This year marks the 150th Anniversary of the publication of Alice in Wonderland. Macmillan have a fabulous celebration website here. There have been events going on all over the UK [and quite a lot in the USA too, where they seem quite obsessed with AIW]
I should like to get to the exhibition at the British Library – it opened on November 20th and runs through till April 17th 2016. It is FREE!
I was really pleased this week to pick up the book “Everything Alice” from our local library. By Hannah Read-Baldrey and Christine Leech [who developed the Hobbycraft magazine] this book has more than 50 projects related to the book – clothes, toys, teaparty accessories, recipes, gifts – using lots of different crafts and skills.
For the most part the instructions are very clear, the templates at the back are useful, and there are wonderfully intricate papercut illustrations on the pages between the projects. An altogether delightful and inspiring read.
I think the projects I would most like to make from the book are the sugar and spice comfits, the Red King’s Slippers, and the Cheshire Cat Handwarmers.
My own copy of Alice is over 80 years old- it was won by my father just after his 9th birthday, in 1933, as a prize for getting 98% in a Sunday School Scripture exam, as it says on the flyleaf…
It is published by Ward Lock, rather than Macmillan – and the illustrations are not by Tenniel, but by that other great children’s artist, Margaret W Tarrant. I love its heavy pages and pictures.
Just twenty miles from here, in Lyndhurst, you can find the grave of Alice Liddell – the girl for whom Carroll wrote the story. I remember taking our girls to see it, more than 20 years ago, when we had a holiday in the New Forest. The grave has been restored during this anniversary year. I must get back and have another look.
I made costumes for two school productions of Alice – it remains one of my favourite children’s books [along with Through The Looking Glass] I enjoy the word-play, and the arcane mathematical puzzles – it is so much more than a book for 9 year olds. Here are the stamps the Royal Mail brought out last January to mark the anniversary.
Did you read Alice as a child? Did you enjoy it?