Bryony van der Merwe

Bryony van der Merwe – Designer

I am an award-winning children's book designer and have worked in the publishing industry for 24 years. I love creating picture books.


Whether you are publishing traditionally through a publishing house, printing at an offset printer, or delving into the exciting world of self-publishing, I can guide you through the process of turning your story into an awesome book.

Whether you have your illustrations ready and are looking for text placement and cover design, or whether you only have the text and aren’t sure what to do next – get in touch, and I’ll talk you through the next steps.

I treat every client and manuscript individually and go out of my way to deliver a quality product. English is my native language, and I pride myself on being friendly, open, and honest.

I can design ebooks, softcover, and hardcover books for all platforms. I also work closely with an illustrator.

Message me if you have any queries.

Some 5-star client reviews:
Kris Dunn Troiano, "I have worked with Bryony on five of my children's books, and I am always so happy with her work. She is a professional and excellent at what she does. She helped turn my children's books into books that are easier for children to read and fun due to the way she added beautiful colors to some of the text on each page, and she recommended a book size that I would not have thought to use which makes my books look much better. She knows how to add the right book design touch to get your books to market. I will hire her again for my sixth and seventh books."

Diana Salas, "Bryony did an amazing job!!!! I have no words to describe how wonderful job she did. I feel very fortunate to have had the opportunity to work with Bryony on my first book. Bryony did everything she describes in her info; her timeliness, quality and professionalism exceeded my expectations. I am really happy with the results. This is my first book and she helped me and guided in a very kind manner. I highly recommend her work."

Sandy McBride, "Bryony was a joy to work with, she captured my vision for this book exactly as i pictured it being. She was patient and very professional and kind, as this was my first attempt at publishing a book. I am thankful I was able to work with her on this project."

Children’s Non-Fiction
Picture Books
  • One Drop, Endless Ripples by Jayshree L Patel: Purple Dragonfly Book Award, Second Place – Best Interior Design
  • Winston the Travelling Dog, Book 1 by Cynthia Anne FineFrock First Place Purple Dragonfly Book Award
  • Winston the Travelling Dog, Book 1 by Cynthia Anne FineFrock, Readers' Favorite Five Star Review Award
  • Namibia Children’s Book Forum (NCBF) Gold Award for My First Book of Namibian Mammals by Olga Kausch, 2018
  • Namibia Children’s Book Forum (NCBF) Gold Award for Sumbu by Romeo Sinkala, 2018
  • Namibia Children’s Book Forum (NCBF) Silver Award for Keepers of Equilibria by Noreen Arangies, 2018
  • Namibia Children’s Book Forum (NCBF) Special Recommendation for The Big Adventure by Terah Lee, 2018
  • Namibia Children’s Book Forum (NCBF), Gold Award for When you dance with the crocodile by Erna Müller, 2012
  • Namibia Children’s Book Forum (NCBF) Gold Award for The Most Important Book by Noreen Arangies, 2012

Work experience


Jan, 2020 — Present

Over the past 2 years, I have designed and edited over 700 children's picture books for a variety of clients.

The Namibia Collection

Jan, 2016 — Present

Together with Projects and Promotions, we have developed a range of books for the Namibian tourist market. These include several fiction and non-fiction children's books.

Wordweaver Publishing House

Jan, 2012 — Dec, 2015 (almost 4 years)

I founded and ran this publishing, eventually selling it in 2015. During my time here, I designed and published over 30 titles. Several of my children's book won awards.

Macmillan Namibia

Jan, 2000 — Dec, 2004 (almost 5 years)

Editing, designing, and layout books, book covers, calendars and posters. Many of the children's books I worked on were for the educational market.

The Namibian Newspaper

Jan, 1998 — Dec, 1999 (almost 2 years)

Layout of newspaper and advertisement, researching and writing articles, proofreading articles written by other journalists at the newspaper.


Sumo Sam

Hanna, Judith

Here Comes Dwight

Mustafa, Naim

The Nogre

Clement, Dick

Berries for Hedgehog

Neville, Nettie

All About 2020

Press, Wooster Street

Winston the Traveling Dog

Finefrock, Cynthia Anne

Bryony has 4 reviews





Brad H.

Brad H.

Mar, 2024

I can’t say enough good about my experience with Bryony! She took the extra step of inviting me to a meeting to review my project - something no other pro on Reedsy did. And she was lightning quick. I was late accepting the offer - waiting for some files on my end from my illustrator. I fully expected the deadline set in the initial offer would be completely off track. No such thing! Bryony...
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michele H.

michele H.

Oct, 2023

Bryony is lovely to work with. She has terrific ideas for design, is flexible and creative. I only have good things to say.
Jessica H.

Jessica H.

Apr, 2023

Love the work! The illustrations are beautiful and she really brought my story to life. I will be hiring again if I write another children’s book !
Paola K.

Paola K.

Mar, 2023

It was wonderful working with Bryony! She did an amazing work on our children’s book cover. We are extremely pleased with how it turned out. She’s been great to communicate with. We look forward to working with her again.

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