Monday, November 02, 2009

Louisa May Alcott

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My creationThere is something so magical about Concord, Massachusetts. No matter how many times I visit, I still feel thrilled when I enter the town.

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DSC03989Surrounded by so much history, you can't help but imagine Louisa May Alcott walking down the streets in town, on the way to visit the Emerson home or a stroll along Walden Pond.

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DSC03989I learned that a new book had just been published and that the author would be in Concord this weekend. She was doing a book signing in the quaint and charming old Concord Book Shop.

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DSC03989The book is Louisa May Alcott, The Women Behind Little Women. Harriet Reisen spent many years researching everything she could possibly get her hands on to write this book.

"Every now and then, there appears a writer who has tracked a subject for so long through space and time that the resulting product ranks it superior to any of the facile interpretations or extended magazine articles that currently pass for biography. Such is the case with Harriet Reisen."
Marion Elizabeth Rodgers, The Washington Times


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DSC03989She met with scholars and searched for all the resources necessary to write the book and produce the film. Listening to the author read excerpts from the book made me hear between the words that this project had truly been a labor of love.

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DSC03989I listened as the little girl within came to life, as she read from her book. Perhaps the same little girl excitement that she had when she first read Little Women.

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DSC03989There will be a film which will be aired on Public Television on December 28th, 2009. I peeked at the website and you can view video clips from the film. The DVD will be available soon. There is a fascinating photo gallery available for viewing.

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DSC03989Although the author had come to sign books, I don't think that she was prepared for the rather large turn out. After all it is Concord, home of Orchard House and well, there are so many of us who share the same passion for Louisa May Alcott. We were almost spilling outside the doors to the shop.

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DSC03989They ran out of books, can you imagine? So, I went around the corner, as suggested and bought a copy from the gift shop at Orchard House. I didn't mind, any excuse to visit there is always a welcomed one.

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DSC03989My signed copy will be treasured. I had an opportunity to speak to the author and I mentioned how much I loved the scene in her film with actors sitting at a cafe table, while the background was of period photographs.

The Woman Behind Little Women from Nancy Porter Productions on Vimeo.



DSC03989It looked a bit like one of those altered art scenes we find in popular artwork.

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DSC03989After reading the book I will put it next to the collection of treasures about the Alcott's. For now, I am lost in the dialogues of Louisa's writings and conversations.

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DSC03989Inspiration...well, I just designed another Orchard House card. I used a delightful illustration from Louis's Journal from the 1800's. The Orchard house rendering is from 1838.

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DSC03989The print is mounted on lovely pearl card stock in a beautiful shiny white paper. A taffeta ribbon in black and taupe accents the front and is tied inside.

My creation

DSC03989Inside the card I have added a glassine pocket with a bookmark wearing the same print.

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DSC03989I added a touch of Vintage ribbon binding in an olive green.

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DSC03989Orchard House and historical Concord inspire me every time I visit.

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DSC03989Inspiration from Louisa May Alcott has bloomed into my designing countless paintings, photographs, altered books and hand-made card. All dedicated to expressing my love of her writing and my passion for Orchard House and the Alcott family.

My creation

Louisa May Alcott, The Woman Behind Little Women from Nancy Porter Productions on Vimeo.




Every Wednesday Susan from A Southern Daydreamer hosts Outdoor Wednesday. An opportunity to visit the outdoors in other parts of the globe without making reservations.

My creationThe song for this post is Orchard House.

28 comments:

laurie @ bargain hunting said...

Oh Karen, I love your Orchard House design, and the bookmark is such a lovely idea. It's a card with a gift included. You can't go wrong with Louise Mae Alcott inspiration! (When I got old enough to read, I asked my mother if my name could be changed to Jo!) Wonderful post. I felt that I was walking down that beautiful street with you. laurie

Tristan Robin Blakeman said...

Thank you for the lovely tour! And your card design and book mark is just delightful!

I've never been a huge fan of Louisa May Alcott (though, of course, everybody loves "Little Women!") ... perhaps I should give her another try. It's been many years, and my taste has changed.

Joyce said...

How did I miss this one! I was actually not doing anything this weekend. Oh well there's always Dickens to make up for missing such a fabulous book signing. I forget everything these days. See you Thursday night. I've actually come up with an idea to finish our homework Last minute as always. Nothing like a deadline to get the muse screaming at you.

Alison Gibbs said...

Hi Karen thanks for taking us to Concord, Massachusetts. Orchard House looks so interesting. Your card is beautiful
Alison

LiLi M. said...

Thanks for another very inspiring post. I will be back. As I spent the weekend away from home, I am still catching up reading blogs and leaving comments. Louisa May Alcott is one of my favorites, I'll check whether I can find the book over here too or perhaps order it through Amazon com or that British site that doesn't charge shipping (all over the world). Then I'll watch the vimeo's too!

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Good morning dear artist and friend! I remember the first time we went to Concord; I fell in love with this old, historical place and never wanted to leave. The era of the story is a time that I would have loved to have at least visited, so quaint, quiet and beautiful. Thanks to artists like the author and yourself, we can escape to this dreamy world where women may have had it pretty rough, but all the same, lived more quiet lives, or at least I dream of. How wonderful, Anita

Sharon's Cottage Quilts said...

Karen, what a wonderful tour and magical place. So happy for you that you were able to get your book, and have it autographed! Whew..That was a close one! I have never been to the Northeast, and your tours of Mass. have been so exciting and informative! I now have a few new sites to put on my list of places to visit in Massachusetts!
Blessings Karen,
Sharon

Such a Wondrous Place this Faery Space said...

This was a post I won't forget. How lovely to feel like I had the book in my hand and was running my other hand along the white fence with the beauty of Nature and old homes everywhere. Thanks for this quiet moment friend. Blessings.

Bunny Rose Cottage said...

What a breathtaking post Karen! What a beautiful card and bookmark! You latest creations are so wonderful! Louisa May Alcott!! LOVE!
Hugs,
Amy

Beverly said...

Oh, Karen. I would have been in heaven to be able to get a signed copy of this book. I have adored Louisa May Alcott since I first read Little Women. I vividly remember it - I was eight years old. I still have my books.

Your post is a beautiful tribute.

Gary and Elizabeth~ said...

Hi Karen,
I loved your post today very much. I also loved "Little Women" and I watch it on T.V everytime it airs.
Your tour of Concord Mass. was breathtaking and so visually lovely.
I will be taking a trip to the book store this weekend to purchase "The Women Behind Little Women". I hope its in paperback so I can take it on the train with me to work.
Enjoy your day and keep creating!
Elizabeth

Suzie Button said...

It sounds like a wonderful day! I one day hope to visit the area myself, and I'll be looking for the book now! Lovely! Suzie

Snap said...

Karen,
Great post. Loved the tour, the book signing, your Orchard House design. Bookmarks are a big hit in my house! Lovely, lovely!

Fete et Fleur said...

I adore Concord, so much wonderful history and beauty.

Your Orchard house card is exquisite! Thanks for sharing this intriguing book. I will definitely read this one.

Hugs!
Nancy

Tara said...

Karen

I put the date on my calendar--my daughter will have her wisdom teeth removed that day and I think we'll snuggle that night and watch as she tries to recover--thanks for the tour, I felt like i went with you! Your mosaic is GREAT! (Of course!!)

Charli and me said...

Good evening Karen, I really loved this post. I can't wait to see the movie and get the book. This was a great tour. Louisa May Alcott is one of my favorite authors. Thank you. The book mark and card is lovely ♥

Claudia@DipityRoad said...

Hi darlin...
I love your rendition of her home and it fits perfectly with your collection.

Like you she is one of my favorite authors ... and of course Little Women a treasure for me. I loved the numerous movie depictions (each one good in their own way)

Thanks for taking us on your trip with you.

Enjoy your week... and stop by and say hi if you have a moment.

TTFN~~ Claudia ♥ ♥

Kathleen Grace said...

The card you created is just beautiful and I am thrilled that there is a book out about Louisa! I adored her books growing up and still do. I would love learning more about the woman behind them. Thank you for letting us know about this!

curtissannmatlock said...

Oh, Karen, how glad I am to have been drawn to your site this morning! Drinking in the beauty and seeing Louisa Alcott's home and town. Thank you! I'd seen the book advertised, and since I'm on my way to the bookstore this morning, must look for it.

Hugs,
CurtissAnn

Gabriela said...

Hello Karen,

You live in such a magical place that I need to re-visit for the third time soon...

Your cards and book marks are beautiful!



~ Gabriela ~

The Quintessential Magpie said...

Karen, as usual, your post is just wonderful! I love your card! It is wonderful!

I always enjoy coming here to see you. Thanks so much for the heads up on the book and the film. I am a HUGE fan of LMA, and I will be on the lookout for this.

I have a story that I must relate to you. In doing genealogy research on one of my paternal lines, I discovered that the kitchen of Orchard House was the original HOUSE of one of my early NE settlers. I was so excited I could barely speak when I found out. He owned a farm there, and at some point, the land was sold and the house annexed to become part of Orchard House. A distant cousin of mine had all of this information, and she kindly shared it with me. So Orchard House is extra special to me. I have some very deep NE roots on numerous lines, and I have enjoyed getting to know that area through my research.

When I get back from my trip, I want to get in touch with you about getting one of your Orchard House cards. I would love that!

Love to you and Happy Outdoor Wednesday!

XO,

Sheila :-)

Mary said...

Karen, what a thoughtful and beautiful post. Your designs are beautiful. I hope you are having a wonderful Outdoor Wednesday.

Mary Isabella and Kiley too! said...

That is one of my favorite books. I bought one recently for my Granddaughter for Christmas. The card and bookmark is stunning...m..

Grandma Yellow Hair said...

What a wonderful post and beautiful card you have designed.
I am so glad I found your site while taking a lunch break today. Hope to visit you again soon
Maggie

Draffin Bears said...

Hi Karen,

I enjoyed your post and what a lovely tour, you took us on today.
Looks like a really beautiful place.
I loved reading Little Women, when I was young and must read it again.

Hugs
Carolyn

Rhondi said...

Hi Karen
It sounds like you had a wonderful time in Concord. I'm glad you were able to meet the author and hear her read her book. I will watch for the film on PBS. Your paintings are beautiful and I can feel the love that you poured into them.
Hugs, Rhondi

Elyse said...

fascinating!!!

a great post, sweetie!

xo

Donna said...

Wellnow I know that you were in Concord, and had I known about this book and its author coming I would have been there, too! How could I have missed such an exciting opportunity? Thank you for letting me live it through your post. with your permission, I'm going to link your Orchard House LMA post to the one I just did last week so people who would like to read/see more can visit your post! ... Donna