Category Archives: Workshops

Some photos from the weekend – Lantern making and weaving workshop in Cumbria

This weekend I organised a craft tent for Penrith Scouts jubilee celebration, which took place on the Saturday near Blencowe. Scouts enjoyed a day of activities, a hog roast and then camped over night.

I managed to take photos in the lulls whilst the kids were off climbing, cycling, baking bread or firing arrows. At other times I was inundated with questions about weaving, lantern making and requests for selotape. A very industrious pair of girls came back time and time again, managed to complete all the activities I’d set out and went on to make their own creation ‘Mrs. Kipling’ which I didn’t get a photograph of because they were too occupied poking it over a wall at people..

Click for panorama! 

Hoping to get some more photos soon of lanterns lit at night.

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Free For All, Wigton, Cumbria

I’ve been experimenting with some materials that I picked up in a scrap store in Wigton, Cumbria.  “Free For All”  is a volunteer run scrap shop, open every Saturday until 12.00pm. I picked up a load of coloured cellophane as this is made in the local factory and the offcuts are readily available.

Was really impressed with the scrap store, as although it is tucked away in the back streets of Wigton, it was absolutely jam packed with people looking for scrap items. It was also run by some really cheery and helpful volunteers who were generally awesome.

Contact details of Free for All: / 016973 44919


As I will be leading some craft workshops in Cumbria during the first week of September I have been testing out various methods of constructing lanterns, using driftwood, cellophane, PVA and tissue. Could get quite messy…

V. Impressed with recent lantern making in Kirkcudbright for the Queens Jubilee.

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Lantern research…

I’m doing a spot of research in order to spark more ideas for lantern making workshops.

It’ll be useful to get an idea of what materials people will need to save up until September… click on the images for the sites I’ve been looking at and more instructions.

I want to recycle as much as possible – Hopefully parents will be able to save up loads of paper, plastic bottles, jars and possibly twigs until then!


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New Website!

I’m not sure if I ever announced the launch of the new web shop yet as I haven’t added all my stock to it, but HERE IT IS! More stock on the way…

I’ve been very busy undertaking whole weekends of pretty intensive learning on a permaculture design course over the last couple of months amongst other things and thangs but I managed to get up to Cumbria last weekend. I met up with a local ceramic artist and we are in the process of designing a workshop that will take place there this September for the ‘Scouts Jubilee’.  The emphasis is on recycling stuff, and making lanterns, as it is taking place on a site where families are going to camp over. Apparently I get a yurt to do it in – woop.

At Glastonbury last year I was part of the Bhopal Medical Appeal recycling crew – the charity had their own workshop space within the festival and were making amazing bottle/fabric lantern people with paper mache heads:

See the Bhopal Flickr album

I think this is a nice starting point although I’m not sure if we would have access to a generator to light them up… I might be better to make smaller lanterns along these lines…

We might have access to clay, so I want to do another activity which involves making up your own animal, foraging around for things to make it out of using a clay base, and then thinking about it’s habitat/food and how long it lives for etc. I think this would probably appeal to kids? At least I hope so….

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Web making was a success yesterday! Every one managed to make webs, especially impressed this brown blue and white one that a lady called Cissy made. The giant ball of white wool did get thrown across a table and almost broke a vase at one point, which made me wonder if I should be organising a P.E lesson for these ladies rather than a sedate crafting hour, but if been asked to come back next month anyhow. I’ve had requests for something paint orientated so maybe we could paint Christmas cards or something. Hmm.

On Thursdays for the last couple of weeks I’ve been attending a furniture course in the evenings but it’s half term this week so it’s not on tonight. We’ve been making different joints so far – the dovetail joints are my favourites!

This is my fairly abysmal first attempt at a dovetail and I haven’t really whacked it into place properly yet but I am hoping to improve during the course! I need to think  of a piece of furniture I’d quite like to try to make during the end of the course. A friend of mine sent me a good example of some fun furniture that she saw on  –

HOUSE DESK! This is made by Ninetonine

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Wool web workshop planning and more

Hi! Good news; the decorations I’ve been making are now available to buy from Unexpected Boutique

This week I’ve been making changes to some felt bracelets I made a while ago by embroidering ribs on to them. I think it makes them look a bit more exciting. I might try to adjust the design so it has a metal mount and clasp but I havent quite worked out how to do that yet.

I’m also going over to Normanton in West Yorkshire tomorrow to do a craft hour in a care home. I’ve sort of come up with a Halloween theme – hopefully we will be making wool webs like this one below

They are made quite simply by winding different coloured wool round paper craft straws which I have already attached together.

I’m slightly worried that some of the residents I might be working with might have dexterity issues (I havent met them yet) but we’ll see how it goes.

Good things people have shown me this week:

I Heart Guts – ever wanted a cuddly spleen? Look no further.

Children’s Own Studio – This reminds me of Korean photographer Yeondoo Jung’s project Wonderland

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Monsters with ReMade

As it’s the end of August we’ve come to the end of our series of fabric monster making workshops in Kirkgate Market as part of the summer programme of kid’s activities.

The sessions went well and we even had some regular attendees who must have made more than three monsters in total.

Here’s some examples of finished monsters!

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