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Category Archives: Arts and Crafts

Lockdown Costume Walks Continue…


I thought I would share some more photos of Betsy and I dressed up on our costume walks! For over 10 weeks we have been keeping up morale (our own, our neighbours and friends online) by cosplaying our favourite characters.

Hermione Granger and Professor Trelawney from Harry Potter

My favourites have been our Harry Potter inspired walk (above), Frida Kahlo and her paint palette (scroll down for images) and Snow White with the Evil Queen!

Rock n Roll!
Just before singing to my neighbours

I’ve enjoyed singing to the street and it’s great when people come out of their homes and watch from their gardens and paths from a safe distance.

Buzz Lightyear and Jessie from Toy Story!

My eyes are actually some I made for my old Corpse Bride Cosplay. You can just about see through them. I drew on Buzz’s eyes with face paint and they are held on with thin elastic and eyelash glue… and yes, they were bloody uncomfortable and a nightmare to figure out where you’re going and who you are waving to!
Tweedle Dum and Tweedle Dee.
Guess who was Dum…
Nice easy one and great for kids! We had the Alice in Wonderland soundtrack playing on my phone.
Off to sing ‘Happy Birthday’ to a little boy down the street. Note the balloon and tiny party hat. Betsy is wearing her Queen Elsa costume as this is our Ice Age ensemble…geddit??
My tiny face paint palette is certainly getting a workout!
Ursula the Sea Witch
Ariel, the Little Mermaid and her Dinglehopper.
The boat is our garden pond. It’s called the Bootle Bumtrinket after Gerald Durrell’s boat in My Family and Other Animals. A perfect prop for Betsy’s mermaid costume!
Cinderella and her Fairy Godmother. Betsy’s bag is a popcorn holder that I got from Disneyland Paris last year. Best purchase ever!
You may recognise the gown from a Cinderella shoot I did with Lee Parker a couple of years ago. I trimmed it down to make it more wearable and used the train as a shoulder wrap.
Betsy was NOT in a dressing up mood, so I dressed as Jessie from Toy Story and she wore her Woody T-shirt as a compromise.
You’ve got a friend in me…
You try and get a decent selfie and get photobombed by a cat’s bum.
I had been waiting to pop this Star Wars costume on again! I made is around 3 years ago to wear at Birmingham Comicon and got to meet the legend Warwick Davis! He loved it so much, he got his son to take a photo of us so that he could post it on Twitter! I also heard him mention my outfit on the radio a few days later. So I give you… Princess Leia on Endor, riding and Ewok.
Saving the universe and defeating the dark side gets a bit tiring. This Princess Leia dress was actually an adult one I had never worn. I just cut off the bottom, a bit of sleeve and glued the Velcro on a different bit of the belt to cinch it in! Her hair buns were made from a mouse tail I made for the school nativity play. My tights filled with cushion stuffing, I just cut it in half and rolled each half up before stitching to stop unravelling. They were light enough to be attached with a couple of hair grips!

Snow White
And the Evil Queen!
Absolutely LOVE this Disney Villains costume!
Taken by Rachel Perks
I could not get her to smile! She was happy, but was in a sultry posing mood and wouldn’t grin for toffee. Rapunzel from Disney’s Tangled.
Motherrrrrrr knows best! Mother Gothel cosplay! She is one of my favourite Disney characters.
Safari Tours!
Weirdly enough, I have had this gorilla costume for around 12 years and never worn it! Bought to create a burlesque routine, but my asthma couldn’t handle the restrictive mask. Managed to keep this on all down the street, but couldn’t wait to get it off!
One of my lovely neighbours gave me a banana…
Betsy’s outfit was nice and simple! I used permanent markers to write on a plain T-shirt.
This was Betsy’s favourite! She has always wanted a Wednesday Addams outfit and someone very kindly sent her some money to buy a toy and costume of her choice! A very lucky little girl! The wig is an adult one and fits really well. It’s cheaper than the kid’s version!
Morticia Addams! Love The Addams Family and this dress lends itself perfectly to this gothic beauty. I’ve actually worn this gown 3 times on our walks: Melificent, Ursula and Morticia.
Just a silly one. I have an Elvis jumpsuit T-shirt that I wore with my white Heyday Online trousers and sang some Elvis numbers.
Frida Kahlo cosplay! Complete with her pet deer. The wig is actually Betsy’s Wednesday Addams one!
Frida’s paint palette and brush! I made these at 8am that morning out of a cardboard box and acrylics. Not bad eh?
Taken by Rachel Perks
Guess who…?
Crazy Cat Lady!
Weirdly enough, this was one of our most popular costume picks on Facebook!
Princess Jasmine and Rajah the tiger from Disney’s Aladdin!
Betsy’s wig is actually my Morticia Addams one!
My trust face paint palette again. Tried to copy the animated version of Rajah as well as I could. Would’ve been great if I hadn’t got it too close to my eyes as it stung to buggery and made my eyes stream all down the street! Never mind, I was proud of my efforts!

Asylum Steampunk Festival – Part 2


As promised, here are some more of my photographs from this incredible Steampunk event. I was anchored to Lincoln Castle, so didn’t get so see other areas of the city in action, but my days were still full of wonder as you will now see. Sunday was a washout all day, but it certainly didn’t dampen our spirits. I even had people dancing in the rain whilst I was on stage! In regards to my outfit, I made the little plaid jacket, matching bag and hats (Bird Nest fascinator and Cheshire Cat mini topper). The bolt of fabric used (and on the little topper hat modeled by Betsy with the brolly) was the same used on Sherlock. My leather corset belt was custom made for me a few years ago, for the Steampunk Dr. Sketchy in Birmingham. I am thrilled to be able to wear it again! Betsy’s little fur is an original Victorian child’s capelette, whilst mine is original 1940’s.

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Lincoln Steampunk Asylum 2018 – Part 1

Lincoln Steampunk Asylum 2018 – Part 1

This year I had the honour of being part of the world’s largest steampunk event! Taking place in areas within Lincoln city, I was based at Lincoln Castle. The setting was stunning, the people incredibly friendly and the outfits unbelievable. I am doing this in 2 parts as I have so many photos! I will also post some video when I have a bit of time too!

I was dressed in my Mary Coggins outfit on the first day (but forgot my flipping rocket pack! What a twit!!!), the second day was cold and rainy, so I wore a more subdued brown ensemble, whilst on the last day I donned my Haberdasher’s costume!

If you recognise yourself or friends in the photos then PLEASE get in touch so that I can title them correctly!

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My first big sale was my Apothecary Hat to this wonderful young gent!

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Witch way did the Warlock go?

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Becca Calver showing Betsy Rose her dragon!

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Mary Coggins and a beautifully dark young lady

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Betsy spent most of Saturday morning wanting to find ‘Der red dragon’. It was like a Welsh ‘Where’s Wally.’

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Great outfits! Titanic hat and lifesaver vest talking to a haunted mansion ghost

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Fabulous hat!

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Steampunk VM Camper!

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This would’ve been a fabulously arty photo if Betsy hadn’t decided to pick her nose…

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Alice in Wonderland Event in Stratford upon Avon

Alice in Wonderland Event in Stratford upon Avon

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On Tuesday I took Betsy to the Bancroft as LSD Promotions had put on a special market and Alice in Wonderland event! The market was lovely, with fantastic eateries (the bubble waffle was incredible!).

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The Wonderland area was small, but it kept Betsy happy for a good 1.5hrs. We met up with a couple of her friends and she couldn’t get enough of the characters. Kudos to the people dressed up in the heat, they did a wonderful job.

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There was a giant chair, pocket watch and rose wall for photo opportunities and a long tea party table with hat decorating (these were covered in red glitter which was a bit of a nightmare as we got covered too, but hey, you can’t complain when it comes to free crafts for kids!). You could even play giant chess or flamingo croquet with the characters.

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Betsy looked adorable in the felted Cheshire Cat top hat I had made and I was surprised with how long she kept it on for! So many people commented on it and she took great pleasure in chatting to them. I wore a teacup headpiece I made many years for my hen tea party! Shame I didn’t get any decent pictures of my outfit, but always the way when you are the photographer.

Well done LSD Promotions! Great job!

Crafty Gal Needle Felting Workshop


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On Monday I went to a day long needle felting workshop with Crafty Gal! I requested it from Mr. Mew as an anniversary gift and was soooooo excited!

The workshop was being held out Bonds; a gorgeous antiques centre just outside of Stratford upon Avon. I love going there anyway and the cafe is lovely! They have a special room at the back for craft tutorials and mine had lunch included too.

Denise Immediately put me at ease and I felt like I already knew her! Unfortunately for her, the other ladies had to cancel. Fortunately for me, that meant I got a 1 to 1 session! I decided upon creating a hare as I loved the over-exaggerated ears. We started the tutorial off with a run through of the equipment and wools and then started on the body. It took an awful long time to felt down the mass of wool fibres and I suddenly realised that this was the reason why we couldn’t do a whole animal for our Crafter’s Club tutorial in September. After a good 40 minutes we were ready for the next steps and we were on to the waistcoat. Well…I was in my element! We chatted and sipped Earl Grey as we stabbed at our creations and the time flew by. After a lovely lunch it was on to the head. Suddenly my hare was brought to life and I knew exactly who he was and what he did.

I would like to introduce you to Walter Shipdown; a local Am Dram director and former star of the stage, known for his stunning performance in My Hare Lady.

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I couldn’t believe the workshop was over. I could’ve stayed all night, whether she liked it or not. Luckily Denise was selling Crafty Gal goody bags of wool, needles and foam pads, so I got one to give to Ma and we did our own little felting tutorial together on Thursday. She is creating a fox and I am creating Walter’s leading lady…stay tuned!

Snitterfield Summer Fete 2018


This year’s Snitterfield Summer Fete them was ‘flower power.’ Originally stemming from the protestors of the Vietnam War, the flower children handed out flowers, danced, making the protest demonstrations into more of a peaceful performance piece.

There was less of the history, more of a loose hippy…60’s/70’s theme. I wasn’t singing this year, but was busy enough manning the Snitterfield Community Crafter’s Club stand. I wanted to show what we do, sell some items and get the word out. I managed to sell a pincushion cup, wrist corsage and paper rose card. Also, there were a couple of ladies that were really enthusiastic about the crafter’s club and knew others who would be too! This was my main aim for having the stand, so I was happy.

I decided to pull inspiration from Frida Kahlo. Yes, she died in the 50’s, but she was an amazing artist (fitting in with our arty stand) and wore amazing ethnic fashions and hair flowers. She was ahead of her time in fashion. I decided to leave behind the monobrow and upper lip hair that made her ‘natural’ look famous. I spend enough of my time trying to eliminate these things from my face.

It was hilarious seeing people dressed as Wombles and the dancers were awesome. They did a great demonstration afterwards and I joined in with much gusto!

I didn’t get to see much else I was mostly on the stand, but looking forward to meeting any new club members and to next year’s Summer Fete theme!

Kirstie Allsopp Presents The Handmade Fair


Hello Catnips!

Yesterday I went to Ragley Hall for Kirstie Allsopp’s Handmade Fair! I created a blog post on my craft club blog, so you can read it here.

If you haven’t seen my other blog then please take a look around.

K x

Steampunk Mary Poppins and Stratford Comicon 2018


Well this April Stratford Upon Avon hosted its very first Comicon! I ended up using this as an excuse to create a costume I’ve wanted to do for years…Steampunk Mary Poppins!

I have always loved the Jolly Holiday scene in the movie and couldn’t wait to start my project. On a very tight budget I managed to get a blouse, petticoat, overskirt, boots and corset. The corset, although XL, was small and the underbust certainly wasn’t ‘under’. I ended up having to cut the shoulder straps, add eyelets and add red cord to lengthen it! It is just a fashion corset and not for tight lacing, so wore my trusty waspie under the outfit for a bit more nip and pull.

The boots were black and white, so I painted them with acrylics and sprayed with an enamel top coat. They looked super and just about lasted the event before cracking across the toes. It was hitting, but there was nothing online that was right (she wore pale pink and white boots, not red and white). I also didn’t have enough money for leather which I could have permanently painted. Ah well, they did the job!

I cut down the hoop petticoat as it was ankle length originally and did the same with the tulle overskirt, chopping out the attached underskirt too. Adding the signature red velvet bows tied it into the movie.

The hat was an 80’s wedding hat! I cut down the depth of the crown and reattached the top, covering the whole thing in tulle that I had trimmed off the skirt! No waste!

Onto the exciting bits! I created the rocket pack in homage to Mary Poppins’ carousel horse and painted it in similar colours, with the same flower and swirl pattern. The pressure dial was inspired by her yellow measuring tape and the bottom of each rocket by her parasol umbrella.

I had bought a couple of papier-mâché vases ages ago in the hopes of creating a rocket pack for myself, so that was great! The carousel horse head was created from a papier-mâché unicorn and the dial from a cardboard gift box. I used craft foam for the rocket cones and parasol bases.

Next up, my emergency cup and saucer holster! Whether there is a tea duelling contest or just the need for a morning Earl Grey, this is the perfect accessory. I ended up creating the template around a silicone cup and saucer (the type you bake cupcakes in) as I wanted something very light and non-breakable (incase I had to carry Betsy). I had some very old scrap leather pieces that I used for the holster. These were easy to cut with standard scissors. I hot glued the edges together and painted it with acrylics to match the rocket pack.

Finally the leather wrist gauntlet! With a glass vial of ‘medicine’ and another full of sugar (to help the medicine go down) it is the ideal emergency kit for sniffly children. I mixed bubble bath, food colouring and glitter for the medicine before hot gluing the cork on. The strap were made from antique leather children’s belts that had dried out. I massaged some moisturiser into the leather and theft them overnight. The main gauntlet was made from the same scrap leather as the cup holster, hot glued onto a piece of craft foam lining. I used acrylic paint again and a special raised outline gold paint for detailing. I sprayed everything with a clear top coat to protect the paint.

On to the event! It only took about 1.5 hours to get round, so it was small, but for a first offering (and £5 entrance fee) it was expected. There was a good mix of stalls, illustrators, an epic cup cake stall, a replica Dalek exhibit and a large Simpsons sofa photo op.

Over the other side were the ‘celebrities’ and a green screen photo op. We went first thing in the morning and there were about 100 of us.

I made my way to an illustrator’s stall and then carried on around. The celebrity guests were sat looking a little bemused. I stood and chatted for quite a long time to Paul Warren and Julian Seager, who were very pleasant. I felt awful as I wasn’t interested in purchasing autographs from them and felt like they were friendly but also trying to butter me up to purchase something! Hopefully that wasn’t the case! I talked briefly to Virginia Hey as she needed to borrow glue for her nail and Chris Barrie who I had met previously at Goodwood Revival in the VIP area. It was rather amusing seeing Mr. Brittas back in a leisure centre!

I did have a photo taken with Betsy on the green screen, but it was just a shame that Betsy and my leg disappeared on the photo! Ah well, it was a nice memory and souvenir!

The good thing about the show is that it is walking distance to the town and park. You can come and go as you please, so can go for a wander and then pop back.

It would be nice to see some photo op lookalikes there, such as UK Negan, a Q&A stage (this could also be used for people to introduce their cosplay costumes), more food stalls and maybe a Jolly Comicon host to keep everyone up to date. There could be a screen with projected live Tweets from their Twitter profile, or new movie previews… maybe some of these ideas will reach the creators!

I have to say though that my husband’s Mugatu costume seemed to steal the show! He has worn it before, but I managed to alter a dog toy to make into Mugatu’s poodle and found some sunglasses to finish the costume off. He looked hilarious!

It was a great little convention to meet up with friends and I’m so glad that we finally have a Comicon of our own. It will get bigger and better I’m sure, but this was a good start!

Contemporary Arts Fair in Stratford upon Avon


Today (04/11/17) we just nipped into this free Contemporary Arts Fair at the town hall, in Stratford upon Avon. It is well worth a visit if you are in the area. With free admission (which is very rare with anything nowadays), there’s jewellery, paintings, ceramics, leather, wood work and more.

Upstairs there were more vendors, but also a wonderful pop up tea shop serving yummy cakes, tea and coffee. They had the most beautiful gold tea sets and the cakes we sampled (chocolate and some Stollen) were really fresh.

My highlight was Becky Paton and her gorgeous mosaics. As well as the larger pieces to break hearts and bank accounts, there were more purse friendly items such as Christmas decorations, brooches and clips. I bought this wonderful dragonfly!

The show is open today and Sunday, with more info available HERE.

Circus Themed Baby Bedroom


It didn’t actually start off with this theme! We had a seaside idea in mind, but I got over excited in Ikea after spotting the bed canopy and everything else seemed to fall in place! You may recognise the awesome metal suitcase shelves that we used to have in the bathroom of our previous house. They are perfect in Betsy’s room and are now adorned with vintage Ladybird books and toys! The bedding set is from Asda Living and came with a quilt, bumper and a couple of sheets. I adore the retro lion and tiger cushions, mini suitcases and melamine plates! They are from Dotcomgiftshop and tie everything in together! The elephant cushion was a recent buy from Sass & Belle. It is so funny and they do a zebra wearing a cowboy hat too!

After scouring the internet for a hot air balloon light, I decided to make my own. The ones I found were either too expensive or had teddy bears, bows and pearls everywhere. I am so pleased with how it turned out that I am now taking commissions! I even made little peg people of Richard, Betsy and I! If you would like one with your choice of theme (Imagine a steampunk version!), then message me for details.

So here it is, I hope you like it! Her room is very small, but I tried to fill it with lots of cheery things and sensory objects!

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