Saturday, March 6, 2010

clothespin doll giveaway

I just tinkered two clothespin dolls. This one reminds me of The City Mouse (from the classic fable, The Country Mouse and the City Mouse) because she is quite fancy with her white legs and printed "blouse."

Background illustrations from The Country Mouse and The City Mouse Illustrated by Laura Lydecker, Alfred A. Knopf, 1987

This would be The Country Mouse, or doll. She's a bit gussied-up herself but her earthtones, vest and satchel say fashionably rural to me.

Posing my clothespin girls against backdrops, I can't help but think of favorite books from my childhood and how their illustrations continue to inspire me in many ways.

Sleeping Beauty Pictures by T. Izawa and S. Hijikata, Grosset & Dunlap, 1969, 1971

The beautiful cover of this Sleeping Beauty book could have provided my very first GASP!

Click to enlarge

I continue to be fascinated by all of the detail: the tiny cluster of garlic, buckets, baskets and pots, savory beef!

Little Red Riding Hood by T. Izawa and S. Hijikata, Grosset & Dunlap, 1967, 1971

I bought these at a school book fair or bookmobile (remember those?). The $1.00 price tags are still on each cover.

Looks like "Grandmother" was a follower of cottage style ... and crafty, too.

Little Red Riding Hood Told and illustrated by Elizabeth Orton Jones, Golden Press, 1948

My sisters remind me that Little Red Riding Hood was my favorite story and that I had many different versions, like this Golden Book. I always loved the above illustration for the pretty detail. What rustic elegance, farmhouse style!

The Surprise Doll Story by Morrell Gipson, illustrations by Steffie Lerch, Wonder Books, 1949

Another favorite is The Surprise Doll, the story of a determined girl named Mary who has a doll for every day of the week but Sunday. When Mary's father refuses to bring her a seventh, she (rather defiantly) brings all of her dolls to a toymaker so that he can create a surprise doll for her.

Mary's six dolls were all brought to her from different countries by her sea captain father; they all wear different outfits traditional to their homeland and at the time, some of their names sounded very exotic to me.

Miffy at the seaside Dick Bruna, Follett Publishing Company, 1970

My oldest sister Betsy brought me Miffy books from her first visit to France.

I still love the bold colors and simplicity.

Miffy's Birthday Dick Bruna, Methuen & Co Ltd, 1971

And besides, who had a better birthday chair than Miffy?

A Child's Year Joan Walsh Anglund, A Golden Book, 1992

The illustrations of Joan Walsh Anglund were a definite influence on my own drawings. I actually bought this book as an adult. The children's librarian at my branch knows that I enjoy picture books and will often show me selections she thinks I will like.

Hope I haven't frightened you away with this long and slightly indulgent post.

So, what was your favorite book as a child?

If you would like a chance to win these 2 clothespin dolls, please leave me a comment telling me what your favorite story was ... and probably still is. I will randomly select 1 winner this Tuesday at 12 noon. Sound good?

Happy weekend!



Claudia said...

I feel like a fool since I read all the time - but I don't remember - at least in terms of an illustrated book. My grandmother read to me from a nursery rhyme book - but the exact title...?

The first books I really remember reading and loving were the Little House books - I loved the cover illustrations.

Love your dolls, my friend.


Hearts Turned said...

Lovely post, Elyse! I love children's books--maybe a little too much! My mother and I are both a bit nuts about collecting books with wonderful, sweet vintage images.

I don't even think I could tell you a favorite book if I tried--but I do love all the ones you shared--all such wonderful images!

Hope your weekend is just beautiful!

Karen said...

My favorite book - hands down - was A Room For Kathy. It was about a young girl and her family who were moving into a new house and she was getting her own room. She was soooooo excite! And then something happened and things didn't go as planned and she ended up sharing her room with her little sister because they had to rent out her sister's room to a tenant. And it talks about her feelings through all of this. It was such a good book and I've read it over, and over and over. This - and Heidi! Oh loved Heidi! Then when Little House on the Prairie came out - I couldn't run to the Library fast enough!
There you have it! My favorite books!
:) Great post! I would DEARLY love to win these little clothespin dolls! They sure would find a fun home up in my studio!!!!!!
Have a wonderful weekend!
Hugs! Karen

stefanie said...

What a fun and pretty post...I always love Cinderella when I was small, the whole stepmother

Kelee Katillac said...

I love those clothespin dolls!

Heirlooms For You said...

Sleeping Beauty was mine. But I have to tell you a story of my Granddaughter now 4. Her mother went back to work after 3 months and I kept her. She came very early in the morning so as I got all her things put away and got her first bottle together. I turned on cartoons. ( my oldest granddaughter told me about a baby network so I checked it out.)Any way early in the morning Miffy came on. They never moved their feet when they walked it was so cute. Later on I found 2 Miffy books to this day when she is here and goes to sleep I still have to read her Miffy! To cute. Miffy holds a dear spot in my heart so to see them on your blog was to cool! Thanks for sharing.Carol

Diva Kreszl said...

oh these are just precious! My own favorite story growing up would have to be Cinderella. My favorite to read to my kids, 'If You Give a Mouse a Cookie' !

Vicki said...

Hi, Elyse,
I, too, love children's books. Thank you for sharing some of your favorites. The illustrations are just wonderful!! Your clothespin dolls are cute as can be! I remember my mom reading the Little Golden Books to me each day at naptime. The first book I ever actually read on my own was Pippi Longstocking. I loved her because she was so full of adventure and not afraid of anything. I hope you have a beautiful weekend, my friend! Vicki

Holly- Cutie Pie Cottage said...

Hi, Elyse! I would love to win your little clothes pin dolls! so sweet! Thanks! The Little house books were my favorite series from childhood but I did have a Thumbelina book in the same style as the fairy tale books you posted here! ♥

Unknown said...

Oh what a fun post Elyse!! I love that you used these books like this, you are so clever! I love Miffy too! And Joan Walsh Englund has always been a favorite!! I always loved anything Hello Kitty as a girl (and still do!). I also always loved any book about woodland animals living in mushrooms and such. And fairies, It all fascinated me!

Donna said...

Hi, Elyse,
Those clothes pin dolls are just so cute. When I first saw the first one, I thought you had done "Marilyn in the subway" You should try that one. :)
I always loved fairy tales as a kid. I agree with you about the wonderful illustrations the old books have. I buy them for my granddaughters(and me to enjoy)even today.

Lisa said...

I loved The Secret Garden. There were a few beautiful illustrations in it and boy oh boy, could I imagine the rest. I had that little garden all figured out in my head. I could smell the roses and see the gate. i spent many happy hours reading (and re-reading) that sweet book. :)

Pansy Cottage Girl said...

That was a sweet walk down memory lane. It brought me back to my childhood, remembering things I had forgotten and lost when my family had to move and I had to leave many treasures behind.
hugs to you Tinker~
Popcorn xo

VA Boutique said...

Aahhh how lovely.
I loved the Miffy books when I was little, my oldest sister (who is almost 13 years older than me)always thinks of me when she sees Miffy.
My favourite books when I was little was Snow White & Rose Red ~ I just really loved this book. I did love all the Grimms Fairytales in the Ladybird editions but I think this one is my favourite.


P.S The word verification for me for this comment is bless ~ how lovely is that! I love it when you get proper words! Tee hee

Maureenie said...

What a fun post! I love children's books. I have a four year old and a 5 month old, so we are reading all the time. I want mu girls to have a love of reading as I do. As a child, I loved the "Little Bear" books. all his friends were always there to play with him. I also liked how mother bear was always baking a cake or sewing something for little bear. We now watch "Little Bear" on Nick Jr. and I love their little cottage, and mother bears long dresses with her aprons. Just how a mam bear should look like!

The clothes pins dolls are lovely! And yes, they do look like city girl and country girl.....Very sweet!
Have a great weekend!

LiLi M. said...

My first favorite was Pinkeltje, but you won't know him, so let's say Pippi Longstocking too. Though Dick Bruna is dutch I cannot remember Miffy in my youth, I guess I'm just too old, I will check that! Your books are lovely, I remember Joan Walsh Anglund quite well, I was about 12 when she came into fashion in my country together with Holly Hobby! Nowadays I collect childrens book preferably illustrated too!
Your clothespindolls are exquisite as always! Love LiLi

Brimful Curiosities said...

My mother read a Mother Goose book to us often. It had wonderful illustrations by Eulalie. I found a copy to share with my kids.

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

I love your precious dolls and the books! I collect children's books and enjoy all kinds...but my all time favorite is Heidi. My grandmother read it aloud to me when I was little and it holds a special place in my heart! Thanks! ♥

Free Pretty Things For You said...

Elyse these dolls are tooooo cute!! you know i love your work :)
i been trying to comment all morning but im at my parents house and their internet is horrible :(

My favorite story was one that my g ma would tell us about a little princess with golden shoes :)

Melinda said...

I was hooked on books very early on--thanks to my MOM!
There were so many series I loved to read. We were at the library all the time and then my first "real" job was at that same library!


Michle said...

As a child, my Mom read to me often. I remember a Mother Goose rhythm book that she read to me. Thank you for the give way.


{oc cottage} said...

How cute are they????!!!!!

m ^..^

Lisa said...

Oh you are going to make me pick!! I love the books like you show in the beginning! I just LOVED them. BUT I think ANYTHING by Dr, Seuss would win. The Lorax if you have to have just ONE! I love books. I have ALWAYS loved books! I just found Goodread! It is a super fun site all about books!! Woo-Hoo!
Hugs, Lisa
OH!! Thanks for offering a giveaway!

Sugar Pie said...

Hi Elyse,I love your blog & love books too, thanks to my mum for handing down her love of books to my sister & I & now all of my 10 children love books as well.
the very first book that comes to mind as a child is "Snow White & Rose Red", then Little Bear goes to the Fair" & "Little Bear Flies a Kite". Then I went on to the Enid Blyton books "The Magic Far Away Tree", the list goes on & on. I still love books & each Christmas I try to find a really really really special book to read as a family.
Have a great weekend Elyse & thanks for such a sweet give away.

Hugs Robyn xx

Maryjane-The Beehive Cottage said...

Darling post, darling dolls! They are so sweet!

As a child I had all the sweet Golden Books, but my favorite book as a young woman was "Little Women". It will forever be my all time favorite! I also have all three movies made of it, strating in 1933.

Love you Elyse!

Jenny's Place Online said...

Elyse, I would have to say a book which originally belonged to my mother (and I still have), called Peg's Fairy Book is my favourite. No, the choice of book wasn't intentional. The illustrations are really beautiful. Happy Crafting, Jenny

Anonymous said...

Adorable you are so creative and sweet imagination.

Theresa said...

Oh precious little dolls! I loved Little Red Riding Hood too but my favorite little book was "The Three Pigs"! Enjoyed the walk back thru these stories! Have a blessed day Dear Friend!

★Carol★ said...

I think I have to try to find those copies of Sleeping Beauty and Little Red Riding Hood! The pictures are just amazing! Love your clothespin dolls. They are so sweet!
It's so hard to choose a favorite from childhood. I always loved Hansel and Gretel, Little Red Riding Hood, The Three Little Pigs, and Cinderella.
Thank you for a chance to win your dolls, and Happy Sunday!

Cathy said...

Hi Elyse,

Just dropping by to say "hi" and Happy Sunday. Love this post. I think my favorite book as a child was "The Secret Garden". But I really loved "Cinderella" too.

Hope you are enjoying our warm weather.

xo Cathy

Toby Tea Cozy said...

I Loved Enid Blyton's Sleepytime tales, I have always remembered the 5 vowels by the little girl in the story's dolls, Anna, Enid, Iris, Olaf and Una!

Kerrie said...

So cute, love them all and the illustrations. Kerrie

Irma's Rose Cottage said...

What a cute post! Love your clothespin dolls, there are sooo cute!
I guess my favorite book was Bambi.

Irma :) said...

I know it sounds weird but Goldilocks is still my favourite. I cant help it! Thanks for the giveaway.

Marilyn said...

My fav story to read to my kids was Morris the Moose has a Cold. Does anyone else remember this? We all loved it...can't remmebr who wrote it though.

Marilyn said...

For some reason I am having trouble with google.. is anyone else? I am Marilyn at Lavender Cottage

shabbyfufu said...

Hi Elyse, so glad that you are happy with your win on my blog! As for childbooks I loved anything and everything that I could get my hands on, and was fortunate that we lived close enough to the library back then to walk! Is anyone out there old enough to remember the book "Millions Of Cats"? A fave that I read to my own children when they were small.

Love the clothespin dolls, which is something else nostalgic to my own childhood days! ~xo~Janet

debi said...

What a fun post Elyse! And a VERY sweet giveaway! I love your storybook clothespin girls!

My favorite book as a child was 'Charlotte's Web'. I read it to all of my children, and bought both the book and movie, as an adult. Still love it today!

I even have a pig in my back garden that looks like Wilbur! LOL

Hugs, Debi

Anonymous said...

Because I thought I would be an artist when I grew up, I remember the pictures--more than the words. I loved Garth Williams' illustrations in The Giant Golden Book of Elves and Fairies.


Anonymous said...

So right to my heart - these were the books I loved as a child, and went back to ebay and bought as an adult - the only one you're missing from my list would be "Big Susan"....Christy,

cdrunyon said...

I am looking for the perfect clothespins to hang my ceiling to floor silk drapery panels. My husband is furious that I chose sweeping silk panels. It has caused such horrible disharmony. So, I thought the city mouse and country mouse clothes pins would look nice with my taupe diamond pattern draperies. I am trying to put the draperies on a tight silver metal fairly heavy gauge wire. The draperies are not meant to go across the room as we have a sweeping sound view. So, I want a drapery in each corner, and one hanging in the center. I am not crafty at all. Does anyone have any suggestions to help me convince my husband that draperies can hang ceiling to floor and don't need to be drawn all the way across the room? He also says I am ridiculous to think that I can do this without a valance. I don't want all that busy-ness. The only busy thing I would like are wonderful clothes pins. Am I crazy, as he says?