(you will love) my milk toof: the adventures of ickle and Lardee

So last week this adorable book magically appeared in my mailbox.

A surprise from my good friend Sylvia, who knows my love for whimsical, quirky things. I usually don’t go out of my way to read about teeth, even though I like my James Taylor-loving, tells-funny-stories dentist who wears crisp plaid shirts and likes to sing while he drills. And I really hadn’t given much thought to the whereabouts of all those baby teeth I handed over to the Tooth Fairy once upon a time.


But now, Inhae Lee’s new book has me wondering. Never in a million years would I have ever considered the possibility that “teeth” could be cute. I know what you’re thinking: there’s cute, and then there’s too cute.  It’s a slippery slope. Not unlike eating something too cold and getting brain freeze, or having your teeth hurt from biting into something too sweet. But Ms. Lee gets it just right.


Maybe you already know ickle and Lardee from the Milk Toof blog, where this very talented Berkeley-based artist has been chronicling tiny teef adventures since 2009:

When I was young, I’d place my baby teeth under my pillow, and when I woke up, I’d find a shiny new quarter. But whatever happened to those little teeth? Where did they go? Would I ever see them again? Many years later, a little tooth was standing at my door. It looked familiar. Its name was ickle. Welcome home, my milk toof!

ickle arrived with three brown suitcases full of little books! Yes, he loves to read, is very curious, likes to nibble on furniture and cuts coupons. Pretty soon, a slightly pudgier toof arrives, Lardee, who loves toys and follows ickle everywhere. The book contains 12 charming escapades — they go swimming, take a bath, even bake cupcakes (what a mess!). The sets and handmade props are brilliant, and their distinctive personalities irresistible. Did you ever think a baby toof could teethe? Stand on teeny pillows? Answer the phone? It makes you want to be tiny like them, to see the world differently.


Here’s a book trailer showing a little about how Inhae creates the teef from polymer clay and sets up shots.

My Milk Toof was released by Chronicle Books just this past Spring and is appropriate for all ages. Perfect gift book for the holidays; I’m giving a copy to my dentist ☺!


Meanwhile, check out this recent ickle and Lardee tale from the Milk Toof blog. Poor Lardee is sick and there’s SOUP involved! ♥love♥

MY MILK TOOF: The Adventures of ickle and Lardee
by Inhae Lee
published by Chronicle Books, March 2011
“a photographic comic” suitable for all ages, 176 pp.
toofbrushes not included ☺



**Photos in this post originally appeared at the My Milk Toof blog, copyright © 2009-2011 Inhae Lee.

Copyright © 2011 Jama Rattigan of Jama’s Alphabet Soup. All rights reserved.

10 thoughts on “(you will love) my milk toof: the adventures of ickle and Lardee

  1. I love this! Much funnier than those books with the peeps. She just doesn’t pose the props, she makes them. A real artist. I’d give anything to have that kind of zany sense of humor.


  2. This book looks hilarious. I also would never have expected to love a book about teeth, but just LOOK at those illustrations. Chronicle publishes some really interesting, fun things.


    1. You’re right about Chronicle. Have loved their books for years — innovative and well-designed. Cool that Inhae was able to garner a wide following via her blog. Another example of someone who wasn’t particularly happy with her day job and decided to follow her passion.


  3. I love those teef. They have Attitude! They are sassy and dramatic! (Like my cat, come to think of it!)


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