Interview #04 - Jonny Steele

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Blitzing stages with his vocal ballistics Jonny Steele always brings a unique catalogue of flows to the Bristol Hip Hop Scene. If, like us, you’re a fan of good vibes, extensive vocabularies & old video games, you’re about to add another all encompassing element to that list. His latest album ‘The Death Of Loki’ dropped recently. We held an inquest, these are the findings.

Q. What was the first rap you ever heard?

The first rap that I probably paid attention to would have to be MC Hammer… obviously Stop, Hammertime! Ever since I saw those parachute pants; I was enthralled, it took me and I thought, I wanna be like that guy.

Q. Which Hip Hop album did you first get your hands on?

My brother had vinyls, 3 main ones I remember him bringing them back one day; it was Queen Latifah, De La Soul & Public Enemy. I remember vividly, being on my bunk bed, looking at the vinyl covers and being like Wow! As it was a very Christian household I wasn’t allowed to listen to em, so I had to sneak around to have a little listen to them on the record player.

Q. Where and when did you first get on the mic?

I used to go to church and I used to be in the gospel music club. When I was in that I had a beautiful voice… then, as I got into my teens, my voice broke and it all went downhill from there.

Q. Who’s in your crew and who else are you working with at the moment?

In my main group, The Scribes, is Ill-literate (rhymer & producer who I’ve known since primary school), Lacey (our Beatboxer) and DJ Kenny Hectic (playing nothing but the coolest Funky House), they all live down in Plymouth. I’m the only one in Bristol and a few years back I met up with my boy Astro Snare.

Q. New albums out, ‘The Death Of Loki’; what influenced the title?

Cleaning out the closet, so to speak. I wanted to use a load of old raps that had been hibernating for a while, when I met up with Astro Snare the beats just fitted perfectly. Loki was my previous name and now I’ve gone back to Jonny Steele, it was good to get out all my old wordplay and battle raps and now I can put it to the side and move on o my new stuff… progression!

Q. You have a verbally acrobat rhyme style; do you put in a lot of practise or does it all come naturally?

Bit of both. Growing up listening to American rap and being heavy influenced by it was a good starting point. By the time I was old enough to get on open mics, UK Garage, Jungle and Drum & Bass had come through, all these different influences were going round. The main thing was being able to just jump up and do it. Playing more live shows, I get to practise more but things can sometimes go wrong (with equipment, sound etc.) I’ve had to work on my freestyling. Basically from things falling apart I’ve become very easy going with music.

Q. If you could collaborate with any artist (past, present or future) who would you choose?

Pharaohe Monch… his delivery and wordplay made me realise what rap was all about.

Q. What’s in store for 2014?

We got the new Scribes album coming very soon and my next album - ‘The Birth’ with Astro Snare. Plus there’s some nice collabos coming up and working on another new Scribes album. It’s gonna be a busy year!

So next time you’re out and something hit’s your eardrums faster than a speeding bullet; it wasn’t a bird, it wasn’t a plane it was most likely a speakerful of Jonny Steele. You can call on the caped crusader using the links below:

Follow Jonny Steele on Facebook 

Buy ‘The Death Of Loki’ Album

Listen to The Scribes

A short behind the scenes video from our recent ‘Iconology’ photo shoot. A massive thank you from us to everyone involved. All footage seen here was shot by Carlos Juan Sandubete Galán.

From March 10th 2014 our new ‘Iconology’ Range will be available, along with all our collections, for you to buy from our online shop:

Check out our original t-shirt designs here

The Bristol Tee Party

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We’re not the only place to get fine quality T-shirts in Bristol. Many independent clothes shops have been instrumental in the spread of Bristol’s fashion culture. These are the best places to shop for T-Shirts in the UK’s coolest city.

(In alphabetical order)

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5 Pointz Bristol - Independent Store

It’s hard to go past 5 Pointz and not stop to review the collection of kicks in the window. They started on Old Market Street back in 2004 and moved to Nelson Street in 2007 where they have been consistently stocking some of the freshest independent and established clothing labels on the market. Always representing street culture and urban style with a swagger; a stroll round their shop’s open layout is something you take your time about.

Established: 2004

Location: 18 Nelson Street, Bristol BS1 2LE

Brands stocked • 10 Deep • Addict• Adidas Originals • Adidas Apparel • Adidas Womens • Beastin • Brixton • Crooks & Castles • Dickies • Diamond Supply Co • Durkl • Hall of Fame • HEX • HUF • I Love Ugly • Indcsn • Jason Markk • King Apparel • Levi’s • LRG • Mighty Healthy • Mishka • New Era Caps • Nike • Nike Air Jordan • Nike Womens • Nike Apparel • Only NY • Puma • Primitive Apparel • Rebel8 • Reebok • Reebok Womens • Rook • Sale • Supra • The Hundreds • Trainerspotter

Opening Times: Mon-Sat 10am-6pm, Sun 12-5pm

Tel: 01179450555   Email: info@5pointz.co.uk   Website: www.5pointz.co.uk

Quick Questions…

Q.What’s your favourite T-shirt in your collection?

A. 10 Deep New Standard T Shirt in Navy Paisley and Navy Chipless.

Q.Which brands are you watching right now?

A. Indcsn & Primitive Apparel

Q.What’s the most played album/track/artist on your store’s playlist?

A. Ded Tebiase & Big Like Baz

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CoLab - Independent Store

Co-LAB is becoming the cornerstone of shopping and interest for the independent art scene in Bristol. As soon as you walk in the place you’re feeling the pulse, it’s a goldmine of cool stuff to look at and wear. There’s an expansive collection of independent T-shirt labels on the racks and they sell pretty much anything an artist can draw on. 

Established: 2013

Location: 2-4 Fairfax Street (Corner of Nelson Street), Bristol BS1 3DB

Brands stocked • TAPT • MRBD • Any Forty • Uchi • Spam • Banker & Benefit • Wide Eye • Boodle • Squared Roots • Who • Mute • Poison Oak • Merrimaking • Forever Endless • Everly Dark • Ocular • We Know

Opening Times: Mon12pm - 6pm, Tue - Fri11am - 6pm, Sat10am - 7pm, Sun11am - 5pm

Tel: 07584905546   Email: bristolcolab@yahoo.co.uk   Website: CoLab on Facebook

Quick Questions…

Q.What’s your favourite T-shirt in your collection?

A. Banker & Benefit 

Q.Which brand are you watching right now?

A.

Q.What’s the most played album/track/artist on your store’s playlist?

A. Proleter - Feeding the Lions EP

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Cooshti - Independent Store

Bristol’s OG when it comes to streetwear and independent fashion. Cooshti has been the staple for premium and super fresh clothing since 1993. It’s the sort of place where you look around and get seriously tempted to skip rent to be fully kitted out in exclusive apparel that you’re, pretty sure, no one else has got. It’s plain sick and slick, if your ascending Park Street stop in and see for yourself.

Established: 1993

Location: 57 Park Street, Bristol BS1 5NU

Brands stocked • Actual Pain • Addict • Adidas Originals • Adidas Ransom • Air Jordans • Anything • Asics • Brixton • Brooklyn Circus • Carhartt • Carhartt Heritage • Carhartt Udg • Carhartt • Carrera • Clae • Color Super • Converse • Dickies • Dunderson • Eastpak • Edwin • Ewing • Fred Perry • Gourmet • Gravis • Herschell Supply Co. • Inkie • Known • Lacoste • Lacoste Live • Lacoste Alex Nash • Lacoste Atmos • Lazy Oaf • Lee • Libertine-Libertine • Mad Decent X Mishka • Marshall Artist • Medicom • Mhi • Minkpink • Mishka • New Balance • Nike • Nixon • Oakley • Obey • Obey X Keith Haring • Onitsuka Tiger • Patagonia • Pandelton • Penfield • PF Flyers • Pointer • Pony • Publish • Puma • Puma X Hussein Chalayan • Ray-Ban • Red Wing Shoes • Reebok • Saucony • Silas • Silas X Slam City Skates • St.Pauli • Stussy • Stussy X Holden • Stussy X Yo! MTV Raps • Suit • Super By Retrosuperfuture • The Quiet Life • Undefeated • Uniforms For The Dedicated • Vans • Vans California • Wesc • X-Large

Opening Times: Mon-Sat 10am-6pm, Sun 12-5pm

Tel: 01179290850   Email: info@cooshti.com   Website: www.cooshti.com

Quick Questions…

Q.What’s your favourite T-shirt in your collection?

A. Stussy World Tour

Q.Which brands are you watching right now?

A. Brooklyn Circus, Garbstore

Q.What’s the most played album/track/artist on your store’s playlist?

A. John Wayne - Rap Album One

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Donuts - Independent Store

Donuts have been feeding Bristol their dope delights of design, streetwear and music since 2007. As well as making noise with their music events; they hold down a strong shop gig too. There’s always a healthy selection of sick t shirts designs on the walls and they showcase some of the sweetest independent talent out there. It’s pretty tasty so, if you’re round that way, take a bite.

Established: 2007

Location: 8 Perry Road, Bristol BS1 5BQ

Brands stocked • African Apparel • Asics • Bridge UNLTD • Bridging The Gap • Clae • Colourway • Donuts • Fjallraven • Grind London • Norse Projects • Percival • Perks and Mini • PRMTVO • Rockwell • Stones Throw • SWAMP81 VS Donuts • Tape-Echo • The Decades Hat Co. • The Trilogy Tapes • The Williams Sisters • TOOMUCH® • Trapstar • Uno One Print • Wood Wood • Y’OH Sport

Opening Times: Mon-Sat 11am-7pm

Tel: 01179292625  Email: store@donutsthestore.co.uk   Website: www.donutsthestore.co.uk

Quick Questions…

Q.What’s your favourite T-shirt in your collection?

A. Bob Marley - African Apparel

Q.Which brand are you watching right now?

A. Perks & Mini

Q.What’s the most played album/track/artist on your store’s playlist?

A. Dane Funk

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Fifty Fifty - Independent Store

Skater owned and operated; Fifty Fifty has become one of the most respected skate & streetwear stores in the UK. Sponsoring talent on wheels in Bristol since 1997, they’ve helped the skate scene in the city thrive. There’s awesome board designs and gear to check out but if you prefer to stay on your feet, you can take a look at their gnarly clothing and t-shirt collection.

Established: 1997

Location: 8 Park Street, Bristol BS1 5HR

Brands stocked • 3D Skateboards • 5boro • Alien Workshop • Anti Hero • A Third Foot • Bohnam • Boikzmoind • Bones • Butter Goods • Chocolate • Converse • DC • DGK • Diamond Supply Co. • Fifty Fifty • Fourstar • Girl • Glassy Sun Haters • Grizzly • Hubba • Indcsn • Independent • Isle Skateboards • Jansport • KR3W • Krooked • Lakai • Levi’s Skateboarding • Listen • Magenta • Mini Logo • Nike SB • Palace • Passport • Polar • Powell • Real • Rip N Dip • Science Skateboards • Skate Mafia • Skateboard Cafe • Spitfire • Statecide • Supra • The National Skateboard Co. • Thrasher • Thunder • Vans • Venture • Vic Apparel • Visual • Welcome Skateboards • Zoo York

Opening Times: Mon-Sat 10am-6pm, Sun 12-5pm

Tel: 01179304990   Email: store@5050store.com   Website: www.5050store.com

Quick Questions…

Q.What’s your favourite T-shirt in your collection?

A. Fifty Fifty - Chocolate Skateboard

Q.Which brands are you watching right now?

A. Polar & Skate Cafe

Q.What’s the most played album/track/artist on your store’s playlist?

A. Pete Rock & CL Smooth

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Natives -  - Independent Store

Representing local and vintage flavour on the Broadmead scene, Natives stepped up in 2013 offering the shopping area something a little different. Sporting vintage wears and independent labels; they’re definitely brightening up the place in a big way. With an in-store barber shop coming soon, they’ve got everything to have you looking trim from threads to skin.

Established: 2013

Location: Union St, Bristol BS1 2DD

Brands stocked • 71 Queens • Addict • Agora Vintage • Alice Takes a Trip • Allow London • Antique • Believe • Bellfield Clothing • BOISHT Clothing • Bullion • Diamonds & Elephants • DS71 • Dynamic Style • Good for Nothing GFN • Hooligan Soup • Innercity Clothing • Jelly & Cream Clothing • Known • Kuccia • Lazy Oaf • Less • Mod Dolly • Monkee Genes • Not Too Shabby • Pharao • Other UK • Realm & Empire • Serge DeNimes • Sprayground • The Affair • These Folk • UCLA Clothing • Uncommon Nonsense • Wilderness Apparel • Vintage • Urban Couture

Opening Times: Mon-Sat 10am-6pm, Sun 12-5pm

Tel: 01179450555   Email: info@71queens.com  Website: www.71queens.com

Quick Questions…

Q.What’s your favourite T-shirt in your collection?

A. Other UK - Faded Roses Tee

Q.Which brands are you watching right now?

A. Believe & Serge Denimes

Q.What’s the most played album/track/artist on your store’s playlist?

A. Talib Kweli & Hi-Tek - Just Begun Feat. Jay Electronica, J Cole & Mos Def

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Over Here - Independent Store

To hold down your corner of Bristol’s oldest marketplace you’ve got to have a little bit of old school in there somewhere. Over Here brings it up to date and represents a bit of Bristol culture with their original tee designs. It’s a co-project from Spam & Utchi and there’s always smiles when you’re perusing their collections, plenty of classics.

Established: 2004
Location: The Exchange Hall, St Nicholas Market, Corn Street, Bristol BS1 1JQ
Brands stocked: • Utchi • Spam • Fair & Funky Skirts

Opening Times: Mon-Sat 9.30am-5pm

Tel: 07813908532   Email: overherebristol@gmail.com   Website: Over Here on Facebook 

Quick Questions…

Q.What’s your favourite T-shirt in your collection?

A. Spam - Cassette Deck & Utchi ‘π’ (Pi)

Q.Which brands are you watching right now?

A. Fair & Funky Skirts

Q.What’s the most played album/track/artist on your store’s playlist?

A. The Journey Men

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Shop Dutty - Independent Store

Nuff respect due to Dutty! They represent Bristol to the fullest. From their heavy music night roots to there recent London invasion, they’ve always done it Dutty. They’re constantly supporting local designers & labels, stocking independent brands and seeking out the finest vintage picks. It’s a hive of creativity and you can even buy yourself some spray paint along with your new garms and go make somewhere in Bristol look more Bristol.

Established: 2003

Location: 116 Cheltenham Rd, Bristol BS6 5RW

Brands stocked: • Butchi & Gosmos • DissMiss Designs • Dutty Girl • Tesla Designs • Puckoo Culture • Jennifer Hope • Forever Endless • Ted Draws • Long Fox • Fund • Crillionaire • Orca • Ocular • Haze Clothing • Netties Boutique • Alterr Ego • Black & Ambitious • Dr. Banana • Mute Collective • Dour Dour • Kuccia • Acid House • Peace Glo • Antiform • Trap Magazine • Love My Custom • Red Bird Makes • Elsie Belle • Asanda • Working Clasp • My Bear Hands • Boom Things • Little Seeds • Magpie Chique • Flöss by Caro • Where’s Nana • Vintage

Opening Times: Mon-Sat 11am-7pm

Tel: 01179249990   Email: info@shopdutty.com   Website: www.shopdutty.com

Quick Questions…

Q.What’s your favourite T-shirt in your collection?

A. Dutty Lifestyle Tee

Q.Which brands are you watching right now?

A. Peace Glo, Long Fox & Ocular

Q.What’s the most played album/track/artist on your store’s playlist?

A. Jungle - Drops

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Way - Independent Store

Way is a new-comer to Gloucester Road that stands out already with the freshest and funkiest streetwear on the whole street. Their collection is bold, colourful and a genuine feast for the eyes. Supporting local brands and searching high and low to bring some great independent clothing labels to the Bristol people; we think they’re Way cool.

Established: 2013

Location: 67a, Gloucester Road, Bristol BS7 8AD

Brands stocked: • Mr Gugu & Miss Go • And Clothing • Not Too Shabby • Gusto • Urban Junk • Merk Wood • Pink Dolphin • Way (leggings and jewellery)

Opening Times: Mon-Sat 10am-6pm, Sun 12-5pm

Email: waybristol@hotmail.co.uk   Website: Way on Facebook

Quick Questions…

Q.What’s your favourite T-shirt in your collection?

A. Mr Gugu & Miss Go Pharaoh Tee

Q.Which brand are you watching right now?

A. Nicce London

Q.What’s the most played album/track/artist on your store’s playlist?

A. Majestic Casual - Chapter I

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Weapon Of Choice - Independent Store

An advocate of Bristol’s strongest method of expression; Weapon of Choice was the first dedicated graffiti and street art gallery in town. Ever since starting out as a live graffiti and Hip Hop night, they’ve been keeping Bristol’s culture bubbling with their original art, music and clothing. They display works and hold exhibitions for Bristol’s upcoming and most sought after graffiti & street artists, keep a look out.

Established: 2007

Location: 8B Park Steet, Bristol BS1 5HR

Brands stocked: • Weapon Of Choice • Regular Guest Artists

Opening Times: Mon-Sat 10am-6pm

Tel: 01179291865   Email: weaponofchoiceltd@gmail.com   Website: www.weaponofchoicegallery.co.uk

Quick Questions…

Q.What’s your favourite T-shirt in your collection?

A. Weapon of Choice - White with White Logo Tee 

Q.Which brand are you watching right now?

A. Sebastian Clarke

Q.What’s the most played album/track/artist on your store’s playlist?

A. Buggsy - The Great Escape, Season 2

Hopefully now you can navigate, avoiding all the big chains and pick up some sick T-shirts from Bristol’s best independent clothing shops. Keep it local People!

Tell us what you think, if there’s an independent shop we’ve missed out let us know by leaving us a comment or sending an email. You can always check out our shop for our own collection of original tee designs.

From bedroom floor to shop floor, tees are folded using lots of different techniques. Here’s a little bit of advice on keeping your awesome T-shirt collection looking almost ironed.

Check out the full article on our blog here:

http://www.nottooshabbyclothing.com/blogs/news-feed

Take a closer look at ‘Homie Pigeon’ and all our other original tee designs at our shop:

http://www.nottooshabbyclothing.com/collections/not-too-shabby-shop

If you’re not familiar with Dub FX’s music yet we suggest you check out this great website called YouTube. If the cosy little rock you’ve been under doesn’t have a strong enough internet connection; you should hike for a few days to your nearest internet café.
From busking on the streets and blowing up laptop speakers to playing on some of the biggest stages of the world; Dub FX’s music and message has earned him a massive worldwide following. We had a back and forth; it didn’t rhyme, there was no beat but miraculously it doubled as a perfect set of interview questions.
Q. What’s your earliest memory of performing?
My earliest memory of performing would have to be when i was about 4 years old, I was singing “La Bamba” and sliding across the lounge room on my knees playing a blow up guitar I won at a carnival. I made my mother proud.
Q. If you could go back to any gig, stage or jam, for one last song, where would it be?
Probably Woodstock in Poland; 300,000 people in front of the biggest stage I will ever play in my life! Ridiculousness!
Q. What equipment are you having fun with at the moment?
GT10b, RC505, Ableton… I’m trying to minimise my set up while having the biggest possible sound!
Q. You’ve just put out your latest album ‘Theory Of Harmony’, what influenced the project the most?
Mainly the fact that I haven’t had an album out since 2009! and I’m sick of playing the same tunes.
Q. How do you get over writer’s block?
Never heard of it, I honestly don’t get it. I’m constantly creating from when I wake up to when I go to bed. I write down 2-3 ideas a day, on average, and when i want to write a song i piece them all together. I have an infinite bag of lyrics and melodies that i can always dip into.
Q. What tune’s are you bopping to at the moment?
Fat Freddie’s Drop, Hiatus Kaiyote, Chords, random shuffle on my phone.
Q. If you could jam with anyone (past or present) who would it be?
The Beatles because they are funny mother fuckers.

If you’re not familiar with Dub FX’s music yet we suggest you check out this great website called YouTube. If the cosy little rock you’ve been under doesn’t have a strong enough internet connection; you should hike for a few days to your nearest internet café.

From busking on the streets and blowing up laptop speakers to playing on some of the biggest stages of the world; Dub FX’s music and message has earned him a massive worldwide following. We had a back and forth; it didn’t rhyme, there was no beat but miraculously it doubled as a perfect set of interview questions.

Q. What’s your earliest memory of performing?

My earliest memory of performing would have to be when i was about 4 years old, I was singing “La Bamba” and sliding across the lounge room on my knees playing a blow up guitar I won at a carnival. I made my mother proud.

Q. If you could go back to any gig, stage or jam, for one last song, where would it be?

Probably Woodstock in Poland; 300,000 people in front of the biggest stage I will ever play in my life! Ridiculousness!

Q. What equipment are you having fun with at the moment?

GT10b, RC505, Ableton… I’m trying to minimise my set up while having the biggest possible sound!

Q. You’ve just put out your latest album ‘Theory Of Harmony’, what influenced the project the most?

Mainly the fact that I haven’t had an album out since 2009! and I’m sick of playing the same tunes.

Q. How do you get over writer’s block?

Never heard of it, I honestly don’t get it. I’m constantly creating from when I wake up to when I go to bed. I write down 2-3 ideas a day, on average, and when i want to write a song i piece them all together. I have an infinite bag of lyrics and melodies that i can always dip into.

Q. What tune’s are you bopping to at the moment?

Fat Freddie’s Drop, Hiatus Kaiyote, Chords, random shuffle on my phone.

Q. If you could jam with anyone (past or present) who would it be?

The Beatles because they are funny mother fuckers.

Viva La Hen/Bitchin Art

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There’s quite a bit of rough in Bristol, fortunately that means there’s a few more diamonds. This one glistens more than most! With her unique creativity and handmade fancies, Viva La Hen has been brightening up the badlands of Totterdown and beyond.

We had some questions we needed to get off our chest, she covered them in answer glitter and tattooed them right back on us. 

Q. What were your first Viva La Hen Creations?

Hummm, my first bitchin’ art creation was probably the tattooed grapefruit I still have on my mantle piece. It was the first thing I ever tattooed when I was a young whipper-snapper and an apprentice at a Tattoo Studio. Whilst all the other tattooed grapefruits that I practised on rotted away, that one dried out hard. I have no idea why it was the sole survivor but it’s totally bitchin’.

Q. How do you get in the mood for creating?

The best way to get me in the mood is music. The perfect day in the studio is when I have a list of new musical recommendations to listen to whilst I work, oh and an endless supply of tea with the occasional biscuit. 

Q. What’s your favourite medium and media to work with?

Easy, my favourite medium is glitter. Love a bit of glitz, shiner the better!

Q. You used to be a tattooist; what’s the weirdest piece you’ve ever had to tattoo on somebody?

There has been a few awful tattoo designs that I’ve tried to talk people out of. One young man got Romeo written on his arm before a holiday to Ibiza. He certainly didn’t come across as much of a Casanova, truly terrible!

One of the most shocking tattoo’s was a guy who got ‘the mother of my son is a c**t’ tattooed on his chest in Latin. At least you couldn’t read what it said, but geez, that is harsh!

The worst tattoo of all was a man that got a bulldog smoking a cigar tattooed with a ladies name under it. The next day he came back to get it covered over and told me it had been a one night stand!!! What an feckin’ plonker! 

Q. All your stuff is very unique; is there anything you ever made and wished you could get back?

Oh yes, I once sold a ‘Ship Shape and Bristol Fashion’ painting with a big maritime ship in bright jazzy colours that I wish I kept. I’ve been meaning to paint an even bigger better one ever since but keep getting distracted by other projects.

I also made biscuit bunting out of felt with all my favourite biscuits. It was really detailed and took ages to make and looked totally bangin hanging up in my room so when it came to selling it, I slapped on a ridiculously high price I thought no one would go for. But they did. Darn shame, I loved those lil custard creams. At least I had enough money to buy plenty of real biscuits.

Q. What phantasy item would you like to get hold of and pimp-up a la Viva la Hen style?

I would love a laser cutter…I could make endless great bits and bobs with that. So if your not sure what to get me for Christmas…

Q. We’re guessing there’s probably a lot of stuff your drawing board; is there anything coming soon you can tell us about?

Well after a busy few months working and performing on other people’s projects, Im dedicating January to concentrating on my paintings ready for an exhibition in the Spring and developing some walk-about collobration ideas for 2014’s festivals!!! Watch this space!

Thank you Viva La Hen for your precious jewels of information! If you want to watch that space you can see more of her cool creations on Viva La Hen Website. You could always take a trip to Bristol’sHarbourside Market this weekend (Ending Sunday 22nd Dec 2013) or at the Arts West Side pop-up shop on Saturday 21st Dec 2013. Grab yourself some original Viva La Hen shizzle for chrizzmizzle!