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This blog has been retired. I won't respond to any inquiries but have retained it in case it is still of interest to anyone passing by.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Paper Doll Roses

Rose Alice

These cheap 'n cheerful paper dolls gave us hours of fun.  They must have been easy to come by as I have two copies - presumably one belonged to my younger sister Melanie.  Unlike other paper dolls that were obviously carefully cut out for me by my mother, we were clearly left to our own devices with these.  Although we must have attempted to cut them neatly you can see that this is the work of children.  As I have two of everything I have tried to select the better preserved doll and dress in each case.

Once again this is a book that was reprinted more than once with slight variations.  Although cut this particular set is complete.  It did not have any hats or accessories and I can remember finding it strange at the time that one of the dolls does not have a full length ball gown.    
Rose Alice
Rose Ellen
Rose Ellen
Tina Rose
Tina Rose

Pansies and Petunias

I've been having a lot of fun planting in containers - its very rewarding to do something that creates such impact with so little effort.  Petunias and pansies are my favourites, they are so bright and cheerful.

Trees across the road from my house.  Its a lovely tranquil setting.  

Saturday, June 18, 2011

More Ron Embleton Magic

Ron Embleton - Cinderella
More Ron Embleton art can be found at Ron Embleton's Comic Cooks posted 3 Sept 2011.

I decided to postpone the original post I was intending to publish this week after I noticed someone had come across my blog searching for 'Ron Embleton Cinderella.'  I don't know if the same person will pass this way again, but on the off-chance that they do I'm including these images.  I suspect that during his brilliant and productive career Ron Embleton (1930-1988) probably illustrated Cinderella more than once.  This selection may not be from the version being sought, but I think they are particularly lovely none the less.

Once again I am posting images that I have not seen on any other online site.  The Look and Learn website (as mentioned before) has a wonderfully comprehensive collection of the better known examples of Ron Embleton's work and is the best place to start any search for his art.

If anyone who finds my blog thinks I may have any illustrations they are specifically looking for please let me know and if I have them (and they are appropriate and relevant ) I will make sure to post them.  You can leave a comment or email me at .

Ron Embleton - Cinderella

Ron Embleton - Cinderella

Ron Embleton - Cinderella
For variation I'm including some illustrations from Sleeping Beauty and The Twelve Dancing Princesses that I also count among my Embleton favourites.  I particularly love the humour in the next painting from Sleeping Beauty.  The motif of comical chefs is one Embleton used on a number of occasions.  I posted an illustration from Beauty and the Beast as part of my Wonderful Weddings selection that mirrors the antics in the foreground shown here.

Ron Embleton - Sleeping Beauty

Ron Embleton - Sleeping Beauty

Ron Embleton - Sleeping Beauty
Ron Embleton - The Twelve Dancing Princesses

Ron Embleton - The Twelve Dancing Princesses

Ron Embleton - The Twelve Dancing Princesses

Illustrations from 'Fairy Tales Around the World, retold by Edward Holmes, illustrated by Ronald Embleton 

For more Ron Embleton art click on the links for Ron Embleton and Disney ,  Here be Dragons , Homage to Embleton , Wonderful Weddings , Perfect Princesses and Handsome Heroes

                                                              A Time for Reflection
More photographs taken at St Stephens Green, Dublin in the early morning.  On days like these its very difficult to leave the tranquility of the park and go indoors.  I now have it down to a fine art that I get to the office and swipe in at one minute to eight to make the most of my early morning wanderings.

 And finally for today - this is a rose (is it Peace?) that grows outside my front door.  We moved into a new home a couple of months ago so I am discovering the seasons in the garden as they happen.  This enormous rose (the plant also grows to over 6 foot) is incredible.  It reminds me of roses in fairy tales - the fabled bloom in Beauty and the Beast for example.  My husband picked two for me but I have left the rest where they are.  In a vase they have already lasted well over a week.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Dorelle - South of the Equator

Victoria Falls
This week's post is something very different to my usual offerings but I feel it qualifies as these images are a vivid childhood memory.  They are taken from place-mats that were originally in my grandmother's home.  Each is clearly signed with the name Dorelle, but I know nothing about the artist.  As a child I was fascinated by these paintings that appeared more like French fashion plates than images of Africa.  I loved the texture and colours of the material - the flowing liquid quality of the women's silk dresses.
As these place mats are still in use in my own home today I wanted to scan them while they are in reasonably good condition.  They are printed on metal (tin?) over a cork base.  In time they are becoming scratched and discoloured.  There are 2 of each picture (12 place settings and 4 for serving dishes) and I have tried to choose the best example from each pair.
Port Elizabeth
 As I've worked in the IT industry now for almost 25 years I sometimes forget that I started out as an historian.  I can boast an Honour's degree in History which I taught in a girl's high school for 4 years before embarking on a completely new career.  I still have an instinctive impulse to collect, preserve and protect.  Part of the reason I started this blog was to record and safeguard images that I have cherished since childhood.  It offers a means of ensuring they survive as well as providing an opportunity to share them with anyone else who may also enjoy looking at them. 

Cape Town

Cape Town 



As these place mats originally came from my grandmother's home I wanted to include a picture of her as part of this post.  At the moment all my all old photographs are packed away in storage so as an alternative I'm including a drawing I made many years ago from an old photograph of my grandmother as a child. I think she was born in 1909 and was about 6 years old when the original photograph was taken.

Constance Marion Cole


Tomorrow's Treasures

Recently I went to see the new Matisse exhibition at the Chester Beatty Library at Dublin Castle.  It is more of a museum than a library and is a fascinating place to visit.  I go there quite often during lunch time, especially if the weather is dull.  I always pop into the little shop and have a soft spot for these pop-up greeting cards.  Usually I buy them to give away but this time I bought one for myself!

There is a tab that allows the central ballerina to twirl from left to right that is really cute. Different messages can be inserted underneath one of the roses and the attention to detail is lovely.  The prima-ballerina also has a delicate piece of tulle on her skirt and 'gems' around her waist and in her hair.  I think this is something worth saving and it is a wonderful example of what can be created from the classically simple medium of paper and card.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Mother Goose Paper Dolls No. 4422 (Artcraft)

This is my latest paper doll acquisition from eBay. I was really thrilled to win the bid as this book does not come up for sale all that often and as far as I know is not available as a reproduction.  I bought it from a lovely lady called Julie who I found very friendly and helpful and she even refunded part of the postage I'd overpaid!  Paper doll books Julie currently has on auction can be found at Paper Moon Designs on eBay.

Of my personal of paper doll memories I would list this book as my third favourite after Whitman Ballet Paper Dolls #1962 from 1964 and Saalfield Double Wedding #4432 from 1964.  I can vividly remember playing with this set for hours and thought the dresses and colour schemes were especially lovely.  I still have my original version in cut form (I posted one doll and dress from this book on 23 March for Daffodil Day.)  It is almost complete with the exception of some of the hats.  Having an uncut book to add to my collection has been a great find!  

Iveagh Garden's Roses (Dublin)

The rose garden at Iveagh Gardens is very old fashioned and still laid out as it was in the 1860's.  I love it.  Because the roses are not new bred hybrids they only bloom once a year, so this section of the park only appears in all its glory for a few weeks each summer. 

The rose above is called Gertrude Jekyll (named after the renowned English garden designer who lived from 1843-1932).  It is my favourite rose as it has such a wonderful scent.  When I first came across it I realised this is what a rose is meant to be - both perfumed and beautiful.


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