The other day over there at Gotcha Cha Cha on Etsy, I put up a picture from a really great book. “Kittens and Puppies, Horses and Rabbits and Insects, Turtles and Birds”, by Cynthia Iliff Koehler and Alvin Koehler, 1970 printing, original copyright 1959. Now, I usually like to use first editions of books, and this isn’t one. I have a few books like that, they aren’t first editions, but they are too marvelous, and not so rare, therefore not so precious, and easier, psychologically, to take apart. And the truth is, there is a 70’s quality to this print, perhaps it’s the paper, or the saturation of the ink, and not so much the 1959 feel that the illustrations have. I am hunting for more frames for illustrations in this book, because they are really that great. I could find next to nothing out about the authors/illustrators of this book, except they have done a few book, and that is it. I think I need better research skills.
I think these pictures we do here at Gotcha Cha Cha look great, but the hardest part is to cut into the books, thereby destroying them as books. I usually use books that are beyond repair, but I always look up to see if a book is “valuable” – worth money, rare, special. It has happened before, but it was just luck. I found a rare children’s book with a messed up spine and it sold on ebay for $66. That was fun, it was before there was much research available on the internet, and I had no idea. It was a Dare Wright book, which are strange and wonderful books to begin with, but this one had been quite a rare one, and I don’t remember which one right now.
Anyway, I have a little stacks on less than perfect books on my desk right now, with some neat illustrations in them, and I want to frame them. When I went to look them up, the value was questionable – some places listed them high, some low. Most of my books say they are worth less than $5, but when it gives the value in the $20’s or higher, I don’t want to destroy them. Well, look for yourself:
New picture in shop, finally. Gotcha Cha Cha. I have been having “creative block”. Framing hasn’t been going well, other idea’s aren’t panning out. Here is a picture and a poem from the book “A Garden of Verses” by Robert Louis Stevenson, a copy from the 1942. This is a Rand McNally book, and it was illustrated by Tony Brice who was a marvelous children’s illustrator. He did many books of the 1940’s era, with bright, chubby, anthromorphic creatures.
The poem is titled “Fairy Bread”. For a long time, anything with “fairy” in it was a hit in our family. I used a yellow mat board, but am rethinking it. Maybe a pink or light green would be a better choice of palette. These are the decisions that get me stuck! I used yellow because it was in the picture, but also because I had yellow board around, and no pink or green. Maybe it is time to go mat board shopping, or maybe someone will like the cheerfulness of the yellow, and absolutely not want pink??!
Now, the frame is plastic. I had a hard time deciding if this was usable. I loved the relief of the children and dog along the sides, but it is plastic! I finally decided that even though it was plastic, the design on the sides made up for it. It also has a screw in back, which is not “real” framing. The glass is glass, not acrylic.
This is from the 1942 printing. It has a slight stain on the lower right hand side which I am ok with, because it gives it AGE. I am all about the old pictures.