Illustrated Adventures in Fashionland

To accompany the special week-long Kindle promotion of Silk for the Feed Dogs, I thought I’d post together all my drawings of scenes from the novel. I’ve been asked many times if I’d consider doing a graphic novel version of Silk for the Feed Dogs. A chance would be a fine thing, I say! Although graphic novels tend to have less text than regular novels. That would be the challenge. I like words too.

If only illustrated novels like Alice in Wonderland or all the Charles Dickens classics were the fashionable model nowadays. Illustrated plates, as they were known, are just not part of our reading experience anymore. And they would be too expensive to produce in our print-threatened times. Already we don’t like to pay as much for books when digital versions are cheaper and more portable.

But the Sir John Tenniel in me is itching to get out. So until such times as I can free him, I have this blog. I hope you enjoy these illustrations Β all together in one post for the first time.

And if as a result you’re tempted to read my novel, do let me know if I’ve painted the scenes as colorfully in words.Feed Dogs copyVintage Fairy GodmotherEdward SmokingA Couple of SwellsLionessesLadybug Shoes 2Hats and CocktailsMammone spotting 1Atomic Boy copyGrand StaircaseFashionable DaffodilsJacketsVillains 2Fashion Week! 2Sleeping under sewing machineOff with her head!Friends on the beach 1Silk for the Feed Dogs is available at promotional price here for US readers and here for readers in the UK. Only five more days of promotion left!


  1. Great illustrations. I think there should be a revival of color plates in books. I know illustrated books are still published. It should be something you try to do, perhaps a special edition.

    • Maybe I will look into it at some point. It would give me such pleasure. Some fashion designers have written and illustrated books of fairy tales in recent times. Gorgeous they are too. But actual adult fare with illustrations (not graphic novels) seem less in evidence. But you’re right, I will think about it πŸ™‚

  2. Oh Jackie, these are wonderful and, while I was looking at them, they made the novel come alive all over again. I hope you have some framed and hanging around your new apartment. I know I would.

  3. Jackie….I came across your blog via The Vintage Traveler….and JUST HAD to reply with a comment.

    I especially appreciated the drawing of the tangled mess in the bobbin case of the sewing machine. Mainly because it “hit home” for an hour or two with my little Singer Featherweight Machine. Your vicious dogs in your sketch described my feelings exactly. !!! My needle was not in correctly and I could not get it to stitch. I am old (83), so I could not see or remember how to change the needle.

    However, I was able to finally get it in correctly and was able to complete the 6 Santa Stockings I created. I am actually a “vintage” mannequin head maker…but sew to relax.

    Loved ALL your sketches…and your style.

    • Welcome! Nice to have you on board, Marge!

      I daren’t reveal how many times my threads have been attacked in this way. I scurry around hoping not to waken the creatures in the pit but inevitably the machine lets a growl out of it and I’m done for. I therefore prefer to draw than sew. It’s less treacherous πŸ™‚ Thank you for your lovely compliments.

      While you may have had a setback, it seems to me you’re well on your way to making someone’s Christmas very happy. I’m impressed. And your career sounds truly fascinating. I’ve met all kinds of professionals from the industry but never a mannequin head maker. Did you find the fashions of heads changed much over the period you worked? Or are you still doing it? One offs or big production runs? Do you supply the US or a particular region or individual vintage stores? Questions questions!

      Hope you’re having a relaxing weekend and if sewing figures into it, that it all goes according to plan πŸ™‚

  4. Talented illustrations Jackie that look like the artist was having a lot of fun. I don’t know the market but I understand that there’s a readership for illustrated stories housed on the internet. Seek out someone who knows such things. Dickens and his ilk released their early works piecemeal in the press – perhaps it’s time to bring the novel virtually (ugh, bad one) full circle? Loved all this artwork – my compliments.

  5. Thank you. I loved doing them, you’re right, Mike. I was like a child making daisy chains πŸ™‚
    I will try to see where they might find a home. Meantime maybe I’ll get going on illustrations of the novel I’m working on now. If the world still isn’t listening, I will shout louder πŸ™‚

  6. Fabulousness indeed!….love them. X

  7. Jackie, may I join in (again) in that I believe your illustrations would make a lot of your readers happy… perhaps in a limited edition of ”Silk”? like for a special occasion as in xmas or other anniversary editions? Meanwhile, thanks for sharing them here! xxx

  8. It would be a joy to purchase your novel with the illustrations — I have read halfway and loved seeing the scenes I read portrayed. You have given me a taste of what is coming up! I am traveling for Thanksgiving and reading your book is my travel treat!

  9. Took me back to the novel. Wonderful sketches!

  10. Andrew W. Thornhill

    Thank you for sharing. The illustrations are storytellers in their own right! My story will use photography for illustrations.

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