Thursday, 22 January 2015

Bunnikins at Bedtime

A couple of recent articles in the Guardian caused that part of the brain that's responsible for preserving fond memories to tick over in a rather pleasing fashion.  My mind has been cast back to think about the Ladybird books that were a feature of the childhoods of many Brits of a certain age. Their beautiful illustrations evoke a different era when elves aside, men were more butch, and bunnies covered their modesty with cutesy dresses that would have made Laura Ashley proud.

Here's an illustration from one of my favourite bedtime reads during childhood, Bunnikin's Picnic Party, a story in rhyme that you can readily pick up from pennies on secondhand book sites.  Even though I was mesmerised by the story,   I seem to remember being decidedly disappointed with the picnic fare. If I recall correctly it consisted of bottles of cold tea and hard boiled eggs.  I had been mightily peed off with that al fresco offering at any stage during my childhood or adult life. Where's the pork pies, perfect eggy mayo sarnies or the crisps or chocolate for goodness sake?

Photo: The Guardian
Now you may be wondering what the seemingly random reference to elves above was all about.  Well now you know. Some modern day wit has taken a satirical look at those retro illustrations and added naughty captions.  They made me laugh and have given me an idea for costumes  when two of my dearest men in the world attend their next fancy dress party.    Darlings, you know who you are!

A more serious minded article showcased illustrations from the wide range of books that Ladybird produced in this era.  The titles included something to whet the literary appetite of all but the most lethargic kids even the crafty ones.  What do you know!  I actually made this spinner. I didn't look quite so neat, tidy and demure though.  Mama Lovelygrey if you ever wondered why your envelopes kept disappearing.........!


  1. My daughter in law writes a blog ( and every Tuesday she devotes it to talking about Ladybird books. She has a huge collection!

  2. But egg mayonnaise hadn't been invented when Ladybird printed those books!

  3. egg mayo was made with salad cream in our house. mayo was for queer folk not of these

  4. Yuk! Salad cream! Thank goodness those dear French invented the creamier, yummier stuff. x Frances - will do and have a wander over to your daughter in law's blog when I have a moment. x