Illustrative Map

Helen Yardley recently commissioned me to draw an illustrative map for the contact page. It was a great commission, with some fun simplified illustrations including The Shard, The Fashion and Textile Museum, Borough Market and The White Cube. Just the type of thing I love doing!

HY Location Map

Spitalfields Market

I’ll be at Spitalfields Market this Saturday (19th October) as part of the Designers Makers stalls. There will be prints, illustrations, greeting cards and hand made books for sale, so if you are in the area please pop by and say hello, browse and maybe even buy an early Christmast present!

FLYER joint low res

London patterns

I spend a lot of time travelling across London on the underground and never without a pen and paper; I am often doodling patterns in a little notebook. I thought it was about time I did something constructive with the patterns, so I have come up with three London-centric cards featuring 3 iconic London buildings: The Gherkin, St Paul’s and Battersea Power Station. As an aside, over the years I have had lots of requests to do more images involving Battersea Power Station, so I hope this is the first of many!

Still working on different colour ways, but these greeting cards should be available to buy before Christmas. I am considering whether these might work as a limited edition screen print as well, so watch this space.


Battersea Power station

Collage card 1

Gherkin Detail

On a walk around the city I saw these two trees against the Gherkin. The gentle organic shape and texture of the trees against the geometric architecture of the Gherkin really appealed, and I saw the opportunity to create an image. I chose the autumnal colours to signify the end of a gorgeous summer and the beginning of hopefully a glorious Autumn.

Should be available to buy as a card or print soon, but feel free to get in touch if you are interested.


High Rise London: a Triptych

I have just finished the last piece in a three part commission of some of London’s most iconic high rise buildings for a private client.

Initially, the commission was just for one drawing, depicting the Strata building in Elephant & Castle which the client wanted printed on canvas. It was the first time that I have had something printed onto canvas and I was really pleased with the result. The image wrapped around the stretched canvas and was printed at 70cm high.


Strata (the first of three canvases)

A few weeks later, I was delighted to hear the client come back to me requesting a second canvas of the Gherkin building. As they were familiar with the image from my popular Gherkin greetings card, they were happy with a tweaked version in a similar palette range.


Gherkin (the second of three canvases)

Finally, the third of the images was the iconic Shard. I was chuffed to bits to be commissioned to do a drawing of the Shard as it was great to have an excuse to draw it, especially as I’d watched it grow into the London skyline from our old flat in Hackney.


The Shard (the final of the three canvases)

It isn’t often I am asked to do a triptych, so this was a really enjoyable process and I’m really pleased with the results, as is the client. All together, they looked like this:


A Triptych of 3 of London’s skyline hits.

I’ll definitely be doing more canvas based prints from here on but my next project is some bespoke, handmade London themed calendars which I’m rather excited about. Watch this space for more details in due course.


The Big Move!

After many very happy years living and working in Hackney, I have moved slightly further east to E17, to lovely Walthamstow or ‘The Stow’ as it is affectionately known. After a busy month of moving in and finding my feet, I have to say that I am loving what I have seen so far. The village is beautiful, the local community welcoming and the people friendly. Oh! And the Spar shop has to be the poshest one in London if not the UK! Top marks to Eat 17 for what they’ve added to the place.

To mark the occasion and to introduce myself to the area I thought I’d produce a new piece, a tribute to the Village’s heart, the delightful Orford Road:

Orford Road

Awesomestow Village

Fixie Cake!

Constructing a fixie cake

Hello again and a Happy New Year to all!

New Year’s resolution #1: blog more. To that extent, I thought I’d post about a different kind of creative experiment I tackled recently.

My dear brother recently turned 40 (something I’m sure he’s only to happy for me to publicise!) and I decided to make him a cake to mark the occasion. He’s a serious cycling enthusiast – at the latest count he owned 8 different bikes of various types – and given that he’s a fellow resident of trendy East London he’s rather partial to the single speed and fixed wheel side of things.

With that in mind I thought I’d make him a fixie cake! Once I’d sketched the outline of the bike the cake was then constructed using a basic Madeira cake and ready rolled icing for the wheels, more icing wrapped around Matchmakers for the frame, seat and handle bars, a cupcake for the chainset, an unrolled liquorice Catherine Wheel for the chain and then edible silver, black and brown food colouring for the spokes, seat cover and bullhorn handlebars. From start to finish it took around 6 hours in total to design, bake and assemble it.

I was chuffed with the result and so too was my brother who was more than a little surprised when it was unveiled to the birthday boy! He and his assembled guests were a little reluctant to tuck into it and spoil the construction.

You can see the various stages of construction in the GIF above – refresh the page to watch it through again! Loved making it and now have an appetite for more creative cake construction and, well, more cake.

Handmade books – Walks through great cities

Having just finished the last of a set of three handmade books based on cities (available to buy now from the shop) I thought it would be good to give more of an insight into how they came about.

They are a collaboration between my husband, Jon, and me. Jon pens the words and I produce the illustrations and construct and bind the books by hand. The books are constructed from a single sheet of 200gsm A4 paper with a card cover.

London, Paris, New York

London, Paris and New York

Each book takes the tone of a couple walking through a city reflecting on aspects of a relationship. The trilogy started with London – this first book hints at the serendipity of meeting that one special person amongst a city of millions. The second book, based in Paris, reflects on how time spent discovering a special city with a loved one is to be cherished and not rushed. Finally, the New York book is about remembering to nurture a relationship, to value how a relationship develops and ensuring it is not taken for granted.

There is just a touch of melancholy about them. Hopefully they convey something of the fragile vitality of a relationship.

Each book works equally well independently or as a lovely little trio. I have also made a box for the set of three which I’m really pleased with. The box also reflects the three cities in its construction.

London, Paris, New York

Set of three handmade books. ‘Walks through great cities’

Hopefully people will enjoy owning them as much as we’ve enjoyed making them!

Inspired: London – A Guide to Handmade in London

I am very excited to be included in the Inspired: London – A Guide to Handmade in London book, which is being launched on the 10th and 11th November. It will be available to buy from We Make London and also from selected bookshops.

Constructing with Constructivists

Back in 2010, Tate Modern’s Constructing a New World exhibition gave me the inspiration for a quilt based on Theo Van Doesburg’s Counter-Composition VI, pictured below:

Theo Van Doesburg

Counter-Composition VI 1925

Seems to me Van Doesburg may have been a frustrated quilter, as quite a few of his pieces lend themselves beautifully to quilts. My take on it took a little longer in the making than planned, but I am pretty happy with the results, shown below:

Quilt detail

Quilt Detail

Overall it was an interesting experiment in quilt design, that I thoroughly enjoyed and I am tempted to try some other variations, including the same piece with a more uniform background.

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