5. Percy Drake Brookshaw, 1963 Birthday Postcards

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Kingsway English, Junior Series Book 1 by J.C. Gagg, with drawings by Drake Brookshaw. Published by Evans Brothers Limited, London 1953. This edition published in 1963.

Numbers: 329 – 338

Right, this is the last of them. I’m stopping at five for now. I have also made ones, threes and fours in previous posts.

All of the numbers have been sewn onto pages from the above book which is fifty years old and I ranted on about here.

337 is made from the back cover.

The numbers are made from Del’s purple shirt, which I also used in the Picasso piece. They have been mounted onto yellow card, which I rescued from the bin at work.

If you feel so inclined, you can buy one here. If you wait until 14th and 15th November, 2015, you will get 30% discount. Use the code GOLD50

Have a great weekend,

Alison x

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4. Percy Drake Brookshaw, 1963 Birthday Postcards

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Kingsway English, Junior Series Book 1 by J.C. Gagg, with drawings by Drake Brookshaw. Published by Evans Brothers Limited, London 1953. This edition published in 1963.

Numbers: 321 – 328

Hullo, Children (see 328)!

If you haven’t been following this project, you can find out more about this fifty years old book here. And if you want to see the cards for one and three, click on the links.

Meanwhile, back to the ‘fours’. I’m still using the coloured card, I found in the bin at work, as a mount for the fabric numbers.

The green gingham was given to me by a friend some years ago, before I had my own children. It used to be her daughter’s school uniform. I made her some birthday bunting with it.

The black and white spot is the torn lining of a bag. In fact, from the very bag I took to Lewisham Hospital when I had my son thirteen years ago. Incidentally, Del , whose shirts are featured on earlier numbers, drove us to said hospital with said bag.

Drake Brookshaw comes up trumps again with some beautiful drawings. 324 is my favourite, with the king and the poor man. Mam and Jane are making cakes on 326, with Dad and John nowhere to be seen. And I often wondered why our dog, Jess, used to turn around about fifty thousand times before she finally lay down for the night, and now I know (327).

If you are interested, you can find them in my shop. On 14th and 15th November, 2015, there will be 30% discount. Use the code GOLD50

Alison x

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Madeline In London

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I am making a determined attempt to get some of the ‘old stock’ from under my bed, and into the sale section of my shop. These are cards I made years ago, onto which my former contact details have been written.

‘Madeline in London’ by Ludwig Bemelmans. First published in 1962, but this edition was published by Hippo in 1989.

I have no recollection of acquiring the book, but I’m sure it will have been beyond repair.

I adore Bemelmans, he was something of a maverick. If you are not familiar with the Madeline books, boy they are good. At first glance you are taken in by the beautiful illustrations.

And then you meet Madeline:

‘She was not afraid of mice,

She loved winter, snow, and ice,

To the tiger in the zoo

Madeline just said, “Pooh-Pooh” ‘

Did I mention all of the books rhyme? Except ‘Madeline’, who never quite rhymes. The publishers wanted this changed, but Bemelmans wouldn’t budge. See what I mean? What’s not to like?

Once you know feisty Madeline, you are hooked, she takes no messing. A spunky female role model. A free spirit. She attends a boarding school in Paris. Pepito, the Spanish Ambassador’s son lives next door. In this book, Pepito moves to London and the schoolgirls visit him.

Madeline (who by the way, celebrates her 75th birthday this year) is a character who stays with you, like Pooh, Clarice Bean, Pi and Jesse Pinkman. But I don’t know who I love more, Madeline, or Bemelmans himself.

Bemelmans lived life on his own terms. He was born in 1898 in Austria/Hungry and died in New York City in 1962, at the age of 64. He became an American citizen in 1918. He didn’t start writing until he was 46, and had his first book published when he was 50. Again, what is not to like?

There are many Bemelmans quotes, but this is my favourite, “We are writing for children, but not for idiots.”

See you soon,

Alison x

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For some reason I didn't number this one.

For some reason I didn’t number this one.

 

 

Vintage Ladybird ‘3a Things We Like’

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I am making a determined attempt to get some of the ‘old stock’ from under my bed, and into the sale section of my shop. These are cards I made years ago, onto which my former contact details have been written. They are totally unique and come with a sewn upcycled envelope. As usual, these cards are made from a used food packaging and are super eco-friendly, as everything used was rescued from the bin.

3a Things We Like by W. Murray. Illustrated by John Berry. Published by Ladybird in the early Seventies.

John Berry was a Hammersmith lad, born in 1920. He died four years ago.

He won a Royal Academy Scholarship, but the war prevented him from taking it. He was a war artist and a lot of his work is now housed in The Imperial War Museum.

After the war he painted portraits. He provided a service at Harrods (where else?) whereby you could drop off a photograph and he would reproduce it in oil.

He has illustrated many children’s books, not just Ladybird, but it is Peter and Jane which brought him to my attention.

See you soon,

Alison x

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Vintage Ladybird ‘Fun On The Farm’

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I am making a determined attempt to get some of the ‘old stock’ from under my bed, and into the sale section of my shop. These are cards I made years ago, onto which my former contact details have been written. They are totally unique and come with a sewn upcycled envelope. As usual, these cards are made from a used food packaging and are super eco-friendly, as everything used was rescued from the bin.

4b Fun On The Farm by W. Murray. Illustrated by Harry Wingfield. First published by Ladybird in 1965, not sure when this edition was published, but it cost 24p.

Harry Wingfield died on 5th March, 2002 at the age of ninety-one.

He taught me to read. Not in person, but by making the reading of those relentlessly boring Peter and Jane ‘stories’ more bearable. I loved looking at his illustrations. The family in the pictures were far removed from my own family, but I appreciated those watercolours nevertheless.

He was a freelance illustrator for Ladybird Books for three decades, retiring in the 1980s. He portrayed a wholesome world, without divorce and disobedient children. Jane helped Mummy in the kitchen and Peter helped Daddy with the car.  Although, in the 1970s Jane ditched her pretty frock for jeans. We did that sort of thing in the Seventies.

I loved his work then, and I love it now. He also did some abstract stuff, for the Ladybird Junior Science series.

Laters,

Alison x

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A Postcard I Made From Our 1980’s Christmas Tablecloth

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When I was married, my mam gave me this tablecloth as a gift. It had been the tablecloth she brought out of the airing cupboard every Christmas. It was only ever used for that one meal. So, I’m guessing it had 16 airings.

Mam can’t remember when and where she bought it. It had a bit of a fifties vibe to it, so maybe it was passed down. She can’t remember any details. What she can remember, however, is me cutting a huge hole from the middle of it when I was about 17 (1984 – my Dad was on strike at the time, I’m using this as an excuse) to make myself a scarf-cum-bandanna to tie around my head. There was no print in the middle of the tablecloth,  just plain red – I was going for a kind of New Romantic look. After 1984 it was never used again, obviously. Mam was furious.

When I opened the gift I couldn’t believe it, because annoyingly Mam never keeps anything. She found it in my cupboard at home and thought it would give me a laugh. There it was, complete with hole and gravy stain (she makes the BEST gravy) on one of the candles.

In January 2013, I made six postcards with the candles on the cloth. I have two left.

I have just listed this one in my shop.

The usual rules apply. All of the materials had been discarded (the card is from food packaging), and I did not remove the blemishes left by life.

All of my work is individually numbered, this is 90.

See you tomorrow,

Alison x

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3. The Surprise Party by Pat Hutchins

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Happy October!

I made these postcards some time ago, and either forgot to list them in my shop, or the listing expired and I forgot to renew. The business side of my operation is not my strong point. They don’t teach you to do impromptu giveaways at 8am on a Sunday at Harvard Business School.

So today, and possibly Friday, I am going to try to list some of the stuff sitting in shoe boxes under the bed. The three shown here are now in stock.

They are very, very, very eco-friendly, as everything used in their making was destined for the bin.

They are made from cereal boxes and an old copy of ‘The Surprise Party’ by Pat Hutchins. The book was published in 1972 (Penguin, in association with The Bodley Head), making the front these cards 41 years old. They are not reproductions, they are made from the actual book. I never cut up books which could still be read, this particular copy was rather moldy in places (none of this on the cards, though). I acquired it some years ago, and couldn’t bear to see it thrown away.

Pat Hutchins won a scholarship to Darlington School of Art (a few miles from my home town) in 1958. She has written and illustrated about 50 books, and given countless children lots of pleasure over the years. One of these children was me. I can remember the lovely Mrs. Yates reading this to my class when I was sixish. Mrs. Yates was a hippy, and I loved her. I was totally beguiled by the illustrations. Here was a person who had outlined her images in dark green, not black. Was that allowed? I think I can trace my colourful sewing outlines right back to Pat Hutchins, now I come to think about it.

I am now going to list some Drake Brookshaw number cards.

Alison x

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