celebrating roald dahl’s 100th birthday with a foodie alphabet and an orange raspberry victoria sponge

#53 in an ongoing series of posts celebrating the alphabet.

HAPPY ROALD DAHL DAY!

It’s time to polish off a few tummyticklers, plushnuggets and globgobblers. Wash it all down with a big tall glass of frobscottle and you’re all set (no whizzpopping, please).🙂

I was actually introduced to Roald Dahl’s writing by one of my high school students in Wimbledon. Danny M. (who made good chocolate chip cookies and scoped out a yummy bagel shop in Queensway) raved about a collection of Dahl’s adult short stories called Kiss Kiss. Though I do not have a taste for the macabre, I found the stories addictive and loved the surprise endings.

After I read as much of his adult fiction as I could find, I moved on to Dahl’s children’s books, impressed by the eyebrow-raising irreverence and sardonic wit, delighted by the clever, inventive wordplay and generous servings of lickswishy, delumptious treats. He was unlike any author I’d read in my childhood. There was nothing Pollyanna or namby pamby about any of his magical stories, and I liked his recurring themes of child empowerment, justice and retribution. He made it okay to be a nonconformist, appealing to the inner rebel in all of us.

Whenever I’m asked about my favorite food-related children’s books, the first that comes to mind is Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.  Here was every child’s dream come true — a world where everything was sweet and edible. I want my own Oompa-Loompas, and even if Mr. Wonka wouldn’t approve, just once I’d like to drink from his river of hot melted chocolate.

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just my type x 2

#46 in an ongoing series of posts celebrating the alphabet

Hey there, Font Freaks! Why the long typeface?

I’ve got just the thing to titillate your Times New Roman. That’s right — a double platter of tippy top typography today! (Say that fast five times.)

Those of us in love with the alphabet usually love to play with our fonts — after all, there’s one for every mood, every emotion, every occasion, every whim.

When I first set up this blog two years ago, I changed the standard fonts that came with my template. You’re now looking at Fertigo Pro in the blog title, Adelle for headings,  Slab for general text. They all seemed friendlier somehow.

Lately, I’ve been quite partial to Lucida Bright or Bookman Old Style when drafting new stories in Word. I’m surprised how anti-creative some fonts can be (sorry, Impact). And I still don’t get all the flack about Comic Sans or Courier. Neither has ever stolen my chocolate.🙂

On to today’s offerings.

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First Bite

Behold the delightful work of art student Pranita Kocharekar of Mumbai, India. She’s studying typography and recently designed this wonderful illustrative typeface called, “Bird Watching,” which earned her a 2013 Typographer of the Year Award. She used upper and lower case A-Z, 0-9, and some punctuation, and she’s thinking of selling bags and vests featuring the design. Yay!

Pranita also created this delightful story called Lost in Typeland, which features two characters who befriend each other, the famous typeface Bodoni and a little girl. Too cool. Be sure to click here to read the entire story and view Pranita’s portfolio.

typeland two

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Second Bite

Check out this clever paper-letter animated short, “The History of Typography,” created by Ontario-based graphic designer Ben Barrett-Forrest. It consists of 291 paper letters, 2,454 photographs, and required 140 hours of work! So amazing, Bravo!

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There now, didn’t it feel good to get your Garamond on?

I love me a good font feast.

Ahhhhhh — to serif or not to serif, that is the question.🙂

♥ More Alphabetica here.

P.S. Take the quiz: “What Font Are You?”

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alphabet iconCertified authentic alphabetica. Handmade just for you with love and 26 of your best friends in natty upper and lower case.

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Copyright © 2013 Jama Rattigan of Jama’s Alphabet Soup. All rights reserved.

tasting the abc’s of fruits and vegetables and beyond by steve charney and david goldbeck

#46 in on ongoing series of posts celebrating the alphabet.

carrot (2) 500

Food + ABCs together in one book — what could be better?

Steve Charney and David Goldbeck serve up a fun and delectable two course meal sure to satisfy a variety of appetites in The ABC’s of Fruits and Vegetables and Beyond (Ceres Press, 2007). This alphabet book with extended activities contains just the right ingredients to feed hungry minds and hopefully get kids excited about incorporating more fruits and veggies in their diet.

abcs food

In Part One, (the first “course”), Charney presents a chewy, crunchy, giggle-inducing platter of rhyming alphabet poems (E is for Eggplant, K is for Kiwi, W is for Watermelon). Each page turn showcases one letter/one fruit/one veggie with a photo set against a bold-colored background on one side, and the illustrated poem on the other.

IMG_0352

The focus is on familiar, kid-friendly produce as well as the more elusive Jicama, Quince, Ugli®, and Xemenia (a wild yellow plum from Africa). Food-related extras like Vanilla, Herbs, Farmer, and Organic round out the menu.  Littlest munchkins will enjoy the lively, comical poems and poring over the cartoony illustrations, perhaps not realizing they are consuming lots of ‘good-for-you’ facts at the same time.

abcs food2

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love me some typography

#44 in an ongoing series of posts celebrating the alphabet.

Was cruising around the web recently and found some cool examples of typography art. I get excited enough just appreciating different fonts that are doing nothing in particular except forming words, but when I see letters showing off their best acrobatics to create images, shapes, and textures, I’m a total goner. Click on the images below to access their web sources, some of which contain even more amazing pieces. Enjoy!

via WebyLife
via WebyLife
via Raychno21
Bicycle Typogram by Aaron Kuehn (click to enlarge)
via Design Swan

And my favorite:

via Design Swan

Brilliant!

♥ More alphabetica here.

Certified authentic alphabetica. Made by hand just for you with love and tantalizing typography.

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Copyright © 2012 Jama Rattigan of Jama’s Alphabet Soup. All rights reserved.

eudora welty: enamoured with the alphabet

#43 in an ongoing series of posts celebrating the alphabet.

from The Absurd ABC by Walter Crane, 1874 (click to see entire book)

Love this quote by Eudora Welty:

I live in gratitude to my parents for initiating me–and as early as I begged for it, without keeping me waiting–into knowledge of the word, into reading and spelling, by way of the alphabet. They taught it to me at home in time for me to begin to read before starting school. My love for the alphabet, which endures, grew out of reciting it but, before that, out of seeing the letters on the page. In my own story books, before I could read them for myself I fell in love with various winding, enchanted-looking initials drawn by Walter Crane at the head of fairy tales. In “Once upon a time,” an “o” had a rabbit running it as a treadmill, his feet upon flowers. When the day came years later for me to see the Book of Kells, all the wizardry of letter, initial, and word swept over me a thousand times, and the illumination, the gold, seemed a part of the world’s beauty and holiness that had been there from the start.

from The Book of Kells (800 A.D.)

Sigh. I know just how she feels ☺.

♥ More alphabetica here.

Certified authentic alphabetica. Made by hand just for you with love and illumination.

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Copyright © 2012 Jama Rattigan of Jama’s Alphabet Soup. All rights reserved.