Saturday, December 20

How cool

Are these? They're vintage reel tape cases of about 5" square and are perfect for storing loose CDs and DVDs. I picked them up at a local refuge/thrift shop outside Cambridge for a pound. I love the graphic style and typography and the colours are amazing! Seriously I could look at these all day but I won't, as we're off to Jacob's parents' for a few days then I'm spending Christmas with my family so a little blog break is due. 

Have a great Christmas everyone, and see you soon! xxx

Don't tell....

...but this is what I've made my sister for Christmas! She's just moved into a new house with a  friend and I thought it would make a nice housewarming pressie. It's basically a collage, framed, with cup hooks screwed into the bottom so you hang your keys up! I've attached mirror plates to the sides so it can be securely hung. I'm quite chuffed with it! I wonder if people would buy this sort of thing on etsy...maybe I'd have to use perspex instead of glass for safety of shipping. Hmm, something to think about in the New Year anyway.

Wednesday, December 17

Tea and cake

Not much to report today, got all my prints bound into a book, but ran out of time to photograph it before it had to be handed in! 

I bought this lovely tea set yesterday for £5 from Cancer Research (Christmas present to myself...) and am so in love with it! It's late 50's/early 60's Midwinter and seems to be a fairly rare pattern, so a bit of a bargain. We just had tea and Jacob's birthday cake ( which I made! - I'm rubbish at cakes but it was pretty good!) using the set, so that was very nice! :)

Friday, December 12

Pages printed!

These are my "journey" book pages which I'll be binding over the weekend. They were all printed with lino and oil-based inks in the albion press.  The images were made for a Print and Process project based on Chaucer's Canterbury Tales. You would never know it, but they said to just run with whatever line took your fancy. i chose part of a line that said "Even if I were to walk from here to India..." so started thinking about a journey on foot.

I'm pretty happy with them as a set. Using small lino blocks like hand stamps, the suns, arrows and houses break up the flow of the book and make it a bit more playful. It's taken me ages to do and is only just dry but I feel like a weight has been lifted now it's all done! I'll be binding them in a hardback cover which will be covered in a white oilcloth with maybe a grey leather spine. I'm still a bit undecided on that so any ideas...?

Tuesday, December 9

Finished kit

Ta da! Here is my finished kit to make a paper ball as pictured in my previous post. It was a really interesting crit today seeing what other "batches of five" people had come up with for under a tenner. Someone had made pants with Noel Fielding (from the Mighty Boosh)'s face on!!! My idea seemed quite nerdy in comparison but hey ho, I'm chuffed with how they look!

Update - You can now buy one here!!

Sunday, December 7

Batch of five

This is the paper ball that you'd be able to make from one of the kits I'm working on for this "Batch of Five" project. We first saw structures like this at the Science Museum and thought they were really cool (especially as they appeared in the "History of Computing" section). Recreating them has taken me days - I know, they are more complicated than they look - but I'm really pleased with the result. Will show you a pic of the finished kit when it's done...

Wednesday, December 3

Double whammy

Firstly, a sample print from my book about a journey. I'm quite chuffed with it and think it could look lovely in other colours. It still needs its little coloured houses but I quite like the abstracty look at the moment.

Secondly one of my collages was featured in a lovely treasury by Sarah and Jon of  Pocketstudio which is exciting. The other work featured is gorgeous I feel mine looks quite out of place! 

Anyway, time to go and do research, I have to think of a "batch of five" identical things I can produce, buy or compile that could potentially be mass-made, by Tuesday...erk.
Any ideas more than welcome!

Friday, November 28


I have to get some final printing started at least for this book project we're doing. So, this will be me for the next 3 hours on the awesome albion presses at uni. They are just so nice to use I can't describe..

Monday, November 24

Triangulation and celebration

Marcus Walters

Kate Gibb


Phew! I'm having a break from my essay and just wanted to show off the linocut I finished this morning in front of Bargain Hunt. My fingers ache but I'm pretty pleased, I just hope to God it prints OK. I'll be printing it in a really pale grey as an icy background to some little coloured wooden houses for my landscape print project. I've got allsorts of lovely mountainous scenes planned but only two weeks to cut, print and bind them into a book... erk. It's fine, it's not as if I have an essay to write, another brief to start and finish and picture framing to do by Dec 11th or anything...
Oh yeah, in case you wondered it's not proper lino, it a vinyl tile from b+q as you get six 12" sq tiles for £3 as opposed to a 6x8" piece of proper lino for about the same. The tiles are easier to cut through, though that can be a mixed blessing as you can see where there are holes right through to the backing paper! But because it's so cheap I just stick another layer on the back once I'm done to give it strength. Seems to work OK. I was thinking of printing it up in colour at some stage too, I think turquoise or golden yellow would be just dreamy!

Sunday, November 23

I have mail

This arrived in the post on Friday and I love it! It's called ABC3D and is by Marion Bataille.
I was researching pop-up books and cards for a project and found it online, it's so beautiful and clever. I love that it's black white and red too, it makes it a bit more of a grown-up looking toy. I'd have made a video of it myself if I could a) be bothered and b) do a better job than this one. Neither of which seemed likely given my state of absolute lethargy this afternoon. I've been doing quite well cutting a very complicated pattern in lino though, although I fear I may develop a hunchback if I'm crouched over like some sort of printmaking hobbit for much longer...

Thursday, November 20

Cockney innit.

Our first proper brief where we have to come up with images from our imaginations was set a week and a half ago on the theme of Cockney rhyming slang, it's pretty fun but quite tricky incorporating the idea of the phrase and the meaning into one image. 

I was quite pleased with this little chap, especially because of the moustache! It was also quite fun researching suits, I'd love to learn how to cut patterns and make jackets and stuff, if only there were time... 

Monday, November 17

Foxes are following me!

Ok, perhaps a little overly dramatic there, but seriously I keep stumbling across images of foxes in the last few days! Pat Hutchins' gorgeous patterned foxes in her children's books are so lovely, but then this poor little wispy character I dsicoverd in a "First Picture-Word book" whilst doing some illustration research has a certain charm. Lastly, in the paper yesterday I saw this rather handsome lampshade (available from and there ends my foxy story. For now.

Tuesday, November 11

Crapness and goodness

OK, I'm officially crap at blogging, it's been weeks! 
Nevermind, I've got work coming out of my ears at the moment with uni. I'm writing an essay on 18th century Anglo-American artists, have a 6-week print project based on Chaucer's Canterbury Tales and another project illustrating cockney rhyming slang! It's all fun though, if a little exhausting! The image above was my best attempt at lino cutting (which I've now chosen to specialise in for the Chaucer task) and I rather like it. 
If it weren't for the length of time those bloody oil-based inks take to dry I'd be bashing these out for Christmas cards but I fear they wouldn't be dry in time! I'm really looking forward to getting my print project started as I pretty much get to make images of whatever I want so long as I base them loosely around one line of the middle English text. The line I've chosen is "Even if I were to walk from here to India...", so I can muck about with the idea of a journey...
I cannot freaking wait to get my teeth into it!

Saturday, October 25


Today's "Make Do and Mend" sale went brilliantly!
I sold loads of stuff, it was the best day-after-birthday ever! The picture is a bit rubbish I'm afraid as I forgot my camera so used a phone instead but you get the idea. Plates and pictures on the wall, other stuff on a table. 
I met some really cool people too so fingers crossed it may lead to some interesting things, like maybe teaching people how to make aprons at the community art centre where the sale was held. I'd be pretty excited (and terrified) to do that!
Right, X factor is on, have a good weekend whatever you're up to :)

Sunday, October 19

Recent goings on

Hallo, it's been ages since I last posted! The first month of uni has been great, I've been so busy drawing I feel busier than I was when I was working full-time (and being paid for it!), but I suppose that's good. I'd hate to feel like I was kicking my heels on a course. We've had inductions on how to screen print and how to do etchings (telephone above is my attempt at this) and have been out and about drawing at museums, in the market and at the botanical gardens. All is going well I think, my drawing is changing lots already..

Next weekend I'm doing a handmade and vintage fair in Cambridge which is being held at this cool new art space which holds talks and meetings and classes on how to knit and stuff. This is the first sale and sounds pretty exciting. It'll be the day after my birthday too so as long as I can survive a potential nightmare hangover it'll be fiiiiiine...

Monday, October 6

Sara Fanelli

I was one of the lucky few to attend Sara Fanelli's talk at university on Wednesday last week. Her Pinocchio exhibition is now up at the university gallery and is absolutely beautiful! It's like stepping into a sweet shop only instead of sweets there are vintage oddities and art materials and a collection of her gorgeous children's books! If you don't know her work it's sometimes quite edgy but brings children's stories to life with her amazing use of collage and typography. I felt quite honoured to hear her talk as she's so enthusiastic and charming. Also to be studying only feet away from an exhibition is really inspirational, it makes me want to get going with my own work, not just do observational drawing. Oh well, only 4 more weeks of that to go...

Saturday, September 27

Knitting and new stuff

So with the help of youtube I think I have grasped the basics of knitting! Silly really that I've not done it before but I must say I'm finding it most relaxing already.
My course is going well, I'm being set allsorts of briefs and being told we should be working 40-hour weeks....I've never heard of an undergraduate course being this intense! They're probably just getting us to get into good practice of actually getting out of bed each morning but still...
So far my favourite part of the course is called Print and Process and we're having to get lots of observational drawings together over the next 2 weeks that we'll turn into different kinds of prints (Monoprints, Etchings, Reliefs and Screen prints). Each process requires a different kind of starting image but I'm loving the simple colours needed for the screen printing induction we'll do. Eeee! I'm excited! And it's sunny! :) :)

Monday, September 22

The shapes we need

I've just been flicking through this amazing book and have got lots of ideas bubbling away now! The cover so reminded me of Francesa (Mrs Eliot Books)'s work I was instantly attracted to it, plus the cover has that gorgeous linen feel..yum. 

Unfortunately any ideas will have to wait a while as I have my first university lecture this morning on contextual studies. I'm really quite excited to sit in a lecture hall and take notes though! Also my after school pottery club for kids is back up and running so I need to think of something nice for them to do this afternoon... I'll get back to my own work tomorrow.

Thursday, September 18

Pottery bargain of the week

This arrived yesterday, it's a lovely 1960's Hornsea salt shaker and I love it! It only cost me 99p on ebay so it was quite a steal too. Although it's a slightly different pattern, it matches my stripey butter dish perfectly and goes with the coffee jar I bought a couple of months ago too. Yayyyy!

Wednesday, September 17

Nice song

I just remembered how much I love Nellie Mckay. She's so beautiful and her lyrics are so clever...

Monday, September 15


I am loving the slightly colder evenings we're having. This time of year is so exciting for me as I always associate it with the beginning of term and new experiences. Plus the way the sun sits quite low in the sky (and the amazingly clear days autumn brings) means it can be a magical time for lovely contrasty photographs.
Anyway, this little picture was made after leaning out of my velux window in my room for some time this evening. The composition isn't amazing but I quite like the feeling of it. It makes me want to wear tights and snuggle up at home.

Sunday, September 14

brrring brrring!

We bought this amazing phone this morning at the car boot sale near us. It's great for posing with. And it sounds pretty good too!

Friday, September 12


Today is my last day working at my university job before I begin my degree. Yesterday I said goodbye to everyone at my school job, I'm really sad to leave both. On the bright side, I was given the most amazing pencils EVER!!! So there's no backing out of Illustration now...

Above is a new collage called "I built you a village". I think it seems a bit sad for some reason but maybe that's just because I made it last night and was feeling a bit nostalgic. The trees are made from 20 year old marbled paper that I made at pre-school.

Next week I'm doing all my registering stuff at uni - I'm so nervous! I've got that beginning of term feeling! Hope you have a good weekend everyone, wish me luck for next week!

Sunday, September 7

Happy feet

This was a drawing I did of my feet dangling over the riverbank on our last fishing trip of the summer holidays. I was pretty happy with it at the time as it encapsulates my odd-looking feet, but seeing them on screen makes them look even more bizarre to me. I think maybe feet are just like that though, if you look at them for too long it's sort of like saying one word over and over and it losing all meaning.
Anyway, I had a little play scanning in the drawing and painting in the blue using Photoshop. I find the result quite pleasing :)

Saturday, September 6

Cut it out

I was trying to make a complicated cutout picture thing the other day with different papers but got really annoyed with it and then discovered that all the bits that I'd discarded as I was cutting said complicated shapes out, were actually more interesting that what I'd been trying to achieve! I of course only realised this once I'd thrown them allover the floor in a rage. But whatever method works for you, right?
Hope you have a happy weekend all, I'm off to buy new shoes and colour pens...yum.

Monday, September 1

Geometry cake

I made this delicious looking geometric dollop this evening whilst watching telly. I was going for abstract and bold, I ended up with a graph paper dumpling. Nevermind. Dragon's Den was worth it!

Red graph paper!

It's the future! Yep I discovered red graph paper on Friday and am just a bit excited! I found it in two shades of red and I have one large sheet of orange which is to die for! God bless those cartographers at work who use the stuff. Hopefully they won't mind me using a couple of sheets to play with, it's like the best stuff ever!
I'm going to do more experiments later combining it with other coloured paper in a more abstract-y way. Watch this space for more paper-related geekery...

Saturday, August 30

Framing happiness

I just thought I'd mention this beautiful oil painting that I started making a rather elaborate frame for today. I absolutely love it, and have become a bit obsessed with it. The colours are so gorgeous and the stylised bottles are lovely. It was painted by the husband of the woman I'm framing it for and it had a pretty amazing voyage back to her.
Her husband had sold it many years ago and it had been handed down to relatives of those who bought it. It had become very dirty and had a huge rip in the middle when eventually the persn who ended up with it thought he should return it to who would truly appreciate it, so tracked down my customer. She's had it restored and I'm now making a lovely frame combining oatmeal-canvas-covered wood with a natural pale wood outer frame. It's always a bit scary framing something old and delicate but it's a pleasure nonetheless. If only I could keep it....

Tuesday, August 26


I finally got round to mounting one of the prints I did a while back from that car boot sale woodblock and listing it on etsy here. I photographed the print against my landlord's trailor that I look out over from my bedroom window. I'd been admiring the colour of it for some weeks now, and finally had a reason to use it!

In other exciting news I bought some lovely charcoal grey over-the-knee socks today, I think I'm going to put them on right now actually...