Ladybird Prints

As you may have figured by now, I’m a bit of a nut when it comes to children’s books and I have a particular passion for old ones.  That’s why I love this idea from Ladybird Books

Ladybird Books started during the First World War (actually near my home-town in Leicestershire).  Their aim being to publish ‘pure and healthy literature’ for children.   Most of my generation will remember reading Ladybird books at home or school, especially the Peter and Jane series.  They had some classic titles like ‘Learning is Fun’ or ‘Books are Exciting’.

Now Ladybird have put over 4,500 images from their archives (mainly from the ’50s and ’60s) online to order as prints or canvases.  It is such a brilliant idea and with the array of sizes available it is so adaptable to any nursery or child’s room. Prints start as small as a photo and go up to A0 poster size, and canvases start at 20cm and go up to 125cm. Both can be ordered framed as well.

The images are not just front covers but pictures from inside the books and even the pencil sketches from the endpapers (like this adorable one from Bunnikin’s Picnic Party). The site is well worth a browse (even if just for the sake of nostalgia) but as there are so many to forage through, here are my favourites to get you started:

For Babies:  I do like a good old-fashioned ABC and there are loads to choose from on the site — depending on which era appeals.  My favourite is ‘The Ladybird a-b-c‘.  I also like the ‘Learning with Mother‘ pictures (which, incidentally, have given me some good ideas to keep the children occupied on our next rainy-day indoors!). They also have all the classic fairy-tales and nursery rhymes on the site so you can choose your personal favourites.

For Girls:  Some of the Peter and Jane images are just dreamy, like this butterfly one pictured which I love and the classic Teepee one (which I’m sure you’ll recognise).  On the whole ‘dreamy’ subject I really like some of the flowery images from the ‘What to Look for in Spring’ and ‘What to Look for in Summer‘ books, which have a 1960’s washed-out look about them — so pretty!

For Boys:  I love the images from ‘The Ladybird Book of Motor Cars‘.  I also think a couple of images from the ‘Great Inventions’ series would look great grouped together but maybe my favourite are the covers for ‘Man and His Car‘, ‘Man in the Air‘ and ‘Man on the Sea’ . Oh please — those titles are just too perfectly masculine.

Please note I don’t mean to be at all stereotypical with my suggestions of images for a boy or a girl — I am personally hankering after those motor-car pictures for my bedroom wall!

-Mo. x


Comments (2)

June 14, 2010

hey, I’m originally from Leicestershire too! I didn’t realise Ladybird started there…..

June 14, 2010

The Charnwood museum in Loughborough has an area devoted to Ladybird books and memorabilia. It’s free to enter too, so ideal for a rainy morning.

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