contact me at

my etsy shop


  • Would you like to award someone special a knitted rosette? See the pattern to knit one here!

  • Little Squares Scarf, (quick pattern).

  • Little Squares Scarf, (step-by-step pattern, with lots of step-by-step photos).

  • How to sew up crochet or knitting with an invisible stitch, step-by-step tutorial

  • Sisterhood Crochet Blanket pattern for square.

  • step-by-step pattern for Sisterhood Crochet Blanket square. Makes crocheting this pattern a doddle for beginners!

  • step-by-step tutorial for some basic crochet stitches

  • Tara's failsafe cup cake sponge recipe

  • knitted slipper pattern

blogs I read

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Hi Vanessa
I love your little girl with her prize winning pig!! The colours are so you!!
Wow you have so much snow! Here in my part of the world (Glos) we have just a teeny bit but it is bitterly cold
Keep warm
Gill x


Very lovely and clever. You've made the papier maché your own.


Hi Vanessa ,
What a brilliant post. Lovely photos. And I just love, love ,love your papier mache figure. Best In Show is so gorgeous. You are so clever.
Love Carole from Snowy Rossendale xxxx


What's not too love about the papier mache?!!! It's wonderful. I adore the little pig - I love his little pink ears and the newsprint showing through. I also love the little details - the rosettes just like the ones you crochet/knitted, the little red shoes and stripey socks. Also I'm so curious about the little cardie - how did you do that? Is it knitting on a miniature scale? Also love the writing - just so Vanessa-ish, also wondering how you did that! (fascinated how the print seems to have a kind of embossed effect). Anyway I adore it and I'm not surprised you are hanging on to it! Love the colours of the little cup. I love papier mache - it looks such fun to do and I really love how it looks and the effects you can have. You have totally found your own style too.
The snow has made me grumpy today and I've mostly been lucky enough to be indoors. Everything has ground to a halt and it's terrible for everyone stuck in traffic or trying to get home. It's not going anytime soon either. Your lovely pictures show the fun and exiting side of it though. The doggies are so cute bounding about in all the snow. You don't usually see snow on the beach do you - that's quite an image. Loved to see all your pictures - cheered me up no end!(When you mentioned paper mache before I thought I had missed something but no, it was just secret!)

Cath W

I am now officially the Number 2 fan of Emily and her piggy. They are both quite wonderful. You are a very talented lady.


I think you deserve a rosette for making Emily and her pig. Wonderful. Beautiful snow pictures too.

Sue x


I really do love your papier mache little girl and pig - they are absolutely beautiful, full of character and wonderful little details. I love the seedling tea cup too - you have been busy, and inspired. It's so lovely to find a new craft that really suits your style, isn't it - the possiblities and joys are endless.I loved your snow pictures too. Enjoy your making and being cosy.
Helen x

what a beautifulwork...the papier mache, your water colour in this pastel colour that i love....congratulations for your beautiful work in crochet in painting, the truth in everything you do...

Dawn Marie

So sweet, I can see why you don't want to part with your girl and piggy. Hopefully (hint hint)you will make some more for your shop :) Wonderful snow pics, we have it really bad up here in Scotland, its been virtually non stop since Friday! Really enjoy your blog.xx


what a wonderful post : the snow, your paintings and your papier maché things! you are so clever!! and with 3 children at home I know it is a feat!

I follow your blog and it is one of my favorite! very inspiring!
Marie (france)


Hello Vanessa! You have made So Wonderful post with full of So Lovely things and Amazing photos that I can't describe! Emily and her piggy are the best - I love pigs and I had a qute couple in my Monday-post! Your sweet dogs look so beautiful at the deep snow and the wind in their hairs!
Sunny wishes Teje

the Vintage Heart

HI vanessa,I adore your girl and pig, the comment above about it been so you is what i thought when I saw it, you are so clever, i would love a figure, and am hoping you make more to pop into your shop,in fact you have inspired me to want to have a go at papier mache. We have had so much snow in the yorkshire dales , over 16 in places and my little dogs couldnt walk through it as it was over there heads!as always love love ,your posts and blog, bestest wishes,Linda x


Beautiful, where do you get your inspiration from?

Liz W in Missouri, USA

TOO MUCH FUN!!! I just LOVE it! A warm and happy post on a cold and blustery day!


Papier mache rocks (so to speak!). I love it. it is a shame that most of us leave it behind when we leave primary school as it is such fun to do. Your work is just lovely. xx

Bobo Bun

Very rarely do I see something that actually takes my breath away Vanessa. Your Pig and Emily are simply stunning, one of the most glorious and talented works that I have seen in a long long while. As I looked I imagined my littlest Bun Millie stood beside the sheep she dreams of owning one day. She even has a jar by her bed labelled for Millie's Sheep Farm. If you're ever in the market for commissions that would be a wonderful way of capturing a dream for me.

As for your weather, might be cold, but the scenery is so so stunning.

Lisa x

Vintage Squirrel Katie

Hilarious, cutesy, Babelicious piggy! I wouldn't part with him either. Have you heard of the ceramicist Craig Mitchell? I first came across his work at the Scottish Gallery in Edinburgh not long after he graduated about 17 years ago and Rob and I stood and roared with laughter at his work, particularly a sculpture of 4 people marooned on a giant french fancy! I dream of buying one!


Vanessa, I just love Emily and her little pig, it is totally amazing!
Stunning snow photos too and how cute are those little doggies!
Vivienne x


Hi Vanessa, Your Papier Mache is really good. So colorful, detailed and clever. I absolutely love Emily and piggy! The winter pictures are so brilliant and capture the scenes so beautifully! Are those your dachshunds, they look so cute but they don't look long!? I had one growing up and my mom has a mini dachie. Love 'em
xo Robin


I love your piggy and girl, so sweet, loving the attention to detail :)

Great pic's too. Keep warm!


Vanessa, Your creations are wonderful, the scenery is beautiful, and the puppies are simply adorable!!


What a lovely papier mache prize girl and pig! How I envy people who are creative!
Just happened upon your blog whilst browsing other peoples. I will be back to look at your lovely work!


firstly i want to pin a rosette on you for the number 1 best and most enchanting papier mache i have ever seen.. Vanessa, its so beautiful! i just cant stop looking and admiring with tingles of delight running up and down my spine. secondly i want to praise your lovely teacups painting, which is beyond gorgeous and thirdly i want to say how lovely and breathtaking your wintery photographs are and how your description of Hugo in the snow made me smile. all in all a totally captivating and magical post, such a wonderful experience for us readers and something to be truly thankful for. you have made my day more special :o)

warm december blessings xxx



oh my vanessa! what can i add! OH MY! what a wonderful talent you are!


Wow, Vanessa,
I've said it before but I will say it again, you are one clever little cookie! So talented. I love your little figurines and I can't wait to see what else you have been working on, they are crazy amazing! Anyway keep working I want to see more! So glad I stumbled across your blog a year or so ago, you are an inspiration! And one day I will send youa pic of my little squares scarf that I have been making (although I haven't picked it up for about 4 months!) I think I have 31 squares left to go, and then I can stitch it all together. I think it will be ready for our winter so I have a few months left to make it!


Hi Vanessa - Your papier mache looks great.
And the photos of the snow felt sooooooo cold - but also quite beautiful - especially the one with the lighthouse and steam coming off the sea! Unreal


I love your little terriers in the snow!


Wow! Fantastic work on the girl and her pig. I love the picture of the steam coming off the sea - the lake near us looked like that a few days ago - our temps got down to minus 20 or so, so the lake water was definitely warmer than that! And the windswept lone doggie really showed how chilly it is where you are. (c:
Keep warm!

Teresa Kasner

Dear Vanessa, where do I begin.. that photo of the lighthouse in the snow was breathtaking. I loved seeing your long-hair dachshunds in the snow having fun... and all the snow pictures, thank you for taking us there with the photos.

The little girl and pig are magic. I raised 3 kids and we all raised registered Nubian dairy goats together. We all milked them.. the kids milked their own. I thought it would teach them responsibility and where our food comes from. I was the 4-H leader for Dairy Goats. The kids showed them at the County Fair and won ribbons and trophies. Your little sculpture brought all those memories flooding back for me.

Thank you. Sending love from Corbett, Oregon


Such beautiful snow piccies, such brave little dogs!
And I love your pig with proud owner!

Alice and Raymond!!!

Oh wow Vanessa, it looks really really really cold! If steam is rising off the sea then it must be bad! I have never seen snow like this, therefore, never felt such cold temperatures, keep warm!!! It really can devestate people especially those who live in poverty or make a living from the land, so many blessings to them!
Your papier mache is amazing, of course! I love your girl and her pig, it is soooooo sweet and looking forward, very much to seeing what other lovelies you create!

Planet Penny

Love your papier mache, haven't done it for ages but it's very satisfying. It appeals to me the way needle felting does, I love to make 3D things. Emily and her prize winning pig are adorable. Amazing photos of the snow, we have barely anything in this part of Norfolk just a bitter blast.
Keep warm Vanessa, and those two little doggies, they look so windswept!

amanda makes

I'm awestruck! Absolutely magical work. Julie Arkell would be very proud of her pupil, I reckon! Lots of love, Amanda xxx

Porcupine Design

You have added another dimension to your art work and it looks fantastic. I love how even though you have used another media to work in, it is still so distinctly a Cabban creation. Well done! I also love the watercolour picture you are working on at the moment of your teacup collection. I hope this will be available as a print some time in the near future. Do you by any chance produce greeting cards (blank for own message)? I am still one of those who write cards rather than email friends and thought that these prints would be delightful to use.


I follow your blog for a while now and it amazes me how talented you are... Love EVERYTHING you make!
The pictures of your dogs in the snow made me smile, they're so cute...


Excellent paper sculpture.
If it were mine I wouldn't want to part with it either.


Oh what a cruel mummy you are, sending poor Dougwas and Ellie out up to their little wotsits in the snow.... lovely pics of your doggies, I love them as you know!
And can I say the lady and pig are wonderful. I know how hard it is to work with papier mache as I have done it too, not figures but bowls and plates and an odd (very!) jug or two. And as has been said, I wouldn't part with it either, would have it where I could admire it all the time. Well done you.

jane smallcombe

Your papier mache has taken my breath away - your work is amazing!!!! Please let me know when you have some work for sale - I love it!!!!


Best in show is just that - the best. I am in constant awe of how talented you are, how marvellous your creations are - and how lucky we are to have you share them all with us.

Snow pictures are great - we've had a tiny little amount down here in Devon overnight, but nothing to what's been happening to the rest of the country. I love those images of the steam rising from the sea, I've never seen anything like it - so dramatic and atmospheric.

Hope you enjoyed your evening of paper machie, and that it made up for the cancelled knitting group. Both children are ill here, so it's been a week of cancelled everything for us - no school, clubs or going out at all, but it's actually been quite nice just to get cosy in front of the fire and do nothing but read, watch DVDs and catch up with some lovely blogs. Christmas madness all seems quite some distance away, and makes me realise how unnecessary it all is.


Your paper machie looks brillant! I'm tempted to start ripping up paper strips myself now! Do you use wallpaper paste or something more advanced???


I LOVE your snow pictures! How beautiful! I wish we had winters like that here in Texas.
Your paper mache is beautiful! Emily and her pig are just the cutest!


I'm so lucky to have found you!
I've been browsing your blog and I'm completely, utterly in love with your work.
Straight to my reading list is where it goes.
See you later :-)


Oh that little papier mache girl! She has such character Vanessa - she looks very proud of her piggy friend. It's such a wonderful idea.

I am rather haunted my your images of steam rising off the sea. How spooky!


Wow, I LOVE your beautiful papier mache piggy and all the colours that you have used are stunning, very talented lady you are xox we are knee deep in the snow too andit's bitterly cold out there xox


What beautiful papier mache. I long to go on a Julie Arkell course. x

kate is greedy

AMAZING!!!! I am just so excited I don't know what to do!!! I know, so many exclamation points you must be thinking but that is how I feel. Paper mache is one of my favourite things in the world and you have smashed my expectations of it... I would love to do a Julie Arkell course but now and even more, I would love to do a Vanessa Cabban one. Love Kate xxooxx.

Isabelle Kaye

Wow Vanessa! Yours are the most beautiful snow photos I've seen recently! They are so artistic, really really stunning!
And well done for your papier maché creations, I've never seen anything like it!
Enjoy the snow!
Isabelle xx


Oh, my!! The little girl and pig are adorable! And the teacup and seedling, too! Your ability to move effortlessly from one artistic expression to another amazes me.

The doggies in the snow - especially the one of the single dog in the wind - touched my heart. Love the beautiful snow pictures - all of them!


Well Vanessa, clearly the recent snow is providing you with truly beautiful views. There is something about those photos with the very clean horizon line that really caught my imagination. I would love to have seen that with my own eyes.

Now. On to papier mache. I do envy you the opportunity to learn a bit from Julie A. I also like her work. But, how good that you got the lessons, but kept true to your own inner spirit. What you are doing with papier mache is very, very Vanessa! Really beautiful, whimsical, full of personality.

I still have a book on one of my shelves all about papier mache, bought on some long ago visit to London. I was sure that I would get onto experimenting with this technique straight away upon my return home, but ... almost decades later, still looking for the time. Rigth now, I am knitting and crocheting and painting up a storm. Not a snow storm. It's still very mild here in New York. xo

What a gorgeous post. The figures look like they've just stepped out of one of your illustrations. Totally, gobsmakingly charming! Claire x

Liz T.

Wow that best in show piggy might just be the cutest thing I have seen in my entire life - it just brings a big smile to my face.


Oooh, I love your papier mache creations, the piggy and girl in particular are fabulous. Can't wait to see more ...
Hen xxx

Judi A.

I adore your tea cup and Emily with piggy, but your photos of the snow, especially along the seashore, are fabulous! You certainly have an eye for capturing scenes with the camera - it's definitely evident you are an artist!


Very Beautiful snow photos and the brave doggies look like they're enjoying it. Love the prize pig and proud owner too.

Erica K

Wow! I'm seriously impressed! You're so talented Vanessa! :)

We got some snow as well, but it's gone now. Our area is horrible with snow...ridiculous really. It took some poor commuters 7 hours to make a 45 minute drive! Disgusting!


The photo of the light house... it made me cry. You live in such a beautiful place. It shows in your art, in your words and in your life. Thank you for sharing your blessings.


Those photos are amazing! I would love to visit the seaside in the snow.
Even if it was awfully cold :)

jo at cottagewannabe

How do you make the tea cup, is there a pattern


I like very much all your work!

alexandra almeida

So beautiful!! Love Emily and her pig, and all other images :)

The comments to this entry are closed.

Hello and welcome!

  • Hello, my name is Vanessa Cabban, and I'm so pleased you've dropped by! I'm an artist and illustrator, working from home. I have two Miniature wire-haired Dachshunds, Ellie and Douglas. I love being part of the blogosphere, reading your comments, and feeling like I'm part of a community. I hope you enjoy reading about my small world.

Books I have illustrated!

  • The Best Gift of All

  • Book and dvd,(narrated by Kevin Whateley), of Bringing Down the Moon

  • There's a House Inside My Mummy

  • The Magic Donkey Ride

  • Down in the Woods at Sleepytime

  • Dear Tooth Fairy

  • Dear Mermaid

  • No Place Like Home

  • Diamond in the Snow

  • Bringing Down the Moon