Needle felting, if you please’m.

Needlefelted Mrs Tiggy Winkle and bookWhich is your favourite Beatrix Potter character? I’m assuming here that you have one.

I’ve adored her books, filled with beautiful pictures, delightful stories and idyllic settings, ever since I could first open a book.

I desperately wanted to write, and more importantly, draw like her as I grew up. I wonder how many book illustrators cite her as their inspiration.

Needlefelted Mrs Tiggy Winkle at the tableMy children were brought up on her tales, so it was a complete joy to take them to her house, Hill Top Farm in Sawrey, last week. Just as I did around their age.

Hill Top farmThe children humoured me well. Each room had one of her books, open at the page with an illustration inspired by the room, or furniture within it. They enjoyed spotting each one. They examined the contents of each room. Calling each other over, so siblings didn’t miss out.

Hill Top farm visit garden The garden is smaller than I remember, but the children still enjoyed investigating every corner. They even did the children’s trail.

kitchen garden at Hill Top farm bee hiveAnd I relived my childhood. (Yes, we did go to the Pencil Museum later in the week. Amused to notice that the pencil set I came away with last time, is now an exhibit. Hmm. Been some time then.)

I love that Beatrix Potter wanted Hill Top Farm left as she had lived in it. Not a museum or theme park. No Peter Rabbits popping out of holes, or squirrel Nutkins shinning down the trees. Unspoilt. Left so that others can experience her inspirations. Just as she would have done.

Needlefelted Mrs Tiggy WinkleAh. Who is my favourite Beatrix Potter character? How kind of you to ask. Hmm. Tough one. I do have a soft spot for both Hunca-Munca and Pigland Bland, but I’ll opt for Mrs Tiggy-Winkle.

It has absolutely nothing to do with the pile of washing I’m still ploughing through from the holiday. I assure you. 

“If you please’m”

I may not have followed in Beatrix Potter’s footsteps, but I still take inspiration from her characters. Needle felting a “stout short person” with a “little back nose went sniffle, sniffle, snuffle and her eyes went twinkle, twinkle”, well, it was a delight!

4 thoughts on “Needle felting, if you please’m.

  • Friday 28 August, 2015 at 6:58 pm

    Would you look at that… I visited Hill Top Farm as a small child. I was too small to remember really, but my sister has deep and profound memories of seeing Mrs Tiggy-winkle for real… the perfect country side to visit. My kids all want to go to the Lake District because of Swallows and Amazons… we will live vicariously through you!!!

    • Saturday 29 August, 2015 at 12:57 am

      Swallows and Amazons is a wonderful book. I think it makes a lot of people want to visit the Lakes. We had a bit of boating fun too.

  • Thursday 3 September, 2015 at 8:52 pm

    Love your needle-felt Mrs Tiggywinkle – she’s one of my favourite characters too. Hill Top Farm is now on my list of places to visit and I love the fact that it has been left as it would have been when Beatrix Potter lived there. I sometimes wonder what she would have made of the updated version of Peter Rabbit that my children watch on CBeebies. I have to say I much prefer the books!

    • Saturday 5 September, 2015 at 8:41 am

      I wonder what she would have thought too? I hope she would have been pleased that they are still loved. Her characters have such life, that over time they have grown. I hope she would approve of how they turned out!

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