Heigh Ho! Heigh Ho! It’s Off to Patreon We Go…

The poet Lord Byron once said "IF I don't write to empty my mind, I will go mad" and when I think back to that fateful day many years ago when curiosity got the better of me and I picked up a copy of Dolls' House Magazine in my local supermarket which then went on to change my life - I understand where the man was coming from!  Hello and welcome to my Patreon page as the artist, storyteller and 'Head Mouser' over in the Mouse Town... St M's is also home to a gang of unique mice, a brood of chickens and two Little Big Cats who love nothing more than sharing the tales of their musings, ministry and mishaps from Merryworth Town - even though I'm usually the one attending to most of the work including the designing, creating, researching, blogging and the cleaning up!

Make a Bed for Byron? Yes? No?

Listen! Can you hear that crashing sound? Yes, that’s the sound of yet another New Year’s Resolution demolished! As my intention was to have shared some news with you dear reader at least once a month, this is my February post even though even though we are now enjoying the third day of March. However, as the rest of the calendar year consists of eleven months of at least 30 days; this would be day thirty if it were any other month other than February. Not that I have anything against February for not only was I hatched and matched in this month, but I also met my ‘other half’ on the 29th and lest we forget, it is the month for a profusion of chocolates, expensive red roses and some very dubious love tokens as Cupid’s Arrow flies forth...

Happiest Day of My Life? It REALLY Was!

With an arm firmly around the waist of her adoring husband and as she gazes up at his handsome face; Nicole talks about the ‘happiest day of my life’ to the videographer on the eve of her wedding day and perhaps if history had taken her and her spouse along a different path; February 2 2018 could have been the 33rd year of her union to one Orenthal James Simpson. Alas, their union as man and wife lasted a mere seven years and all that remains to us of that fateful day in 1985 are the poignant images of the happy couple and that unanswered question; ‘How could it have all gone so terribly wrong?’

With THOSE Mice Away – Let’s Play!

Nestled in a fictional place known as Merryworth, the Mouse Town is a 12th scale model village and St M's Church, a parish hall and a collection of shops including 'Mollie's Tea Room' and the 'Leaf & Maple Flower Shop' are all to be discovered there. St M's is also home to a gang of unique mice, a brood of chickens and two Little Big Cats who love nothing more than sharing the tales of their musings, ministry and mishaps from Merryworth Town...

At Home With Lord Byron…

As an artist AND a passionate devotee of Regency History who loves to create a scene and not only of the hysterical kind; it is perhaps only to be expected that I would create a Regency inspired miniature. Inspired by the life of the poet – the 'Ghost of Piccadilly' is the story of a 12th scale historical house which has enjoyed world wide recognition – however, the story is FAR from over! Follow me as I step inside Number 13 and return to the year 1815…

One Last, Lovely Smile?

The American poet and journalist William Cullen Bryant once said that Autumn was the "year's last, loveliest smile" and even though I adore the season's vibrant colours, collecting horse chestnuts, the fallen leaves and the welcome appearance of the humble mince pie, I haven't really had much to smile about lately. Since September I've been tormented by the 'Tooth of Autumn Present' and although the pesky molar and I finally parted company last week, I'm now haunted by the 'Tooth Ghost of Autumn Past' which has had a severe impact on my daily cookie fix and has also kept me away from the studio lest I scare off any of the fellow artists with my wild look! And as I'm still confined to barracks for a few days yet, I've been working on some exciting 12th scale projects while trying really hard NOT to feel sorry for myself particularly when I think about all that I achieved this summer over at the Mouse Town of St M's when the weather was so much nicer...

A Tears For Fleurs Tutorial!

After the celebration of All Hallows Eve, the first day of November is one for remembering the dearly departed with the festivals of the Mexican Day of the Dead and All Souls' Day and with this in mind, I designed a unique teardrop tribute of flowers for display inside the design room of one of my favourite flower shops. However, given that my photographic skills appeared to have deserted me when I set about capturing some more images of this floral spray perched on a table - I was relieved to discover that the results of the outdoor shoot were something of a compensation! And if you would like to discover the tale behind the creation of this teardrop floral spray then please read on!

That’s ONE Crooked Hen!

If the author of the enchanting tale of Peter Pan is to be believed then Sir James Matthew Barrie will not doubt be reassured to discover that there is still at least one faery that can be found skipping about within the stone walls that surround the ancient City of York, although at first glance, she may be mistaken for just another conventional human; appearances can be deceptive! For those of you who have known me since childhood, it will be of little surprise to discover that the return to my hometown of York has reawakened those mystical qualities of my character and with the opportunity to acquaint myself with the inhabitants who reside at the bottom of my new garden – my fascination for all things fey has taken flight as it were…

Wake UP! September’s Over!

It's probably something of an understatement to tell you that I'm rather glad to see the back of September and that of the month before when my father died suddenly and even though I had walked away from our painful relationship some time ago, these last few weeks have been rather challenging to say the very least! He died of heart failure in the morning of an early August day at the age of 68 and now when I think of our relationship from my earliest memories and what has been revealed since his death; I really believe at least in the emotional sense that his heart failed him many years ago and as my intention had been to share my story and then leave the man to his rest; I shall say no more about it. Now, can I have a drum roll please? For, wait for it; my websites are FINALLY published...

Desperately Seeking Clarice!

Many years ago as my Grandmother would regale me with the tales of the elegant Dalby family from York and the Tibbett clan living, loving and squabbling within their adoptive land of Scarborough in North Yorkshire; I recall that it was at the first mention of the story about ‘Poor Clarice’ that my interest was really piqued. For as every family history sleuth knows, there is usually always at least one ancestor that ignites curiosity and which leads to an irresistible urge to discover more about a life that somehow holds a peculiar affinity for you and it was hearing of the story of ‘Poor Clarice’ that 'did it' for me so to speak and I've been desperately seeking her through the mists of time ever since...

Those Gnarled Branches and Fallen Leaves…

“You may choose to look the other way, but you can never say again that you did not know.” So said William Wilberforce, a Yorkshire lad and THE leader of the movement to abolish the slave trade. If you are like me and love to go in search of elusive ancestors throughout the vale and dale of the County of Yorkshire; this blog could be just what you are looking for as I follow in the footsteps of my North Riding family, and as there are plenty of them, I have many miles to travel!

A Death So Final. So Over.

Today commemorates the untimely death of Marilyn Monroe at the age of 36, an effervescent glamour puss and arguably the most famous female icon of all time. My interest in Marilyn began as a teenager as I was waiting for a flight to Spain for having spent most of my holiday fund on the book by Fred Lawrence Guiles in an airport store and to the consternation of my family, I spent the rest of the week with my head buried within the pages and I have been reading about her ever since...

A NO ‘Happy Ending’ Bouquet

On July 29 and on an incredible and much more summery day over 36 years ago, the world was 'lost' in a sea of enthusiastic flag waving, military parades, dubious hats, the soaring strains of Elgar's Pomp and Circumstance, swathes of ivory taffeta and unbridled patriotic fever to celebrate the wedding of the Prince of Wales to the Lady Diana Spencer. As a young teenager and naive monarchist who would happily spend hours sketching designs for wedding flowers on the odd bit of paper; I remember being the first to claim the best seat in front of the television at the home of my grandparents to watch this real fairy tale wedding...

Flaming June!

It only seems like a week ago to the beginning of last month when I had spent the morning looking at some images of two brides who had both married on the first day of June some years apart and my memories of being surrounded by buckets of glorious sunflowers, fragrant roses and lush foliage as I grappled with scissors, silver wire and the clock! And although June may have left us for another year, she has been kind enough to leave some glorious weather and as I was sprinkling the lawn with water earlier today for those hens to enjoy some grubbing around - I admit to feeling somewhat nostalgic for the occasional rainfall but alas, with no rain in sight let's get on with my June Mash-Up...

In Hearts at Peace and Under an Scarboro’ Heaven….

Clarice Tibbett, Born on a Tuesday, Baptised on a Tuesday, Married on a Tuesday, Took ill one Saturday, Died that Tuesday, Inquest held on the Thursday, Cremated on the Friday, That was the end, Of Clarice Tibbett. In case you haven’t recognised it, I have corrupted the ballad of poor old Solomon Grundy written by …

Continue reading In Hearts at Peace and Under an Scarboro’ Heaven….

However You Want To M*a*s*h It Up, Suicide Is NOT Painless!

Who among us has never sung, wailed, hummed or screamed at some time or another to a song written by a fifteen year old hormonal teenager and which would become the soundtrack to the film M*A*S*H? For it was on Tuesday June 19, a cloudy day in 1962 that the loved ones of Clarice Tibbett would experience the heartbreak of knowing that suicide is not painless with the awful news of her death and by her own doing at the age of 48...