Brunskill and Grimes puppet-making workshop

Many puppeteers are also puppet-makers, or at least have some skill in making. The more I work with puppets, the more interested I am in how they are put together, what materials they are made from and what considerations have gone into the design. Hot on the heels of the devising with puppets workshop before…

Print-making at Open Studios Cornwall

I recently left the hubbub and noise and chaos of London for a slice of peace down by the sea in Cornwall. Though I’ll still travel all over for acting and puppetry work, this is the place I will be calling home for the foreseeable future. As luck would have it, during my first few…

Teaching my first puppetry workshop… in Russia!

At the English summer camp in Russia with CLASS Study and Training Centre this year we wanted to teach the students some specific theatre skills that they could use in their final devised pieces. Along with a bunch of fun drama games for team-building, firing up imaginations and encouraging creativity, I led my first puppetry…

Making a moving mouth puppet

Over our last two puppetry classes at Little Angel Theatre we have been making simple moving mouth puppets. Using electric breadknives to sculpt foam blocks into heads and hot glue guns to stick on eyes, nose and the opening mouth, we created a variety of funny-looking characters. First came the drawing part. Drawing lots of…

Christmas present fabric pictures

I do love a home-made gift, as does everyone in my family. This Christmas I got out my needle and thread and made little fabric pictures for my mum and Grandma. The wooden box frames come from Wilko and the fabric is from my sister’s bags of fabric scraps (she does a lot of crafting)….

Wilderness FarmFest with InterAct Wales

In a house by a river in Wales something is happening. People are gathering round a campfire sharing poems and songs, making minions out of clay, creating shadow puppets and mosaics, and wading through the river with sticks. These people are InterAct Wales and their guests at this year’s Wilderness FarmFest. The festival is still…

Cross stitch bluetit bookmark

Feeling on a bit of a roll with my homemade stitched gifts, I recently attempted another cross-stitched bookmark, this time for my mum’s birthday. I say homemade, but as with the puffin bookmark I made for my sister’s birthday, there was a certain manufactured element to it – I bought the pattern for it from…

Backstitch motorbike

You only turn 30 once, so to mark the occasion of my fella’s thirtieth birthday I wanted to get him something special, and what’s more special than a personal hand-made gift? He’s a big fan of motorbikes and owns a Yamaha FZ6 Fazer S2. As I’m cracking on with the cross stitch, I thought I’d…

Puffin bookmark

Now I’ve re-acquainted myself with cross-stitch, for my sister’s birthday present I decided to move on from stitching owls to sewing a puffin. I bought a pattern for a bookmark from Samuel Taylors at Embsay Mills, which included all the threads, needle, 14-point aida, felt backing and a tassle. The first thing I did once…