Wednesday, December 19, 2007

It's holiday time!

It's almost Christmas and today is my last day before heading off for my holidays until the new year. This is a small line drawing of some of the characters that I've made including Little Errol and Squeaky Beryl on the right, George and Enid in the middle and Dancing Ernie on the left, who is usually quite hard to draw because he never stands still.

Oki-ni Sleeping Babies

Last year, I was lucky enough to be invited to design and make an exclusive range for the fashion brand collaboration company oki-ni. Each character came with a tiny sewn brooch - here it's an extra titchy baby, some of the others had bright red heart brooches with messages of love stitched across them like sewn tattoos. I have kept one of each for myself. These were the very first embroidered sleeping babies I made.
"oki-ni has commissioned Lucy Jane Batchelor to create twenty magical hand-made characters for Christmas 2006. Each piece comes attached to its own winter wonderland scene with an oki-ni tag appliqu├ęd to their posterior; we promise this wasn’t painful in any way! You are urged to personalise them, accessorise them and repair them when they wear thin to create a loyal, lifelong companion."
They had some great press and will have been in their new homes for a year now.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Squeaky Beryl

It's been a very long time since I made any Squeaky Beryls, but last week I made a couple as a very special order and one for me to keep, these are extra cuddly Beryls as they are made from the softest cashmere given to me by Jo Sheffield of Bubsie. She has a super squeaky squeak in her tummy, lovely old mother of pearl button eyes and an American vintage sewing print skirt.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Knitted Keep & Share Sleeping Babies

I made these funny families of babies for Amy at Keep & Share from her offcuts and samples. I also made a few other one-offs; there was Ralph and Harold the twins and their big mummy Agnes. Most of them have been sold now, just a couple of the little babies still available on the Keep and Share site in the off-cuts section.
This is Ralph and Harold - or is it the other way around? I'm not too sure, only Agnes can tell them apart.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

A Nice Holiday for the Sleeping Babies

These six tweed sleeping babies have just returned from a very exciting holiday. They've been to a photo shoot for Elle Deco, such glamorous little things. They'll be in the February 2008 issue, I can't wait to see how they looked with good lighting and a bit of make-up (?)!

Woolen Blanket Babies

They're much bigger than the usual sleeping babies - Last Christmas I made a huge one as a mummy to all of the babies, she was from a cotton and wool tapestry cushion cover and was covered in a floral pattern. The initialed pair are from a beautiful wool blanket (sewn in 1939) and have cream leather ears, the other two are stitched with pompoms around their hoods to keep them warm and snuggly! I get their leather ears from the leather sewers by Brick Lane- they give me bags or scraps to reuse, all sorts of lovely colours.

Little knitted sleeping babies

This little knitted sleeping baby is off to a new home today, and as he is the last of these that I had made, I thought I'd like to keep a record of him. In his package he has some mending threads, some bird stickers and a woven tape which reads 'Me and my friend'.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Bright Ideas Show at Craft Central

These are the display cabinets in the entrance lobby of Craft Central, there are 16 in all, divided into 4 lots of 4. I created a scene and story in each strip, this is the first one with them on stage.... (I have added a couple more below this one) and because there were so many cabinets to fill, I also brought in a few things from my big cabinet at home to help fill it up. Here are few of them:

Lovely old cotton reels, and a some wool cards. I collect these lovely pieces of haberdashery and find them the best inspiration for colours and styles for my illustrations and cards.

I found this tiny cup at the village fair a few years ago, it reads 'Mother' in gold. It was the best 20p I spent that day! I'm now on the lookout for a saucer for it, and maybe a teapot and jug.

And this sweet little card is from an old game. You spin the wheel to get a letter of the alphabet and then pick a card and answer it beginning with that letter. Each of the cards is soft, textured, heavy paper and the type is pressed into it quite far, they have a beautiful quality.

Photo credit: Sarah Murphy

Mischeivous Mauds Bedtime

Maud in bed with her teddy Teeny Timmy. I have made a batch of Teeny Timmys for the Christmas sales, they are about 2 inches high and made from the scraps left over from Maud and Boris, they have tiny reclaimed leather ears. Maud is tucked up in bed (my mums old jewelley box) with some crisp cotton bed linen (lace table runners) and a good book (a grusome Victorian miniature).

Photo Credit: Sarah Murphy

Bothersome Boris Baking

This is his biscuit recipe for all butter biscuits with icing, and here he is baking with one of my miniature stoves.
I read an Enid Blyton story when I was young about a little girl who accidentally left her (fully working electric) toy stove at the bottom of her garden overnight. The fairies and elves used the stove that night and, to say thank you to her for having used it, they left her some tiny, tiny cakes and a note. I wanted that so badly - the stove I could cook small cakes on, and most especially for some fairies to make a tiny cake for me.

Photo Credit: Sarah Murphy

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Sleeping Baby

A tweed sleeping baby. I've been starting to get some bits ready for the opens studios next weekend, and heres one of the Sleeping babies I've made. Their faces are sewn onto old linens and they have embroidered eyes and rosy pink cheeks. Their bodies are made from soft cashmere and wool tweeds. There are a few of them ready now and I feel like I have to be quite quiet around them (which is rather hard for me) - they look so calm and serene!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Peg Doll Fairy

My studio is at Cockpit Arts in Deptford and as a special niceness for the Christmas Open Studios they have asked us each to make a decoration for a tree that will be given as a prize to one of the visitors. This peg doll fairy is one of mine. She's a lot like the Peg Dolls I made for the Lucky Dip swaps last year, only this one has antique lace wings and very pink ballet tights. I've just realised that I haven't given her a name... ummm.... 'Angel'!

Cockpit Arts Deptford, Christmas Open Studios
18-22 Creekside
London SE8 3DZ
Friday 30th November 12am-9pm Admission Free on Friday
Saturday 1st and Sunday 2nd December 11am-6pm Admission £2.00.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Bunny in his Innocent Smoothie hat

My mum knitted this rabbit for me this summer from the softest left-over cashmere from a very snuggly shawl that she made a few years ago and Auntie Jan stuffed him and sewed him up. He lives in my studio and with it being winter now, it's started to get a little bit cold. I found the perfect hat for him from Innocent Smoothies Help the Aged charity Big Knit. The smoothie was delicious, and the hat looks so sweet, I smile every time I look at him.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Bright Ideas show opening soon

At last... I have put up my display in the exhibition to launch the twins. I have four very long cabinets to fill with just a few tiny toys so I have created scenes of them in their own worlds. I especially like Maud in bed in a box and Boris cooking biscuits. I'll put some photos up very soon.

Bright Ideas

Craft Central (the new name for the Clerkenwell Green Association)

33-35 St John’s Square



Nearest station: Farringdon for the underground and
overland trains

It's open from the 1st - 25th of November
Weds - Saturday 12 - 6pm plus Sunday 25th November
and admission is free. I will be invigilating the show on Friday 9th, Friday 23rd and Sunday 25th of November if you'd like to come and say hello - It would be nice to see some friendly faces and nice chatter.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

First Press for The Twins

It's their first bit of press! A tear sheet arrived today from Selvedge magazine, the Nov/Dec 07 issue and it's not long to go until the show opens. I've made some props for the display cabinets; lots of sewing, including some bunting, a bed and a stage with curtains and pelmet.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Packaging for The Twins

Hot off the press I have the packaging for Mischievous Maud and Bothersome Boris. They come with: an adoption certificate, a family portrait, a membership card, information on their production, care instructions and a cut-out-and-make minuscule meal; the main course is a pyramid of peas and for dessert a big slice of cake- providing them with a perfectly balanced and delicious diet when the Fondant Fancies run-out.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Farewell Little Errol

He's been my favorite for a few years now and the very last one I had made has been sent out. There are no plans at the moment to make any more though I'm sure this won't be the last one ever, but for the time being ... Farewell Little Errol! (for now)

Mischievous Maud and Bothersome Borris

A preview picture of prototypes of the new TWINS to be launched on 1st November at Craft Central (the new name for the Clerkenwell Green Association) as part of the Bright Ideas award scheme and exhibition. They are made from beautiful handwoven Harris Tweeds. More info to come....