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Papercutting new items and a video!

We’ve added lots of new papercutting downloads to the site this week and will be extending the collection each month so keep checking back to see what is new. You can either have the single items or we have bundled them together for even better value.

As you can print them yourself you have control over how big you print them so you can make a range of sizes for bunting, baubles or more.

The license on these files is for personal use only, however if you should want something for commercial use then contact us and we can make you something just for you.

All the downloads come with a set of full instructions as well so do not worry if you have never done any paper cutting before. Need a bit more help before you start cutting? Check out the video to see how it’s done. 

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Apocalypticus, a truly British apocalypse

Well it was very windy and then it was wet, but it was definitely the end of the world in Britain….

courtesy of Sarah Schmidlin Photography

It was an amazing weekend of music, making new friends, meeting old ones, trading, bartering, dancing, sword fighting, life drawing, belly dancing, fire eating and drinking tea.

yep.. that’s the tea drinking!

The sun did shine on us though and we thoroughly enjoyed the end of the world! Bex got to dye lots of fabric with rusty things she found around the site and Jay got to eat the biggest ice-cream the world has ever seen for his birthday treat. 

And there was a tank to play on!

The music was amazingly varied with something for everyone across the whole weekend from ska and steampunk to rock. The traders were varied too and you could get everything from a keyring to whole new outfit.

We didn’t go on the drive with the vehicles but the videos and photos look fabulous as they went through the local towns and villages. However, we are confused as to how you lose a Hummer mid route?! 

Next year is already underway with headline acts confirmed for Friday as UK:ID and Saturday as V2A!! get your tickets booked as it is less than 9 months away as we’ve moved it to July so it is warmer (hopefully – this is Britain) and it is longer too. Do not be worried though there will still be plenty of tea as this is still going to be a truly British apocalypse. 

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11 Wednesdays until Christmas!

We’re getting excited here about Christmas (and yes we know we have not had Halloween yet). This year we have even made real Christmas kits so you can join in with making Christmas things too.

There is nothing nicer than being greeted by a wreath at the front door and these are great fun to make and reusable too. You can be inventive with your styling to make them completely personal as you start from scratch making your very own fabric using freemotion embroidery to make the red and green base fabrics. You don’t have to be an experienced machinist either as you can keep the stitching as simple or decorative as you like. The fabrics are all included in the kit along with easy to follow instructions to guide you through the process. 

Once you have your personalised fabrics you can then style the wreath using Christmas shapes with the enclosed templates. 

We believe in sustainability here at the Inventors Asylum so we have sourced wreaths that are friendly to the environment. You can choose from either the metal and fabric wrapped ring or the straw and moss ring – not a drop of polystyrene in sight! 

Circle wreath kit        Star wreath kit       Wabi Sabi wreath kit                

We would love to see your wreath once it is in situ so send us a photo or tag us in on Instagram #inventorsasylum

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Asylum X

Wow, what a time we had in Lincoln. We went expecting, well, we weren’t really sure what to expect as we had never been before. We had been told it was going to be spectacular and we were not let down. 

The advance guard party

We had given Rusty her annual tart up and she was ready to flaunt it in the sunshine (which there was for at least a day and a half of it!) So off we headed to BGU and setup right by the front doors where you couldn’t miss us.

The big new tent worked a treat in the sunshine, we had so many visitors we didn’t get to sit down all day. We even managed to get ourselves volunteered to join in with the fashion show that evening!

courtesy of Freesprite Media

In which we did not threaten to eat the audience (honest)! Even Kaida and Mak strutted their stuff down the red carpet and earned a well deserved cheeseburger afterwards.

You would have thought we would learn to stop volunteering for things, but no, on Saturday Bex got herself in charge of the microphone at The Engine Shed and compered Dystopia, Party for the End of the World with some of our favourite people including Flesh Tetris and the ever awesome V2A.  

Sunday it rained!!

A lot….. but we kept going and spent several hours outside demonstrating natural dyeing and getting wet!

And then Bex got volunteered to compere another night at the engine shed with Alice’s Night Circus, Victor and the Bully and Steampowered Giraffe. That was something special. The wedding dress and top hat came out, as did the glittery makeup (I’ve yet to find anyone who actually got a photo of the outfit!) and we made some dreams come true. 

V2A on a visit to our stand

Monday was quite a chilled out day after far too little sleep all weekend but we topped it off by meeting Terry English and having our family portrait done by Darkbox photography. (yes, that’s Terry English armour on Bex)

Will we be back next year? Hell yeah!

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Asylum X – Lincoln. What we will be up to….

It’s going to be busy in the post apocalyptic zone at the Asylum.

We’re going to be doing a wide variety of things on stand including:

1 – never wash again! how to get permanent weathering effects on clothing for the perfect post apocalyptic/aged look.

A look at techniques used to get the aged look into fabrics without it all washing out again after you have worn it once or you having to avoid hot days to keep your aged look without losing your friends.

2 –   working with rust, a guide for beginners.

Rust is not just for old cars, it is perfect for many other applications from jewellery or ornaments to dyeing fabric and staining wood. Let the Queen of Rust guide you through the basics of how to expand your use of this simple yet versatile substance.

3 – The life of a war bike

The journey from everyday ride to one of a warbike is not easy but it is fun. See what it takes to become one of the tribe and learn some of the techniques used in creating the effects on display.

4 – cyanotypes.

Creating blueprints/sunprints using the power of the sun. You can also have a go and make your own.

5 – stitching/making post apocalyptic clothing and textiles.

We have a treadle machine that we bring so you can even have a go if you like.

6 –  natural dyeing.

Using plants and rust to dye fabrics and clothing.

Also across the days we will have specific special events going on:

Thursday evening

Setup! We’ll be putting up the stand and then heading over to Charlotte House for the Advance Guard so come on by and say hello (especially if you are adept at putting up large metal tent like structures)


From 10am get your war paint on.

Bex will be helping you finish off your apocalyptic look by hosting a makeup station all day on stand where you can pick up tips and tricks for getting the look that rocks at the end of the world.


At 10.30am to get your blood flowing and your energy up we’ll be doing a wasteland workout. You don’t need fancy workout clothing or special gear as when the world ends you need to be able to move in whatever you are wearing. So join us to see how fit you really are and if you will survive! (gentle versions also available)

Before Dystopia the Party for the End of the World at the Engine Shed there will be another chance for you to get your look sorted with the post apocalyptic makeup station at the gig for one hour only. Then you can learn how to party like the world is ending….


At 2pm we will be teaching you how to prep you apocalypse bunker so when the world ends you will be ready. Join us in Constance Stewart Hall with your notepad at the ready….


For those of you who have survived the weekend we’ll be doing another full day of demos and fun on stand, so come along and say hi.

Of course we will have our usual supply of amazing things on stand for you to see and buy including lots of new products launched this month.

Still need to finish your outfit? We have plenty of clothing for sale on stand or if you want to we are offering a special service new for the Asylum – Bring along your undyed shirts/blouses/t shirts etc and we will dye them for you for only £10. All being well they will be ready to wear before the end of the weekend!!

If that’s not enough to keep you busy then check out the rest of the timetable at

Now I’m off to pack!!

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On the Road to Ruin…

What a weekend… we’ve been hiding out at a secret location in the South building at the Road to Ruin site since Friday lunch time getting the Marauders village frontage and first walls built. The weather has not been great for flat panel construction and lifting but we soldiered on. Of course, I decided it was just wabi sabi wall building – it’s mine, I’ve claimed it as a concept – and then we were off! We built doors that opened, doors that didn’t, pretty windows, gaps for severed limbs to poke through later, reinforcements, fake reinforcements, a storage cupboard, a dumping space and even a secret room called the playroom which you have to search out when you come to the festival.

the door that will open!

walls under construction

wabi sabi wall building!

We’re heading back in a couple of weeks to do more building so we’ll fill you in on more details then but until that date watch the Facebook page for the festival at  Apocalypticus – Road to Ruin 2018 


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When the Apocalypse hit the NEC!

The Apocalypse came to the Creative Craft show in June when we arrived with our set up of wasteland trading stall, bikes and, of course, Rusty all under the roof  of the NEC in Birmingham. We spent the show demonstrating what it could be like to live and work after the Great Reset when all the skills that we have come to take for granted and even forget as we have technology that can do it for us become our means of everyday survival.

We took a wide range of our costumes and props as well as fabrics and clothing, but the favourite of the weekend was yet again the string of fairy lights made from rusty tin cans.

We had our warboy on the treadle sewing machine….

We demonstrated the ability to dye fabrics using rusty objects and our magic formulas…

And we even taught workshops in full post apocalyptic gear!

It was exceedingly warm despite the air conditioning but the warpaint survived to the end. We had a fabulous time and had the chance to meet lots of you lovely people in the flesh at least so thanks for coming to see us and we will see you again very soon.

Next Creative Craft show is in Manchester in September for us and our next show is The Asylum in Lincoln where we will be up by the University and have lots of exciting things planned!

keep making…

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The Town That Never Was

The team have just returned from a fantastic weekend at the Town That Never Was. Set in the Victorian village at Blists Hill, it was a steampunk extravaganza. With monster hunts, street debates, parades, dance lessons, bad guys to catch, drill practice, live bands, a full size Tardis, fire eating, aerial dancing, flaming bagpipes and every character you could ever imagine. We can’t wait to go again next year!

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Save the planet – new refills on cyanotype kits

If you have purchased the refillable amber glass bottle cyanotype kit from us you can send it back to be refilled. When purchased each bottle contains 100ml of sensitiser, however the bottles are able to hold 150ml.

When you have finished your kit you can send your bottles back and get them refilled with your choice of either

100ml refill at £11.99 (100ml in each bottle)

150ml refill at £15.99 (150ml in each bottle)

Never tried cyanotypes before or not had a kit from us? Then you need to buy the cyanotype kit (refillable) first if you want to use this service.

All you need to do is have fun using your kit and empty your bottles, then package them carefully so they don’t break on the way to us – if we sent them to you in the first place you can send them back in the same packaging! Then send them to us here at the Inventors Asylum and we will send them back to you filled with your choice of refill. If you order other products at the same time we will wait and send them all together unless you ask us to do otherwise.

Ordinary postage rates apply.

If you need bigger bottles/greater quantities just ask and we can quote for these.

Bored of just Blue? You can also try the cyanotype toning kit to make different colours including different shades of blue, browns, red, yellow and more…

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The Inventors Asylum go on Live TV!

2018 really is a year of firsts here at the Inventors Asylum. Yesterday we had our first live TV appearance with Hochanda. The team at the studios were really friendly and were just as excited about the show as I was. Hochanda has never had cyanotypes before and they were really keen to see how they worked and learn more about the process. It was a brilliant opportunity to take our knowledge to a wider audience and secretly educate a few more people on a relaxing Sunday afternoon!

The Inventors Asylum team at home took some pictures of ‘mummy in the TV’. And the two year old was pleased to see this morning that mummy had survived and was now home and not in the TV anymore!

If you missed it you can watch it again at

The Inventors Asylum will be back on Hochanda on the 20th May at 8am and 10am with more cyanotypes and other amazing goodies so we’ll see you soon!