May Gibbs, Gumnut Babies stamp pack
The May Gibbs, Gumnut Babies stamp pack comprises two 8 x $1 sheetlets featuring the Gum Leaves stamp from the 2016 Love to Celebrate stamp issueRead more
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The May Gibbs, Gumnut Babies stamp pack comprises two 8 x $1 sheetlets featuring the Gum Leaves stamp from the 2016 Love to Celebrate stamp issue. The tabs on the stamps feature classic illustrations the books of May Gibbs.
This year marks the centenary of the publication of May Gibbs’ Gumnut Babies. This much-loved book introduced Australian children to the Gumnut Babies, small imaginary inhabitants of the Australian bush. The Gumnut Babies resemble human babies but wear little gumnut hats and gumleaf girdles. The girls, called Gum Blossom Babies, wear frilly skirts made of eucalyptus blossom and have little blossom caps. These tiny fairies of the bush live among the gum trees with other bush babies, such as the Boronia Babies, Wattle Babies and Flannel Flower Babies. Together they battle villains, including Mr Lizard, Mrs Snake and the most terrifying of all, the big bad Banksia Men. The best known of all the bush babies are Gumnut Baby foster brothers Snugglepot and Cuddlepie, first seen in May Gibbs’ The Tales of Snugglepot and Cuddlepie (1918).
English-born May Gibbs (1877–1969) arrived in Australia with her family when she was a small child, and spent her formative years in Western Australia. The bushlands and wonderful wildflowers of the region gave May a deep and abiding love of Australian flora and fauna. After studying art in England, in 1913 she returned to Australia and wrote and illustrated Gumnut Babies, the first of her 18 books on a bush theme. May Gibbs’ stories, illustrated with her watercolour and pen-and-ink drawings, are now regarded as classics of Australian children’s literature.