Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Children's Book Review, Clara Button and the Magical Hat Day

Children's Book Review by Susan Stephenson,

When I was a child, I inherited my nana's button tin. I loved to play with those multicoloured circlets. I'd make patterns and pictures with them, and dream buttony dreams. So when a children's picture book called Clara Button and the Magical Hat Day peeked over my horizon, I was definitely ready to go back in time. Clara Button and the Magical Hat Day was written by Amy de la Haye and illustrated by Emily Sutton. It was published by V and A Publications (Bloomsbury).

Clara Button loves hats - making them and wearing them! But her favourite hat is the one that once belonged to her Granny Elsie. When her older brother Ollie breaks Granny Elsie's hat, Mum takes them on a special hat day out to cheer Clara up. While visiting the Victoria and Albert Museum, Clara gets lost and embarks on an exciting journey of discovery. Meanwhile, Ollie is having adventures of his own, with swords and tigers!

Clara Button and the Magical Hat Day takes us all back in time, via the Victoria and Albert Museum. Sutton's illustrations are gorgeously detailed. They include all sorts of delights, from Clara's bus journey past Harrods and Fortnum and Mason, to lavish exhibits at The Victoria and Albert itself. Author de la Haye was a former curator of 20th Century Fashion at the museum, and has woven a charming tale of a little girl who most of all wants to fix her Granny's hat.

This would be such a lovely gift for a child about to visit the V and A, or indeed any museum. I think it will particularly appeal to little people who love to design clothes or dress their dolls.

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  1. this book looks gorgeous!

    ~ Liz

  2. Hi Susan
    I am the same with buttons! I remember my mother's button tin. I would sit for hours looking at all the different shapes and sizes. I loved the toggle buttons, the ones that were embossed and shiny and the cloth covered ones! I have collected a tin of buttons over time! I have cheated a little as some of the low cost stores have sets of buttons in the shape of squares, triangles and circles! Now I have a reasonable selection I feel at peace! One has to have these things they are very important like a couch to snuggle into, a basket of shells to listen to the sounds of the sea, a good book to read and paper dolls with paper clothes! Essential ingredients to developing rich characters in children!
    Thank you again for sharing

  3. @sue stirlingButtons, children's books and paper dolls! Three of my favourite things, Sue.

  4. Ooh, this sounds so lovely! The only problem I have with the V&A is that it is right next door to the natural history museum and so it's always horrible having to choose which direction to go in!

  5. Look forward to reading this book to my children before a visit to the V & A!

  6. Will have to read this book to my kids before we visit the V & A!


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