Inspiring is a word which sums up this weekend. Sam and I have been staying with our parents in South Devon and while he’s been doing a bit of overtime for work (he works from home) I’ve been out and about with my Mum and Dad.

On Saturday we went to Doddiscombsleigh Art Show which is a fantastic exhibition of the work of many South West artists. There was such a varied array of work there, but there were several artists who stood out for me. I loved the landscapes and still lifes of Brett Humphries – they’re so detailed and precise, right up my street!

I was most inspired by the beautiful ceramic pieces with illustrations exhibited by Caroline Barnes. They’ve given me some ideas for artwork for our own house, so watch this space!

Not content with just one visit to an art exhibition, today we went to the opening of my Aunty Liz’s very first solo exhibition. She creates the most beautiful textile pieces using a variety of techniques and will be at Birdwood House in the high street in Totnes all week. We’re all very proud of her – she’s an extremely talented lady! Below are just a few examples of her work, but she has so much more in her pop up gallery, so if you’re in South Devon this week, please do go and pay her a visit! Take a look at her website Lime Green Lizzie for some more photos of her work.

Quilt by Liz Swinbank


Quilt by Liz Swinbank


Quilt by Liz Swinbank

While I’ve been busy enjoying other people’s artwork, I’ve not had a lot of time for my own! I did a bit more work on this adult colouring page but it still needs a bit more heavy outlining before it’s finished.

Adult colouring page

I was telling my Mum and Dad about how I’d like to have a go at making some things out of shrinking plastic, which reminded them of a video they’d seen on how to make bangles from plastic bottles. It’s very simple, just cut a section from the middle of a smooth drinks bottle (like a fizzy water bottle) so that you have a plastic ring. Then turn the iron on to a medium heat and touch the sharp edges of the plastic to the iron, moving them in a circular motion. The plastic will start to curl inwards. Do this both sides and it ends up quite curled in on itself and hardened into a bangle.

We experimented with decorating the insides with sharpie pens – here’s the result!

plastic bottle bangle bracelet

Sorry about the poor quality of the photographs, these dark evenings are making things difficult!

plastic bottle bangle bracelet

Finally, I heard from someone recently who I did some illustrations for when I was still at school! Martin Dade wrote a book about an alien called Gluper many years ago and has finally got around to publishing it for others to enjoy. Unfortunately I didn’t have time to redo the illustrations to a more professional standard, so Martin used one of the originals which I created, and, with the help of his graphic designer, came up with this great front cover!

If you would like to buy the book, it will be available to order from next week, keep an eye out on Gluper’s website for more details!

Gluper by Martin Dade

I’m sharing this post on the following blogs: Handmade Harbour and Blue Chair Diary Illustrations!


Love your Aunt’s textiles, this takes me back to my exhibition days and know the amount of work that goes into each piece. You are a published artist as well and love the alien pic, well done

Wow, what an action packed week. Devon seems to be a very creative place. How great to see your illustrations in print. At first I thought your bangle was made from plastic tubing (which was something I tried at my craft club). It wasn’t very successful, because I didn’t come up with a very good way to make a ring. Am going to give your idea a go.

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