What children’s books I’m reading to my toddler right now

 

favorite books for toddlers

My 31 Favorite Children’s Books for Toddlers

  1. King Bidgood’s In the Bathtub by Audrey and Don Wood. This one was gifted to us as a baby shower gift but it might be my favorite children’s book. Or one of my top 3. I LOVE reading it to Jasper. There are so many fun characters to play and it’s such a clever book. There’s always something to find hidden in the illustrations.
  2. Sleep Like a Tiger by Mary Logue and illustrated by Pamela Zagarenski. We bought this one at the local used book store and I love the message. It encourages kids to go to sleep but in an empowering way.
  3. Moomin series. Jasper’s especially loving Moomin and the Wishing Star right now by Tove Jansson. Moomin books are all about a whimsical and Jasper
  4. Anything Dr. Seuss. We picked up a few compilations from Costco while we were on a grocery run and there are some unfamiliar stories in there to discover (some of them are a little odd or outdated so I get why they aren’t the most popular ones today, but Jasper still likes them!). The Big Orange Book of Beginner Books by Dr. Seuss and The Big Green Book of Beginning Books and The Big Red Book of Beginning Books by various authors.
  5. My First Book of Patterns by Bobby and June George and art by Boyoun Kim. This is a board book that is great for babies and growing toddlers , but I think it’s such a great way to introduce anyone to the elements of design.
  6. Curious George anything! Jasper cannot get enough of “ooo ah ahs” (aka: Monkies)
  7. Rex vs. Edna by Douglass Rees and illustrated by Jed Henry. This one was illustrated by our friend so we were lucky to snag a copy, but Jasper LOVES it. I mean, he loves dinosaurs in general but this is a funny t-rex story with a twist. For some reason I imagine Edna’s voice as Wanda Sykes.
  8. The Circus Ship by Chris Van Dusen. LOVE this book. I love that it’s based on a true story. The rhyming is clever. And I really love the page where you have to find all the animals on one page. It’s so clever! Jasper loves pointing them all out!
  9. Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss. Jasper is starting to want longer more narrative books so books like this one are great!
  10. Silly Sounds: Ready, Set, Go by Liza Lewis. We also picked this one up at Costco awhile ago, mostly because I wanted to see how Jasper would react to sounds book. He loves it! The story isn’t as prominent. It’s mostly for identifying the right buttons to press.
  11. Babar Learns to Cook by Laurent De Brunhoff. This one was one of Paul’s as a child and Jasper loves it!
  12. Miss Rumphius by Barbara Cooney. A personal favorite 🙂
  13. My First Book of Feminism by Julie Merberg and illustrated by Michele Brummer Everett and My First Book of Feminism for Boys. This series of books was illustrated by my dear friend (and Picture Hope illustrator.) and they’re fun to read together.
  14. Lola Dutch When I Grow Up by Kenneth and Sarah Jane Wright. This is another book written and illustrated by dear friends. It’s such a good one for encouraging imagination.
  15. Good Night, Gorilla by Peggy Rathmann. Jasper’s babysitter got him this one and it contains all of Jasper’s favorite items: bananas, monkeys and a funny moment. It’s fun to read!
  16. Mike Mulligan and his Steam Shovel. It’s a little too long to read so I skip some pages still, but he loves looking at all the machinery.
  17. Brown Bear, Brown Bear by Bill Martin Jr. and Eric Carle. We have the slide and view version that he loves to interact with!
  18. Animals by Ingela P. Arrhenius. This one was a baby shower gift and I LOVE the illustrations and how large it is. We use it to identify animal sounds because it’s quite simple. If you’re looking for cheap artwork you could even cut out the pages.
  19. Alexander Girard Colors. I picked this one up when I was visiting the International Folk Museum in Santa Fe, which has a huge Alexander Girard room. Jasper loves identifying the colors.
  20. Dream Animals: A Bedtime Journey by Emily Winfield Martin. Such a beautiful, whimsical read!
  21. Bear Came Along by Richard T. Morris and illustrated by LeUyen Pham. OK, I hadn’t heard of this one before we bought it in Jackson Hole (we try to pick up a children’s book in whatever city we visit.) But I think this might be my favorite book ever. The pictures are amazing and the story is so good. It’s fun and meaningful and. I’m going to go leave a review on it!
  22. Where the Wild Things Are by Mauric Sendak. Jasper lOVES the monsters!
  23. Hop on Pop by Dr. Seuss. A Jasper favorite.
  24. Are you My Mother? By P.D. Eastman. Another Jasper favorite.
  25. Good Night Baboon! By Sabrina Moyle and illustrated by Eunice Moyle. Great for identifying animals and also, Jasper is on a numbers kick right now.
  26. We’re Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen and Helen Oxenbury. I didn’t super love the book until I listened to this song and now we love it!
  27. Baby Astrology: Dear Little Aquarius by Roxy Marj. My friend, Roxy Marj, just released this new collection of astrology children’s books. And even if you’re not into all the kumbaya stuff of astrology no need to fear. It’s a sweet book that identifies the wonderful qualities of each sign. Roxy was sweet to send us the collection and I had wanted to give them out as gifts. However, Jasper is obsessed with each one!
  28. Richard Scarry’s Cars and Trucks and Things That Go. Ok, Jasper could spend SO much time looking for Goldbug and at each car and truck. It’s like this book was made for him! However,  I made the mistake of putting it in his crib last week so he’d have something to look at in the morning. Aaaand it kept him so occupied that, when I went in that morning, he had ripped up the book and it was completely shredded. I think my son is a nordic god.
  29. Ten Little Fingers and Ten Little Toes by Mem Fox and Helen Oxenbury. Jasper can’t get enough of this one. He loves placing his fingers and toes on each page!
  30. Woody Pip and Hazel by Elsa Beskow. Once again, Jasper can’t get enough of this one!

Book Recommendations + Book Club May 2020

 

Try a virtual book club

For anyone wondering how well book clubs work from afar, try out your favorite video conferencing app! Invite some friends, find a fancy snack, and talk about your favorite new book. Or find a new one that you’re interested in reading! Catch up on personal stuff while you dig into the details of why Bernadette left or what singing crawdads have to do with the story or the medieval history of the color yellow. (Can you name these books?) 

We recently designed some video conference cards that are colorful and a little bit cheeky… do you have a friend who can’t seem to mute themself when they’re not speaking? Hold up the mute card or the “Quiet, please!” You can even download different backgrounds to use on Zoom. I’m sure you’ve noticed our penchant for bright colors, so check out our zoom background color pallets! If you don’t have a video conference corner set up, a bright background is the next best thing – and requires zero house cleaning. 

If you want to join a preexisting book club, I know just the one: OURS! Each month we pick a new book and discuss it. If you don’t love to read or don’t have time, try downloading the audiobook so you can join in the fun in a more convenient way. 

This month’s book

To join in the Lars book club this month, Amazon Prime your own copy of Yellow: The History of a Color right to you door! Once you finish reading, we want to hear your thoughts below! 

 I’ll give just a teaser of topics covered in the book to pique your interest… 

Yellow pigment was derived anciently from clay deposits and was used by cave painters all across the globe! I did a little research and learned that some historians view the development of color as one of the first signs of civilization – it shows a bridge between art and science. Nifty! 

In Eastern cultures, yellow is almost always associated with joy, light, goodness – all things we love at Lars.

Vincent van Gogh used yellow alllllllll over the place, and we can’t get enough of it. Check out one of these films made about him if you want to see his color pallets brought to life outside of the canvas! Loving Vincent & At Eternity’s Gate

Pantone’s most recent yellow color of the year was last in 2009, but it has made a huge splash this last year on the runways and in interior design. Don’t believe me? Ask Glamour, Vogue, Fashion Week, Harper’s Bazaar, and more. Have you heard of Gen Z Yellow? (You don’t have to be Gen Z to love it!)

If you’re already a fan of yellow, you’ll enjoy reading about it in Pastoureau’s fabulous book—and if not? Hey, maybe you’ll have a new favorite color by the end. 😉 It is sure to be a visual feast. Happy reading!

Other book recommendations

Here are some more books to check out all about color!

 

Maybe you don’t love to read, or you just don’t have the time to sit down with a book! My rec is to download the audiobook! You can join in on the book club fun in whatever way is convenient for you.

Click here to see all of our favorite book recommendations!

Free Phone and Desktop Wallpaper Downloads from Craft the Rainbow

free rainbow phone and desktop wallpaper downloads

Free phone wallpaper downloads

We loved creating these free downloadable wallpapers just as much as creating Craft the Rainbow. If you haven’t read it before, you’ll want to! As I mentioned in an earlier post, it’s the ultimate stay-at-home companion, which is something we all might need right now. And now, for the first time ever, it is available for your Kindle for super cheap too I might add.

Quarantine boredom is no joke, but what better solution is there than crafting? We created these downloadable wallpapers as we were inspired by Craft the Rainbow, so who knows what you could be inspired to? Let that simmer in your thoughts as you look through each colorful wallpaper, and choose what speaks to you the most. Inspiration can be found in the darndest places, and here at Lars, sometimes it’s a sweet background photo.

These were one of my favorite parts of creating the book with my friend, photographer Chaunte Vaughn. We spent A LOT of time making them. Ha! I wanted each chapter to show the love I have of it through finding all the beautiful craft supplies in that color. Some of the beautiful objects were provided by friends and crafters from around the world including Ruth Ribeaucourt of The French Muse, who sent me a huge supply of beautiful objects from Provence. To me, they made the book!

Chaunte was so patient making these with me. We shot it in January when we had shorter light to work with so we had to RACE to get them done.

free phone wallpaper downloads

Free desktop wallpaper downloads

Check out these new wallpapers as soon as you can, and let us know which one was your fav! Unless all of them were, in which case you’ll want to download them all! Look through the shop today for the free downloads, and let Craft the Rainbow keep inspiring you for the rest of the month (or maybe the rest of your life!)

free rainbow desktop wallpaper downloadsfree rainbow desktop wallpaper downloads

The artist behind these rainbow wallpapers

These beautiful background canvases in each the images were created for Craft the Rainbow by artist Rachel Kiser Smith. She added so much texture and vibrancy that we’ve been using the backgrounds for shoots ever since.

We love her work so much and wanted to introduce her to you! Here amazing use of color and texture fills the pages of Craft the Rainbow and we couldn’t be happier about it. Read through her interview below to get to know Rachel, and to see more of her process while creating for our book!

What do you consider yourself? Example: Artist, designer, illustrator, maker, business person etc.?

Artist, creative, dabbler

Who helped you “become” who you are?

My Mom always had a creative project going and supplies to share. As an adult, friends who are also making art have been important to me. And can I say authors? I love reading anything on the creative process.

Do you feel like you’ve arrived at what you set out to do?

Yes and no. Perhaps the heart has secret dreams that will always keep me from feeling like I’ve arrived. But just starting to make work and share it on Instagram (after years of hiding) was an arrival of sorts. I remember the thrilling feeling when I realized that I was working with people I’d admired for a long time.

What more would you like to “become”?

Speaking of secret dreams . . . ha! I want to be a children’s book author and illustrator!

What did you study? Did you go to school specifically for what you do?

I took a bit of a meandering path in college and ended up with a double major in Spanish and Visual Arts. Spanish may seem inapplicable, but I think reading, analyzing, and writing about beautiful works of literature has had as much influence of my creativity as the art classes I took.

What’s your work space like?

When we moved into our house, we turned the formal living room into a creative space. It has a wall filled with art supplies and another with books. Usually the whole family shares a big table in the middle, but since having the kids home full time for distance learning, we’ve brought in another table just for me. That’s been a game changer.

Did you always have an ultimate plan?

No, and I still don’t! When I begin on a project or painting, I just have to start making stuff. The ideas come as I begin. I think careers can be like that too.

What piece of advice would you give to someone starting out in a creative field?

Protect your creative time from yourself. Part of you will come up with any excuse to not create. Commit to editing and researching later.

What’s inspiring you lately?

Amy Merrick’s book On Flowers, Gabriel Garcia Marquez novels, reading The Wind in the Willows to my kids, and watching the caterpillars in our yard.

Where you can find Rachel’s other work

@rachelkisersmith on Instagram

Her work for sale on Minted

Shop the Rainbow

Many of our Craft the Rainbow items, like journals, our guided journal My Life in Color, and more are still on sale! Shop the entire rainbow here and gear up for your quarantine creativity!

My Life in Color guided journal for creatives

How to publish a book: Part 1

Establish your goals

Whenever I begin a project, no matter what it is, I like to think about the why behind what I want to do it. Why do I want start this project? What is the goal of this project? In this case the questions is this: why publish a book? It’s such an enormous project that will take up a lot of time and possibly money so it has to be worth it in some intentional way. A few suggested reasons (and there’s no right answer for everyone, just preference):

  • Passion project
  • Brand awareness
  • Credential/Validation
  • Sales
  • Audience alignment

What were my goals with writing a book?

In my case, it was all those things. Overall I wanted to make the most beautiful craft book I could possibly imagine so yes, it was most DEFINITELY a passion project! I love what I wanted to do and I wanted to share it! It was also a great way to share what The House That Lars Built is all about, thus establishing our brand.

Thirdly, as a blogger since 2008, I was in the habit of self-publishing blog posts left and right, but there came a time when having an outside voice was helpful in validating my work and showing others those credentials. Additionally, of course, I wanted sales to happen–hoping for the best (you can read more about that here). Lastly, I wanted to see if there were more people out there in the world who wanted to align with what we have to offer.Craft the Rainbow by Brittany Jepsen

Make your goals drive your process

Once you’ve established your goal, it’s important to make sure that your goals drive the process. That includes driving the following:

  • Subject / topic
  • Whom you select for you agent
  • Whom you work with as a publisher
  • Contract terms
  • Production input and timeline
  • Launch / promotion

Your goals may shift through the process, and that’s totally fine! As long as you identify what they are and how that affects your flow.

How to select an agent

These days there are various methods to publishing your work, from self-publishing to online publishing etc. This series only addresses traditional publishing, in which I found having an agent to be very helpful. She helped me navigate the foreign world of publishing.

My agent came recommended to me from a few people who were in a similar category. I had seen what she produced and knew she represented a talented crew so I felt comfortable working with her.

How to find an agent in your category

If you don’t have one that comes recommended, there are a few ways to find one.

  1. Look at the acknowledgements section of books that are similar to yours. Authors typically thank their agent in this section. It’s a great resource! You can also follow authors on Instagram–I’ve seen a number of them thank their agents there.
  2. Ask around to those who are in similar categories. Agents typically represent only 1 or 2 categories, for example, art and food.
  3. Online search. I didn’t find this to be the most helpful way, but, of course, it’s always there!

I’d recommend doing lots of interviewing and research to make sure that you find the one that’s a best fit for you. You will be working with your agent for a LONG time. I first met my agent in 2014, didn’t sign a contract until 2016 and the book wasn’t published until 2018 so it’s a long haul! And then there’s marketing afterward and additional books after that.

Here are some things to look for in an agent:

  • This person has a good track record in your genre
  • You get along with this person
  • This person will tell you the hard things (not just what you want to hear!)
  • This person has fair pricing
  • Your work processes align

Agent takes your book proposal to auction

I’ll get into the book proposal in the next post, but for now, I want to talk about one really awesome reason why I’m glad I had a book agent for Craft the Rainbow. The auction! Once you have a book proposal that’s solid, the agent will put your book up for auction, which means that he/she will shop it around and it could go into a bidding war. The agent has solid relationships with editors at all the major publishing houses so this step is crucial for finding the one that’s the best fit for you and your goals.

The publisher will respond if they are interested or not and then they make a proposal to you with a price, royalties, and terms. Each one that I received had a lot of pros and cons to it, but the agent walked me through each one thoroughly. I ended up going with the one with whom I thought understood my concept the most and would allow me the most freedom to create the book that I wanted to create, which turned out to be the best fit! My Life In Color prompted journal

Ok, there are many more pieces to add to this puzzle, but I’ll be talking more about them in the next post. That includes the following:

  • how to write your proposal
  • how to work with a team to write your book
  • contract negotiation/financial considerations
  • contracts
  • production scheduling and resources
  • launch/promotion

In the mean time, let me know if you have any questions so I can include it in the posts! My Life In Color prompted journal

You can find Craft the Rainbow here and it’s on sale for both the hardcover and Kindle (only $2.99!). You can find My Life In Color, the follow up journal here. 

2 years of Craft the Rainbow!

Craft the Rainbow

It’s been two years since Craft the Rainbow came out and basically two years since I’ve read it cover to cover, which I did once again tonight. And you know what? It’s the best work I’ve ever produced. Hands down. I poured everything I had into that thing. And I think I’m now far enough away from it that I can say that without trauma in my voice. Maybe…ha! We’ll see.

I get how it might be viewed as another craft book and if you’re not into crafting, how you wouldn’t be interested. I get it! There are plenty of tutorials out there on the Internet that where you can take what you need, make a happy craft, and move on. But, going back to our mission, and it’s taken awhile to be truly conversant in what it is that I believe, when you put soul into something, it means more and your life is enriched. It’s just that simple.Launch Party

Because of that, I made Craft the Rainbow more autobiographical than a standard craft book and thus, meaningful. I spent a lot of energy working on every sentence and anecdote because I wanted it to be an interesting and humorous read as well as provide a deposit for beautiful pictures. I shared images from my wedding, pictures of my grandmother and included stories about how and why I made each project in the book. It was important that each story was deliberately chosen. (Except for one–there’s one story in there where I just didn’t know what to say–I just thought the project was really cool. Ha! I’ll let you guess which one that is.)

I also wanted you to learn something from it. The goal was to encourage you to get more comfortable using color in your own work and life. I shared what I know about successful color usage. Especially how you can develop your own color story and, one of my favorite tips, how to love a color you think you hate. I have challenged myself to do this many times and because of it, I can say that I love every shade of the rainbow–as long as I can pick the shades!

Craft the Rainbow on Amazon

The book has a 5 star review on Amazon, which is, not too shabby *wipes off shoulder (and if you haven’t left a review yet, please do! It helps the book rise in ranks–so important for authors!) and that makes me smile and grateful for everyone who took the time to do so.

The decision to do a book was not treated lightly. I spent months, nay, years, investigating if I should do it or not. I asked friends who had written books to find out if it was worth it. I was hesitant for a few reasons: I was still getting going on my business and time away from building it would interfere with its growth. Sure enough, I was right–we paused on activity on the blog for a few months. Luckily, I had grown Lars so we had a small team to pick things up more or less. I definitely couldn’t have done it without a team!

This genre of book, crafts, is a huge time commitment AND investment of money. Though I received an advance of royalties, we used a big chunk of that on paying people to help, buying supplies, props, rentals, photography, etc. Above all, I wanted it to be EXTRA so we went all out! I hope you can see that as you flip through the pages.

I also knew that writing a craft book wasn’t going to end with me on the New York Times Bestseller List. I had never seen it done so there wasn’t much proof that it even could happen. But, I also knew that if I was going to pause my business for so long, I needed some sort of marker that it was going to be worth the time spent on it, and being on a list of that type leads to more eyeballs and more sales so I thought I may as well shoot for it. Maybe mine would be the exception?! Sure enough, it didn’t end up on that list. And though it was well received and reviewed, it didn’t break any sales records. And that really disappointed me and I’m still sad about it. I think that’s partly why it’s taken so long to really reflect on it publicly.

I’m sure it’s uncomfortable if not cringe-worthy to hear about someone’s disappointment with something they’ve worked hard on. It’s uncomfortable for me to share about it. And it’s disappointing when the publisher was also banking on its success. In fact, the book was used as their show off book–there are so many bells and whistles on it! Gold leaf, gold book binding ribbon, every page was well designed. It’s nice to know, but not if it doesn’t sell books, amiright?!

I share this insight because it’s very easy to see people’s successes online, especially when they’re flailed about like we’ve come to do on social media, but we don’t often talk about the non-successes. I won’t say the word failure here because it wasn’t. It achieved my goal to make the most beautiful craft book that ever existed. I am very proud of it, I’m proud of my team for accomplishing such a huge challenge. I think I’ve probably needed to air it out so that I can heal from the experience.

Lessons Learned

What do I learn about this experience? Lots of things, but the biggest life lesson was that you don’t always have control over an outcome. You can only do your very best work and prepare as much as you can, which is exactly what I did. I can’t feel regrets about that!

With all that said, I still feel strongly that Craft the Rainbow belongs in your library, whether you craft or not, but especially if you do, and now is the best time to take advantage of the time. Dare I say, it’s the ultimate Stay-at-Home companion. They are all projects made from paper, which you may already have at home and if not, we will be making lists of materials from each project in the book so you can place it directly in your cart. Stay tuned!My Life In Color prompted journal

My goal with being so direct and vulnerable is 1) catharsis (and it does feel slightly better 😉 and 2) remind you that it still exists and you will benefit from it. Ha, how’s that for no shame?!

Throughout the month we will be sharing some more insights into Craft the Rainbow and My Life in Color so stay tuned!

You can find Craft the Rainbow here!

Craft the Rainbow (the kindle version is only $2.99!)
My Life In Color
Craft the Rainbow notebook
Craft the Rainbow journal

Picture Hope: The Social Distancing Coloring Book

Picture Hope: The Social Distance Coloring Book

It’s a project that I’ve compiled from 64 artists from around the world who have each made a coloring page inspired by hope. The idea is that they provide the blank canvas and YOU add the hope through color. And you know what? It works! I can’t even tell you the goose bumps I got while I was working on it! COVID-19 has indeed changed so much of our routine, yet in the confusion and uncertainty we’ve also witnessed countless moments of compassion and the strength of the human spirit.

Picture Hope: The social distancing coloring book

64 Artists from Around the World

I’m going to list all the artists here because they all deserve recognition for dropping everything to make this happen:

Abbey Lossing, Alli Stocco, Ane Kirstine Bilde, Angie Stalker, Ashley Isenhour, Audrey Smit of This Little Street, Ayang Cempaka, Beci Orpin, Brooke Smart, Caitlin Connolly, Cat Seto, Corrie Beth Hogg, Danielle Kroll, Darcy Miller, Dylan Mierzwinksi, Elizabeth Graeber, Ellie A. Osborne, Emily Isabella, Emma Block, Eva Jorgensen, Flora Waycott, Hannah Gumbo, Helen Dealtry, Hilary Onyon, Jackie Diedam, Jacqueline Colley, Janna Morton, Jen Hewett, Jess Whittaker, Jessie Kanelos, Weiner, Jéssyka Gomes, Jordan Sondler, Josefina Schargorodsky, Julie Marabelle of Famille Summerbelle, Justina Blakeney of The Jungalow, Katie Kortman, Kelsey Garrity Riley, Kendra Dandy, Libby VanderPloeg, Lisa Congdon, Loris Lora, Madison Blake, Maria Trolle, Meenal Patal, Merrilee Liddiard, Meta Coleman, Mia Saine, Michéle Brummer Everett, Michelle Christensen, Miranda Sofroniou, Monica Dorazewski, Natalie Apuzzo for Winter Water Factory, Normandie Luscher, Phoebe Wahl, Roxy Marj, Samantha Hahn, Sarah Jane Wright, Sebastian Curi, Suzy Ultman, Tara Nearents of Rad and Happy, Tonya and Steve Vistaunet of A Happy Vista, Victoria Riza, Yelena Bryksenkova

Creativity is Important Now More Than Ever

I’ve spent my career developing The House That Lars Built, whose mission is to encourage people to make things with their hands. We believe that the act of making has the power to heal and improve your well-being. The goal of this book is the same and it’s needed now more than ever. Coloring is a simple yet profound act that allows for meditation and mindfulness and this coloring book is even more profound because of the many voices of support behind it.

Donate for Coronavirus Relief

You can purchase Picture Hope in our shop and donate for larger amounts if you wish.

You can find the printable book over in our Shop!

And if you do some of the coloring pages, we’d love to see them! Tag us with #PictureHopeColoringBook

Abby Clawson Low Art Collection

New Art Collection from Abby Low in Lars Print Shop

Abby’s bold, graphic and colorful work was the perfect addition to our Print Shop and captures the essence of Do Design. It was the perfect match. I LOVE the idea of blowing up these prints extra large (you can print them up to 24×30” large!) and creating a huge statement on your wall. Each one would be perfect as that exclamation mark in your space but they also make a great gallery wall together, no?!

We feel like this couldn’t be better timing for Abby’s line to arrive in our Print Shop with this month being such an important one to us (craft month, dur!). That’s what we’re all about here at Lars. If you didn’t know this and want to know more about why I am so passionate about crafting go take a look at my recent post Why I feel called to craft. We are looking to provide you with a little extra inspiration to get you on the crafting train. Not just because crafting is “fun” but rather to inspire a sense of well-being and peace back to your life, which is exactly what our March book club choice Craftfulness: Mend Yourself by Making Things by Rosemary Davidson and Arzu Tahsin addresses. 

To back up this month’s read and the importance of creating, we want to revisit some quotes from last month’s book Do Design: Why beauty is key to everything by Alan Moore because the two go hand in hand.

Provo Gallery Stroll

For those of you finding us from Provo gallery stroll, welcome to our online gallery! We hope you have enjoyed finding Abby’s pieces as you make your way through the gallery stroll! 

Without further ado, we are pleased to present you Abby Low’s color collection!

Perforated

“By returning to our roots of making, crafting, and designing, our world would be a better place to live.” Pg 20

Striped

“We can use design to work on behalf of the human spirit, to uplift us physically and spiritually, to connect us to our human nature. Design elevates, nurtures and improves our lot. It intertwines our spiritual and material well-being.” Page 20

Thin Stripes

“If you believe that our best work is done when we are young, you create a gray future. Every day is the opportunity for the new, as yesterday has now gone. Drawing from a bitter well is not good for creativity.” – Pg. 66 by Willie Nelson

Checked

“The act of creating something of beauty is a way of bringing good into the world. Infused with optimism, it says simply: LIFE IF WORTH WHILE.”  – Page 12

Color Block

“If you cannot describe a new destination, you will never get there.” Pg 24-25

Diagonal Block

“To bring great stillness into one’s work means one can truly commit to its execution and most beautiful realization. It is commitment, Tashi says… that gives you freedom.” Pg 29

MultiStripe

“No pessimist ever discovered the secret of the stars, or sailed to uncharted land, or opened a new heaven to the human spirit.As you sail along, maybe it’s wise to keep the Utopian coast in your sights.” Pg 84

Don’t miss out on this series of posters created in Abby’s colorful, bold, and graphic style and get one (or seven) for you home today, find them all here

March Book Club: Craftfulness

March Book Club of the Month: Craftfulness

Stay tuned for this exciting read along with one of our favorite illustrators (can’t wait to share who it is with you!).

What does it mean to join Lars Book Club?

There’s no official induction, just pick up a copy, read with us, and participate in the discussion going on over at @LarsBookClub where we share snippets from the book along with discussion questions, and reminders. And mid-month we share a poster inspired by the book by one of our favorite artist. You can see some of our previous artwork over in our Lars Print Shop here. The artists design a  bookmark, which you can download for free or you can download the artwork, get it framed or matted and keep as a reminder of some of your favorite reads.

We’re glad to have you a part of our club!

You can find Craftfulness here

 

January Book Club Art

1

Little Women Art Print

The print is available for download in our Print Shop and the bookmark is available for a free download. Be sure to check out all of the wonderful prints that we have in our Print Shop!

Tell us what you loved about Little women and keep up with us on our bookclub Instagram @larsbookclub! We love hearing your thoughts!

Artwork by Becca Standlander (and stay tuned for her interview!)

Book Club January 2020

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What does it mean to be a part of the Lars Book Club?

There’s nothing tricky about it!

First, we announce a new book every month here on Lars, then we provide some questions and insights over at our Instagram page. Next, we follow up with a printable poster and bookmark in our Print Shop (you can see previous posters here) OR something to make inspired by it (new this year!). Lastly, we provide an interview with the illustrator who designed the poster (see previous interviews here) and, also new this year, an interview with the author, when applicable.

Why a Lars Book Club?

Our Book Club is really our excuse to hold ourselves accountable to reading more all the while reading books we’re interested in–think art, design, and making–it’s our dream book club, one that we can’t find any place else! We also like to stay in the know about new books in these categories and love introducing them to you.

Like it? Join us!

November Book Club Art

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Hi readers! Have you been reading along with us as we read this months book Making A Life? I have loved exploring the pages of this book and learning from artists and creators that I love. It’s so inspiring. It is so interesting to read about the process that others go through during the course of creation learn and grow from it. If you haven’t picked it up yet do yourself a favor and get reading. There’s so much to learn! This month’s illustration is by the very talented Brooke Smart and we couldn’t love the print more! Stay tuned for an interview with Brooke to get to know her a little better, She’s pretty fabulous!