Tuesday, December 14, 2010

The Story Behind the Story

Every Christmas holiday season I add to my collection of children's books. Last year it was a delightful retelling of Don Quixote and I enjoyed every tilt and windmill of it. The books are coming out of their year long hiding and being rediscovered all over again.

This holiday season brought me a very special book indeed. One that lives in my memory of favorite stories being read by a much loved and missed Grandmother.
In my childhood this book rarely ever migrated from the current reading pile and I am sure my Grandmother would have loved to have branched out to other books or maybe not. We both loved the stories, mostly from Russia, contained in this book titled The Snow Queen and Other Tales.

Some of the other tales I've never heard since. Winter's Promised Bride, Melito and His Soul, The Cat Who Became Lord of the Forest and a beautiful retelling by Alexandre Dumas of The Story of the Nutcracker. I almost passed it by while doing some other shopping in the antique mall, and then something familiar about the cover drew me to check it out. I realized once I opened it (and fell in love again with the first color illustration by Adrienne Segur),

that not only was this the collection of my memory but the exact printing, from 1962. It never left my hands and last night, I allowed myself one bedtime story. I want to savor this one in so many ways.

So back to the real world. Sunday was spent wrapping and more wrapping. Gifts are flying out of here like geese on migration and still more to do. No weaving, but some sewing. I may have gone a little over the top with the latest project. I let my inner girlyness come out. If I had been near the horses they might have ended up with sparkle hooves and pink ribbons in their manes and tails, but thankfully (for them), it was Stella I was sewing for. Instead I settled for feminine fleece fabric (say that 3 times fast), ruffles, decorative top stitching in deep raspberry and flower appliques cut from the same fabric and pieced over the belt.

It was all I could do to keep from putting some leftover white eyelet lace on this confection. But I managed. It was after all, white and not terribly practical. LOL, like any of it is practical! It does have a sweet baby wale cord lining in a heavenly light blue.
The belt is also the same fine, soft corduroy and I love the combination. Gene commented that it didn't make it any less girly. We both did a little eye rolling over it all but enjoyed watching Stella prance and show off in it none the less.

Parting Shot: I've Got a Crush on You.


  1. I swear....Stella looks like she should be modeling on a runway! She has that ear cocked, and she tilted her head...just a wee bit, just like a model would. Thanks for a good morning chuckle!

  2. Stella's expression in that first shot has absolutely cracked me up. It looks like she's saying, "Errm, what?!" - she is desperately cute, but I've never really met a terrier yet who had a truly 'pink' mindset.

  3. The book looks lovely. Illustrations in old books are beautiful. That Stella photo would be a great illustration for a children's book.

  4. Ooooh...what a lovely book! So glad it made it's way back into your hands.

    Stella's expression is priceless. She is a character worthy of her own children's book...The Adventures of Stella and Friends.

  5. Oh yes, I could see Stella's adventures as a mini serial
    and ham that she is, she loves to be the very epicenter of attention. Pink coats or not. Alison, she's about as close to pink terrier as I think I'm ever going to get. Miss Bea might be a bit closer to the pink ideal, but then again, she's part poodle!

    LA maybe I should send in some head shots to Michael Kors. I think she does have runway star potential. Project Stella! ;)

    Valerie and Evelyn, that book delights me every time I look at it, and that has been quite often these last couple of days.

  6. I think the look on Stella's face says, "You gotta be kidding!" Great catch on the book, a gem of a find~