Well as my last blog hinted at, I spent the bank holiday weekend down where I grew up in Sussex. Whilst there I roamed the vintage shops of old town Hastings and drove along the coast to check out the De La Warr Pavilion’s Ladybird Books Exhibition.
The first thing that got me excited was the wonderful Art Deco building!! I feel a new print coming on….
The exhibition was a wonderful show case of the beautiful paintings created for the ladybird books. The amount of work that goes into one tiny book is just fantastic!
What i found quite interesting was how the size of the ladybird book came about. As paper supplies were limited during the war, publishers strived to print one book out of one sheet of paper – and so the size of the ladybird book was defined!
It really struck me how unique these books are. Not only do children find them engaging, interesting and easy to learn from, adults find them beautiful and nostalgic. A Timeless collection that myself and my boyfriend add to continuously and hope to read to our children one day.
But most importantly I was beyond inspired! so keep an eye out for lots of new things coming soon….!
Having grown up in Sussex I have often visited the Seven Sisters from a young age. Here are my top 5 reasons to visit the Seven Sisters country park this bank holiday weekend:
Free geography lesson! My siblings and I ALL visited the country park whilst at school to learn from its varied landscape; the meandering Cuckmere river and see what you can find on the shore in the shallow rock pools. Fun for the kids and educational!
Push yourself physically and try the coastal path walk from Lewes to Eastbourne. I did this route when I was training to climb Kilimanjaro. A solid 26 miles, it’s a tough one. A full day with many hills! Tough work but the views are spectacular!
Choose your mode of transport; you don’t just have to walk around the country park! There are options at the park entrance to hire bikes or canoes! This also includes an easy access flat path to the sea, suitable for buggies and wheel chairs! Everyone can enjoy this stunning place.
There’s ALWAYS an ice cream van in the car park! After that lovely flat or hilly (you choose) walk treat yourself after to a cooling ice cream.
With 280 hectares of land it’s a wildlife fanatics ideal spotting ground. Get those binoculars out and see what you can see!
The event will see the Pavilion celebrating the 1st anniversary of the opening of The Window at the Park and also the launch of an exhibition by myself and limited edition prints will be available of the Pavilion and the Kiosk.
If you are interested in attending then please drop me an email and i’ll arrange an official invite to be sent to you. To also attend supper club will require booking in advance.
Last week I attended a conference held by Creative Bedfordshire, it was an awesome and inspiring day – but most importantly I met Emma from Pavilion at the Park, Bedford. Now you may have noticed via twitter that myself and Emma have joined forces and are working together on a very exciting project…!
Firstly it is the Cafe’s 1st Anniversary this May and so to celebrate I am creating a print of Bedford Park, which will feature the pavilion, a Limited Edition Version of the print AND doing the same for their little Kiosk down in Russell Park! Super exciting!
Today I met with Emma to go through first thoughts on the initial designs, and to discuss invitation info for the launch night!
We are hoping to hold the Birthday celebration and launch night of the prints and an exhibition by myself on 22nd May @ the pavilion – stay tuned for further info!
Any thoughts, comments or questions greatly received!
Today we’re taking a little sneak peek behind the scenes at Tabitha Mary…
As well as designing my own prints and doing the day-to-day jobs behind running a business I freelance. This sometimes comes under the Tabitha Mary umbrella and may be a commission, collaboration with a cafe or a companies branding work in my Tabitha Mary style. And other times its completely disconnected. The most unconnected contract I have at the moment is with a company based in France that produce Insulation Boards! I work on all their branding and marketing material. I have to admit, my french is awful and hasn’t improved since working with them!! Apart from I now know the french for all measurements and a bunch of technical terms!!
The newest print under development is of Burgh Island, someone at the Handmade & Vintage market in Milton Keynes mentioned this location to me as a possible print… and that’s that! I listened!
I recently attended the Creative Bedfordshire Conference and had an amazing and wonderfully inspiring day. Whilst there I met Emma Garrett, owner of The Pavilion in the park, Bedford & Kiosk at the park, Russell Park, Bedford. I’m very excited with a new project we are working on together to design a print of each location, a limited edition version may be available of each and we’re hoping for a launch party to coincide with their 1st anniversary! EXCITING STUFF! I’ll keep you posted here on updates….
Some jobs I can’t talk about as they’re secrets! sssshhhhh….! or for companies that are not yet officially launched and want to keep it all under wraps until the big day.
And some jobs get interrupted by this little madam….
She is a pickle!
On top of all of this! I’ve just been hired by ‘Love Arts and Crafts’ as their new after school Art club teacher!! I can’t wait to start teaching after the Easter Break!
So there’s a little sneak peek into the very busy world of Tabitha Mary. They’ll be more to come. I’ve got SO many plans for the next year and I’ll be blogging about it all regularly… until then!
Most of you probably know that on new years day 2014 I summited the mighty Mount Kilimanjaro! It’s all I talked about for months before and months after!
So.. now, having not spoken about it for a good few months i’m going to self indulge a little but give you the background behind my print and why I pushed myself physically and mentally to reach the summit of Africa’s highest freestanding mountain.
The idea of doing something challenging stemmed from a big change in my life, i’d reached a big corner in my life and needed something to focus and work towards while I found my feet and a new life.
Several activities were considered; travelling around New Zealand being the most serious contender. But in the end I decided I needed a real adrenaline pumping challenge, something that would push me to my limits. Mt. Kilimanjaro it was!
After attending a welcome meeting in London with Action Challenge I was signed up and off! Training plan underway, fundraising page open, that was it! No turning back!
I decided to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Research who helped my Grandma through her final few months with us, and Epilepsy Research UK who strive to find solutions and better medications for epilepsy suffers like my Brother. So 2 charities really close to my heart.
The training was going well, I hiked ALOT met loads of new people and friends and it soon came round to flying out to Africa.
The Action Challenge group:
were amazing! What a fab bunch of people and my new best friends for the next 6 days of climbing! Our support team of 77 porters (! YES 77!) were incredible! The organisation that goes into getting a group of us up the mountain is insane. Each guy had their own job and took pride in it. I’d chosen to hike with Action Challenge as they support the welfare and equal pay of the porters they use and its the best job for a local to have in Tanzania, they are treated and paid really well.
The hike started in the humid and hot jungle but by camp 1 we were already camping under the looming peak of the mountain. I’ll never forget the sunrise hitting the side of the summit each morning, turning it pink, purple and orange
Everyday of the hike saw a different landscape. Day 2 saw the land turn to big rocks and tough shrubbery. The altitude didn’t get too bad until about day 3 when we really started to notice the shortness of breath, headaches and other side effects!
For me the hike didn’t seem too bad until the morning of day 3, the Baranco wall! The Altitude was really beginning to affect me now, I had a really bad headache and felt quite dizzy. Not great when you have to free climb up a sheer drop wall! A stitch came into play half way up! I remember getting to the top and just thinking ‘how on earth am I going to reach the summit!?’ Day 3 was a REALLY long day, after the wall climb we hiked for 7 hours over mixed terrain and into an area that looked like Mars! Just rocks and dust! Was so weird. Until we got to base camp. The altitude was REALLY kicking in now, no appetite what so ever and sleeping was hard. Not that we had a chance too! We got 40 minutes to put our heads down before we were up again welcoming new years Eve by starting the ascent of the summit.
Imagine this… Pitch black, -8 degrees, only your head torch for light, plodding up a single track path like a herd of sheep for 6.5 hours! I tell you it does ALL sorts of crazy things to your mind! Everyone and I mean everyone went through 3 stages: Excitement, Tears and the grumps. All at varying stages! My tears came about 4am when I just felt SO exhausted, sick and my head felt like it would explode. I just lent on a rock and literally just wanted to go home! My friend Amanda (who had about an hour before gone through the same phase herself!) picked me up, said “don’t stop, you can do this tab” and that was it… off we went again, plodding….
At about 6am we saw the skyline show its first glimpse of sun rise. It was euphoria! I can’t tell you how that boosted us up the remainder of the summit. At 6.30am just in time for the sun rising we reached Stella Point, the first of Kilimanjaro’s summits. The atmosphere was incredible, everyone was crying, cheering, collapsing and just speechless that we’d done it! I video’d my feelings because I knew i’d forget (i’m not going to share it, because I look like a muppet!) but it’s incredible how the altitude gets you. I sound drunk! My words are slurred, i’m crying my eyes out and i’ve still got 45 minutes to hike to Uhuru, the highest point!
That final push was agony but so worth it. The sun was hot the view incredible…
After the euphoria, relief and celebrations of reaching the top (all be it in a drunken slurry, oxygen deprived state!) The reality of how we got down started becoming apparent…. I’d run out of water and we had a 4 hour descent ahead of us down the scree side that had now melted in the sunlight and was metre deep dust slide. It was awful!! What I would’ve paid to have been helicoptered off the side and taken home!
But we did it, got to base camp. Drank some water had an hours rest and then started a rather slow but long walk to our final camp before leaving the mountain.
And we wouldn’t have made it without these guys: The A Team:
I then flew onto Zanzibar for 7 days of R&R! Man did I need it!!
If you know someone who has climbed Kilimanjaro or have done yourself, share your story with me and receive 10% off a Kilimanjaro print order!
I could chat about it for hours! Truly a life changing experience. One I will never forget.