Quarto's Jacqui Small prepares to step down

Quarto's Jacqui Small prepares to step down

Jacqui Small, group publisher of the eponymous Quarto imprint, is preparing to step down from her full-time role at the end of the year, which will also see the closure of the list after nearly 20 years.

The lifestyle list focused on interiors, food and drink, crafts and gardening will publish in winter 2017 and for the last time in spring 2018. The first book on the imprint was released in 1998 before the list was acquired by Quarto in 2004.

Small will then become publisher at large for Quarto, collaborating on "special projects and titles" with the publisher in a "flexible" arrangement. The publisher confirmed Small's role was not being replaced.

There is no hard timeline for Small to move from full- to part-time, although work on her fall and spring titles should be completed by January/February.


Some of the titles Small published

“I feel so grateful to have worked with such talented people over the years to produce beautiful books that I will be proud of forever," Small said. "Our spring 2018 programme is very exciting and I am committed to publishing it successfully, while also looking forward to a new chapter in my life and career. I know that my authors are in good hands at Quarto and I shall look forward to collaborating with the team in the UK and the US in the future – just not full-time!”

Quarto said Small's books were renowned for their "authoritative" content, "high-quality" design and "mouth-watering" photography. She has published over 250 titles over the course of her career, sold into more than 40 countries in over 25 languages, and worked with expert authors such as interior guru Kelly Hoppen, florist Paula Pryke, and Michelin star chef Pierre Koffmann.

Bestsellers on the imprint have included 2012's Honestly Healthy by Natasha Corrett and 2014's Patisserie by master chocolatier William Curley. Among key titles on 2017's list are Have Your Cake and Eat It by Little Venice Cake Company founder Mich Turner, Cook Yourself Happy - The Danish Way by Caroline Fleming and Thoughtful Gardener by Jinny Blom.


Small with authors Mich Turner (left) and Kelly Hoppen

Small started out as a designer by trade, beginning at a design agency working on advertising and marketing for fashion houses, wine merchants and publishers. She stepped fully into the publishing world after Mitchell Beazley hired her to manage marketing for its list, comprising books about wine as well as reference books, which was where she launched Millers Antiques Price Guide before establishing her own lifestyle list. When the company was sold to Reed, she and David Peters decided to start their own company - Ryland, Peters & Small. Jacqui Small Publishing was born three years later in partnership with Aurum Press and subsequently became part of Quarto in 2004. 

Marcus Leaver, chief executive of The Quarto Group, paid tribute to Small and her "extraordinary" career, promising her legacy would live on as the company now worked on "the best transition for her list going forward".

“Jacqui’s career is an extraordinary achievement. She has created a unique style through her ability to spot emerging lifestyle trends and her passion for publishing excellence. All of us at Quarto feel incredibly lucky to have had her as a colleague, mentor and friend. Her legacy will live on as we work together on the best transition for her list going forward," he said.

Koffmann, whose book won the James Beard Award, said it had been "an absolute pleasure" to work with Small, while Curley, patissier and chocolatier, said: “Working with Jacqui has always been about striving for perfection. Every element of each book is meticulously produced, while promoting creativity and innovation. I will always be grateful to Jacqui for believing in what I do and enabling me to create my dream books. All of which I am immensely proud of.”

Small with Michelin star chef Pierre Koffmann