Sitting down the other day to re-read a Little Golden Book to one of my children, I again enjoyed the paintings of Eloise Wilkin. I grew up reading "Baby Dear" and "My little golden book about God," and I remember taking in the details of the illustrations of chubby-cheeked children and roly-poly babies with creases and dimples. Mrs. Wilkin was a wife and mother of four children, and her children and grandchildren were models for her illustrations.
She illustrated several books written by her sister, Esther Wilkin, who wrote "Baby Dear." Mrs. Wilkin even had dolls produced that were taken from her illustrations. "Baby Dear" was a popular book, and Mrs. Wilkin had her grown daughter, Deborah, pose for the mother, and Deborah's little son was the baby in the story. It is such a delight to know that the illustrations that I enjoyed in this particular book, where the mother is taking such loving care of her precious baby, and the big sister is doing her best to imitate her mother by caring for her doll, is actually a family affair! To be illustrating her own daughter and grandson must have given Mrs. Wilkin great joy.
Here is a place to purchase some of the books that are still in print:
Books Illustrated by Eloise Wilkins
Here is a list of books by Mrs. Wilkin:
Here is a page about the Vogue doll from "Baby Dear"