Monday, January 31, 2011

Yummy Yummy Brusselsprouts

Yummy, yummy Brusselsprouts. Not the soggy, mini-cabbage that you were forced to eat in your childhood. I am talking about Brusselsprouts Handcrafted Baby Fashion. It couldn't be more different from the much-maligned vegetable of the same name. Brusselsprouts the children's clothing label is excellent taste, colourful, and adored by many.

Midnight Garden Dress by Victoria Crisp of Brusselsprouts.

Trellis Dress by Victoria Crisp of Brusselsprouts.

Apricot Bloom Dress by Victoria Crisp of Brusselsprouts.

Brusselsprouts is an Australian label by mother and daughter team, Victoria and Kay. Their goal: to create beautifully handcrafted children's fashion that will make your little sprout stand out from the crowd. A fusion of modern and vintage design, each piece is lovingly made with quality fabrics sourced from around the globe. These vibrant dresses by Victoria Crisp caught my eye for their exquisite patterns and elegant style. A sizable tie at the shoulder, in a complementary fabric, adds interest and flair to an otherwise simple design - so perfectly styled for such intricate and beautiful fabrics. Oh yummy yummy!

Yummy Yummy Girls' Dresses by Victoria Crisp of Brusselsprouts. 

Brusselsprouts the online store stocks some other Australian labels too, and more than just kids' clothing. Check it out, and join their large following on Facebook - you won't be short of inspiration!

Thanks to Victoria from Brusselsprouts for allowing Kitty as a Picture Kids Design Blog to feature these dresses.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Vintage Fabric Gems by Christa Davis

How I long to be in London right now, just to be able to step inside Studio 2b and browse Christa Davis's breathtaking clothing collections. The Little Davis Collection for girls is what grabs me the most. Exquisite vintage fabrics, and reconditioned cashmere, on the sweetest original designs by Christa; they captivate me utterly. See for yourself...

Smock Coat, Vintage Linen;
Little Davis Girls by Christa Davis.

Harry Dress, Cotton lawn; Bertie Cardigan, Reconditioned Cashmere; 
Little Davis Girls by Christa Davis.

Latin Dress, Cotton lawn,
Little Davis Girls by Christa Davis.

Madeleine Skirts, Vintage Cotton; Tanzie Dress, Vintage Linen;
Little Davis Girls by Christa Davis. 

Peter Pan Suit, Vintage Cotton; Peter Pan Suit, Liberty Cotton;
Baby Davis by Christa Davis.

Mushroom Suit, Liberty Cotton; Iris Dress, Vintage Linen;
Baby Davis by Christa Davis. 
Kick Pleat Dress, Vintage Cotton;
Little Davis Girls by Christa Davis.

And here's a bright vintage fabric that you've got to love!

Squaw Dress, Vintage Cotton;
Little Davis Girls by Christa Davis.

It's a pattern lover's paradise! Christa uses a combination of modern fabrics and vintage recycled fabrics. She has four clothing labels: Davis Vintage (women's wear), Little Davis (girls and boys), Baby Davis, and Lost and Found (accessories, homeware, and vintage clothing.)

These images are copyright and have been published by Kitty as a Picture Kids Design Blog with the permission of Christa Davis.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Captivating Illustration by Oliver Lake

Ooh I'm very excited about this post - Oliver Lake of Iota Illustration.
My daughter (aged 22 months) is a fan too. She spotted some pictures of Oliver's on my computer and squealed with delight, so I put her on my knee and we looked through Oliver's collection together. I asked her to tell me what the illustrations were...

For All the Birds by Oliver Lake of Iota Illustration.

...'Birds,' she said. Easy Peasy, she has a bird mobile, and we see birds outside every day.

Three Lazy Owls by Oliver Lake of Iota Illustration.

'Owls' she said. She likes owls - she has a gorgeous hand-knitted owl toy, a favourite of hers.

Two Fine Foxes by Oliver Lake of Iota Illustration.

'Wox' she said, because she can't make an 'f ' sound yet.

The Honey Bear by Oliver Lake of Iota Illustration.

'Bear,' she said. We've seen plenty of bears in her books.

The Pig and the Rooster by Oliver lake of Iota Illustration.

'Piggie,' she said. I am feeling proud, she is doing well.
Until...

The Laid Back Lions by Oliver Lake of Iota Illustration.

'Daddy,' she said!
Anyone who knows Mike will scream with laughter - Mike is the laid back type, and the faces of the lions at the back most definitely resemble him! He is super-tall and lean with a long face, a little facial hair, and prominent nose. I can see him caricatured in those lions, yes I can! He is not as sad and serious as all that, and very handsome ;) , but I can see where she was coming from!

But enough about me and my family. Oliver Lake of Iota Illustration is what this is all about. His illustrations are absolutely captivating. I love the attitude and personality Oliver captures in his animal characters, especially the animal musicians:

Red Squirrel Serenade by Oliver Lake of Iota Illustration.

The Owl Harpist by Oliver Lake of Iota Illustration.

The Accordion Bears by Oliver Lake of Iota Illustration.

The Clarinet Bunny by Oliver Lake of Iota Illustration.

The Monkey Drummer by Oliver Lake of Iota Illustration.

The Jazz Bunny by Oliver Lake of Iota Illustration.

The Elephant, the Flute and the Bird by Oliver Lake of Iota Illustration.

Aren't they superb!
Oliver Lake is an experienced artist and professional children's book illustrator. He has had a number of commissions, including five published children's books. He has also exhibited and sold work at a number of art galleries throughout the UK. 
http://www.iotaillustration.etsy.com/ is an online store, based in the United Kingdom, set up and run by Oliver. All of the limited edition prints in the store are © Oliver Lake and come printed, signed and dated.

I was reminded of Oliver Lake when I spotted his work on a post in Facebook by Brighton POD (Promoting Original Design). Thank you for inspiring me!

Thanks to Oliver Lake for allowing Kitty as a Picture Kids Design Blog to feature these illustrations. Much appreciated!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Vintage Wallpaper Gorgeousness by Inke

We have a little room detached from our house that is a great space to kick around in - make a mess with paints, play with playdough, that kind of thing... But it's not just a playroom, because my partner and I like to sit out there too, open the French doors and relax with a glass of wine. It needs a bit of brightening up on the inside, and I have been pondering what to do with it (after I have revamped the garden, painted the shed, filed those papers, done up that doll's house, written that blog post etc etc...) but imagining that I did have time, I was contemplating painting some fun silhouettes on the interior walls, in blackboard paint, for my daughter to draw on. But we really need some colour - something stylishly simple and sophisticated. Then I remembered Dutch artist Inke Heiland. Inke is exactly what we need!! A splash of vintage wallpaper gorgeousness!

Vintage Wallpaper Giraffe by Inke Heiland.
Vintage Wallpaper Rhino by Inke Heiland.

Vintage Wallpaper Elephant by Inke Heiland.

And I love this baby elephant! So cute...

Vintage Wallpaper Baby Elephant by Inke Heiland.

There is a fantastic selection of wildlife silhouettes to choose from, and a HUGE range of wallpapers. Mix and match silhouettes and wallpapers to create the perfect design for your home. And if wildlife is not your thing, Inke has much more: The Town Musicians of Bremen, Trees, Branches, Leaves, Interiors, and Birds...

Vintage Wallpaper The Town Musicians of Bremen by Inke Heiland.
The Town Musicians of Bremen Book illustrated by Inke is also available.

Vintage Wallpaper Tree #1 by Inke Heiland.


Vintage Wallpaper Interiors by Inke Heiland.


Vintage Wallpaper Birds by Inke Heiland.

Inke's Birdhouse Lamp is a lovely idea. Hand made from French Oak (sustainable sources), it comes with an energy-saving lightbulb, and a set of wallpaper birds. Oh divine!

Wallpaper Tree and Birdhouse Lamp by Inke Heiland.

Are you wishing you had thought of it? I am! But, where on earth would you find such an amazing collection of wallpapers? Inke and her team don't seem to have trouble; the wallpaper selection is enormous and ever-changing. Colours and patterns cover every taste, from bright and bold, to subtle and subdued. I guarantee you'll find something that appeals to you. Visit the  Inke Heiland online shop to see the full collection of products and wallpaper designs. You'll love it!

Many thanks to Inke for allowing permission to feature these designs on Kitty as a Picture Kids Design Blog. 

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Delicious Chocovenyl Wall Decals for the Home

My fascination with wall art continues, and I am so inspired when it comes to decorating kids' rooms. Trouble is, my daughter's room is packed full of furniture and toys, and that makes decorating almost impossible. Almost... but Chocovenyl make some incredibly beautiful mini wall decals that I could definitely make space for. If a room feature is what you are after, Chocovenyl has that covered too, and there is such a great range of designs - they can brighten up any room in the home. This Belle and Boo design would be my pick...

Hot Air Balloons wall decals, A Belle and Boo design. 

But this mini decal might be a better fit...

Miniz Belle Hugs Boo wall decal, A Belle and Boo design.

Or this yummy donut...

Miniz Donut wall decal, A Belle and Boo design.

Belle and Boo is not just all about girls...

Dino Ride wall decals, A Belle and Boo design.

And Chocovenyl are not just all about Belle and Boo. They have a huge collection of wall decals by world class artists including Alberto Cerriteno, Julien Canavezes, Adolie Day, Helen Dardik, Zutto, Carolyn Gavin, Jillian Phillips, Alessandra Fusi, Teodoru Badiu, Mister Mista, and Ellen Giggenbach, as well as Chocovenyl's own designs. I've picked out a few favourites, which is not an easy thing to do... there are so many fabulous wall decals to choose from!

Princess and the Pea wall decals, A Helen Dardik design.

Princess and Castle wall decal, An Ellen Giggenbach design.

Fairy wall decals, An Adolie Day design.

Alice in Wonderland wall decals, An Alessandra Fusi design.

Dogs wall decals, A Carolyn Gavin design.

Fun Transportation wall decals, A Sarajo Frieden design.

Miniz Fizzy & Co wall decals, A Teodoru Badiu design.

Kotobus wall decals, A Zutto design.

Rainbow Toys wall decals, A Jillian Phillips design.

And there is so much more; something to suit everyone, all homes, all tastes. When it comes to wall decals, Chocovenyl definitely has a yummy collection. I love it!


Chocovenyl is based in the UK, however local readers (New Zealand) can purchase from Unique Boutique.

Many thanks to Chocovenyl for allowing Kitty as a picture Kids Design Blog to publish these images.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

The Chicken Thief

My next purchase is going to be the children's book The Chicken Thief by Béatrice Rodriguez. I confess, it is not an indulgence for my daughter, but a treat for me! It will go on my bookshelf amongst my favourite illustration books.

The Chicken Thief  by Béatrice Rodriguez.
Size:  265 x 160mm landscape ISBN  978-1-877467-31-8 hardback. Published by Gecko Press in 2009.

The Chicken Thief is the gripping story of a chicken who is snatched by a fox. The chicken's distraught friends take chase through the forest, over mountains, and across the sea. Their exhausting pursuit through day and night comes to a most surprising and delightful end leaving the reader absolutely satisfied. That, I find, is rare in a children's book. So often a beautifully illustrated children's book is poorly written, awkward to read, or fails to conclude in a pleasing way. The Chicken Thief is unusual; the story is told only through illustration. Can a wordless picture-book capture all the drama and tension of the written word? I believe The Chicken Thief does.

Illustration from The Chicken Thief  by Béatrice Rodriguez.

Illustration from The Chicken Thief  by Béatrice Rodriguez.

Illustration from The Chicken Thief  by Beatrice Rodriguez.

 The Chicken Thief can be enjoyed by young children on a basic level, and will continue to fascinate as they get older and are able to find subtleties in the story. There is much to explore and discuss as a child grows, including themes of friendship and misunderstanding.
But who said this had to be a children's book? This purchase is for me, and I encourage all illustrators to get their hands on a copy.

The Chicken Thief was first published in France as Le voleur de poule. In 2009, Gecko Press in New Zealand published an English version in hardback. I spotted a copy in Time Out Bookstore in Auckland recently. It is also available for purchase at the Gecko Press website, and an English version by publisher Enchanted Lion Books is available through the Kitty as a Picture Amazon Bookstore.

Psssssst: Just quietly... a little birdie told me that there is going to be a 'sequel' published by Gecko Press later this year! I'll keep an eye out for it ...watch this space!

Many thanks to Gecko Press for allowing Kitty as a Picture Kids Design Blog permission to publish these copyright images.