Hi!  I’m Vanessa and I’m delighted you’ve taken the time to visit ARC, which stands for Art, Rocks and Crafts.

In the everyday I am a wife to kind and patient husband Peter, a mother to five fantastic children (three now adults and two teenagers) and a Nanna of two wonderful grandchildren.

I started this blog to show you the decorative painting style known as Folk Art and the unlimited projects you can give a new lease of life to by using it.  As well as painting there are other craft styles I use to create greetings cards, personalised gifts, small items of  furniture and home accessories and offer workshops, parties and one-to-one instruction to teach you the skills you need to make these, or similar items yourself.  


These are a small sample of some of the things I have transformed.

And below shows a recent workshop where the group created Christmas hanging decorations using Folk art dotting technique.

Art and crafts are great fun are a real confidence booster when you look at the beautiful things you have created using some very simple techniques.  But there is another side to it and this is an area in 2019 that I am will be increasing my involvement in and it is the health and wellbeing benefits to art and crafts.

It is becoming more widely recognised that art and crafts (to be fair, any creative activity or hobby) can have an incredibly positive impact on a person’s overall mental and physical health and wellbeing.  This is being evidence by recent research and in some areas and countries, including the UK is even being prescribed by doctors and health workers.

Take a look at this short video by  the BBC Arts online where Dr Daisy Fancourt talks about why she thinks it’s important. 

As well as the Folk Art workshops I volunteer at two local community groups who provide a safe space for people to meet and on the back of these myself and another lady, Penny, set up Friends of South Town (images above) to provide the same safe space to those in the more deprived area of Leamington.  All of the groups offer help and advice for those who need extra support, a non-judgemental environment and the opportunity to make new friends. 

The following are quotes from people attending one or another of groups, which are lovely and confirm that arts and crafts do help people, added to that they are creating some wonderful handmade or hand painted items so it’s plain to see this is a win-win activity.

“I’m glad I came along today.  Everyone is so friendly and I’ve really enjoyed doing the crafts.  You don’t think about your problems while you’re doing someone, you can just lose yourself for a couple of hours.  I’ll be coming again!”

“Oh I do feel better now. I was quite flustered when I came in and didn’t really want to join in but doing that has really calmed me down.  Thank you!”

Keep an eye out for my next Workshops.  Not one planned soon enough?  Why not think about arranging small painting party with a few friends in your home or contact me for details on one-to-one sessions.

Happy crafting in whatever form that may be and, if you live in the area, I look forward to meeting  you soon. 😊