14.5.09

Hurrah for the Circus!



I have a quiet passion for anything circus. I've never been to one, and I'm not sure if I'd like the real thing, especially not performing animals. Of course, to see
Cirque du Soleil would be marvellous, but we'd have to take out a small loan or sell our body parts to afford the tickets. So I content myself with browsing my collection of what I might grandly call, my resource material. Look...





One of my best 10p finds, from a village fete bookstall. A moment when your heart beats a little faster and you look round quickly to see if anyone else has spotted your treasure.





Battered, torn and broken in places, yet Humberto's little circus is beautiful to me.




Not so fragile - my Christmas present from Andy (very *subtly* suggested by me). It weighs as much as a baby elephant itself, and is a whopping 45cm tall (17 & 3/4") 29cm wide (11") and nearly 8cm thick (3").




It is stuffed with a smorgasbord of everything circus, hundreds of pages of pictorial gorgeousness. I could happily drown in it and frequently do.





On a (much) smaller scale, this sweetie, an open the flap booklet. Front -




Inside...



Turn the flap...



Turn the flap...



Turn the flap...




Back cover.



Not everything is on my bookshelf though. The other day I came across this, via
Fern Animals and almost cried with sheer delight.







Tomorrow I take the first batch of this menagerie to the shop, which in itself is worthy of a little Grand Parade. It's been a long old seven weeks.



A BIG PS - I do not like performing animals either, unless they are firmly between the pages of books!

29 comments:

Mary Beth said...

The circus is one of my most favorite places to go and I bet you'd love it! When I read this, I kept thinking, "Ah, Kindred spirits!"

jfidz said...

Didn't realise you were into circuses in such a big way Gretel. A fascinating blog entry - loved the books and the great film clip.
Wonderful parade of felted folk at the end.

Sue said...

I used to have something similar to your pop up book as a child... what wonderful memories of those magical times of seemingly endless hours spent looking and looking and looking, spellbound, far beyond the page and way off into the imagination... I wish I could conjure up that innocence again :-)

Contessa Kris said...

Don't all the animals look adorable together! Ready to take on the world. I love the circus books, especially the one you received for Christmas.

Vikki said...

hello my lovely, I was having a very grey day and boring lunch hour so I thought I'd stop in and found (for the first time, don't worry its just me) your studio cam. And there you were working away, how lovely I thought and it cheered me right up.

Vikki x

ayelet(nishale) said...

I LOVE the pop up book!!!!!!!!!!!!!
and the other and your creatures and the movie! what a delightul post!
Thank you for sharing!
You also welcome to visit my new blog!
Thank you!
Ayelet

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

I cannot believe you found such a treasure!! What delightful luck.

Personally speaking, I rather deplore the performing animal part of a circus, which usually keeps me away from them...I'd much rather enjoy your felted parade! They are simply adorable.

Since you are a circus fan...have you read the book, Like Water for Elephants?

Soozcat said...

Oh lovely! And your felted promenade at the end is every bit as magical as the rest.

Frances said...

You've a delight of a menagerie there, PG. Wonderful to think of those creations of yours being adopted by folks who will truly appreciate them.

Circus memory.

Long ago I lived in a small Southern U.S town, and when the circus came to town, there was an actual circus parade, with horse drawn carriage, and horse drawn cages with lions and tigers inside. This parade passed right by my elementary school and we six-year olds were allowed to line up along the sidewalk to see the parade pass by.

Even better, my dad and my grandmother took me to the circus, which was held in a big tent. One ring, with ringmaster. I remember sitting on a bleacher seat and just marveling at the spectacle.

Decades later, I did once attend Ringling Brothers Circus here in New York City at Madison Square Garden. It was by no means as thrilling as seeing that tent-housed circus as a six-year old.

xo

Rosehaven Cottage said...

I was fortunate to have a mom that loved to take us to the circus when I was a child. The best one was a traveling circus that came to town when I was 12. We sat in the tent with the smell of the dusty dirt floor while we watched the performances. I even got a red, white, and blue drum majorette baton with a glitter encrusted top. I think that's the last circus I attended and it's the best memory. Thank you for bringing that all back with this post!

Cindy

tlc illustration said...

I attended a three-ring circus in NYC when I was in grade school. I have almost no memories of the circus itself, but more of the subway, the venue, the popcorn and the large, glossy program that I got to bring home.

And for years, we played with a nearly antique, wooden, Fisher-Price circus set. I imagined myself teeny-tiny and participating in the trapeeze adventures that I set up. :-)

Caroline B said...

I like the idea of the circus but really don't like the real thing - clowns creep me out and I hate seeing majestic animals reduced to performing tricks (what a killjoy - sorry!) However, that cutout circus is fantastic, as is that amazing book. And those little wire mechanical toys are incredible, I just love things like that!

Pearl said...

Hello my friend,
I have been away far too long. Hope you are doing well. Your animals are so sweet looking. I can just imagine that they come to life at night and dance around the room.
Love your circus collection. Such vivid colors...Very cheery for sure.
Take good care.
Sending you hugs,

Kim said...

The thing I loved most about the Circus was the glittering, twirling ladies, and of course the horses. Many horses enjoy their work (I know I'm generalising, but Merlin would be great in a circus!)and so that's ok with me. You can keep the clowns though!!!

I love your little parade, and it's great to see them finally finished. Can you take a breather now?

Kim x

d. moll, l.ac. said...

Your felted animals are so impressive with their charm and perfect shapes.A job well done, how is your wrist? My rabbits agree with you that performing animals should be in books only, but then I think they think this means behaving animals as well.

CrazyJaneDesigns said...

I love your circus, and am a little envious .I have been coverting the Tachen circus book myself.But funds will not allow.
I feel very luck to have worked in a circus myself, as a wardrobe mistress on tour in Taiwan (and no I did not agree with the animal side)and I must say it does hold very special memories for me.

I love your animals, they have such wonderful expressions.

BumbleVee said...

ta tata ta ta ta.....

they look like they are getting all "marshalled" for their very own parade.... line up over here everyone..... wheeee....

Hirondelle said...

When I was a kid the circus came to stay for a month in the field behind my house. They arrived at night lorry after lorry hauling mysterious and sometimes noisy loads, and I knelt on the ottoman and gazed out of my mum and dad's bedroom window as they slowly filled the field. The next day I wandered among the lorries and cages and as they began to set up. Watching them raise the big top was amazing. By the end of the month I understood why people ran away with the circus. I longed to join them myself (fire-eater was my first choice, but I would have been equally happy had they offered my the lion-tamer's post). A perfectly wonderful month.

Jessie Lilac said...

Oh my goodness! Yes! Yes! I love the cardboard circus! And the books! And the video! The music is perfect for it too isn't it? You lucky thing finding such wonderful treasures!x

Graceful Moments said...

You always have the most interesting items popping up on here! The menagerie is delightful.

gracefruit said...

There is a book called 'Water for Elephants' that I think you would love.

Kim said...

Gretel, theres a little award for you on my blog, I think you may like it :)

Kim x

Elizabeth Rhiannon said...

The circus is always so magical, isn't it? A mysterious world. I love your pics and your own animals :)

acornmoon said...

What a great find for ten pence!

Your little collection of felted animals looks beautiful. What's next on the agenda, a Noah's Ark perhaps?

Jackie said...

Your little troupe is wonderful
Pop up books are up there with old paintboxes from childhood.

Mlle Miracle said...

Your particular felted ménagerie is very funny!
And I agree with you, I do not like performing animals too, it makes me sad.

Bee said...

Your menagerie is very impressive!

I didn't realize that H.A. Rey wrote this book about the circus. He also wrote the "Curious George" books which were my brother's favorites when we were children. (Do you know these books?)

Water for Elephants, which someone else mentioned, might well intrigue you. I have it somewhere; would be happy to mail it to you if you like.

natural attrill said...

The moscow state circus was on the moor last week, don't think they had any animals though!!

(the moor is the big muddy/grassy thing with rugby posts on it: - it lives at the bottom of our school)

Toby.

icandy... said...

Yea! Circus... one of my favorite things! :)