Down the Rabbit Hole

This post is first and foremost a recommendation to visit the post which inspired it. Smiler over at ‘From Smiler, with Love‘ created a tribute to Alice in Wonderland by hunting up scenes throughout the story that have been done over the years by various illustrators. The illustrations are accompanied by selected quotes, and it really is worth a look-see.

I think maybe two current Stop & Wander readers know that I had a blog for a few months called ‘Down the Rabbit Hole’. I thought I was being clever with the title, but there are actually hundreds and hundreds of blogs out there with Carroll inspired titles.

A few years back, my dad gave Sierra a really fantastic gift: A pop-up version of Alice in Wonderland created by Robert Sabuda. Not your typical pop-up book, but a really intricately constructed book that I think is closer to art than literature.


Sierra was six at the time, and the book is a little worse for wear, though she treated it pretty well considering. I’ve attempted to take pictures, but the light isn’t too great, and I used my bumpy bed once more as a pedestal, so I’m afraid I did not do the book justice. Still, you can get the gist from the photographs.


Look close, ^ you’ll see the shapes of certain familiar faces in the trees.


Kinda neat, there’s little cellophane windows, and you can see Alice inside in her giantess distress. On each page, there are panels or mini booklets along the side or the bottom with smaller, accompanying pop-ups and the text of the complete story.


The paper Cheshire is well and truly creepy with his face opening and closing. Sabuda did a bang up job.


I think my least favorite part of both the story and the movie was always the pepper bit, with the baby pig. There’s something really creepy about dreams that incorporate seasoning.


Whew. That’s over with. Would you care for some tea?


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Here’s that crazy game of croquet. With such a generous supply of pink buzzards, I’m surprised no one suggested lawn-bowling.


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And it all comes down… like a house of cards. C’est la vie.


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19 thoughts on “Down the Rabbit Hole

  1. Wow! What a fantastical popup book. You are right. It’s a work of art in itself. The original story of course has inspired many people in many ways. Perfectly unabsurd, forever in pursuit , the readers mind, of the meaning which disappears when most expected, so many glorious circles,

  2. My sister gave K the Robert Sabuda book A Winter’s Tale for her birthday last year. It too is an intricate work of art and literature at the same time. I really love the page with the cards.

  3. I love popup books, They are so damn expensive though that I can never afford to actually buy the ones that impress me the most.

    The page with the cards on it actually blew my mind.

  4. Great find. I love the house of cards page. There is such a variety of wonderful art for this story but I am partial to John Tenniel’s illustrations.

  5. Am I the only person that has never read Alice? I think so.

    Pop-up books are the best. I’ve never owned one. As a child I envied my friends that had them in their collections.

  6. I remember Sabudo’s Wizard of Oz which as you opened the first page unleashed a tornado into your astonished face. (I meant me I guess; don’t know if this happened to you and if it did, I probably wasn’t there).

  7. gingatao- it is kinda uncanny how Carroll managed to catch the quality of a dream in so many of the scenes and the dialogue. I find dreams about the hardest thing to describe. Circles.

    bibliomom- A winter’s tale? The same WInter’s Tale with pearly in it? aos, is that the same one you referenced on your blog? I’m all intrigued with reading that one now. Before this post, I honestly didn’t know Sabuda was well-known or had a whole bunch of these books.

    jo- oh, that’ll be a fun read. so many opportunities to use character voices!

    Slothboy- yay! 1 mind blown. Yeah, they are a bit expensive, but guess what? Amazon comes through with the pop-ups. If you see one you like, look in their Marketplace, you can often get it for a third of the price or better. (but check customer quality reviews…. used would be a bigger issue with pop-ups I’m thinking)

    Robin- indeed yes! You and ombudsben. Sometimes the gorillas stop by but they kinda detonated awhile back. I’m glad you’re one of the two who I didn’t drift out of contact with.

    Hi The Other Ivy and welcome. Yeah, John Tenniel’s are classics. That’s kinda the consensus over at Smiler’s too, but I sure like to see the contrasting portrayals of Alice.

    Stevo- Well, you and Velma, the blind barrista. Have you even seen the movie? I used to hate my pop-up books when I was a kid because Bryan used to rip off the stick out parts, and then the stories made no sense.

    aos- whoosh! No, that hasn’t happened to me yet, but I’m glad your face had cause for astonishment. ;)

  8. Am I went to aos’s blog to check and no the two books are entirely different. The one that I talk about is of the same title but is by the author of the Alice book that you showcased. HERE is the one that I talk about.

  9. Pingback: Movies and Film Blog » Down the Rabbit Hole

  10. That’s really something. The last one with the deck of cards flying through the air is really impressive (on photograph anyway). As for the Duchess/Pepper scene, I would have thought you’d mention the baby turning into a pig, now that to me is truly creepy. There’s hardly any light to work with this time of year eh? I have the same problem. Glad I inspired for this, it’s a fun romp.

  11. J- lol, now that you mention it…

    bibliomom- well, that does make more sense, I guess. From his little passages, it didn’t really sound like the kind of story to turn into a pop-up book. It looks pretty cool, though, the one you showed.

    Smiler- Yeah, I wish some of the other pictures had been better depictions. The forest page is pretty impressive, too.

    GG’s- Oh, I donno. At least on this end more recent history has been better. And I think Rabbit Hole for stop & wander was a good trade, this blog & this community has more synchronicity, more life, more depth. Do wish you were more a part of it, however.

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