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Happy Valentine’s Day!

♥♥♥

I thought I would take this opportunity to share some kitten love with you. I love cats so much, but the other members of my family are both very allergic to them and so sadly, I have to make do with paper ones, which is not the same at all!

The cat faces are reproductions taken from Victorian decoupage sheets to which I have added my own crazy embellishments.

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Above is Anatasia and she is a White Russian cat and of course, a princess.

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These two are Bertie and Sophie and they are inseparable.

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Above we have Edmund, a perfect little prince who would much rather play than wear his crown!

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And finally, Anastasia’s little sister, Tatiana, looking very sweet in her pink bow.

The cards above, along with other exciting stuff, are available from my shop. You can view it by using the tab on the menu at the top of this page, clicking on any of the images above or by clicking here.

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An original Victorian Valentine.

Finally, in researching the Victorian’s celebration of Valentine’s Day I came across this amazing collection in The Guardian archives – worth a look for the ‘Vinegar Valentines’ alone! Here’s the link: victorian-valentines-day-cards-in-pictures

Best wishes, Erica.

Sketching in Gloucester Cathedral

I recently spent an afternoon sketching in Gloucester Cathedral near my home. A monastery has stood on this site since the late 7th century and the cathedral was established in 1541.

There are many things that I love about the cathedral, but having a particular interest in women’s history I am always drawn (no pun intended!) to the exquisite 15th century Lady Chapel. Below is a sketch I made of the tomb of Elizabeth Williams, who sadly died in childbirth aged only 17 years.

Sketch of the tomb of Elizabeth Williams, Gloucester Cathedral (sketching)

The inscription reads:

“Elizabeth speaks: Husband, you carved me in marble here your wife;
Thus you’d ensure her immortality.
But CHRIST my hope and trust was, all my life;
So God forbids that I should mortal be.
July 4th AD 1622. Wife of W.I. Williams,
Youngest daughter of Dr Miles Smith,
Bishop of Gloucester
Aged 17″

Also laid to rest with her was the tiny unfortunate child, who sadly, somewhere over the centuries has lost her nose.

Sketch of child of Elizabeth Williams, Gloucester Cathedral (sketching)

Elizabeth Williams and her baby lie directly opposite the tomb of her sister, who also died in childbirth. So very sad, but I’m grateful that the lives of these two young women were valued enough by those who knew and loved them for them to have been commemorated with these beautiful memorials.

Tomb of Elizabeth Williams and baby, Gloucester Cathedral

The memorial to Elizabeth Williams and child – Photo by Julian P Guffogg

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