Children's book illustrations - Kate Greenaway

I have recently become interested in children’s illustrations and designs and have started to source and collect children’s books during my second-hand shopping jaunts. In particular I am drawn to older books featuring hand-drawn illustrations, and am much inspired by the original drawn imagery and styles.

I found this Kate Greenaway book recently and it instantly transported me back to my childhood. As a child I loved pouring over the pages of my Kate Greenaway book – I loved the illustrations and I was fascinated by how the little girls were dressed in their old-fashioned pinafore dresses and bonnets.

Marigold Garden - pictures and rhymes by kate Greenaway. First published in 1885.

Kate Greenaway was born in England in 1846 and became very successful writing rhymes and illustrating books for children. Her watercolour illustrations depict young children playing – often featuring gardens and floral posies as a recurring theme, and show life for children in the Victorian era (possibly reflecting her own idyllic childhood).

Left - 'Tip-A-Toe' Right - 'Mamas And Babies'

The children featured in her illustrations are always dressed in quaint clothing of yesteryear. She dressed children in her own versions of late 18th Century Empire fashions – and apparently Liberty’s of London adapted Kate Greenaway’s drawings and used them as designs for actual children’s clothes!

Left - 'When We Go Out With Grandma' Right - 'The Dancing Family'

Kate Greenaway died in 1901 aged only 55, but left a legacy of much loved and beautifully illustrated rhymes and poems for children (and adults!) to enjoy.

Left - 'The tea Party' Right - 'Under Rose Arches'

1 comment:

  1. Yeah, I love these types of illustrations.

    I've been reading Rupert to my kids and ever since I was a kid myself, I've loved the illustrations, not to mention the colouring too.