Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Raggedy Andy Stories Written & Illustrated by Johnny Gruelle Free E-Book



You all know how much I love dolls of all kinds and how much I love history.  So, I'm sure you weren't surprised when I posted illustrations from the "Raggedy Ann Stories" free ebook yesterday.

Well, like my dolls, I generally design and create boys and girls dolls like brothers and sisters, husbands and wives, etc.

So, it should come as no surprise that I would post illustrations from the 'Raggedy Andy Stories" free ebook written & illustrated by Johnny Gruelle as well.

I found Raggedy Andy's Stories with illustrations by Johnny Gruelle to be charming - especially the illustrations and felt inspired to create another "raggedy."  However, my inspiration isn't necessarily limited to a cloth doll.  It might be a mixed media creation, a woodcraft, custom fabric, etc,  You just never know where inspiration is going to take you.  I've created many dolls and crafts over the years but always feel you can never have too many "raggedies" - in whatever form they take,

I hope Raggedy Andy's charming story inspires you, too.

Per Project Gutenberg - This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere in the United States and most other parts of the world at no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included with this eBook or online at www.gutenberg.org. If you are not located in the United States, you'll have to check the laws of the country where you are located before using this ebook.

This adorable E-Book is available online at https://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/17371




"Raggedy Andy Stories" starts with two letters from fans of Raggedy Ann, which are as follows:

Sunday, February 16, 2020

Raggedy Ann Stories Written & Illustrated by Johnny Gruelle Free E-Book



When I look at primitive doll faces I can't help but melt as they are so darn cute.  I was first introduced to primitive dolls with something I saw many years ago during a shopping trip to Sturbridge with my mother.  In one of the crafts stores we liked to visit I was looking at a box filled with patterns and just started laughing my head off. Of course, my mother asked, "what's so funny?" So, I showed her the pattern I was looking at and she burst out laughing, too. It was for a primitive cloth doll which was so ugly it was actually beautiful. So there we were - two grown women standing in the middle of a store laughing our heads off.

As I scanned through the box I found other patterns for primitive dolls that were just as ugly and just as beautiful. So, of course, I bought a few and could hardly wait to get them home so I could make them.   And, make them I did.

The popularity of primitive dolls - especially "raggedies" (which are versions of raggedy ann dolls) continued to grow and grow.  Primitive decor seemed to take over with all sorts of primitive decorations that could be made for one's home -  dolls, raggedies, make-do's, shelf sitters, holiday and seasonal primitive decorations, primitive animals, primitive graphics, primitive woodcraft's, curtains, rugs, furniture and so on and on.

Around this same time primitive decor was all the rage and gaining in popularity online which created a ton of primitive websites, blogs, and groups. It seemed there were primitives everywhere and no shortage of freebies for creating all sorts of primitive dolls and crafts for home decor, but especially "raggedies."

So, given how much I love history and old books I decided to see if there was a copy of some of the old "Raggedy Anne" books out there on Project Gutenberg which displays books that are in the public domain.  To my delight there was a "Raggedy Ann Stories"  ebook and a "Raggedy Andy Stories" ebook.

As far as Raggedy Ann is concerned, one of the legends surrounding her creation is that a little girl was rummaging around her Grandmother's attic and finds a battered old doll with only one button eye. She brings the doll down to her grandmother who sews on a missing button eye.  While reminiscing about playing with Raggedy Ann as a young girl she decides to give it to her granddaughter and in doing so introduces her granddaughter to the world of Raggedy Ann.  And so Raggedy Ann was born.

I found Raggedy Ann's Stories with illustrations by Johnny Gruelle to be charming - especially the illustrations and felt inspired to create another "raggedy."  However, my inspiration isn't necessarily limited to a cloth doll.  It might be a mixed media creation, a woodcraft, custom fabric, etc,  You just never know where inspiration is going to take you.  I've created many dolls and crafts over the years but always feel you can never have too many "raggedies" - in whatever form they take,

I hope you find Johnny Gruelle's doll illustrations and short excerpts from the books to be enchanting and hope they inspire you to not only read each of the eleven chapters for Raggedy Ann yourself, but inspire you to create a Raggedy Ann of your own either for you, your daughter or your granddaughter.

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Sir John Tenniel and Arthur Rackham Illustrations From Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll Free E-Books



Like many of you I can remember my grandmother and mother reading "Alice In Wonderland" to me and reading it myself when I learned how.  I always loved the story and the illustrations.  My favorite characters were the white rabbit, the mad hatter, the caterpillar, the footman frog, the mock turtle and the queen.  I always had visions of making my own versions of dolls for these characters but haven't done so yet.  They are, however, on my bucket list.

Recently I created a new "We Love Books" category with 12 book related designs.  One of my recent designs was inspired by one of the characters in "Alice In Wonderland" - the white rabbit.  I don't know if it's the red hearts on this design that makes me think of this book, but it does.

So, given how much I love history and old books I decided to see if there was a copy of some of the old "Alice in Wonderland" books out there on Project Gutenberg which displays books that are in the public domain.  To my delight there were several.


I found Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll with illustrations by Arthur Rackham.  After finding that ebook I them looked at The Tenniel Illustrations for Carroll's Alice in Wonderland by John Tenniel ebook and decided to post them as well as they are all so wonderful and inspiring.

Monday, February 10, 2020

For the Love of Reading - Victorian Girls and Their Books Illustrations



If you've been a reader of my Linda's Blog for awhile you know that I've had a long term love affair with dolls, doll patterns, the Victorian era, floral design, genealogy, research, history and books. As far as I'm concerned you can never have enough dolls and you can never have enough books.

So, of course, I would be drawn to illustrations of Victorian girls and their books from the Harper's Young People Illustrations Book of 1889, like the illustration shown above.  It appeared in the May 18, 1889 weekly of the Harper's Young People Illustrations Book from 1889 on Page 420.

It was drawn by Rosina Emmet Sherwood and appeared in a story "The A.O.I.B.R" by Elizabeth Eggleston Seelye.  According to her Wikipedia page: "Her story "“The A.O.I.B.R." appeared in Harper's Bazaar in 1889 with an illustration of a child reading. The Rockwell Centre for American Visual Studies cites this as a surprisingly early illustration of a girl reading. The subject of girls reading in the illustration by Rosina Emmet Sherwood is thought rare (like the ones in Louisa Allcott's Little Women)."

The caption reads: "She retired to the society of books." This brings back wonderful memories for me as so many times when I was growing up you could find me like this.

My house is filled with books of all kinds. My love affair with books and reading began very early on. My Mother was an avid reader, my Father was an avid reader, my Grandmother and Great-Aunt were avid readers, and so it was passed down to my siblings and I.

Sunday, February 9, 2020

The Book and Crafts Review Corner Free Graphics and Illustrations


I love books and love different types of books, like: books about dolls and doll making, books about crafts and craft making, romance books, books about history, encyclopedia's, books about the Victorian era, old and antique books, and so much more.


I love to read, perusing books, shopping in bookstores and spending hours on end in libraries.


I also love old graphics that are in the public domain, book related graphics, and book related e-printables and how-to's.

I hope you enjoy my "Book and Crafts Review Blog Freebies." Just click on the "Book and Crafts Review Freebies" you like below:

Bookstore Shopping With Mom - What Can be Better Than That


I Just Love To Go Bookstore Shopping!  For me there is nothing more relaxing than going bookstore shopping at my local bookstores.  It was especially enjoyable when I would share this experience with my Mom.  She loved to bookstore shop, too.

Not only was the time spent with my Mom thoroughly enjoyable, but we both loved books. We could spend hours upon hours just walking up and down the aisles looking at the best sellers, the discount books, the magazine section, etc. My mother always went to the "cooking" section first while I always went to the "dolls and crafts" section.

Now I wonder why that is? Couldn't be because I love "dolls and crafts?" Nah!

Why am I telling you this? Because I was fortunate enough while my Mom was still alive  to go bookstore shopping with her many, many times and for that I am so grateful. They were always delightful trips and usually I came home with some new best sellers from some of my favorite "romance" authors.

The last few trips I came home with a few "doll and craft" books to add to my collection.  If you believe I just bought a "few" craft books you don't know me very well.  My Mom used to look at my shopping cart and say, "Really, Linda!" LOL LOL

I've Reviewed Quite A Few Craft Books Over The Years




I'm a "grown-up girl" who has never outgrown her love of dolls and crafting. I just love dolls and crafts and I just love books about dolls and crafts. So, it is only natural that I would love collecting books about dolls and crafts, doll making and craft making, doll histories and craft history, various types of dolls and crafts,  and collecting dolls and crafts.

Whether it's Americana crafts, holiday crafts, seasonal crafts, computerized crafts, paper crafts, doll making, embellishing, fabric crafts, bead-work, applique, fragrance crafts, making gift baskets, jewelry, mixed media, needlepoint, knitting, origami, pottery, quilting, sewing, painting glass, making toys, wedding crafts, woodcraft's, or wool felt I love them all.

I especially love craft encyclopedias and the history of various crafts.

Years ago I started reviewing some of the doll and craft books I bought while bookstore shopping with my Mom.  They were glorious days back then for my Mom and I and I miss shopping with her.

While I've created and reviewed a tremendous amount of craft kits I did manage to review many doll and craft books.




Shown below are the books I have reviewed so far:

Saturday, February 8, 2020

My New We Love Books Category #12


Last, but not least, we have my favorite "We Love Books" design.

If you're wondering why this is it's because I'm a member of the "Baby Boom" generation and have lived in jeans my whole life. I must have had a blue jeans color in mind when creating this design.  Not only do I love the color but I love all the book related words and hope you do too.

The design shown on the towels above would be perfect for any male or female or baby boomer senior citizen. Wouldn't you agree?

Shown below is the design for my We Love Books Category #12.


My Very Blue We Love Books Category #11



I absolutely love the color blue.  Dark blue, light blue, teal, royal blue, navy blue, etc. it doesn't matter.  I love the color and, as a result, tend to incorporate this color into all my designs.

So, I decided to create some clothing products for one of the very blue designs in my new "We Love Books" custom products gallery.

If I was younger I would have loved to wear the leggings and tank top in the picture above.  How adorable would it be to show up at the gym wearing that.  I'll just have to be satisfied with buying the socks and sneakers.


My New We Love Books Category #10



As you all know I love creating designs for everyday, every holiday and every season.  Well, when thinking about my new "We Love Books" designs I decided to create a design for the summer months that was patriotic - a bright red, white, and blue.  I hope you like it.


Shown below is the design for my We Love Books Category #10.

Friday, February 7, 2020

My New We Love Books Category #9


I don't know why but when I look at one of my new "We Love Books" designs it reminds me of the white rabbit from "Alice in Wonderland."  It has to be the open white book with the big red heart.  It's a book with a heart versus a playing card but, nonetheless, that's what I think of.  What do you think?


There are currently twelve different categories of my new "We Love Books"  custom products gallery.

Shown below is the design for my  We Love Books Category #9.

My New We Love Books Category #8



When you look at all my doll designs you might have noticed I generally design for both boys and girls.  Every girl doll generally has a "brother."   Some are "husbands and wives." Males and females.

The reason for that is because my older brother is only 10 months older than I am and I was never aware of a time when it wasn't the two of us.  On my birthday I got presents, but so did he.  On his birthday he got presents, but so did I.  As a result there was always something for "boys" and something for "girls."

As a result, I tend to think that way when designing things and this was true when I decided to create new designs for my "We Love Books" custom products gallery.


There are currently twelve different categories of my new "We Love Books"  custom products gallery.  Some are geared to girls and some are geared to boys.

My New We Love Books Category #7


One of the favorite things I liked about school as a child was my books.  I loved bringing them home, flipping through the pages, and, believe it or not - doing my homework.  I  especially loved the history books.  I could never get enough of them.

Some of my teachers I loved and some I didn't.  One of my favorite teachers was one I had in the 3rd grade.  She was young, just beautiful, inspiring and dedicated to teaching us.   She was also engaged to be married so, of course, all the girls in my class loved asking her about that.

One day she announced to the class that we were all invited to the church part of her wedding.  Not the reception - just the ceremony.  Well, I was beyond excited about that as I had never been to a wedding before.  I could hardly wait to see how beautiful her dress would be.  I, of course, had visions of one Cinderella would wear.

Through the years I maintained a great respect for teachers and think my love of my school books was an inspiration for my new "We Love Books" custom products gallery designs.


Shown above are two of my new designs: a large tote bag and coffee mug.  I would have loved to bring all my school books home in that tote bag and would have loved giving my 3rd grade teacher the mug as a teacher's gift.  Wonder if she would have liked it.

Thursday, February 6, 2020

My New We Love Books Category #6



I just love bright and cheery decorations for my home and hope you do too.  If you do then I hope you love the new custom products I designed for my "We Love Books" gallery.

There are currently twelve different categories of my new "We Love Books"  custom products gallery.

One of the designs that I created for my new gallery is a favorite of mine because it is so cheery and bright.  Shown below is my We Love Books Category #6 design.  I hope you find it as cheery and bright as I do.


My New We Love Books Category #5



As you all know by now I love lots of things - including books and reading.  I figured I'd seen everything but was surprised yesterday when I found out during the last few years there has been a trend among the couture fashion designers and students to design clothing out of books.

Some actually are made from book spines.  Some from book pages and some with book related and library related custom designs.   Totally amazing.

There are currently twelve different categories of my new "We Love Books"  custom products gallery.

Within each category I have joined in on this trend and created a few pieces of clothing for grown-up women featuring some of my book designs, like the ones shown in the picture at the beginning of this post.

My New We Love Books Category #4



When I think about books and reading I inevitably think of my Grandmother, mother, and father - all of whom were avid readers.  I have vivid memories of sitting in my Grandmothers lap while in her rocking chair while she was reading me a book.  Beautiful times to remember.


My New We Love Books Category #3



You've seen two of my latest "We Love Books" custom designs and, hopefully, have loved them.  Now I want to show you my third "We Love Books" design.

I was in designing mode when I was creating my new book designs and ended up creating  twelve different categories of my new "We Love Books" custom products gallery.  Something for everyone - young and old.

Shown below is the design for my We Love Books Category #3.


Each category of my new "We Love Books" is filled with all sorts of wonderful custom decorating and everyday products with whimsical book designs.  We have all sorts of home decor,  electronic accessories, pillowcases,duvet covers and pillowcases, dishes, greeting cards, wrapping paper, ribbon, scrapbook paper, gift tags, coffee mugs, stickers, kitchen entertaining products, pillows, everything you need for book gift decorating, paper products for entertaining, linens, led candles, jigsaw puzzles to entertain the kids, and so much more.

Wonderful "We Love Books" Crafting Supplies Custom Products For Crafting Enthusiasts


As you know I love books and just finished creating 12 book related graphics for the twelve different categories of my new "We Love Books"  custom products gallery.


That's great all by itself but, being a crafting person, I also created a "We Love Books Crafting Supplies" category for my new book related custom products like: vinyl stickers, scrapbook paper, rubber stamps, stickers, wall decals, etc.


If you love books and crafts, love to scrapbook, love stickers, love rubber stamping, love mixed media, or just love decorating your room with wall decals you're going to love my new book related crafting supplies.

My New We Love Books Category #2


As you all know I decided to create a "We Love Books" custom products gallery based on my love of books and love of custom fabric designs.  After all, who doesn't love books?

There are currently twelve different categories of my new "We Love Books" custom products gallery.

Shown below is the design for my We Love Books Category #2.



My New We Love Books Category #1


As you all know I love Victorian dolls, love of crafts, love of research, love of jigsaw puzzle, and love of reading.  And, recently, I decided to create a "We Love Books" custom products gallery.

There are currently twelve different categories of my new "We Love Books" custom products gallery.

Shown below is the design for my We Love Books Category #1.



Each category of my new "We Love Books" is filled with all sorts of wonderful custom decorating and everyday products with whimsical book designs.  We have all sorts of home decor,  electronic accessories, pillowcases,duvet covers and pillowcases, dishes, greeting cards, wrapping paper, ribbon, scrapbook paper, gift tags, coffee mugs, stickers, kitchen entertaining products, pillows, everything you need for book gift decorating, paper products for entertaining, linens, led candles, jigsaw puzzles to entertain the kids, and so much more.