is a cute book in the vein of the Brambley Hedge books. The main difference between the two series is that the Foxwood books include different types of animals living in the community instead of the all mice residents of Brambley Hedge.
The Foxwood titles were released as small individual titles and then later as two big collections of stories. This is one of the smaller books. I picked it up because I love little anthromorphic animals, what a shocker. The illustrations are really cute and I love the style. Also all the different little animals.
Like these hedgehogs at the beginning of Treasure. That stone stove is incredible. Take a look at momma hedgehogs prickles sticking through her hat — how precious is that?
This series definitely came after the Brambley books; proof of that is clearly shown in the jars of jam that are so ubiquitous in the “mouse books”. That aside, the Foxwood books have their own charm and the stories are fun and interesting. The settings are adorable.
Foxwood Treasure starts with Willy the hedgehog being bored and going to visit his grandpa. He and his friends Rue Rabbit and Harvey Mouse are with Grandpa when they find out that the villagers are trying to raise funds to build a village hall. They decide they should do something to help raise money.
So they go to the library to learn how villagers have made money in the past. I love this library picture! Look at all those little drawers at the base of the shelves. Look at that post and beam construction. A big table to read books at; Wow! If I had a space like this to keep my books in I’d be in heaven.
Anyway back to our story. The kids learn that one of the most successful villagers of the past had an inn where he sold a special lemonade made from his secret recipe.
So off they go to find and search the (now defunct) old inn. After some adventures, they discover the location of Fox Hall (it was hidden and secret), find the recipe and give it to the village as a whole.
So they have a party at the newly re-opened Old Fox Inn.
So if you like little animals wearing clothes who live in their own village and are all friends and love to eat, drink and be merry; you should check out this lovely little series of stories/books about the denizens of Foxwood.
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A particular passion of mine is little dishes. Children’s or doll’s dishes, pots and pans and all things kitchen. So it makes sense that I also am quite fond of little cookbooks. Like this vintage Little Golden Book:
Susie’s New Stove is cute, that’s it just plain cute. My copy is a bit grungy but still cute.
Susie, who is cute as a button, has just gotten a brand spanky new toy stove — which in those days was a little metal electrical stove that did get very hot and really cook things. Which was a bunch of fun, I had a vintage one of these little stoves when I was little and we had bunches of fun using it. Mine looked more 1920s and stood up on curvy legs.
Learning to cook is a process, like learning to do anything is. First you put on your apron so that not only do you look good (so important) but so you don’t goop up your clothes.
Then you decide what to make and look up (or ask your mother) what you need to make it. This is my favorite recipe from this book:
You’ll notice it’s not so much cooking as heating up things. And that the essential last step is to turn off the stove. We don’t want to leave a hot little thing to accidentally start any fires. Or melt any of our play children.
This is the table of contents. It is the last page of the book, sort of ironic placement. Which is the menu for Susie’s Daddy’s birthday meal which he says is delicious. (He’s one of those great dads these storybook children always get.) Actually my Dad was pretty happy with all the little things I cooked but I remember mostly making grilled cheese sandwiches and chicken noodle soup from a can. My stove was big enough to put a small real saucepan over both burners to make a whole can of soup — boo-yah!
This last picture is Susie and Mike getting ready to cook a real dinner on the real stove. Ha!
Reading over this post it’s pretty obvious that I’m trying fairly desperately to find a way to feel a little cheeriness/happiness in what seems like an increasing wack-a-doo world. This week I chose to think about silly little food. And cute aprons.
So though it was in a totally disjointed awkward way I hope I gave you a moments respite from the real world.
Remember, more silliness over on Pinterest.
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No, I’m not a Grinch or anything like that. It’s just that I’ve been crazy busy and sick with the flu on top of everything.
So here I am, better late than never, wishing all of you the happiest of holiday seasons and the best of all things in the New Year.
I chose this picture for this year because of it combines the sophisticated faerie with her art nouveu/deco feel with the sweet innocence of the pretty children. And bonus, it has a wonderful tree covered in old-timey decorations.
Last word: Just remember not to eat anything bigger than your head.
Posted in ephemera, faerie, illustration, inspiration | Tagged holiday, illustration, inspiration, vintage | Leave a Comment »
Do you love fabric? Do you wish you could get custom printed fabric (or gift wrap or wallpaper)?
Well that is just what Spoonflower is/does.
And right now they are having a wonderful event. 2nd chance at 2 for 1 Fat Quarters of Fabric. Now until noon EST December 16. Effectively it’s actually 50% off Fat Quarters because when you get to your cart even if you have odd numbers they are all at 50% of regular price.
Usually they do this sale once a year — in November. This year I finally branched out from basic cotton and jersey and got some silk (real silk not polyester) and cotton sateen. They are gorgeous.
They have some truly lovely designs for sale. Just make sure to look at large pieces in the preview as not all designs repeat as well as others. Make sure you like the repeat before ordering.
This are some the currently trending designs:
And a few (OK more than a few) of the designs from my favorites:
(I ordered a fat quarter of micro20 after klimt in silk and it is amazing – more pastel than the preview but amazing.) And the captain owl doll in linen canvas (8″ swatch is 1 doll).
I ordered some dotd skulls black medium in linen canvas last year to make a new skull handbag. Still haven’t made it yet but I’ve got the fabric. Hah!
Yup, I bought the tiny steampunk octopuses and the exterminate 25cm fabrics this year.
I strongly advise creating an account so that you can make a favorites list; that way when there is a sales event so you’ve got them all in one easy to shop place. I didn’t do this the first year and figuring out what I wanted to order was both time-consuming and frustrating. Still worth it but boy did it eat up time.
Posted in accessory, costume, fabric, Spoonflower, Uncategorized | Tagged fabric, Spoonflower | Leave a Comment »
Miss Suzy by Miriam Young, pictures by Arnold Lobel, 1964.
Miss Suzy is a book that makes me feel all warm and safe. So I decided that today is the day to share it with all of you. It is Ucky outside! The story is about a lady squirrel who lives in a lovely tree house and gets chased out by a nasty squirrel gang. Then she ends up spending the winter in the attic of a house living in an old doll house. She befriends a group of toy soldiers who, in the spring, chase the squirrel gang out of her house. And they all live happily ever after.
It has printed endpapers, which (as I have said before) I just love.
Here she is in her house in the tree. It is a most charming house in a lush full autumnal-ish tree. It’s golden and inviting. I think that Miss Suzy’s house would make a spectacular doll house even though just the thought of creating at least the top part of the tree with the house is an extremely daunting prospect. Still, it would make an awesome doll house so it would be worth all the work.
Has anybody made this house? Does anybody want to besides me?
Here she is cooking and cleaning. Her furnishings are minimal and made of the sorts of things a squirrel might find lying around outdoors. Note that the firefly lamps contain real live fireflies, I’m assuming she swaps them out every day or so that she isn’t keeping them caged until they die. She is after all, a kindly squirrel lady.
Miss Suzy tucked up warm and cosy in her bed. Don’t you just want to climb in there and go to sleep?
This is the doll house where she lives for the winter. She found the group of toy soldiers while exploring the attic for things she could use. They had been waiting a long time for someone to find them and play with them. So it worked out well for all of them and they spent the long winter together.
I love the illustrations in this book. The full color images are jewel-like and the limited color images balance the color pictures so that you don’t overload on color and become desensitized to it. By combining both types of pictures the book ends up being more than the sum of it’s parts.
I hope that you have enjoyed Miss Suzy, and remember if you want your own copy it turns up on Ebay and Amazon Marketplace regularly at reasonable prices. (No, I don’t get a cut — I just like to see good books find their people.)
Posted in book, doll house, illustration, Uncategorized | Tagged animals, book, illustration, vintage | Leave a Comment »
Love those little goblins peaking out from behind the big pumpkin moon.
And a silly spooky Blythe dress:
Yes, that is my handy dandy headless Blythe body which I got so I could fit patterns on it without risking scratching a great big Blythe noggin.
About a week or so ago I was doing some recreational browsing, which is kinda like retail therapy except you don’t generally buy anything. When I spotted this cool small scale skull fabric and thought I have got to make something out of that, at the counter I noticed that it had a tag on the bolt that said “Glow-in-the-Dark”. So I bought some and went home, dug thru my pattern stash and decided to make this yoked dress. Then I did a little google search to see if anyone made glow-in-the-dark thread and found out that DMC does. Wow! Back to the fabric store to get some and also pick up some lace for the bottom of the dress. A few, well several, hours later — ta da, Spooky Blythe Halloween dress.
Which I posted off to Arlene, who got the package, opened it, picked up the phone and Sqwee! She really liked it. Photo of her doll wearing the dress properly accessorized to come later.
A note about that DMC floss: it’s from their Light Effects collection and it’s number E940. It looks white in daylight but it Glows-in-the-Dark. Hooray! Also it’s made of polyester not cotton which means it’s fiddley to work with so for what it’s worth here are my tips for use. Use shorter lengths than you would for cotton floss, this stuff likes to unwind and tangle. Also try to only touch the needle not the floss as this stuff snags on everything, my hands aren’t the smoothest but they aren’t that rough and the floss kept catching on my fingers. Polyester floss is a booger to stitch with until you get the hang of it, but the final effect is worth it.
UPDATE: Here are Arlene’s Blythe dolls all dressed up for Halloween.
Posted in costume, doll, ephemera, tool, Uncategorized | Tagged Blythe, doll clothes, ephemera | Leave a Comment »