Ruby’s trifle

Ruby’s newest design – currently on pocket mirrors but soon to grace badges and bags – is a shout out to the dawn of seaside tourism. trifle_largeWe had to, really, what with being based on the coast. Trinkets and trifles have always been absolute necessities for the casual holidaymaker – I mean, it’s not a holiday if you haven’t bought lots of things you didn’t know you needed, is it? And Aunty Gerty needs a gift of some sort, surely? Fortunately, such fripperies were not always so tacky as ‘Kiss me quick hats” and coasters made of half-broken shells (yes, been there, done that); nor were they always so dentally destructive as a stick of rock, ‘trifle’ all the way through it or not–or, indeed, ‘Tikka,’ as lined the core of the Chicken Tikka flavoured candy cane Jo’s husband David brought home once. Ahem. Anyway, trifles, in the other sense of the word, can be useful and they’re certainly charming, so Ruby’s taken inspiration from the late 18th century:

She’s brought them bang up to date (we’ve decided patch and snuff boxes aren’t quite so useful these days, so we’ve gone for pocket mirrors) and, well, they’re rather lovely we think! Deal features first, but Ramsgate, Margate and Dover and all points coastal are in the works.

Warning: these trifles are not edible.

New tote bag and Cornish drawings…

For about ten years now we’ve been spending a couple of weeks every summer staying in a secluded spot on the Helford River, just inland from Falmouth in Cornwall–Daphne du Maurier country! We’ve become very attached to this stretch of the coast over the years, with its hidden coves and dramatic shoreline. While the children do impressions of baby seals for hours on end, I sit on the beach or on the harbour wall at Helford Passage with my lovely friend Debbie George and draw…

Helford Passage sketch
Helford Passage sketch






From the tiny beach at Grebe, just inside the mouth of the Helford River, there is the most wonderful peninsula. I’ve painted the view before and am now working on a detailed print. It features–at various scales–repeatedly in my holiday sketchbooks!

The hill opposite Grebe







This year’s drawings were a mixture of pencil, fine drawing pen (0.1), and ink and rigger brush. I’ve carried on sketching since we got back, gradually bringing in elements of the fields around where we live, which are a lot flatter. There are some nice lines, though–quite literally in the case of the lines of old telegraph poles that dot the landscape. Those merged sketches have led to our next tote bag.

It’s a two-colour print in three colourways again. We’ve also enjoyed some small but beautiful flocks of late summer swallows, who feature–you’ll have to enlarge these thumbnails to see them though! Once again, these are available on Folksy and Etsy.


Autumn Tote Bag


Well, here we are, our first printed tote! This is ‘Autumn’ – I guess its inspiration is self-evident… Printed on natural cotton, this comes in three colourways – orange on cream, green on cream, and grey on grey. Here’s a picture of Jo with one so that you can get a sense of size – Jo is 5’3″! We’re working on the next design already, but in the meantime these are now available to buy on Folksy – here –  as well as at Dunlin & Diver in Deal, Kent. We hope to be delivering to some of our other outlets very soon.