We are HUGE fans of multi-award-winning Australian author and illustrator, Alison Lester – who isn’t?! While we love some of her most popular picture books (like the Clive Eats Alligators series), two of our more recent favourites are Ruby and Isabella’s Bed, both stories of enchanted dreaming and the wonderful places you can go at night. When you’ve got a night owl like we do, there’s nothing like some subtle motivation to help her close her eyes and go to sleep.
In Isabella’s Bed, lucky little Anna and Luis get taken on a magical journey on their Grandmother’s bed. They travel through an ancient city, desert plains, crumbling mountains, thundering waterfalls and crashing waves. Who wouldn’t want a four post bed that can take you on such adventures?!
So, of course, we decided to make one! We had already been using a pretend bed in our dolls house, which was actually a little wooden box that had been the packaging for a necklace I bought. With some basic woodcraft (a.k.a gluing four icy pole sticks to the box), we had ourselves a four post bed! All we did then was:
- Paint the posts and the edge of the bed black, just like in the book.
- Glued black pom-poms to the top of the posts.
- Dressed the bed using some old pink baby mittens and a bit of textured ribbon.
- Cut out some shapes from pink foam sheets, attached them to toothpicks, added some rhinestones, and glued them to the bed head – these shapes are a very significant part of the book but we couldn’t fit them all on so picked our favourites.
- Finally, we added a valance using a piece of fabric with a lace-like pattern that I had brought back from a trip to Ghana, which works well given the story is partly about the Grandmother’s time abroad.
There it is – our “stylised” replica of Isabella’s bed! Can’t wait to see what imaginative play comes from our first piece of miniature furniture construction!