Wednesday 31 August 2011

Vintage die-cut shape books

I don’t know a great deal about these vintage shape books but have included them here because they are so pretty. Ernest Nister, Raphael Tuck and Dean and Sons published several of these in the 19th century but I think these were probably produced around 1920. They are all undated so it's difficult to be certain. There are no publication details on the first two books but I think they could be part of the Valentine Toy Books Series.  The others were all published by Alf Cooke again undated c1920/30.

This one is called "Dreamland" the story is told in rhyme and begins like this;
Golden hair, eyes twinkly blue, pretty, pretty little Prue, to the meadow runs to play with her dolls alone one day. All among the daisies white sits this merry little sprite, making daisy chains you see just as busy as can be. And when the sun gets oh so hot Prue runs to find a shady spot, and very soon is fast asleep whilst all around her fairies creep. And as the fairy queen draws near she cries, "Oh! What a little dear. Let's send her dreams of far off lands", then off they skip with beckoning hands!

Illustrated with small red and black drawings. No author or illustrators name given.

This one is called "Mary's holiday" and it begins like this;

Hurrah! Cried little Mary, Hurrah! She cried again I'm starting in a minute for the very next train. I've packed my little red frock I've packed my hats all three, and all my shoes and stockings as you can plainly see. The station that I go from is just about a mile, it’s down a lane and through a field and then across a stile. I know the engine driver well, a most important man, he sometimes shows me lots of things that only drivers can. I love to know about the trains and signals down the line, and to watch the great express I think is jolly fine. 

The book on the left is Red Riding Hood and the pretty one on the right is Little Mary May.

Can you guess the sailors name? 
The story is told in rhyme - this is verse two
In great alarm, and much surprised to masts and ropes he clung, as overboard with mighty splash his oars and things were flung. At length, as still the boat flew on, our sailor bold espied a flying fish, upon whose back he took this curious ride.

Now for the fun part;

Ahoy me hearties here’s what to do, guess his name – now here’s a clue! (1980s pop singer)
Follow this blog and leave a note to win this sailor all afloat!
The closest name shall win the treasure – to send the book will be ‘me pleasure.

Rules: Once you have guessed the sailor's name please include your answer (and your name, email or blog address so that I can contact you if you win) in the comment box. Follow this blog - by clicking on the followers link at right. You can enter as many times as you like. This is an international giveaway. Current followers welcome to enter. In the event of more than one correct answer the first one out of the hat will win the giveaway.

One book giveaway  (the book with the sailor on the cover) value £50.00. Giveaway closes 14th September 2011 - winner will be notified on the 15th September and book shipped same day. Giveaway now closed, thank you for your interest.

All the books featured in this post are now sold, thank you for your interest.


  1. Oh dear, I don't know his name, and don't think it'll be fair if I Google it! Love the rhyme though. Best of luck to the next reader. =)

  2. barbaraannefisher31 August 2011 at 15:25

    Go on - have a guess - he needs a new home!

  3. Chaudiere??

  4. barbaraannefisher31 August 2011 at 15:45

    I don't recognise that name - is Chaudiere a pop-singer????

  5. barbaraannefisher31 August 2011 at 19:15

    George Michael is certainly an 80s pop singer - but is he the one?? Keep guessing folks.

  6. Me thinks it might be George Michael too!

  7. barbaraannefisher1 September 2011 at 08:53

    But is it??? Don't forget to follow this blog and leave me your contact details.

  8. Barbara, I may be way off on this one, but he looks like Sailor Jack, known later as Cracker Jack. The only 80's pop star I can think of with 'jack' is Michael Jackson. I had one other choice, but he's kind of a meanie for so cute a sailor.

  9. barbaraannefisher1 September 2011 at 16:48

    Excellent ideas! It does take some thinking about - I thought the clue (80s pop singer) would help but maybe it's made it harder! All will be revealed on the 15th September!

  10. What about Stevie (Wonder)? or Billie (Ocean)?

  11. barbaraannefisher5 September 2011 at 11:39

    Like it!! If it's not Billie Ocean it should be!


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Barbara xx