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 Some interesting selections for you to browse:

 Books with Fairies 


Alice in Wonderland Books


  Louis Wain illustrations [cats!]

   Chromolithograph illustrations


 Books featuring dogs

 Ernest Nister books


Making a collection of Contemporary Pop-ups and Movables

The 1960s saw the beginning of a resurgence in pop-up art and by the 1980's Hallmark Cards, Random House, and Intervisual Communications, Inc. had exploded the pop-up market and were producing up to 25 million pop-up books a year. Waldo H. Hunt, founder of book packaging company Intervisual Communications, Inc. and primarily responsible for the rebirth of the modern pop-up book, enlarged the pop-ups' scope of appeal by also recognizing adult audiences.

The intricacies of modern pop-up books have brought the paper engineer from obscurity to center stage. Contemporary paper engineers / pop-up designers / illustrators include David Pelham, Robert Sabuda and Ib Penick. After the conceptual stages, pop-ups are marketed by book packaging companies and then sent all over the world to be assembled by hand. The low cost of labour in places ranging from Asia to Latin America makes these extravagant books affordable to a broad market.

Pop-up books from the last 30 years are still relatively easy to find and it is possible to get even some of the most complex constructions, in good condition, for under 30. When buying pop-ups look out for mis-folds of the construction and for missing parts to movable elements.

 The pop-ups in this book are quite simple, but the subject matter is a very well known children's character that has a good nostalgia factor. The creator of Andy Pandy is associated with several well known 50s/60s children's characters, such as the Flowerpot Men and the Woodentops. Similarly, the illustrator, Matvyn Wright, was very accomplished and prolific.

 Star Trek is something of a cult t.v. show and this pop-up book from the 1970's shows the original cast members [Kirk, Spock and Scottie] on the front cover. Whilst the pop-ups themselves are uncomplicated the subject matter gives it its collectibility.

 David Pelham has designed many pop-up books and they are usually characterised by more interesting subjects and more adventurous mechanisms. Because he is contemporary and still publishing his books are very good value for money.

 I like Ib Penick's movable books, he tends to use a combination of techniques within a single book making them more interesting and that little bit different. As movables become more complicated they will be more susceptible to damage and hence the availability of good copies is less. This will needless to say affect the overall value, but his books are still coming in at a competitive price.

 Lothar Meggendorfer is the all time supremo of the movable book and original copies of his books fetch thousands of pounds. However reproductions are available and once these also go out of print they themselves will increase in value.

 Robert Sabuda is arguably today's king of the pop-up. His books are popular and they have large print runs, so there are a lot of them around, but they are some of the most complex and so I would judge that a lot of them will be well used and hence subject to damage. Therefore a copy kept in top condition should represent a good investment for the future. In many of his books there are smaller pop-ups behind flaps on the main pages making them really interesting and entertaining to look through.


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