Friday, December 11, 2009

Village Pillows

Rachel Cole is not only the brilliant designer I get to work with at Schwartz & Wade (How To Be A Baby, How To Get Married and Being A Pig) but also the creator of Village Pillows.

Here's what Rachel says about them:

"Village Pillows are a set of cushions that fit together to form the landscape of a little town—somewhere far away from the city. They're ideal for both play and decoration—as individual pillows or as a group. Hand screen-printed on cotton duck cloth or linen in extremely small editions, Village Pillows are well constructed and include an insert."

How cool are they? Don't you need them? Immediately?

More here.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Monday, December 7, 2009

Dicken's Christmas Carol: the marked up manscript

Charles Dickens wrote A Christmas Carol in just 6 weeks to raise much-needed cash in September 1843.

Printing the manuscript was a Christmas rush job, so there wasn't enough time for Dickens to make a clean manuscript copy. As a result, the copy that went to print is heavily marked up and extremely difficult to read. It has all of Dickens’s additions and subtractions in his own hand.

The manuscript is housed in the Morgan Library. And every year they turn the page so you can look at the next spread. This year, for the first time, all 66 pages are available online. (So you won't have to wait 64 years to see the entire book.)

The watercolor of the Ghost of Christmas Present, above left, had to be redone because the spirit was supposed to be wearing green, not red.

Here's just two of the changes he made to the text (so brilliant!):

On page 3, he inserts “his eyes sparkled” to amplify the portrait of Scrooge’s nephew, whose beneficence is crucial to the plot.

On page 12, where Scrooge takes Marley’s ghost to be evidence not of the supernatural, but of his own indigestion, (“more of gravy than of grave,”) he converts the offending bit of food from being a “spot of mustard” to a less digestible “blot of mustard.” (Genius!)

Read more here.

Listen to an interview here.

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