Posts tagged ‘oxford’

This past Saturday, we hosted the grand launch party of the new Barefoot Books World Atlas at our Oxford Studio. Author and explorer Nick Crane was there to share stories from his many travels, sign books and let some very lucky kids try on his hat collection from countries around the world. And on top of all that, there was a very special and delicious Barefoot Books World Atlas cake! For those of you who weren’t able to be there, here’s a look at the festivities!

…who would you be? This was the question we asked the guests who came to our launch party earlier this month. We invited the wonderful Sophie Herxheimer to paint everyone’s vision of themselves. Sophie sat talking, listening and painting from 7.00pm til 11.00pm, by which time she had created over 30 remarkable pieces of work. Here are some of the results. Puck is my older son, Francis, and I chose to be the fairy godmother in Cinderella. Who would you be, and why?

We have had a hectic half-term week in the Oxford Studio.  Thank you to everyone who has come along to enjoy the many performances that were on offer, to browse and buy our books and to savour the many treats in the Storyteller’s Cafe. A special thank you to Amanda Morley, of the Phil & Jim Puppet Theatre Company, who adapted ‘The Drummer Boy’ from The Barefoot Book of Indian Tales to mark the festival of Divaali.

The lights of the shop have been turned down, the chefs have gone home from the cafe, and the office staff have closed their computers. But the day is not over: every Tuesday evening, Jo Kelsey runs a pilates class for adults in our first floor studio. And every other Tuesday, Vic and I run workshops for aspiring illustrators and writers. Here are some photographs from last week’s Tuesday activities, and here are seven tips that came out of the writing workshop:

If you had been in Oxford this weekend, you may have wended your way to our Grand Opening. The character waiting for you outside the studio was none other than the Terrible Chenoo from our new series Monster Stories; he was VERY hungry. Beyond him you will have found entertainers of every kind:

Come along and join us for our grand opening weekend! After many months of hard work and crises of different shapes and sizes, we are open at last at 294 Banbury Road, Oxford.

‘Imagination unbound’ is the campaign that is underway in Oxford as the city sets out to become the UNESCO World Book Capital 2014. So it was with great excitement, and wide-open imaginations, that our events manager, Fi Ross, and I sat down this week to meet Jackie Ibbotson and Hannah Kirby, the dynamic women behind this initiative. Since its inception in 2001, no World Capital Book City has been based in an English-speaking country.

…a new Studio has opened, and it’s like nothing you have seen before. If you don’t believe me, come along to 294 Banbury Road, Oxford and step inside. Yes, we are finally open for business! The drills have been packed up, the floors have been swept and polished, and the builders have gone.  Instead, every time the door opens, another curious customer comes in, often with a small child or three in tow. Slowly and surely, one day at a time, the word is spreading. We have all kinds of family-friendly activities, from arts and crafts to pyjama-time storytelling – here are a few images from the first week in our new world…

At long last, the builders have laid down their drills and the painters are busy at work. The retail, cafe and studio spaces of our new home in Summertown, north Oxford are being transformed from plasterwork and bare boards to an Aladdin’s cave of colours and contrasts.

Soon after I had started Barefoot Books with Nancy, a manuscript arrived with a cover letter saying ‘Dear Mrs Strickland, have you ever wondered what it is like to go to the dentist, from the point of view of the tooth?’ I did not think that this was a promising theme for a children’s book, so I rejected the manuscript. However, this summer it has returned to haunt me.