Posted on

An Interview with Tabitha Mary…

An Interview with Graphic Designer Tabitha Mary.

How did Tabitha Mary.co.uk start and what was your initial inspiration?

It started with the Shipping Forecast Regions print, I created it for my parents for christmas about 5 years ago! It looks quite different to the version we all know and love now. But the original got so many conversations started with people fascinated with knowing where the actual regions were that it dawned on me that I might be able to sell it as a print. So I reworked it into a more commercial version and gave it a whirl… I had my very first listing on Etsy, I couldn’t believe it when I received my first order! I can still remember exactly where I was: In the car on mini break in Yorkshire.

Original Shipping Forecast Print by Tabitha Mary

You have over 80 prints in your collection, which is your favourite? Or top 3 if you can’ pick one.

Oh tough one, probably Kilimanjaro and Annapurna as they are two prints that I created solely for myself as a memory of my travels and hiking adventures. I also love the Mount Fuji one, just because I love mountains!

What is your proudest work achievement to date?
Just being sat here, right now making a living out of my dream. I never thought I would end up running my own business and being able to survive off of it. Quitting my full time job was so scary, but looking back, the best thing I ever did!

Where did you grow up?

I was born in Stevenage, but when I was 3 just before my sister was born we moved to a tiny village called Buxted in East Sussex near Uckfield where my parents still live. I love going home to Sussex. I’ve lived all over Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire following my career as a graphic designer but no where’s quite felt like home in the way Sussex does.

Do you have a favourite thing to draw?

Definitely coastal locations.

What Radio station do you listen to?

BBC Radio 2

If you had to watch one DVD Box-Set forever more, which would you choose?

EASY! Sex and the City – it’s my guilty pleasure!

What would you choose as your favourite food?

Ok, that’s a lot harder. Can I have a savoury and sweet choice?!

Savoury: Sausages Sweet: Anything pastry (makes me sound so healthy!)

Do you have a particular style when it comes to home/interiors/décor? Can you tell us a little about this…

My husband and I love anything vintage and retro and mix that with my obsession with Orla Kiely and all things graphic makes for probably quite a 60’s vibe, but in a modern and vintage way. My favourite home colours are grey and duck egg, so that pretty much features all over the house with accents of yellow, orange and tons of graphic patterns injected in the form of blinds, cushions and bedding. I believe in having a plain base and then adding the detail with accessories.

What is the best holiday you’ve ever been on? Did it inspire any artwork?

This is really hard! I like different types of holidays and locations for all their own reasons. Summiting Kilimanjaro will always be up there as it was such a personal achievement, but Italy with Paul when he proposed and our Honeymoon in California are also pretty high on the list! I just love to explore and experience new things, so all holidays are great!

Tabitha & Paul’s Engagement
Nepal
Nepal

What is the best and worst thing about being self-employed?

Best thing: The sense of achievement and flexibility of being your own boss. Worst thing: The pressure, I set myself really high standards which means I never switch off, i’m always working and I find it really hard to let go or delegate things.

What’s your strongest memory of your childhood?

My Mum and Dad’s carpet in the house I first lived in until I was 3. I vividly remember thinking it was horrible!!! HA HA! Sorry Mum!

What’s your scariest experience?

My best friend making me do Aerial Extreme for my hen do! I used to be okay with heights, apparently as i’ve got older I no longer am! Hated every second! I remember climbing onto the platform and my bum cheeks were shaking I was so scared!! ha ha. Conveniently said best friend was pregnant so couldn’t participate!

What is your favourite piece of artwork and who is it by?

Oh it changes all the time! Currently its a set of 3 prints I recently bought from the super talented Talia Giles.

Tabitha Mary's favourite artwork
Art by Talia Giles

Describe a real-life situation that inspired your work?

Summiting Kilimanjaro lead to me creating a print that can be personalised with your name, route and summit date. It’s one of my best sellers with fellow sumitters wanting a lasting reminder of their achievement.

Kilimanjaro
The fabulous Kilimanjaro

What’s your most embarrassing moment?

Oh there’s too many! I can be a bit dizzy!

Do you have a favourite colour?

Probably duck egg, but closely followed by grey, orange and yellow.

What jobs have you done other than being a graphic designer?

Since graduating in 2007 i’ve been lucky enough to work as a graphic designer in a few jobs, designing christmas crackers, kitchenwares, licensed sunglasses, licensed stationery, packaging, cards, wrap, gift bags. The days before uni I did all the usual jobs, macdonalds, tesco, waitressed, worked in staples for a bit! Best job was waitressing at Glyndebourne Opera house during the summer breaks from uni.

Is the artistic/creative life lonely? What do you do to counteract it?

Being self employed can be lonely, luckily I’m a pretty motivated person and good in my own company. But to stop myself going stir crazy I go to regiment fitness two mornings during the week, which ensures I actually talk to other human beings other than Paul (my husband!) and we always have pretty busy and social weekends either seeing family or friends or working an event.

What memorable responses have you had to your work?

I get really overwhelmed when people write me lovely feedback, especially when they’re talking about a gift they’ve bought for someone else. I’m pretty shy when it comes to receiving positive feedback, it drives my husband mad!

Have you visited all of your print locations? And what research do you do for your prints?

Gosh I wish! Sadly not, in the early days I did as that’s how I chose my locations, but now so many of my prints are commissioned by a shop or customer I use photography and online interactive maps to explore the areas and get a feel for the place.

Can you describe a typical working day for you?

There is no real typical, but i’d say I start about 8.30am, I action any sales that have come in and do any admin that needs doing. I then start on whatever print is next on my ‘to do’ list. I try my hardest to break for lunch, this didn’t always used to happen, but now that I’m pregnant I make sure I take an hour time out every lunch time. The afternoon is normally designing or if a wholesale order has come in then printing and packaging that. I tend to finish work about 7pm when my husband gets home from work.

You’re currently heavily pregnant with your first child – what aspect of having children are you most excited about?

Everything! I find thinking about the fact i’m growing a little person a bit mind blowing! I just cannot wait to have a mini Paul and I and for us to have something so special between us to look after and watch grow. At the moment I’m mostly focused on the birth and I cannot wait to see Paul hold our baby for the first time, I get a bit teary just thinking about it!

Where do you envisage your business to be in 5 years time?

My main goal is to keep it growing at an achievable and realistic rate given that things are going to change as I approach motherhood. I just hope that I’m still sat here in 5 years working for myself. I feel lucky everyday that I have the opportunity to be living my dream job, but don’t take it for granted and worry all the time that it might end one day. I just have to hope and pray it doesn’t. But main goals are to continue focusing on my wholesale and licensing growth which has already grown significantly over the past year.

What hobbies do you pursue outside of your artistic work life?

I used to be a massive hiker, hiking most weekends all over the UK and taking trips abroad to partake in hiking holidays. That’s dwindled a little since settling down with Paul as our hobbies are more focused on home improvements, and very often working weekends! (sorry paul!) But I hope that country walks will be something we will enjoy once again as a family when our baby arrives!!

Is there anything else about Tabitha Mary you’d like to know? Perhaps we can do a second interview if we get enough questions…

Posted on

Pregnancy & Self Employment…

I’m currently 26 weeks pregnant & this post has been swirling around my head for a while now…

It dawned on me that being pregnant and self-employed puts me in high-pressure situation at what is meant to be the most amazing and exciting time of your life – don’t get me wrong it is ABSOLUTELY exciting and emotional and brilliant (and nerve wracking/scary in equal measure), but because of my freelancer status it has also been pretty stressful too, I wanted to share with you the pros and cons of pregnancy as a freelancer, and a few tips that might help anyone else in the same boat…

THE CONS

  • Exhaustion & Nausea: Being a freelancer means no sick-leave for this pregnant lady (if i want to get paid!), even when I was pretty sick and nauseous…feeling badly hungover on a daily basis during the first trimester (despite not drinking a drop of alcohol) was not fun. It wasn’t pretty either!
  • Markets: Being a large source of my income and a brilliant way to improve the exposure of my business, the markets I attend are absolutely necessary for me. Especially the bigger trade shows (such as Top Drawer) which I have attended twice while pregnant. I obviously have to be careful not to lift heavy things & this proved really tricky at these events – huge thanks to Mr Cross and lots of great friends on-site who lent me their muscles.
  • Meeting Deadlines: Pregnancy feels sometimes like a ticking time bomb with no real idea when it is going to explode. This means that creating and meeting deadlines is tough, and I have this constant worry that I won’t be able to fulfil my commission deadlines – I obviously don’t want to turn down work, and I’m just having to manage customer expectations, trying to be honest and realistic at every turn. This means I’m working as speedily as I can on my good-days and trying to get through my commitments as soon as possible, with the (perhaps futile?) hope that I might have a chance of a rest before this little one arrives.
  • Hormones/Emotional: The past two months has seen me turn into a crazy/emotional/irrational mess on some days.This is worse at my busiest periods when I feel like I’m drowning in work, and I often have a good cry, which weirdly makes me feel much better. I’m sure ladies who aren’t self employed feel all of this too, but being on-my-own on the work front means I can’t really share the work to colleagues or slow down as I might be able if I worked a normal 9-5.
  • Worrying About The Future: When you’re a freelancer and you’re pregnant for the first time like me it is really hard not to worry about what the future will bring. Not only am I dealing with the usual pregnancy-related anxiety, I’m also nervous about how I’ll manage my business post-baby’s birth…I’m SURE it will all work itself out in the wash, but the anxiety is there nonetheless.

THE PROS

  • I don’t have to be up/dressed/out of the house looking smart on a day to day basis – ultimate respect to any pregnant Mum’s-to-be who do have to make that happen daily. I won’t lie – I’ve spent a large majority of this pregnancy working in my pyjamas.
  • I can largely set my own hours, so I have been able to be flexible when I’ve been feeling particularly grotty.
  • I haven’t had to ask for time off for appointments.
  • I haven’t had to put up with unwanted food smells from a staff room/cafe/canteen during the really sicky months. Gosh, was I thankful for working from home during that period.
  • On the whole I haven’t had to be sick in front of people (except Mr Cross) – I cannot imagine dealing with bad morning sickness in front of an office full of people.

ADVICE IF YOU’RE PREGNANT & SELF EMPLOYED

-Know your rights: Do your research as early as possible and know where you stand in terms of self employed rights, maternity leave/pay/allowance. If you can get your head around it all early hopefully you can plan ahead with knowledge and not let it get too overwhelming.

-Be organised: Try your hardest to get as organised as possible on your good days/weeks – this will ease the pressure on your off days.

-Delegate, delegate, delegate…don’t be scared to outsource some of your work – employ an extra pair of hands if you can afford it, get family onside to help wherever possible, call in all your favours – whether it’s hiring a PA/VA, outsourcing your social media, or getting help with your emails/admin, your body & baby will thank you for it in the end.

-Get for a ‘Baby on Board’ badge for public transport use (even if you don’t commute daily) you may well need to get into London for meetings, trade shows, markets etc, and it’ll be handy to have to ensure people are quick to offer you a seat and therefore a more comfortable journey.

-Buy Supplies: Have plenty of bottles of water, ginger beer, biscuits, crackers and salty foods in stock for the days you are feeling particularly rough: these will help you to feel a little more productive on down days and ensure you keep up your energy and stay hydrated. You’ll be good for nothing unless you’re ship shape! Also stock the cupboards full of healthy, quick to prepare meals – you won’t feel up to cooking much, trust me.

-Make your workspace comfy: a new chair, cushions, blankets, quilts, footstool, fan, heater….whatever you might need to keep you as comfy as possible during your working day make sure you buy it! Your back/hips/pelvis will thank you for it.

-BE KIND TO YOURSELF: Yes, you work for yourself, and so you alone are responsible for making ends meet and keeping your business afloat, but in the grand scheme of things your absolute priority is yours and baby’s health…so be kind to yourself, give yourself regular breaks and treats, don’t work ridiculous hours and don’t beat yourself up if you need some days where you binge watch Netflix and eat all the junk!

I am so blooming excited about the arrival of my little bundle, and I have been ridiculously lucky with an amazing husband helping me more than I could have hoped. I’m blessed with brilliant family and friends who have all helped out to make things less stressful…despite all of this it has been and is HARD and emotional and stressful, I’ve been teary and scared and tired and sick.

But I absolutely know it will all be worth it…i just have to imagine holding my baby and all the stress blurs at the edges and I suddenly feel far less scared and overwhelmingly excited.

14 weeks to go & counting….

Tabitha

Posted on

A little update…Top Drawer SS17 & hobnobbing with celebs!

Hi Guys,

I’ve been super busy and haven’t managed a blog update for a while – so I thought it was high time I filled you in on what’s been happening here at TM HQ…

Last week I headed to Olympia in London to return to Top Drawer for their SS17 trade show.

 

 

 

 

Top Drawer – Adventures in Design for Creative Retailers 

It was a brilliant few days – it was so nice to chat to loads of potential and current trade clients, as well as tons of other fabulously creative retailers. Anyone who has ever been to Top Drawer before will know that it can be a bit of a whirlwind experience, absolutely exhausting (especially when you’re a preggo like me!) but totally worth it!

I was blessed with lots of orders, commissions and bespoke commissions – which means you’ll be seeing 25 new prints between now and baby Cross’ arrival in May – no rest for this pregnant lady!

Excitingly, this season’s Top Drawer turned out to be a star studded one too – with the lovely Rick Stein visiting my stand and admiring my brand new Padstow print. It was really brilliant to chat to him, as I have admired his cookery programmes and restaurants for many years…coincidentally I had posted a personalised Padstow print to him just the day before Top Drawer, and he was chuffed to learn one would be winging its way to his flagship restaurant The Seafood Restaurant within a few days.

Padstow, Cornwall

As well as Mr Stein I also had a visit from Anthea Turner who showed lots of interest in my work and very kindly said “These are really beautiful, well done!”…I may have blushed just a little bit…and had a little pregnancy-related hormonal cry on the way home!

So folks, I’ll be giving the autumn/winter Top Drawer a miss in September as I’ll be knee deep in nappies, bottles and baby grows, but I’ll be back at Top Drawer in January 2018, so I hope to see you there!

In the meantime, make sure you sign up to my mailing list so that you don’t miss my updates, and give me a follow on my social media platforms too!

Tabitha x

@tabithamaryuk on Twitter

Tabitha Mary on Facebook

@tabithamaryuk on Instagram

Tabitha Mary on Pinterest

Posted on

Exciting News! Tabitha Mary is picked as Theo Paphitis’ #SBS Winner!

On Sunday I tweeted amazing Business Tycoon Theo Paphitis about my humble business during ‘Small Business Sunday’ and to my surprise and excitement I was chosen by him as one of six weekly winners!

This means that Theo Re-tweeted my business to his 500,000+ Twitter followers!!

How blooming exciting!

I was totally unaware I’d been picked until my phone started going mad with Twitter notifications – oh gosh the excitement when I saw what had happened was unreal!

sbs tabitha mary theo paphitis
Theo Paphitis chose Tabitha Mary as his #SBS

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The weekly initiative, set up by Theo in 2010, now has over 1700 #SBS winners and supports small businesses in the UK.

As a result of my #SBS win yesterday I have already received an impressive boost in followers online, and so many lovely congratulations messages, it is quite overwhelming!

Tabitha Mary SBS Winner
Theo himself Re-Tweeting my business! WOW

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I will now also be profiled on the #SBS website (www.theopaphitissbs.com) which is exclusive to all Small Business Sunday winners.

I’m over the moon and couldn’t wait to share my success with you all!

Exciting times ahead for Tabitha Mary…

TM

x

Official SBS Winner Tabitha Mary
Official #SBS Winner
Posted on

New prints, Top Drawer, MK Handmade & Vintage, PLUS exciting Press Coverage for TM!

BRAND NEW PRINTS….

Tower Bridge London Print by Tabitha Mary
Tower Bridge London Print by Tabitha Mary
Shoalstone Lido, Brixham, Devon Print by Tabitha Mary
Shoalstone Lido, Brixham, Devon Print by Tabitha Mary
Pembroke Lodge, Richmond Park, London by Tabitha Mary
Pembroke Lodge, Richmond Park, London by Tabitha Mary
Fishcombe Cove, Brixham, Devon Print by Tabitha Mary
Fishcombe Cove, Brixham, Devon Print by Tabitha Mary

 

Berry Head, Brixham, Devon by Tabitha Mary
Berry Head, Brixham, Devon by Tabitha Mary

I’m so excited to introduce 5 new prints to the Tabitha Mary range this week…

Tower Bridge – London
Shoalstone Lido – Brixham, Devon
Pembroke Lodge – Richmond Park, London
Fishcombe Cove – Brixham, Devon

and finally,

Berry Head – Brixham, Devon

I hope you love them as much as I do – they’ve been so fun to create and do watch this space as there’s more newbies on the horizon…!

HANDMADE & VINTAGE FAIR – THIS WEEKEND! 

MK Handmade & Vintage Sept 2016MK Handmade & Vintage Sept 2016

Mr Tabitha Mary (Paul) and his lovely Mum will be holding the reins for me at this weekend’s MK Handmade & Vintage fair (10th & 11th September) in Middleton Hall in the MK:The Centre shopping centre, opposite John Lewis.

Be kind to them won’t you?

I’ll be busy in London at Top Drawer, Olympia…

TOP DRAWER, OLYMPIA

Top Drawer Olympia London
Top Drawer Olympia London

I’ll be exhibiting my prints at the fabulous TOP DRAWER in Olympia, London from Sunday 11th-Tuesday 13th September.

You can find me on stand SP220 in the Spotted section of the show!

I’ll look forward to seeing some of you there!

IN THE PRESS…

The Lady, 12th August 2016
The Lady, 12th August 2016 – featuring my Rio print!

 

 

 

My Rio de Janeiro print has been getting all the love recently…it was featured in the 12th August edition of The Lady magazine!

Oooh er!

Living Edge RIO print sept 2016
Living Edge RIO print sept 2016

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Rio de Janeiro print was also featured in this month’s LIVING EDGE MAGAZINE… How exciting!!

WE HAVE A WINNER…

#mytabithamary winner post
#mytabithamary winner post

We have a winner for our latest #mytabithamary prize draw!

Huge CONGRATULATIONS to @JoMidgley72 who has been notified and will be claiming her prize soon.

Thank you to everyone who has been shouting about their Tabitha Mary purchases online, keep up the good work everyone and don’t forget to use the hashtag #MYTABITHAMARY to be entered.

THE COUNTY MAP PRINTS ARE BACK!

And there’s a new kid on the block…
North Riding of Yorkshire

As well as the old favourites:
Dorset
Buckinghamshire
Anglesey
Bedfordshire

North Riding North Yorkshire County Map Print by Tabitha Mary
North Riding North Yorkshire County Map Print by Tabitha Mary

Dorset County Map print by Tabitha MaryDorset County Map print by Tabitha Mary

Buckinghamshire County Map Print by Tabitha Mary
Buckinghamshire County Map Print by Tabitha Mary

 

 

 

 

Anglesey County Map Print by Tabitha Mary
Anglesey County Map Print by Tabitha Mary

 

 

 

 

Bedfordshire County Map by Tabitha Mary
Bedfordshire County Map by Tabitha MaryThat’s all for now folks…
I’m off to finish prepping for Top Drawer and MK Handmade & Vintage this weekend! Busy! Busy!
TM xx

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted on

What’s New, Pussycat? Bedford Park Concerts score a hat-trick! Freelance branding project.

 

Bedford PROMS Bedford Park poster
Bedford Proms banner on the bandstand in Bedford Park

Last weekend Bedford Park was home to the most amazing three night run of concerts, organised by Bedford Park Concerts.

On the Friday Dizzee Rascal headlined and was supported by Kurupt FM, Miss Dynamite, Wiley and Jaguar Skills. The Sunday saw Sir Tom Jones himself perform, supported by The Shires and Tunde (from The Lighthouse Family). Then on Saturday night it was the incredible Bedford Park Concerts 20th PROMS in the Park, with fireworks and laser light show! What a line up it was!

I started working with Bedford Park Concerts back in September 2015 when I created a special commemorative print to mark the 20th anniversary of their Proms in Park concerts. (Still available to purchase online here)

Bedford Park PROMS commemorative poster
Bedford Park PROMS commemorative poster

From there, I became their official graphic designer for the entire triple event and produced all of the marketing material, online and offline as well as on-site material for the weekend itself. It was a really fab creative experience, I loved every minute of the design process – from the initial ideas right through to completion.
I was really proud to work with such great Bedford companies and become a part of the famous Bedford crowd! I love the sense of community that is abundant in Bedford, and working on this project only highlighted this for me. What a friendly, hardworking bunch you Bedfordians are!

Tom Jones in Bedford Park
Tom Jones in Bedford Park

 

Dizzee Rascal Bedford Park
Dizzee Rascal played at Bedford Park on Friday night!
Tunde Bedford Park
Tunde performed at Sunday night’s epic concert!
The Shires advert Bedford
The Shires supported Sir Tom Jones

Proms night itself was absolutely EPIC!! I can’t tell you what an incredible atmosphere it was, and I was chuffed to see how popular the branded merchandise was, I sold out of most of it! I also sold lots of my other designs too, and I’m thankful to anyone who took time out of their night to show an interest in my work.

Mr Cross Tabitha Mary Bedford Park PROMS
My Mr Cross manning the stall!
Bedford PROMS merchandise
Bedford PROMS merchandise was for sale on the night
Bedford Park PROMS magnets
Bedford Park PROMS magnets
Bedford Park PROMS tea towels for sale on the night
Bedford Park PROMS tea towels for sale on the night

The sun was shining and life was sweet – thank you weather gods for smiling down on us!

Bedford Park PROMS
Glorious sunshine at Bedford Park Concerts fabulous weekend of concerts!

Hubby and I were also lucky enough to see Sir Tom Jones himself on the Sunday night – what a showman he is! We danced our socks off all night and I so enjoyed seeing everyone coming together and enjoying themselves.
The whole three night event was really so well put together- Mark and the team should be really proud of themselves!

I’m hoping to work with Bedford Park Concerts once again on next year’s events and I’m so excited to find out what acts will be playing next year…watch this space…

Bye for now…

TM xxx

Photos from the weekend…

Amazing fireworks Bedford Park PROMS
Amazing fireworks Bedford Park PROMS
Amazing fireworks Bedford Park PROMS
Amazing fireworks Bedford Park PROMS
Sir Tom Jones in action!
Sir Tom Jones in action!
Dizzee Rascal in action!
Dizzee Rascal in action!
Bedford Park PROMS
Bedford Park PROMS
Posted on

Exciting news – digital prints and frames for all my prints…

THERE’S BIG NEWS AT TM HQ…

I’m pleased to announce that I can now offer all of my prints in a standard digital printing format at a lower price than my higher quality signed Giclee prints. This means that my prints are now affordable for any budget. The digital prints are available at any size, and start from just £16.00 (A4).

As well as the new digital prints, I am also now offering a framing option on all of my prints at every size (A4, A3, A2, A1).

You can choose between beautiful white, black or oak high quality box frames – meaning that your Tabitha Mary prints can now be delivered ready to hang! Perfect.

white black or oak box frame
White, Black or Oak Box Frame Options

WHAT’S ON?

I’ll be at the Linslade Canal Festival
THIS SATURDAY 30th July 11am-5pm

Leighton-Linslade Canal Festival Logo
The Linslade Canal Festival this weekend (logo designed by yours truly!)

Do pop by for arts and crafts, canal boats, rural crafts and live music/entertainment. It should be a great day out for all the family.

I’m proud to have designed the artwork for Leighton Linslade Town Council’s recent rebrand, including the logo and typography for the canal festival.
Photo 11-07-2016, 10 52 12
Linslade Canal Festival from 11am-5pm THIS SATURDAY 30th July

 

Bedford Proms is NEXT WEEKEND!!

Bedford Proms Commemorative Print
Bedford Proms 2016 – 20th Birthday. Commemorative print on sale now online, and on the night.

Bedford Park Proms are celebrating their 20th year of holding this fabulous event and have commissioned me to create their flyer and this commemorative print to help celebrate.

The Proms are to be held in Bedford Park on 6th August with a spectacular classical concert, fireworks and laser finale. The London Gala Orchestra, Bedford Choral Society and Brit award winners Blake and Soprano Rebecca Newman.

Tickets can be purchased from www.bedfordparkconcerts.co.uk Adult tickets £31, Children £5.

I will be there on the night of the proms selling the commemorative prints in person.

Pavilion At The Park – Exhibition 

Pavilion in the park Bedford logo
Head to the Pavilion (Bedford Park) to see my current exhibition…

My work is currently on display at the wonderful Pavilion At The Park, Bedford in the heart of Bedford Park.

Tabitha Mary Exhibition at Pavilion, Bedford
Tabitha Mary Exhibition at Pavilion, Bedford

The exhibition is on display until the 19th August.

I’m chuffed to pieces with the reaction to the exhibition so far, do pop in for a peek – and why not grab the best brunch in Bedford while you’re at it!

Brunch at the pavilion bedford
Brunch at The Pavilion, Bedford

NEW PRINTS!!

I’ve launched three brand new prints this month…I’ve been doing lots of research, asking you lovely people what designs you want from me over the coming months – these were some of my top requested designs and I was only too pleased to oblige.

Introducing:

The Needles, Isle of Wight
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
St. Ives, Cornwall

Watch this space for loads of new designs coming your way soon…

The Needles, Isle of Wight, Travel poster print by Tabitha Mary
The Needles Print by Tabitha Mary
St Ives, Cornwall Print by Tabitha Mary
St Ives, Cornwall Print by Tabitha Mary
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil Print - the perfect memento for #Rio16
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil Print – the perfect memento for #Rio16

And finally…

#I’mLoving JULY

I’ve been loving lots of things this month…

All the things I'm Loving in JULY
All the things I’m Loving in JULY

 

– My trip to Berlin (Berlin Bear & Bratwurst ‘n’ Chips!)
– Succulent plants
– The build up to #Rio16
– Little Low Cards
– The Leighton-Linslade TC #CanalFestival
– Rifle Paper Co. artwork of LA & San Francisco (our upcoming honeymoon destinations – eek!)
– My new copper/glass photo frame
– Clever marketing ideas
– Baking
– Breakfast at the Pavilion (Bedford)
– Drinks that come in fruit
 ——————————————————————————-
What have you been loving this month?
TM
xxx
Posted on

Launching my #SummerSale & expanding my ranges…

Launching TODAY…
FOR ONE WEEK ONLY!!
20% Off EVERYTHING on my website when you use the code HAPPYDAYS16 at the checkout

Now that’s what I call a #SummerSale 🙂
(code expires 7th July)

Summer-Sale
Tabitha Mary Summer Sale

It’s been a manic few weeks here at TM HQ…

I’ve been super-busy with events and sales – from the Castle Quay Weekender, to the Bedford High Street Showcase: it’s been awesome to get out and about locally, interacting with customers and seeing their responses to my new prints, magnets and tea towels.

There’s such a great community vibe at events in Bedford, these two events in particular were filled with many great designers and a hugely supportive public who help to keep small (but mighty!) independent businesses like myself afloat. #lovebedford

High street showcase Bedford tabitha mary
Tabitha Mary at The High Street Showcase, Bedford

New prints on the horizon…
I’ve started lots of research into popular UK landmarks, tourist spots, architecture, holiday destinations, castles, historical houses, Points of Interest and natural beauty – my ambition is to expand my print collection to ensure I’m utilising the most popular locations for my customers. Watch this space for works in progress, and also please do send me any ideas you might have…I’ll be running polls over on my Twitter page as well as asking opinions across my other social platforms.

The hope is to have hugely expanded my range in time for Christmas and the Top Drawer event, where I’ll be in the “spotted” section! So, do be sure to check back for all your Christmas shopping needs… 🙂

Get your thinking caps on lovely people – I’m looking forward to hearing your ideas…!

Tabitha Mary Poll on Twitter
Keep an eye out for polls like this one on my Twitter feed…

NOTH Make, Do & Meet…

As a seller for Not On The High Street – I was recently invited down to London (to an awesome venue called The Brewrey) for NOTHS’ annual Make, Do & Meet event – where I got to meet lots of fellow creatives (who also sell at NOTHS), catch up with the gorgeous Beds/Bucks/Herts sellers group, as well as be truly inspired to make my little corner of Not On The High Street as brilliant as possible. It was such a fun day…

NOTH Make, Do & Meet event 2016
Fun times at the NOTH Make, Do & Meet event

NOTHS 2

New look on my website…

My time at the NOTH Make, Do & Meet day really inspired me to give the photography on my website a proper overhaul – it was long overdue, and although hard work (I worked some 12 hour days!) I’m so chuffed with the finished result, and love the fresh, modern vibes my product photos now have.

Head over to my website to see them all, but for now here’s a little peek…

Tabitha Mary new product photos
A little selection of some of the new product photography on my website…

Wedding season is upon us…

With the wedding season now in full swing, don’t forget my bespoke wedding commission service, which is available in two styles (see The Chantry and St Bartholomew’s, Wigginton prints below).

I can also personalise my St Bartholomew’s, Wigginton church print with names, dates and wedding colour schemes for other couples tying the knot in this beautiful church.

wedding commission by Tabitha Mary
Style 1 – The Chantry
St Bartholomew's Church, Wigginton
Style 2 for wedding commissions

And finally… 

My next event is the Bedford River Festival on the 16th-17th July…do pop down to this fun riverside extravaganza and check out my prints, magnets and tea towels…I look forward to seeing you all there!

Bye for now & happy shopping in the summer sale, enjoy lovely people!
TM x

Posted on

Bedfordshire Sights Map Launch at Bedford High Street Showcase Market

This weekend I took part in the Bedford High Street Showcase Market. What a fab day it was! Bustling and buzzing with a variety of local businesses.
I had a new print and new products launching at the event. I’d had all my popular Bedford prints put onto magnets and tea towels and my gosh did they go down well! I sold out of magnets and nearly all the tea towels went! I’ll definitely be getting more made for the Castle Quay Weekender and River Festival.

The newest print I was launching was my Bedfordshire Sights Map which is a bit of a new look for me and an updated version of my typography Bedfordshire County Map. But this map does come with a bit of a challenge! Can you work out the landmarks represented on the map?

  • Harrold Country Park
  • Churches
  • The small towns and villages that make up some of Bedfordshire’s most picturesque areas.
  • Hot Air Balloon rides
  • RAF Twinwood
  • Bedford Park Pavilion
  • Black Cat
  • Cardington Sheds
  • Leighton Buzzard Light Railway
  • Chalk Horse of Dunstable Downs
  • The Charles Wells Well Tower
  • Ickwell Maypole
  • Swiss Gardens
  • Tea Shops
  • Moot Hall
  • Stevington Windmill
  • Wrest Park
  • Willington Dovecote
  • Jordan’s Mill
  • Shuttleworth Collection
  • Forest Centre
  • Dunstable Downs
  • Woburn Abbey
  • Woburn Safari Park
  • Whipsnade Zoo
  • Luton Airport
  • Bedford Suspension Bridge
  • Moggerhanger

Some of the icons on the map relate to maybe multiple attractions, but I do hope I’ve captured the diversity of this great county.

I’ll be back in Bedford on 18th-19th July at the Castle Quay Weekender with more magnets and tea towels in stock and I’m aiming to have another new print ready for then too! Watch this space! TM x

 

Posted on

“Thank you” from Mr & Mrs Cross #PTCrossWedding

web__1853__J4B9474

Mr Cross and I would like to say a huge thank you for all your kind messages we received for our wedding on 14th May.
We had the most amazing day, we are both still a little overwhelmed by the whole thing! All the hard work definitely paid off! We enjoyed a few days in Jersey to recuperate and now look forward to starting our new chapter as Mr & Mrs Cross.

With me being a designer and Paul’s passion for all things vintage and retro the styling of our wedding was really important to us to create a day that reflected our personalities and passions.
We were married in St Bartholomew’s Church, Wigginton where Paul’s family are from. 6 generations of his family have been married here and we just had to carry on such a wonderful tradition! The Church is gorgeous, small, intimate and when lit with candle light, enchanting. In the grounds of the church the wonderful Elsie’s Ices provided Ice creams to reflect our Italian engagement, they went down VERY well!

What did we wear? The Groom wore a Ted Baker suite, Ted Baker Retro Phone Cufflinks (he collects old phones!) Clarks Shoes and a tie bought online. I wore a Kenneth Winston Gown #1584 bought from Ann’s BridalRachel Simpson Ivory Mimosa Heels and Chez Bec Earrings. The Bridesmaids wore Jenny Packham embellished dresses.

We’d hired Hastoe Village Hall for our reception venue. Far from your standard village hall is Hastoe! Recently restored with original features, it created the perfect blank canvas for us to go wild! We had stunning Festoon lights installed and my incredible Husband collected vintage Soda Syphons, turned them into lamps which we sat on tree slices surrounded by old bottles. The fairy lights twinkling in all the glass was just magical. Petals Flower Shop in Berkhamsted finished off our dream setting with gorgeous flowers that fitted in perfectly with our colour scheme of blush pink, duck egg and coral. We had an amazing cake table where friends and family brought scrummy cakes with the centre piece being provided by EmmaBelle.
In the run up to the wedding we’d asked people to help us collect pennies from pre 1991. Everyone thought we were mad! But everything soon made sense when we revealed our vintage one armed bandit machine and home made fun fair for guests to play on. All brilliantly brought together in a 4x6m gazebo from The Tent Company.

We danced the night away to my Cousin’s band who made our first dance, Andy Williams’ ‘Can’t take my eyes off you’ super special.

Cat Lane captured our special day, so far we’ve received just 5 sneaky previews, but I’m already blown away and dying to see the whole wedding album! They were absolutely fantastic on the day. I can not recommend them highly enough.

Here’s a few photos that hopefully gives a reflection of our amazing day. There’s more over on instagram #PTCrossWedding

Wedding newsletter-01

TM x

Posted on

What is Giclee Printing?

I often have customers ask me what a Giclée print is, so I thought I’d write a little blog to answer this question…

An important starting point is to understand that a Giclée Print is simply a high quality digital print. The confusion comes when understanding what the high quality elements are that separate a standard ink jet print to a Giclée print.

Let’s start with the actual word Giclée; pronounced “G-clay” it is a french verb that means to squirt or to spray. So in terms of printing this would relate to an inkjet printer. So to fulfil the quality aspect the inkjet printer would need to be of professional standard with more than the basic CMYK, so 4 ink cartridges. One of the beauties of Giclée printing is the depth of colour that can be achieved and this comes from the multiple ink cartridges. My printer for example has 9 different inks.

So we’ve got the ink side down, now if we used for example my 9 cartridge inkjet printer and printed onto standard A4 printer paper. We would not achieve a Giclée print and you’d probably also find that the paper would be soaked through with the ink!

To achieve a Giclée Print you need to follow this formula:

Quality pigment based inks + Archival quality paper = Giclée Print

It’s really important that the paper is of Archival Quality as the inks require it to do there thing and work to their full potential. With this right formula you can achieve a gorgeous print, rich in colour and depth, which will stand the test of time and not fade.

Of course to gain a Giclée print isn’t cheap and I often see artists selling digital prints at the same price as my Giclée prints and it is frustrating, so if you’re ever buying a print ask what the print process is, the artist will only be too happy to explain.

I hope this answers the key question and makes somes sense!

TM x

 

Posted on

In your shoes Notonthehighstreet.com visit & 10th Birthday

Untitled-1
Today I had a visit from Subomi, from the financial team at , as part of the company’s Partnership Days. In Your Shoes gives notonthehighstreet staff a chance to meet the sellers they work with, and spend the day getting a sense of the daily running of their creative businesses.
Not only was this exciting enough, but it also happened to be NOTH’s 10th Birthday, so it was even more special to be celebrating with a member of the team.
As a partner I received the best birthday pack ever! Hats, bake your own cake, sparkly resin ’10’, candles, popper, notebook and a card! What a treat!
Subomi was great and we spent time talking about my business, both asking questions and talking about my future plans before photographing some new prints ‘Powered by Steam’ & ‘Westgate, Winchester‘ to launch on the site.
He also helped me shoot some ‘behind the scenes’ images and a cool video of me packing up an order. It’s things like this I find very difficult when I’m here on my own!

Needless to say Subomi and I decorated the cake and wished NOTH a very happy birthday in style!

Thank you for your company today Subomi, it’s been great! #NOTHS10 #INYOURSHOES TM x