1. The perfect way to welcome Fall is with a beautiful giclée archival print by Vermont-based author/illustrator Ashley Wolff. Part of a small series based on the linocut illustrations from her Baby Bear Counts One picture book, this print has hand-applied gold accents, making it look like a gouache original. It’s 13″ x 19″ and comes signed, titled, and numbered (Limited Edition of 100 pieces).
Here’s another charmer from the same series:
Shop for these and other goodies at Ashley’s Etsy Shop!
2. New Book Alert!! Look what’s coming out on September 26! A new middle grade novel by Sara Lewis Holmes! Isn’t the cover gorgeous?
I first “met” Sara between the pages of her prize-winning debut novel, Letters from Rapunzel (HarperCollins, 2007), which revealed her penchant for fairy tales, quests, and happy endings. The Wolf Hour (Arthur A. Levine Books. 2017) sounds positively magical and compelling:
A girl. A wolf. A red cape. And . . . pigs? In the vein of A Tale Dark and Grimm, this gorgeously written, endlessly surprising retelling explores the stories and wildness that define us. Welcome, my little lambs, to the Puszcza. It’s an ancient forest, a keeper of the deepest magic, where even the darkest fairy tales are real. Here, a Girl is not supposed to be a woodcutter. Or be brave enough to walk alone. Here, a Wolf is not supposed to love to read. Or be curious enough to meet a human. And here, a Story is nothing like the ones you read in books, for the Witch can make the most startling tales come alive. All she needs is a Girl from the village, a Wolf from the forest, and a woodcutter with a nice, sharp axe. So take care, little lambs, if you step into these woods. For in the Puszcza, it is always as dark as the hour between night and dawn — the time old folk call the Wolf Hour. If you lose your way here, you will be lost forever, your Story no longer your own. You can bet your bones.
Prepare to be enchanted. I can’t wait! Congratulations, Sara!!
3. Attention Laura Ingalls Wilder fans! This past summer I read the most wonderful blog post by award winning author Sonia Gensler, where she describes how her mother and grandmother surprised her one Christmas by sewing a complete wardrobe based on Laura’s wedding trousseau in These Happy Golden Years. Wow!
Every day while Sonia was away at school, these two “mothers of invention” got busy adapting Barbie dress patterns by poring over dress descriptions in the book and cross-referencing them with the old fashioned styles in a reproduction 1900 Sears Roebuck catalog. They even made some undergarments!
What beautiful work, and I can well imagine how thrilled Sonia was when she opened her present on Christmas morning and saw these dresses. That they have stood the test of time — after being played with by many small hands — speaks for how well they were made and how carefully Sonia has preserved them. In her post, she describes everything in enchanting detail and includes the passages from Wilder’s book that inspired the dresses.
Her heartwarming post, a lovely tribute to her mother and grandmother, will definitely make you smile. 🙂
She’s been giving us peeks of new pieces on Facebook and I simply had to share. She works with acrylics, mixed media, and collage on canvas, paper and wood. Love the gorgeous colors and textures, and the inclusion of text, making for creations of stunning whimsical beauty. Her themes of love and nature sing of a happy heart. Subscribe to her newsletter to be among the first to hear about new pieces for sale!
5. Tippy toes, tap tap. Who doesn’t love CUTE SHOES!? Have you seen the adorable styles at Hot Chocolate Design?
I admit I’ve always loved mary janes — so girlish and feminine. HC sells a slew of fun flats, platforms and heels for women and girls.
Choose from a matching pair, or a “mismatched” but complementary pair. And yes, I do love the foodie ones — bacon and eggs, cherries, popcorn, pineapple, strawberry.
For schoolish types, check out these:
Even if you don’t buy anything, it’s worth a trip to their website just to see all the possibilities. Perfect gift for the person who has everything. 🙂
6. Couch potatoes may be passé, but hot dog couches are in. Leave it to the Europeans to elevate junk food into high art. Behold Studio Job’s newest creation:
So hot, it’s not even on the market yet. Being exhibited at a fancy art and design show in Paris even as we speak. However, Italian firm Seletti will be selling them in the not too distant future.
Tube steak not to your liking? How about a hamburger chair?
Definitely WANT. I relish both pieces :D!
7. What do you mean you’re hungry? Again? Didn’t you just eat something yesterday?
Well, okay. Lego your egg . . .o! Yeah, I’m a stop motion animation freak.
8. I’ve never been one to sew my own clothes, but I had a brief fling with embroidery in my youth. I loved learning how to make french knots and chain stitches, how to block and frame a piece of finished embroidery. Though my skills are nothing to brag about, I enjoy looking at the samplers I made years ago that hang in our home today. And I love watching films or seeing paintings of genteel upper class women sitting in their parlors doing needlework. 🙂
Recently “discovered” the work of Israeli illustrator and needlework artist Tamar Nahir Yanai via an Etsy interview this past July. Her backstory is interesting: after working as a graphic designer for years, she began illustrating children’s books. This led to selling paper goods featuring her illustrations, and after people started requesting permission to create embroidered versions of her art, she decided to try her hand at embroidery.
Now she sells wonderful embroidery kits and patterns along with her line of notebooks, cards, and prints. She views illustration and embroidery as complementary art forms and she obviously excels at both. Love her delicate, feminine style — so calming and pretty! Visit her Etsy Shop for more.
9. Last, but certainly not least, today is the official release date for Amy Ludwig VanDerwater’s new poetry picture book, Read!, Read!, Read! illustrated by Ryan O’Rourke! Hooray!
Twenty-three poems capture the joys of reading from that thrilling moment when a child first learns to decipher words to the excitement that follows in reading everything from road signs to field guides to internet articles to stories. These poems also explore what reading does, lyrically celebrating how it opens minds, can make you kind, and allows you to explore the whole world. Ryan O’Rourke’s rich artwork beautifully captures the imagination and playfulness in these poems.
Can’t wait to get my sticky paws on this one. Heartfelt Congratulations to Amy and Ryan!!
Okey dokey. Wait. What do you mean you’re hungry? What, again? Weren’t those Lego eggos enough for you?
Well, I do have a pic to share that I saw on FB recently that made me happy: James Taylor making pizza. Sigh. It’s not enough that this multi-talented man makes delicious pecan pies every Thanksgiving. Pizza, too? Invite me over, please.
Well of course now we MUST hear a JT song. Turn it up!
Sigh again. Needed that.
Now, do have a good Tuesday, a great week, and Happy Autumn on Friday!
Copyright © 2017 Jama Rattigan of Jama’s Alphabet Soup. All rights reserved.