Monday, August 31, 2009

Green Paper

Mary Green has a phenomenal blog with wonderful images of old paper and her own and others' art work using ephemera. Mary also takes old book covers and repurposes them for scrapbooks, photo albums and journals. I recently bought one at her etsy shop, where she also sells packets of ephemera, and CDs of rare paper items; you can also find her on eBay. Her blog has excellent links to other ephemera collectors and artists, too. Be sure to check out her freebie page, where you can download images for use in your own artwork.

Paperdoll Review, 1934

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Little Fanny

A Merrimack repro from 1980--the original was published in London in 1910, and goes for hundreds of dollars. I was content to find this on eBay for about $6.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Bergdorf Goodman

On the evening of Aug. 7, I was strolling down 5th Ave. and the windows of Bergdorf Goodman caught my eye...

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

The Flapper's Prayer

It was ever thus. Click left on image to read. Found at a house sale several years ago, folded up into a small rectangle. I like to think copies were passed from woman to woman, a gesture of sisterhood as they kicked over old restraints but struggled with that old dichotomy: good girl--bad girl, virgen--vixen. "How can I be naughty and still be nice?"

This photo was found separately, but it sure seems a perfect match for the Flapper's Prayer. On the back of the photo, this couplet:

Monday, August 24, 2009

Costumes of the Country

From The Sophisticated Traveler, The New York Times Magazine, March 12, 1989. Artist: Tim Lewis. A paper doll that can be male or female, depending on costume. Very clever!

The art and layout remind me of the paper doll series by the artist Alajalov that ran in Vanity Fair in the 1930s (see the Alajalov that I posted Jan. 31 to compare). Remember to left click for a larger picture.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Coney Island now

The parachute jump in the background dates from the old days; it's no longer used as a ride.

Dancers perform on the boardwalk.

An umbrella with paper doll clothes! She was nice enough to let me take her picture when I told her I was a collector. Should have asked where she bought it.

The colorful machinery of The Wonder Wheel. I was on the white stationary car; the others slide out as the ferris wheel turns. I use to go on those years ago, when scary was fun!

August 16, 2009

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Coney Island then

I found this folder more than 20 years ago. No date, but I would guess c. 1920. The back of the folder is marked as a postcard, so you could seal and mail.

They don't look very happy! They might have been exhausted trying to see and do everything. I don't think they're on a ride, but likely just posing in a stage vehicle.

A more recent find: I would guess about 1946. And they appear to be posing around a fake bar! Note the "shelves" behind them--a painted backdrop. This also is a postcard with a divided space for address and message. No addressee, but someone wrote: "Butch & Icki & his goils friend's" -- that's the spelling and punctuation!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Jane Arden War Bond Drive

Feb. 14, 1943. This is the last of the Jane Ardens in my collection (I'll keep looking for more). Thanks to all of you who left comments!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Jane Arden Victory Fleet

Jan. 31, 1943. This Jane Arden series from 1943 is a call to arms for the war effort. I think the fellow on the far right tipping his hat represents the artist; his left hand resembles a paint brush!
Or maybe the artist was in a rush and didn't get to fill it in...

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Cajon Desaztre

The great thing about blogging is the interesting people you meet from around the world, who share your interests in paper and crafts.
This paper doll, Selina, was created by Marisa Desaztre of San Fernando, Cadiz a city in the south of Spain. There's also a black and white version on her blog, for those who want to print out and color their own:

Check out her crochet and macrame projects -- lovely handbags--and she makes jewelry, too.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Barbara by Tina Lee

Jack and Jill, March 1941. Tried to eliminate the moire effect, not sure why it appears on what seems to be a flat gray background...

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Woodstock Paper Dolls

Tom Tierney did an outstanding job on this book, timed with the 40th anniversary of Woodstock. I ordered my copy from

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Blueberry season, 1907

Here's the blueberry for which you were longing. Wish you were here so you could have some of the fresh ones. We are working hard but having a good time too--with love-- Marie--

This lovely watercolor by Marie was added to a plain vanilla postcard. Was she working hard at an artists' retreat, or picking blueberries, or some other activity? It's always a thrill to find original artwork in an unexpected place. Someone used the front as a blotter, but the delicate watercolor is untouched and vibrant.

The postmark, as you can see below, is Ogunquit, Maine, August 15, 1907, and the recipient was Mrs. Enos B. Comstock, 556 W. 186th St., New York, N.Y.

A quick Google search reveals that Enos B. Comstock was an illustrator, 1879-1945; Marie could have been his daughter; but since it is addressed only to Mrs. Comstock, I'm more likely to think it was his wife's sister. But that's just a guess. Could be just a dear friend to Mrs. Comstock.

In the NY Times archive, an obituary that provides more information: Frances Bassett Comstock, wife of Enos B. Comstock, and also an artist in her own right, died of pneumonia in Feb. 1922 at her home in Leonia, N.J. (which is not far from where I live); she was 41.

There are many references online--on rare book sites, art sites and even eBay to Enos Comstock as writer (children's books such as "More tuck-me-in stories") and illustrator for writers such as H. Rider Haggard. Both Frances and Enos contributed illustrations to the 1909 A Child's Garden of Verses by Robert Louis Stevenson. Frances did many other McLoughlin Bros. books.

From around the web: