Wednesday, December 24, 2008

'Twas the night before Christmas...

I'm totally enchanted by beautifully illustrated copies of Clement Clarke Moore's "The Night Before Christmas"... So much so, that I've built up quite a collection over the years.

(click any photos to enlarge)

Every Christmas Eve our family reads The Night Before Christmas. I love how each artist puts his or her own style into the illustrations... They're all so beautiful, and so widely varied! See for yourself...

Starting with the older copyrights and moving forward... my first book is copyright 1949, illustrations by Leonard Weisgard:

I love this Little Golden Book version, illustrated by Eloise Wilkin, copyright 1955 (look at that 25 cent price on the cover!)

This copyright 1965 version, illustrated by Reisie Lonette, has the dreamiest illustrations. I love how the original owner penciled in "Narrator," "Papa," and "Santa" for the different parts. Clearly several people took part in reading this book at one time! (I love the history of used books! And see the 29 cent sticker? You don't see prices like that on hardcover books anymore!)

I just love Douglas Gorsline's illustrations in this copyright 1975 version... A black kitty is prominent in his version, and many of you know how partial I am to little black kitties!!

I own two Tasha Tudor versions. This is the copyright 1975 version... She is such an original. Her work is immediately recognizable and her style is perfect for The Night Before Christmas... And, of course, her adorable corgis are always featured in her beautiful illustrations...

Here's another Little Golden Book, copyright 1987, with illustrations by Kathy Wilburn...

Okay, I just want to crawl into this book and live with this little bunny family! Jacqueline Rogers has just captured all the loveliness of the Christmas season with her sweet little bunnies in this copyright 1987 version...

Are you a Scotty dog lover? If so, you'll just flip for the vibrant illustrations in this copyright 1993 Jean Hirashima version!!!

This little copyright 1995 Candy Cane Book is different in that the inside illustrations are by Susan Spellman, but the cover illustration is by Linda Graves...

If you're a fan of old Victorian illustrations, you will LOVE this book! The book itself is copyright 1997, but the illustrations are copyright 1888 by William Roger Snow (pseudonym Richard Andre)... Just gorgeous!

I'm just a sucker for versions that feature furry little creatures! The little mouse family in Loretta Krupinski's copyright 1998 version is just adorable!! I love every one of her beautiful illustrations - see for yourself!

We have so many of Jan Brett's books! Back in 1996, the girls got to meet Jan Brett at a local bookstore and watch her draw a hedgehog as well! We love all of her books, and her copyright 1998 version of The Night Before Christmas is no exception - such detailed, beautiful illustrations!!!

Sharon Cartwright did a beautiful job with her copyright 1999 version, published by Junior Jellybean Books...

This is the other Tasha Tudor version I own, copyright 1999... All of her illustrations are so detailed and magical!

If you are a dog lover, you must check out William Wegman's copyright 2000 version, featuring his famous (and adorable!!) Weimaraners!! My girls first saw his beautiful dogs on Sesame Street, and this book's photography and the 'human' characteristics of his canine cast will delight everyone, young or old!!!

"The Visit," a copyright 2001 version by Mark Kimball Moulton is a little bit different in that it tells "the delightful history and origin of "The Night Before Christmas" as recalled by Dinghy Sharp, storyteller and great-great-granddaughter of author, Clement Clarke Moore." Add to that the phenomenal illustrations of well known artist, Susan Winget, and you've got a "must have" copy for anyone who collects "Night Before Christmas" books! (I'm so lucky to have a signed, personalized copy as I purchased it directly from author Mark Kimball Moulton!)

I almost passed by this version because (to be quite honest) I wasn't very attracted to the cover. Luckily I didn't "judge this book by its cover" because the inside illustrations are phenomenal, featuring the nostalgic Santa Claus illustrations of Haddon Sundblom!

I hope you enjoyed a little glimpse into these talented artists' renditions of The Night Before Christmas!!! I treasure my collection and enjoy looking through them ... They instantly get you into the Christmas spirit!

(all artwork is copyright of the individual artists)

Merry Christmas, everyone!!!


laurie said...

Oh yes, I did enjoy seeing this delightful collection of "Night Before Christmas" books. How in the world do you decide which of these lovely books to read on Christmas Eve? Thank you for sharing them. Have a wonderful Christmas. laurie

Edie Marie's Attic said...

Hi Donna!
The story about your mom's ring brought tears to my eyes! I truly believe that our loved ones visit us and help us find things and comfort us. Since anything is possible for God, He must be able to give us the ability to check on our loved ones! At any rate, I'm so happy you have her ring to wear and love.
Your copies of the beloved story are just incredible! My favorite has to be the rabbit family, how adorable!
Have a wonderful holiday dear friend!! Hugs, Sherry

Connie said...

I loved that old story, chick!! Most of us could quote it from memory because our parents read it so much. Thank you for visiting with me and leaving that sweeeeet comment.

Claudia said...

I love your collection of books! How wonderful to have them as part of your Christmas. Have a Very Merry Christmas!

TattingChic said...

What a lovely collection of books you have...yes, the night before Christmas is a Magical Night, indeed...full of wonder and delights awaiting! Merry Christmas to you and your family! :)

Peggy. said...

What a great collection! I love them all but those sleeping bunnies are just too cute.

Have a great Christmas!


Anonymous said...

Merry Christmas! What a wonderful collection of books! Thank you for a peek at these wonderful treasures. M. Ann

Joanne Kennedy said...

What a fun and different thing to collect. I bet the kids love them all. Hard to pick a favorite that's for sure.


Deborah said...

Quite a collection and I love the sweet colorful illustrations.

The best to you,

Mo said...

What a great collection! I did an article earlier this year on a series based on the Night Before Christmas that are occupation themed. The series is very cute. Hope you have a very Merry Christmas!

Brook said...

I always enjoy your blog, your daughters are adorable,as for the storybook my favorite illustrator is Cyndy Szekeres. I am new to blogland, please visit me and I would appreciate being added to your list of bloggers. My husband passed in 1997, so I share tears with you ,memories keep us going and God's grace. Blessings, Brook

Indigo Robe said...

I , too, have a collection of over 100 books of various Twas The Night Before Christmas... I just recently turned down a new copy of Teacher's Night Before Christmas. What was I thinking? I was tired... it was 50 % off! Why didn't I buy it?! I guess a trip back to the store is in order.

I really enjoyed your collection and have many of the newer ones you showed. I am going to have to start looking for the vintage ones now!

I display them around my home at the holidays. On the cabinets, everywhere and anywhere. Thanks for sharing your collection! Nice to know I have company in my love of the poem!

Amongst The Oaks said...

When I was about 3 I heard that book so often, I could recite it by heart. I don't know what happened to the little Golden Book, but I'd love to have another copy. Thanks for sharing your collection.

Cathy said...

Hi Donna and Happy New Year.

I love your blog! I'm so glad I stopped by. It's my first visit!

I'm having a blog contest. Come join in the fun.

xo Cathy

Chandra said...

What a fabulous collection you have! Thanks so much for sharing! I'm so glad to see my favorites (Tasha Tudor and Douglas Gorsline) included!