Friday, 15 October 2010

At last! The Children get their copies of Fluffville!

Well, we finally managed to hold the launch of Fluffville Saves Energy and what a hoot it was! Everyone who was invited turned up, including Tiddles, who arrived in his used-chip-fat motor car! He was an excellent host, welcoming all the guests and posing for numerous photo shoots. He is currently 'in talks' regarding a TV series, 'What Tiddles Did Next'.....Hmmm, we'll see.

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

Puppet-Making Master Class, Part Two!

Here we go, Folks! Dig out your paintbrushes and find those needles and threads - we're makin puppets!
Here is the final instalment of my fascinating guide to making a Tiddles puppet - just think, if we all make one or two, Tiddles will take over the world! Now our puppet heads are nice and dry, they can be painted to make the little characters really come to life. All you need to do after this,is make a puppet theatre out of an old box and write a little play for your puppets to perform! Seemples!

The first thing you need to do is paint the paper mache head with an undercoat. I used a tester pot of white emulsion. This means when you paint the colours on, you will get a nice, bright coverage and it will look brill!

Here are the base coats on with cute little black noses!

Now for the fun part! Painting the detail on the little faces - I used a fine paintbrush to do this, as you can control the furry-ness better. I also used good quality acrylic paint, but poster paint or squeezy paint would do the job! For the eyes, I used stick-on plastic eyes, as they move around and look quite realistic. If you don't have any, just paint the eyes where you want them.

Now you need to make the glove part of the puppet - the bit where you put your hand! I have used felt for mine, but you could use any sort of fabric, as long as it's something which doesn't fray too much. I hand-stitched mine, but you could easily use a sewing machine if you have one. Remember to make a paper pattern first, roughly the size of your hand - you need to make sure your hand will fit inside and not be squashed!

Here is the finished Tiddles, made from recycled newspaper and a bit of felt!

Thursday, 5 August 2010

Liz's Puppet-Making Master Class, Part One

My latest project is Fluffville Films - puppet shows, written and created by Secondary School Students, aiming to raise young peoples' energy-awareness. The productions will feature Tiddles and the Stepford Bunnies, and possibly an Energy-Saving Piglet if anyone has a mind to make one! I will be working in six schools, with older kids this time and we will be using a professional film-maker to produce sweet little Fluffville DVDs! If any of you want to see how to make a Tiddles or Bunny puppet, here's how!
The first thing you need to do is blow your balloons up to a sort of puppet-head-size, so not too big! The best kind of fixing method is PVA glue, mixed with water - not too much water, about 1 part glue to 3 parts water seems to work fine. You can use wall-paper paste, or even flour and water if you have no posh glue!

Make sure you cover the balloon evenly with strips of torn newspaper. Don't make the strips too big and it's best to rip the paper, rather than cut it with scissors, it seems to lock together better.

Now add cardboard ears and stick them in place using masking tape - don't worry that it all looks a bit scruffy and random at this point, it will all be painted later. A good way to make a nose is by squidging some paper tissue with glue. It becomes quite soft and you can mould it into whatever shape you need. You then just paper mache over the nose to make it neat-ish.

The next step is to carefully paper-mache around the cardboard tube where you put your finger, ensuring it feels nice and secure. Make sure the tube is wide enough to fit your finger!

Here are the puppet-heads with their final coats of paper mache. They need to dry thorughly before they can be painted. Be sure to tune in next time to see the finished Tiddles and Bunny and how to make the little puppet glove!

Thursday, 22 July 2010

Brilliant Artwork by a Little Kid!

I was in a Primary School recently, showing the kids the Energy Presentation. After they had seen it, I got them to design their own 'Energy Saving Super Heroes'. One little boy, who was only about five or six, came up with these fantastic characters, based on 'cops' - the S.W.A.T team (I don't actually know what that means). I thought the whole, 'What can we do to save power?' 'Don't take a bath, take a shower' idea was absolutely brilliant! He didn't have any help, other than watching my PowerPoint of Tiddles and the Bunnies; really good work! He was such a tiny, little guy too! Probably the best thing about my job is getting to meet and work with these amazing kids, they blow me away with their perception and creativity, every time.

Monday, 19 July 2010

Tiddles meets the Queen!

I can't believe this, but Tiddles has had lunch with Queen Elizabeth at a posh place in Dumfries! He certainly knows how to schmooze, that Orange Tiger! The invitation was supposed to be for me, but as I was going to be in Italy, Tiddles said he would go in my place! It's been ages since I've written anything on my poor little neglected blog, for which I apologise, but Eco-Schools has been so full-on - I've visited 64 schools and spoken to nearly 3,500 children! Always accompanied by my faithful Friend, Tiddles and the odd Bunny! I kind of 'see' some of you on Facebook, which is lovely, so please add me as a friend, as it's a bit easier to keep in touch and say Hi. I think of you all often and look forward to blogging a bit more now the schools have broken up. Tiddles tells me his next appearance will be in 'OK' magazine, so watch this space!

Wednesday, 28 April 2010

A little magazine article about Tiddles!

There's no keeping up with Tiddles! Here is a little clip about him, now he's a 'famouso Tiger'! (His words!) I have told him that he needs to keep his paws on the ground and work hard - just because he is in a glossy magazine, doesn't mean we have lots of pennies in the bank, or tins of his favourite soup in the cupboard! meanwhile, I'm trying hard to re-arrange official launches of Fluffville, as the book has to remain 'under wraps' until they've been held - it's proving to be a difficult political exercise, with these elections and all sorts of annoying protocol to follow - it's a book about saving energy, after all - Tiddles isn't running for Prime Minister (yet!)

Friday, 23 April 2010

Fluffville Saves Energy is here!

We had a delivery at the office this morning of rather a lot of boxes full of books with Tiddles on the cover! My first reaction was to run away! They are very sweet and I am thrilled to bits!

Monday, 19 April 2010


'Fluffville Saves Energy' comes back from the printers on Friday! Things have been very hectic here; with posh launch parties planned, and then cancelled, as some important Ministers were coming from Edinburgh, and you can't do stuff like that near to a General Election. I don't really understand these things and nor does Tiddles! But it's to do with Local Authority Protocol and things like that.... Anyway, we will be having them after 6 May, which gives Tiddles time to buy a new suit and get his fur trimmed. I nearly-but-not-quite got stuck in Italy after our Easter holidays - we got home just before the Ash Cloud. I would have quite liked to have got stuck, as my feet haven't touched the ground since returning - some of the illustrations had to be done again, as the quality wasn't quite right. I also put in a page on nuclear energy, than took it out again as it was incorrect! Stressville or what! Here are a couple of pictures of Tiddles making a junk monster and in his radiation suit, which, as everyone keeps pointing out, doesn't protect his ears!

Wednesday, 24 March 2010


Well, the launches of 'Fluffville Saves Energy' have been arranged; important people invited, press organised etc. The big, and somewhat worrying question is - will it be back from the printers? I have phoned and emailed, but no one has got back to me yet. I should be more assertive instead of the wobbling wuss that I am! Tiddles, the star-struck tiger that he is, is off to Italy next Wednesday. I told him he better not loose his boarding card this time, and to make sure he has enough euros for everything he needs! I don't know, these young tigers today, no sense of responsibility! I do hope everyone is well out there in Blog land - and a big Thank You to Laurie, from Tiddles and I x

Saturday, 27 February 2010

Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Have a go at Tiddles' Quiz!

Ooh, it's difficult, isn't it? I think I need to phone a friend!

Ever wondered what to do with the middles of your loo rolls?

No, you probably haven't! But in case you do, here's a sweet little idea from The House of Tiddles - turn them into spiders! What jolly fun!

Sunday, 21 February 2010

Tiddles' Great Uncle Selwyn

Tiddles' Great Uncle Selwyn was a Coal Miner in the Welsh Valley's many years ago. Tiddles has borrowed his shovel, wheelbarrow and some coal to demonstrate an example of a 'fossil fuel'. Clever Tiger!

Saturday, 20 February 2010

Tiddles' Volcano Book

I have this very tablecloth in my kitchen!

Make a Wizzle Stick - Tiddles shows you how!

This is a great favourite with the smallest children, as they only need a straw, some strips of plastic and some sticky tape - seemples! Tiddles demonstrates as only he can!

Friday, 19 February 2010

A Creative Tiger!

Anyone remember these old Daler sketch books? Tiddles, the retro tiger that he is, buys them from eBay! Happy Weekend everyone!

Thursday, 18 February 2010

Share a Car and Take a Shower - but not at the same time!

Hi Everyone! It's busy, busy, busy in the House of Tiddles! I am working hard to get all the artwork sent off by the end of this month (eek!) and also negotiating for a Secondary School level book! Of course, I have to do all my usual school visits and other partnership-working stuff, so Thunder Birds are certainly Go here! It's good fun, though; I never thought I would be here this time last year! Hope you are all well, I miss reading your blogs and commenting very much, but hope to catch up soon!

Saturday, 23 January 2010

Getting started!

It's all very well when you go to a meeting, and show people stuff, and they like it and say 'Yes, great, we want to go with it....' Then you have to come up with the goods, and actually get the job done! I am trying not to be like a frightened (Stepford) Rabbit, frozen in headlights, and move this project along to its next step. I thought if I could get a decent working rough of the whole thing, that would be a good starting point for the publishers to comment / change / edit / abort (Well, hopefully not abort!) So, that's my task for the weekend; no fancy wine bars, retail therapy or ballgowns for me! Nah, I don't do any of that stuff...well, the bit about retail therapy is true! Oh, any advice would be welcome - I am kind of copying what I've seen other people do on the web, as I haven't a clue really!

Friday, 22 January 2010

One Small Step for Man, One Giant Leap for a Small Orange Tiger! (And some Bunnies)

Well, I can't actually believe this has happened - but it has! 'Fluffville Saves Energy' is going to be published! I went along to the meeting, presented my dummy book, facts and figures - and they said Yes! I now have a lot of work to do, as we are working to a tight deadline, and need to get the books into schools and libraries by the end of March! This means I have to seriously get drawing, and of course, I have to do my schools visits and everything else as normal. Maybe I'll be allowed one day a week to work from home, that would be nice!

Thursday, 21 January 2010

Familar Territory!

It's funny; a year later and here I am, back at my desk with my little attention-seeking kitten squeezing me off the edge! I'm making up a mock-up of the Fluffville book, but this time, someone actually wants to publish it! I think I'm ready for the meeting tomorrow, apart from what to wear, of course! I was 'working from home' today, as my bed was being delivered. I had a lovely old bed, but it was just too small for Bob, Bacon and I - we had to sleep in shifts! Whilst this may be OK for lazy cats, it was not so good for me, so a New Bed had to be purchased. I'm pleased to report that it's here, and looks fantastic - although I had to lug all the boxes up the drive, as 'the lorry couldn't get up the hill'..... Ah well, good job I'm a strapping lass, eh!!

Monday, 18 January 2010

Come and have a warm-up by the fire!

Pour your self a cup of tea, and come and have a sit-down by the fire! Well, in my dreams! I hope everyone is well, and you are all having a good New Year so far. The snow has melted at last in Dumfries and Galloway, so normal service is resumed; schools open, back at work etc. I have a meeting on Wednesday to see if Tiddles will have his first book published! This is very exciting, and I have been busy preparing timescales, facts, figures and roughs for this. I'll let you know what happens, even if it's bad news - in the meantime, please keep your paws crossed for a successful outcome!
Edit 19/01/10:
Thanks, guys for your welcome comments and encouragement. The meeting has been moved to Friday at 3.30pm. I am panicking, rather, trying to make a mock-up and realising I have never done this before, and don't know what I'm doing! Better go and look at Jackie and Lynne's blogs for inspiration!