Friday, 31 December 2010

New Years Resolutions

Things I did on New year's Eve.

  • Didn't use the acronym NYE it annoys me
  • 6 mile run
  • Bought dad slim fliter tips from pound shop, brothers now think I have taken up smoking for new year.
  • Ate an apple
  • Ate some apricots and 3 figs and a handful of golden sultanas
  • Bought a cookery timer (it was half price)
  • Had a gingerbread soya latte and tea cakes with marmalade and apricot jam 
  • Watched New Narnia film with Lily and mum
  • Talked to dad, he liked the carrot and coriander soup-
  • Made aubergine stroganoff with jacket potatoes- the aubergine was also half price.
  • made granola for mum
  • ate the granola
  • ate some smoky vegan cheese and crackers
  • told George to find funny Jools Holland 'no neck' youtube videos.
  • Carried on embroidering bat
  • Wrote some resolutions
  • Put on my new pajamas. Blue and spotty.
  • Organised trip to Morecambe
  • Planned craft event for Valentines
  • Thought about sewing puns for craftivism group.
  • Contemplated making a origami heart for valentines event- maybe next year.
New Year's Resolutions
Finish what I start
Blog every day
Do work better
Read more
Eat less
Eat more
Don't feel bad, just do better next time
Listen and dance to science of sleep intro for ultimate happiness.
Listen to a story on tape or watch Bagpuss for childhood nostalgia.
Leave the house at least once a day (running may count)
If in doubt, just do it
Don't let the first word of the day be a swear word. ( I blame those cats)
Do a race
Regularly put money in somewhere safe.
find fun new music
up earlier
bed earlier
Always take an eco bag
make something everyday.
do a craft stall
Write letters and postcards to friends.
Smile, even if feeling rubbish.
start early, do better
can't do it all, do a bit
grow hair
Write to do lists before going to bed
be vegan forevers
be less angry
Eat little treats
Buy little treats
plan more outings
stop making sew many spelling/typos mistakes
read more
cinema once a month

leave it and go to bed.

Thursday, 30 December 2010

Horse and Bamboo theatre

Over part of the summer, (most of June and a pocket piece of July) I worked at The Boo, home of puppet travelling theatre, Horse and Bamboo. A  puppet theatre nestled in the sleepy Lancashire town of Rossendale. My main jobs were to promote the puppet festival running on the 11th and 12th of July. I was assigned to cover the box office, (how many tickets would you like for Three Little Pigs?), write press releases for the puppet companies performing, hand out posters in the local shops, tidy up puppets and collect tickets. My favourite task was to run my own workshop to entertain the children, whilst they were waiting for a show to start. I made a house box out of paper and card to put all my materials in, a chunky yellow coloured house with two windows and an uneven roof top and chimney. I brought some of my puppetry books to inspire the children and brought fabric scraps and wooden spoons to create fantastic wooden spoon puppets! Hoorah!

Horse and Bamboo- Storm in a Teacup- touring 2011
 Micro puppetry

Wooden spoon puppets!

Punch and Judy on a summers day.

Wednesday, 29 December 2010

elf and safety

Is this an elf or friendly clown? Either way, he is NOT finished so do not judge. Go away I'm off to do some reading...perhaps.

Tick Tick Tock (revisted)

Tick, Tick, Tock

Tick, Tick, Tock
frosty Coloured Frock
Tick, Tock, Tick
a Mouse's nose twitch
Tick Tock Tick
a candle flame flick
Tick, Tock Tock
All our memories forgot
Tick Tick Tick
Tick Tick Tock
the mouse has fallen off
the clock

Tuesday, 28 December 2010

Rocking horse ship

I decided to create a rocking horse decoration for my friend Lauren, as a 3 day late Christmas present, using my favourite form of sewing, embroidery.
I first used an air erasable pen to outline the horse shape and then used running stitch to colour it in. (with an embroidery hoop to secure of course) I think he looks rather characterful with crosses and red button embellishing his body and his muddy brown eyes. I used liberty fabric for the back and sewed the wrong sides together, adding a purple ribbon on my way, then turning out. The toothpaste coloured blanket stitch hides any troublesome stray threads.  

All wrapped in vintage offcut blue satin and tied with scraps of ribbon and suitcase gift-tag.

Monday, 27 December 2010

Chestnuts roasting on a winter fire

Another gloriousely claustrophobic day indoors. Extending Christmas novelties, mother roasted chestnuts on our burning fire. Remember to inscribe them with an X or they shall most certainly explode! I love the nutty smell and the sharp crack of the bark as I dig my greedy nails into the trapped flesh. The splinters of chestnut are hard to pick out of my teeth.

Check out mother's divine stockings on her etsy shop here...... relovedathome

Tomorrow's travels- Preston

I shall be visiting my (twin) Lauren in her home town Preston tomorrow and hopefully going to see this amazing exhibition at the Harris art gallery and throw in a few charity shop snoops, sister heckles and parched peas.

Mr Fox name is revealed....

Sunday, 26 December 2010

Hummingbird gift

My sister Vicky recently did a illustration project on Hummingbirds, she has now become quite obsessed with the curious little things, delving through odd facts and sketching from cabinets of taxidermy at The National History Musuem.  According to my own brief research on the birds, they have no sense of smell, are the smallest bird, and their twig like feet are quite ornamental; mainly used for delicate perching on branches. I decided to turn my embroidered bird into a festive decoration for her. I first had stitched it on a vintage offcut when left alone and bored with toppling suitcases and camping bags at a train station in Ipswich last summer. I used ribbon rosette stitch for the flowers and running stitch for the outline, the beak is plumply filled with an orange fill in stitch.
Victoria's presents were mostly hummingbird bird related; an old Ladybird book with a child's pencil sketches on the back pages, the hummingbird bakery cookbook, a hummingbird decoration, minature kitsch diary and dolly print cupcake cases all wrapped in liberty fabric and fastened with lace that I found on a piano. I hope we can make some of the delicious cakes in the Hummingbird bakery cookbook soon, veganising them of course.

Saturday, 25 December 2010

Christmas evening craft

This Christmas I wanted to make as many home-made presents as possible.My first creations were rocking horse stamps later attached to cards. Very Art Brut. I also made a lot of biscuits that I wrapped in cellophane and gave to my friends and Grampy. My finest creation was Mr Fox for my little sister Lily.

Transformed into rocking horse stamp cards for my friends.

Vegan spiced biscuits-marvellous. Later wrapped in cellophane and fastened with a jolly coloured ribbon for edible Christmas presents.

Merry Christmas from a visit to Grampy in Chester. I visited a book shop on the wall and picked up a picnic basket for mother's home-made hamper.

Mr Fox for Lily handmade Christmas gift

Introducing MR FOX- An absurdly formal name for such a wondorous creature. (He shall be thus renamed by Lily...)

Embroidered tail- rather flimsy I would say.
Bold orange button completes amber colour coordination to a T.

Christmas Eve impatience, sigh.

BRILLIANT! Thanks Rebecca.

Delcious vegan mince pies

On Christmas Eve I prepared the ingredients for vegan mince pies.
Pastry shaped stars trap chunky dates, ground almonds and amber coloured sultanas cradled in their pastry beds, and glued together with melted margarine. Sprinkled with bitter sweet icing sugar, that sticks to your teeth.

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Monday Evening craft

 Clown Mouse burrows for juggling balls stitched out of felt that he finds in holes in walls and unlocked suitcases. He was most pleased at acquiring three matching coloured balls which brought him a delight so great his button nose turned a fantastic bright red and crooked an extra spring in his tail.

  Ebony painted rocking horses

Mustard coloured shortbread with brown sugar sprinkles and buttons of raw cacao.

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Winter blister

The white stuff has returned, which I think is quite a bother. I'm not a fan of the cold and my hands now need regular oiling to stop from flaking away. Hopefully travelling down south (If I make it in the ghastly sludge) will be warmer.

Today I have been researching the traditional European circus as one of the stories for my creative writing dissertation. My protagonist is named Bernard, he lives in an Oddity shop but rarely leaves his castle of dirty teacups that frame his slouched body. He repeatedely twiddles his fingers as they are used to repititive movement due to his past clown profession. He was the finest juggler in the land.
In my evening I slid down the treacherous ice glazing the streets of Manchester to The Thirsty Scholar for The Vegan Girl's Guide to Life book signing by author Melisser Elliot. 'A cross-stitching, protesting, vegan baking fairy Godmother', the words of author of Vegan with a Vengence, Isa Chandra Moscovitz. The book did look interesting, there were guides to what to feed the non vegans in your life,(no vegan cheese, please) setting up an eco enterprise and where to get the vegan tattoos which apparantly are compulsory for the non animal eating ladies. I did not purchase a book as I had £9 and the book was £12. Melissa seemed to enjoy the cupcake I brought her (left over from my housemate's birthday party). A pumpkin and carob chip delight. The rest have been distributed to my Sunday running club and my writing workshop companions. I am off to London on Thursday to see Alice in Wonderland at The Little Angel Theatre and attend a Christmas Craft fair run by Selvedge magazine.
The snow would have melted on my megabus return.

On Monday please attend sandbar for a fine night of poetry and storytelling at Sandbar, Oxford Road. Feauturing Joseph Dobson, Belinda Johnston and myself.

Tuesday, 16 November 2010

Threads and Letters

My new fanzine is coming together- A self publication about literature and textiles . I thought you would like to have a sneak peek at what it will most likely include:

Secret Button archive artcile and photos
Ecological sewing
Embroidered poetry
Paper windmills

I'll keep you posted.

Sunday, 7 November 2010

The Manchester Vintage Fair

My favourite look, Russian Ushanka, peep toes and cable knit scarf.

My dainty rhyming postcards bought from the fa

The Whitworth Forest- this lovely lady accessorized a Peter Pan collar blouse with this tartan pleated skirt echoing highland mainstays.

The jumper is the making of this outfit.

Preppy style with a punk edge, the hair.

'The Vintage Fair' is the UK's leading vintage fair bringing affordable and quality vintage items to various locations across the country. The Whitworth welcomed stalls from Manchester based vintage reworked jeweller, Yellow Squirrell, Didsbury hidden hoarders gem, In all her Finery, Killed by Rose, grunge meets glamour History's Attic, reworked timeless vintage finds and extravagantly theatrical cakes from Cupcake Palace . Are just a few of the treasure hunters who presented their wondorous wares to the Whitworth.

Saturday 30th October 2010, The Vintage Fair adorned the green leaf papered walls of the Whitworth art gallery with stalls of antique décor, cupcake tea party, retro hair saloon, grandmother's shoes and libraries of embellished 1920's evening couture and vintage warmers. The dusky smell of worn woollen jumpers amidst the collection of past thrifts and treasures were quickly grasped by the bustling pigeon eyed collectors. It recalled the hustle of a Victorian market albeit the flush of vintage clothes contrasted to the tough bartering of a less consumerist age.
I was photographer and promoter on the day of the fair. I was given the task of capturing members of the public (which then became subsequent attendees of the fair) who were adorning vintage clothing or inspired looks of a more independently stylish era.
It was refreshing to see so many people attending a vintage fair, showcasing individual contemporary styles by patch-working elements of nostalgia's past in their outfit.
People were photograped that represented vintage styles that expressed their individuality. It is subtly political to wear clothes that distinguish individuals, a gentle petition against the mainstream conforms of mass produced fashion by not looking like everyone else.
Purchasing and wearing vintage clothes is like passing on a patchwork quilt, you are reworking and reliving stories of the past wearers in your contemporary footsteps. My purchases included a few essential accessories; a tweed clasp purse, dainty 1950's caricature postcards and seventies floral bucket. Less may be more, but surely having more to play with is more fun.

Photography and writing by

Rebecca Aimée Lanyon Willmott-

Thursday, 2 September 2010

A long walk to the post office

Figaro is getting ready to travel to the post office. Although he is most upset about having to get a bus to his nearest post office to post his weekly letters. The local post office has recently been shut down and replaced by a McDonalds. How upsetting. Figaro is going to write a letter of gentle protest, detailing his upset at the demise of one of his local amneities.
'I hope the local cardboard house shop doesn't close soon too.' Fabric mouse whimpers.

Figaro is a recycled paper and plasticine cat who lives in a recycled cardboard house found in a recycling bin. Follw his adventures at

Sunday, 27 June 2010

My favourite day is Sunday

Today I actually got to do most stuff I want to do on a Sunday.
Previous Sundays seemed to be filled with stuff I don't want to do, but today was pretty neat.
First I had a sort of lie in, and I got to wear my lovely vintage nightie I bought yesterday from the new vintage shop on Ullswater Road in Lancaster. I had my coffee and vanilla soya milk and a green apple. I wish mum would put apples in the fridge, they obv taste fresher and crispier that way. I contemplated NOT going for my run as I had been for 5 runs this week totalling over a marathon. :O So I messed about on the laptop and emailed some whole-food companies to see what deals I could get for the food coop/veg box scheme I'm setting up at my uni. (Manchester Metropolitan) I would love it to be like the one they have in Leeds. They do vegan picnics and cookery lessons, cheap veg box scheme and vegan snacks and workshops. I then realised I left my usb pen in the library. Crumbs! So tried phoning uni, but they were closed. (Lazy) I then thought I should go for a run. So I did, I ran up a big hill and took five pounds so I could buy soya milk and a apple on the way back. The soya milk was 79p and the apple 40p. I then went back to buy the Independent on Sunday 5 minutes later. When I got back I tried practising my ballet stretches and slipped on my new ballet shoes. I think my balance is defiantly getting better. Over breakfast I read my newspaper outside with Weetabix and museli and honey and soya yogurt. I then started making my Madeline pinafore dress for Manchester children's book festival. The volunteers were told to dress up as their favourite story book characters. WEll I have so many so I am dressing up as Madeline as I look most like her. I spent most of the day fiddling about with the straps of the dress and my mum helped me with the box pleats. It is sort of finished and it has a matching cape. I'll wear my new boater hat with it also.
My dad phoned asking about some phone. We had a nice walk along Lancaster canal yesterday and saw a little frog and a canal boat cat.
I then roped my brother Harry outside to do some skipping. I purchased a skipping rope from The British Red Cross shop in Watercup where I am doing volunteer work at a Puppet theatre named The Boo. The rope has pinochio wooden heads on each end of the rope. I adore it. After some skipping I was hungry. But today I had to make tea again. Yesterday I made stir fry with peanut butter sauce. Today I made a vegan sausage shepherds pie sorta thing. It was pretty nice.
After tea I was bit bored so had some soya yogurt and Weetabix again.
I phoned a friend, then felt confused as usual and then played with my little sister.
I then put on my nightie and read The Old Curiousity shop with a cup of tea and two ginger biscuits.

Sunday, 13 June 2010

find me on the radio

Saturday, 27 March 2010

I'm doing a craft fair here this Easter Sunday!

Come along for vegan cakes, pumpkin muffins and mushroom shaped cupcakes :D Paddington bear vintage recycled handmade bags, russian doll badges and felt plushies! Fun bands and vege cafe too in the Lovely Islington Mill in Salford!

Sunday, 14 March 2010

Vegan Shortbread

Few ingredients are needed to make this delicious and simply effective British biscuit.

Shortbread is an ideal biscuit to make as it is so simple to make and makes an ideal present as it has a long shelf life. (I put some in a mug, wrapped in cellophane and tied with a ribbon and gave to my mother, she was delighted). Shortbread originates and is most commonly associated with Scotland. Not surprising that the most notable shortbread manufacturer is the Scottish company, Walkers, specialising in providing shortbread and fine Scottish specialities. With this being my first attempt at vegan shortbread, the question was would it taste too dry without the essential ingredient of butter? Shortbread is named thus because of its reaction with the butter creating a crumbly (shortening) texture. Thankfully my experiment was a delicious success.


8 oz Plain flour

4oz Icing Sugar

8 oz Vegan margarine

4oz Corn flour or rice flour

Preheat an oven to 200C

Sieve both and icing sugar into a large bowl and mix in margarine.

I like the next bit, use your fingers to make the mixture crumble like breadcrumbs. Then knead into dough. If your dough is too crumbly add a little water or Soya milk to bind the mixture or add more margarine. Don’t add too much water as the shortbread is supposed to be quite dry. Grease a cake tin and press the dough into the tin. Make sure the dough is quite thick to make chunky biscuits and to prevent breaking. You can press down the sides to create the petticoat tail effect and cut into triangles or cut into stripes for the classic shortbread fingers. You could even use a rolling pin and use cookie cutters to make adorable shortbread shapes! Use a fork to mark holes in the dough and pop in an oven at no more than 200 C. Shortbread needs to be cooked slowly so that it does not brown to maintain the classic smooth white colour. Keep checking on your biscuits to make sure they do not brown this should take about 30 minutes. When your biscuits feel slightly hard take out of oven. Don’t worry if they are quite soft they will continue to harden on a cooling rack. Dust with caster sugar and share with friends, or if you are greedy or have no friends eat all yourself hoorah!

An afternoon of Origami

This weekend I had a lovely afternoon of folding paper to make some lovely paper ornaments :) This was at Nexus Art cafe in Manchester and is run every Saturday 2-4. we are hoping to make a stop animation film with paper boats! how cute!
We made some paper boxes, a daffodill and some envelopes.
I bought a vintage Rupert bear book with a complicated elephant pattern, but I will tackle that when I'm more adavanced!
Origami is quite simple as long as you follow the steps correctly!
Apparantly I'm a natural at folding :D
Grab yourself some paper and have some folding fun!

Saturday, 13 February 2010

Tick Tock Tick

Tick Tock Tick
Frosty Coloured Frock
Tick Tock Tick
A Mouse's nose twitch
Tick Tock Tock
eyes to the clock
A poem tucked in a pocket
Secrets in a vintage locket
Tick Tick Tick
Candle Flame Flick
Tick Tock Tick
Your time is up
Tick tick tock
A memory forgot