CAROL PARKER - socially engaged artist


‘Plank 2013’ Yarnbomb installation – Market Rasen MR BIG Arts & Crafts Festival 2 Feb-2 March.

Below is an introduction to the Festival.   I’m hoping to create a colourful knitted display in the town centre.  MR BIG has done amazing work to bring the community of Market Rasen together.

The kinds of things that will be available to be decorated are: lamposts, bench seats, bollards, images and measurements available if you email me.  Anything with stripes would be fantastic.   Oh and in case you’re wondering, the ‘Rasen’ of Market Rasen comes from an Anglo Saxon word meaning ‘planks’ hence the title of the festival!

If you would rather go ‘off piste’, there’s a tree to hang things from and countless shop door handles that would love to be adorned with knitted treasures!

Finally….thanks so much for taking part and please…

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#imapiece @ The Craft Inn 4th Feb 2013

#imapiece is a project from The Craftivist Collective which is supporting Save the Children’s campaign to give every child a life free from hunger. I am very happy to announce the The Craft Inn will be running an #imapiece event on Monday 4th Feb at The Lamb in Surbiton from 7pm.

We live in a world with enough food for everyone, yet hunger remains the biggest underlying cause of child deaths. Every hour of every single day, 260 children die because they can’t get enough to eat. For millions more hunger is a life sentence– causing devastating and irreversible damage.

This year, we have a historic opportunity to change this.

We want the Prime Minister to use his G8 presidency this year to push world leaders to invest in nutrition interventions that will save millions of lives.

Jigsaw hi res hands

As part of the #imapiece project I’ve joined hundreds of other members of the craft community who care deeply about injustices facing children around the world. Crafters all over the UK are creating jigsaw pieces stitched with their messages about injustice to show the Prime Minister that we want him to take action on hunger this year.

Do your bit towards ending world hunger and show how you are a piece of the Puzzle. On the 17th and 18th June 2013 the UK will be hosting the G8 summit. Save The Children and The Craftivist Collective are inviting people from all over the UK to design and make a puzzle piece that will show their passion and support of for and of projects that aim to solve world hunger.

How can you become involved? On February 4th 2013, The Craft Inn will be holding a #imapiece event. Templates for the puzzle pieces and ideas of what to do will be provided, as well as a wide range of materials to use to design and make your piece. Your puzzle piece will then be sent off and become apart of a large installation that will be displayed at the G8 summit, to be seen by world leaders and dignitaries, proving that the people of the UK are supportive of any positive moves that can be made in the plight to end world hunger.

The event will take place at the Lamb in Surbiton on Monday 4th February, and will commence at 7:30pm continuing until around 10:30.

We can be the generation to end hunger. The #imapiece project aims to show that we can all be part of the solution and craft lovers can use their talents and hobbies to do just that.

You can find further information about the project by visiting the #imapiece website:


Significant Seams is such a great project and this post is so beautiful and thought provoking. I hope you enjoy x

Significant Seams

In the wake of tragedy, heartache, and frustration, the seams of this community are lined with laughter, determination, and grit. The community of Walthamstow, creative, diverse, and generous inspires me, and what Significant Seams aspires to be.

Today, the first words I heard as I arrived at work, “I’m sorry, I’m not here for the class. I’m here to volunteer. I have to volunteer.” An American ex-pat mother, inspired by Gandhi, struggling with her emotions in response to the Connecticut travesty/tragedy. Next, an alert from a customer and fellow social entrepreneur who’s using her influence to help my business. Then, the focus of my day: hosting a funder to see the site of our new premises (which has a donated sofa courtesy of an army of almost invisible volunteers since the last time I was in… which was yesterday, with architects offering to work pro bono!) and to visit the…

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A little Creative Gem in South West London. Open to the public this weekend!

Little London Observationist

If you take a short ride on the R68 bus from Richmond, alight at King Street and turn the corner, you’ll come to a narrow footbridge arching over the Thames. This leads to the magical and eccentric Eel Pie Island with an off-beat name just right for its off-beat story.

Bridge To Eel Pie Island

This mysterious little slice of traffic-free land has a musical history that tosses about names like John Mayall, Mick Jagger, Cyril Davies, Eric Clapton, David Bowie. Even before their time, Charles Dickens was said to enjoy a beer over that bridge and Henry VIII was rumoured to pop by the island to fill his stomach with eel pies on his way to entertain his mistresses.

Rainbow Shed

The island’s Eel Pie Hotel became the phenomenon that started it all with hundreds of revellers flooding the island to see The Who or The Stones in the hotel, to drink, dance, get high, sleep…

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Up coming events in Seething – Seething Sunday delivers slippery fun and warms hearts!

Please allow me to introduce you to the wonderful realm of Seething! Within the Royal Borough of Kingston Upon Thames a group of slightly crazy, increasingly passionate and effortlessly creative people have been for some time producing hair brained schemes to raise money for charity, and to bring the community together.

From over sized board games to festivals and parades this group of merry Seething folk have successfully developed a long list of annual community events. Exploring local histories, the folk of Seething adapt, develop and create events that focus on community involvement.  With each Seething project important messages are delivered; that of the importance of celebrating achievement, supporting the local community and local business as well as sharing in the joys that creating and making can bring.

The next Seething event has been running for four years and thus I am given the greatest pleasure of introducing to you this duo of crazy, exciting and most of all fun community events to take place as part of Seething Sunday on Sunday 14th October. This year we will be raising money for two brilliant charities; Shooting Star’s Children’s Hospice and Creative Youth.

The first of this duo turns the science of traditional skiing on its head and celebrates the new international craze of ‘Suburban Skiing’. Surbiton Ski Sunday is an annual event located on St Mark’s Hill in Surbiton and invites members of the community to attach over-sized ice cubes to their feet in an attempt to be the fastest ‘skier’.

Chief organiser of these magical events’ Robin Hutchinson said “Few people will be able to resist smiling or laughing when they see people skiing down St Mark’s Hill in Surbiton with ice strapped to their feet. Last year no World Records in Suburban Skiing were broken but following the magnificent displays at the Olympics we are expecting records to tumble.”

This hilarious and utterly fantastic event will commence at 11 o’clock on the morning of the 14th October coming to an end at around 1 o’clock in the afternoon at which time members of the realm of seething (of which we all are) will be invited to join a parade en route to celebrate and re-enact the tale of the Kings Soup.

This new ‘folk tale’ was published in 2010 by Homage de Fromage. The Kings Soup encompasses the concepts of all the projects within the realm of Seething and highlights the positive difference an individual can make through their attitude to where they live and how they respond to others. The story’s themes are those of greed and selflessness, of the joy of making rather than owning, of the benefits of locally produced food as well as of the value of community celebration and sharing.

And so in the afternoon of the 14th October, people are invited to bring along a leek or a potato and together the community will build a giant table and prepare, make and share the King’s Soup.

The villain of this ‘folk tale’ is a selfish King who is feared by his people because he takes everything that is good. However, although his Palace is full, his heart is empty. Through a series of events he tastes a simple, lovingly made soup that changes his heart. He learns to appreciate the sense of achievement and joy that growing, creating and making can bring. Through this he begins to understand the value of friendship and community.

Robin Hutchinson – chief organiser of this event went on to say “… what a great way to round off a morning of exercise than by coming together to make and share soup and remember why community is important. We hope as many people as possible will come along to join in the fun.”

All events created by the folks of Seething are open for anyone to take part. You are invited to register for the skiing before the event and you can do that by emailing

You can read more about other projects we have produced by visiting our website:

You can also follow us on twitter:  @stateofseething

You can buy this amazing folk tale by following this link !