Eleanor Lakin was born in Boonsboro, Maryland. She attended Moore Institute of Art Science and Industry and graduated from Virginia Polytechnic University with a Bachelor of Architecture. She founded and practiced as a principal of Eleanor Lakin Architects for 30 years. The firm received awards for architectural design, historic preservation and rehabilitative reuse of historic properties. An early advocate for historic districting, she participated with the Maryland Historic Trust as a workshop and seminar speaker, and served on city and county historic district commissions. Her articles on historic stone construction and children’s architectural concepts for house design were published and recognized in Washington Post reviews.
An artist, Eleanor has received local, state and national awards for works in watercolor, oil and acrylic mediums. Her work is represented in private and public collections, and was included in the Maryland Artists Today exhibit and National Prize Winning Watercolors publication.
A major collector, she is recognized for her knowledge of folk toys, folk art, antique dolls, and dollhouses. Her expertise in the field has led to illustrated lectures at college and collector levels. She has authored published articles on antique dolls and dollhouse furniture, and served as a guest curator for related museum exhibits.
Her passionate interest in American folk art led to assembling a collection of handmade children’s toys. It has been an amazing journey and one that has culminated in writing this book, FOLK ART MADE FOR CHILDREN, which documents America’s decorative arts and material culture from a unique perspective.