Saturday, 30 August 2014

Holiday Adventure Story Writing Competition

A love of reading, writing and a passion for adventure are the themes of a new competition, with children aged ten and under being asked to put their imagination and creativity into action by writing a story about Lottie and her holiday adventures.

The competition is a chance for one lucky child to win a selection of ten books from the Lottie Pinterest folder ‘Great Books for Girls’ (that boys can read too!), in addition to winning exclusive new Lottie products before they hit the shops. 

Entering the competition is very straightforward;

Parents and guardians are asked to download a printable template from the storywriting app on the Lottie dolls Facebook page at so that kids can use this as a starting point for their story. Parents are then required to take a photo of their child’s story and upload it onto the storywriting contest Facebook app and fill in a form to grant parental permission for their child’s entry to be considered for the competition. Full terms and conditions of the competition are to be found at: 

Disclaimer; I received no financial compensation for writing this post and have no material connection to the brand or products mentioned. 

Saturday, 23 August 2014

No Words Required - More Beautiful Book Covers

These are just some of the beautiful books I've catalogued in the last couple of weeks. I love my work! The oldest – Wee Bits O’ Things by Ernest Aris was published in 1914 and the newest – The Church Mice and the Ring by Grahame Oakley in 1992.  The Chalet School & the island, Adventurous Four, My first and second story books and the Tiny Tots annual were all published in the 1950s. Doodles the performing pup is a cardboard puppet ready to cut out and build. Beautiful books - vintage or new they need no words!  I hope you enjoy looking at them as much as I enjoyed cataloguing them.

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

Friday, 15 August 2014

Hay-on-Wye - Book Heaven!

It’s always a delight to visit the Hay-on-Wye book town. Its position on the border between England and Wales makes it the perfect place to set out on an exploration of the beautiful border country

A mug of tea and a quick study of the map is always first on the agenda. I know where the shops are, but it doesn't hurt to be prepared!

The main attraction for me is, of course, the numerous bookshops. We were only in the town for half a day, but I've been before so made straight for my favourites, one of which is Backfold Books & Bygones, an interesting mix of general & children's books, plus postcards & ephemera. 

Backfold Books & Bygones (Oxford Road)

Someone at The Addyman Annexe (27 Castle Street) has a fine sense of humour!
Kindles are banned from The Kingdom of Hay – Amen!

I noticed the ‘No Parking Sign’ on the side of the building when I took the previous ‘photo but what I didn't notice until later was the message chalked above it.
Buy a Book - At any time.  

If you like your bookshops big, be sure to visit The Hay Cinema Bookshop 
From the Guardian Independent Bookshop Directory... A cathedral of books, an enormous building, stuffed to the rafters with second-hand books on old library shelving.  

I could happily spend a week browsing the shelves but my husband doesn't enjoy book shopping, so I made a beeline for the children's section and avoid the rest. 
A tiny corner of the Hay Cinema Bookshop. 

We picked a perfect July day for our visit.

If books are not your thing, you will find plenty of other distractions.

Quirky vintage shops, 

delightful flowers

and charming streets to explore. 

I didn't get much time in this interesting shop and am kicking myself because I can’t remember the name. I do remember the owner saying it was named after one of his dogs. Looking at the map, I think it might be Belle Books on Broad Street?

From Hay-On-Wye it was on to Stella Books at Tintern in the beautiful Wye Valley.

With around 30,000 out-of-print books this is one shop you can’t afford to miss. 

The river with Stella Books in the distance.

After a good sleep and a delicious breakfast at this fantastic b&b, we were ready for more adventures.

We weren't intending to visit Hay this year hence the shortness of our trip. We were en route to Buckinghamshire, but it was raining there so we went to Hay first. If you are thinking of going, you really need to allow more time to visit all the shops. A week should just about do it!


Just before I close I want to share this beautiful gift received in the post last week.

Thank you very, very much Nicole I was so excited when the postman called, and I love every single thing.

For those of you who haven’t met Nicole, she is a very talented author and illustrator living and working in Holland; See more here 

Nicole and I have not met, but we have corresponded over a number of years, and I count myself very lucky to have her as a friend.

I am also grateful for all my blogging friends, thank you for visiting.

Friday, 8 August 2014

Book of the week; The Cheery Chicks Book with illustrations by Harold Earnshaw

Vintage children's book

 A beautiful picture book telling the story of three small children, a dog and a cat about to go on holiday..
telling the story of three small children, a dog and a cat

Travelling by steam train…
The Cheery Chicks Vintage Book travelling by steam train

and taxi!
The Cheery Chicks Vintage Book a ride in a taxi-cab

On arrival at their destination, they chat to a flower seller...
Vintage children's books

and a hurdy-gurdy boy. 
Vintage books for children

They spend a long time gazing at the toys in the toyshop window 
Vintage children's books

before going to play in the park.
Harold Earnshaw vintage children's book

Then it's off to the cake shop for tea with grandpapa. 
Harold Earnshaw Vintage Children's book
I know some people might think the animals have no business being in the cake shop never mind sitting at the table, but it’s my favourite picture. Grandpapa looks like a kindly old gentleman. The children are incredibly wholesome and the animals well behaved. Even the waitress is smiling.   

The story follows the children as they enjoy a holiday on the farm...
Vintage Book illustrated by Harold Earnshaw

and ends when they put their toys to bed.
The Cheery Chicks Book illustrated by Harold Earnshaw

The Cheery Chicks Book is now sold, thank you for your interest.

Thanks for looking...

Saturday, 2 August 2014

Peek-a-boo it's for you; a collection of vintage greeting cards

I adore vintage greetings cards so finding this collection rather made my day!  The cards were given to a little girl called ‘Briony’ between her birth on the 28th December 1946 and her second birthday in 1948. As much as I love these, I can’t keep everything (as Terry is happy to remind me) so these are listed for sale on my website.  If you would like further details, please follow the links. I'm always happy to reduce prices for job lots.

Peek-A-Boo -  unused miniature greeting card. This adorable card is a little creased but other than that it's in perfect condition. The wording inside reads 'It's for you'. Now sold, thank you for your interest.

Congratulations to Baby and you. This delightful die cut card features a baby in a crib surrounded by flowers. The verse inside reads - rejoicing in your happiness, sincerely wishing too that life and love may always bless your little one and you! This card is now sold, thank you for your interest.

Happy Landings. This pretty card was produced in 1946 as part of the Victor and Mabel Evershed range. It was given to Briony on the occasion of her birth on the 28th December 1946. Inside reads - Congratulations! I hear the great Little Person has arrived. It's signed by Vi and Eric with every good wish. Hand coloured flowers at the bottom of the card and a pink ribbon bow. The illustration is signed 'LP' there is a little browning to the centre of the card but is otherwise in good condition.

Tom Tom the Pipers son stole a pig and away he ran, over the hills and far away to wish you luck on your first birthday.

Good luck from Tom, good luck from me for this and every year, may life be bright as bright can be and bless you, baby dear!   If you look closely you might spot the farmer chasing after Tom. These tiny details really bring the card to life.  

For Baby's Very First Birthday Super greetings card from 1947. "Creeping here and reaching there, bright eyes searching everywhere, may your eager heart find, too, this Happy Birthday wish for you!" With hand written message "Love & kisses, darling from Auntie Tubby." Sweet black and white image on the inside of a baby with a teddy, toy dog and rattle. This card is now sold, thank you for your interest.

Birthday Wishes now you're ONE YEAR OLD today! Lovely card given to Briony on her first birthday in 1947. Delightful verse inside reads - Everyone knows, from your head to your toes you're a Darling! So this will convey fond love, and the very best wishes of all, to greet your first birthday today. Hand written greeting 'From Gerda To Briony x' This card is now sold, thank you for your interest.

Two original vintage gift tags; Two of the prettiest little gift tags you are ever likely to find.  Both are used, and both were attached to parcels given to 'Briony' for Christmas 1947.The first shows a hand coloured rabbit with a red bow and a lovely fluffy white tail. The message on the card reads To Briony with lots of love from Barbara Merry Christmas. The other shows a windmill with the words To Dear little Briony from Nellie with love. I'm sure it would be very difficult to find two others quite like these.

Hickory Dickory Dock Part of the Alpha Series made in Britain. Folding nursery rhyme card 'Hickory Dickory Dock the mouse ran up the clock! The clock struck one the mouse ran down! Hickory Dickory Dock. Many Happy Returns! Message reads - With love & kisses from Gillian xxx. Pretty colour illustrations inside and out.

Here is Teddy watch him run Charming die cut card "Here is Teddy watch him run to greet you on the day you're one" produced by G. Delgado, London in 1947. Message on back reads ‘With lots of love and kisses'  Single sheet die-cut card. This card is now sold, thank you for your interest.

 A Christmas Smacker Delightful die-cut card featuring a smiling 'sailor' duck. Card stands 6" tall. I just love this happy smiling chap in his sailor outfit.  There is a sweet verse, inside - Here's a LUCKY CHRISTMAS DUCKY! He's really quite a "QUACKER" - For he's bringing you a CHRISTMAS HUG and a great big CHRISTMAS "SMACKER"! The card was given to Briony in 1948, but the handwritten greeting just reads "with love from Nicolas" This card is now sold, thank you for your interest.

Peek-A-Boo - I see you!

Thank you for taking the time to look at some of my vintage greeting cards.

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