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Category Archives: Day to Day

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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Lincoln Steampunk Festival 2018

Lincoln Steampunk Festival 2018

I cannot wait to be part of the UK’s largest Steampunk event! I will be hosting the Cogsmith’s Curious Creations stall in the Lincoln Castle grounds as well as singing on the main stage in the same location.

I will be wearing my Mary Poppins outfit on Saturday, a more simple outfit on Sunday and then my new Haberdashers ensemble on Monday!

The singing sets will be at 11am Saturday, 1pm Sunday and 11.30 on Sunday. Please pop along to the stall or stage if you are about!

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!

Bloxham Rally 2018


On the weekend of 23rd June I had the pleasure of singing at Bloxham Steam Rally. I’ve known about this event for years, but had never been. Ignorant as I was, I thought it would be a quaint country fair, set in a small field. Oh how wrong was I! Try 3 fields, with steam engines, fun fair, classic vehicles, tractors, stalls, eateries, American civil war reenactment camp (huge), military section, lorries and more.

The weather was scorching and there was no escaping the dust and heat, but I would rather have that than a muddy quagmire. It was wonderful to see some old reenactor friends again and everyone was busy with their tasks for the weekend. Unfortunately we didn’t realise quite how loud the funfair was going to be and it was directly opposite my singing location.

I tried moving to another spot….ooops, there goes the arena tannoy…moved again and was greeted with steam engine smoke and a large mechanical organ. I decided to battle the funfair noise and it was a head to head noise-off between me and the gorgeous antique carousel. I think it won, but I got through my first 2 performances with a small passing audience.

It was my birthday that day, so my parents came along for a little while and brought me a cake, so that was wonderful. I had a bit of poorly tummy, so it was lovely to have some extra support from them, Mr Mew and Betsy Boo. We staggered around the main field and classic cars before our farewells and drooled over some stunning vehicles!

In the evening I was performing at the beer tent before the Dorset Rats went on. The ex-military area drove down 2 vehicles so that I could perform outside with them as a backdrop! We had a few problems with the generator not being powerful enough, but once that was fixed, I had a grand time singing to the crowd. It was a barmy evening and everyone was in a cheery, relaxed mood.

Along came Sunday and I was feeling quite a bit better than the first day. I couldn’t wait to see the full sized replica Hurricane in our military section as I would be performing on the wing today! I hadn’t seen it seen my last ever time at The War and Peace Show in 2014. It certainly brought the crowds over for my performance and I had a swell time up there! My favourite part? Singing on that replica aircraft as a Lancaster Bomber flew overhead. How blessed am I?

Wartime in the Vale 2018


For Father’s Day this year, we thought a trip to Ashdown Camp’s Wartime in the Vale would be a great idea. I had to swallow my pride a little, as I used to perform there many years ago and was let go when a new entertainment organiser was brought in.

We firstly stopped at the fabulous Fourteas in Stratford Upon Avon to have a family breakfast (thoroughly recommend the G.I. Breakfast and Earl Grey tea!) before heading to Evesham.

The event has increased hugely from the small field event it once was. I could hardly recognise the place! We got there at midday, with no entrance queues and there were huge displays of military vehicles. The main arena had First World War and WWII vehicles, tanks and cavalry (best displays I have seen at a show).

There were lots of stalls (a few good ones, but 50% were annoying tat, Lindy Bop 50’s dresses, 80’s doing vintage or extremely overpriced vintage military (£35 for moth eaten military breeches that needed patching up, sewing and new fly buttons and lacing?!). It kind of reminded me of how War and Peace started to go, so they could entice young people and families.

Amazing box made by a WW2 POW out of newspaper!

I was also NOT impressed by one guy representing Help for Heroes, who made some kind of tongue-in-cheek comment about my ‘big buns’ and a bake sale, before somehow thinking it was hilarious to say “You know, if you can tear yourself away from Jeremy Kyle or whatever it is you do in the daytime…” seriously?!?! At least these two were professional!

Thanks to my friend Stephen, I had the honour of going inside the First World War tank, which was fascinating. Boy was it cramped! With lousy suspension and lack of headroom it would certainly be no good for just popping to the shops in…

One of the most dangerous places to be in the First World War, they were cramped with exposed scolding-hot pipes, toxic fumes, noise and more. Around 8 men would be put into these hazardous machines and many became ill or died from heat exhaustion, carbon monoxide poisoning from the engine, horrendous burns from the pipes or killed by the axis forces.

Back to the show!

For the little kids, there was a mini fun fair that certainly amused Betsy for 20 minutes before home time! The mini swing boats were actually from 1945, which was awesome!

I would say that it would have been nice to have some smaller entertainment spots, set up at a couple of other areas (other than the main marquee), but it would’ve been impossible. Everything is set around the central arena, which is obviously rather noisy and the main focus of the show. Any singers or music would get completely drowned out by the tannoy, pyrotechnics or engines!

I think I would go back for a day out with the family, but would bring ear defenders for Betsy Boo next time! There were warnings with most of the explosions, but some we were unprepared for and she soon started trying to hide!

I would thoroughly recommend the displays, which were fantastic, but if you go with shopping in mind, maybe go to a carboot sale before hand and just enjoy the rest!

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!