Friday, April 17, 2009

Ooh la la - a French Flaunt-It Friday

The last in my mini series of posts about books from my collection. These ones I WILL be pulling apart and rebinding when I figure out what they 'need'.
From the top (above) we have Muirhead's Short Guide to Paris from 1951. It is the style of travel book I love most with lots of fold out maps and floorplans to major buildings. It is also set out as a walking guide so it tells you who or what happened in a particular building on a street and then walks you further along it and points out the next place of interest. I have found the 'recent' history very interesting as it is almost 60 years old and Paris has changed so much since then. It has other little touches that send it straight to my heart too, like a ribbon place marker and the original owners name and address penned on the endpaper (DF Woodhouse, 229 Stanley Park Road, Carshalton, Surrey, England). It's a little gem! (Open in front below.)

The second book (open at back above) is really interesting. On the spine it is titled The Silent Traveller in Paris, written and illustrated by Chiang Yee. On the front cover this information is in Chinese calligraphy. Published in 1956, the book contains beautiful watercolour and ink illustrations that are both very Parisian and very Chinese. It is a different way of seeing Paris. Unfortunately the cover is in quite bad condition so I don't know if it is a good rebinding project after all. I will use the pages at the very least though and might add them to the last book I've got here A Month in Paris by Mrs Robert Henrey (on the bottom in all three photos).

This gem of gems is from 1954. Why is it the gem of gems? It doesn't have maps, or ribbons or much in the way of illustrations (other than the portrait of Mrs Robert Henery by Honor Earl). I haven't read it yet but I will... before I spend my month in Paris later this year!!! Yes, that's what it has - the perfect title! This rebound sketchbook will be mine, all mine!

And strangely these last two books must have been in the collection of the one person before I collected them too. They both have watercolour blotches of colour on their foredges. You can see it in this last photo. There is no paint on the pages, just splashed onto the foredge. I can almost imagine the quirky studio of an travelling artist...

9 comments:

Natalia said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Natalia said...

Great post - well written and fascinating too! (I have a thing for older books also).
*Prev. post deleted due to embarrassing spelling!

Chrisy said...

oh honey...yes yes use the last three books...but..the first two?!...you must keep them as they are! such treasures...I covet them....

ArtNomadix said...

Yes Paris has changed lots, even in the last 30 years ! I recently flew over with GoogleEarth, and the building I lived in has finally fallen down completely, or more likely pulled down and made into a little park for the huge modern apartment that takes up the quite long narrow street that led down to the market, sadly also GONE !

Jan Allsopp said...

Ah, sad. But what memories you have! I wish I could say I'd lived in Paris once, which is why I'm going for a month! I'm so excited!

SCB said...

Hi Jan, I think I've got your Chinese author's book on living in London in my pile of books to cannibalise!

Jan Allsopp said...

Now that's exciting Sara! I can feel the burgeoning of a collaboration!...

Beadsme said...

I have a thing for old books. left loads back in the UK when I moved to Aus. Soo sad.

Shirley said...

Jan,
You always find the most wonderful books! I need to spend more time in the local second hand bookstores - I still love recycling books, even though I finally learned cased-in binding with my own covers.