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Alice’s medieval wonderlands

27 October 2006

Historic Scotland has launched a new range of gifts and goodies featuring lively artwork by a young Scottish designer. The Abbeys & Cathedrals range includes mugs, jigsaws, notebooks and bookmarks featuring medieval scenes and some of Scotland’s most celebrated saints – including Columba, Andrew, Margaret and Mungo.

The artist commissioned for the light-hearted artwork is 25 year old Alice Druitt who set up her own company, Gingerpaws, selling cards showing famous Edinburgh scenes as an undergraduate. While still at university, she was commissioned by Historic Scotland to create the artwork for the popular Cartoon Castles range. Its success prompted the latest commission.

Aundrea Hollington, Head of Retail at Historic Scotland said: "We wanted artwork that would conjure up a wonderland of medieval life as well as being educational for children and what Alice has created does just that. The new Abbeys & Cathedrals range is full of fun and is a delightful celebration of Scotland’s heritage.

We have a long record of working with designers and artists from Scotland, and beyond, to create unusual and high-quality products with historical themes."

The new range is part of a major project to update, reorganise and refurbish Historic Scotland’s shops. The Crown Gift Shop at Edinburgh Castle and the outlet at the Jarlshof prehistoric and Norse settlement in Shetland are among the first to have been refitted. At the same time, new collections of goods based on themes including kings, queens, prince and princesses and banqueting have been created.

A number of products have been inspired by aspects of the remarkable properties in Historic Scotland's care. These include elements of the Tapestries Collection, from fine bone china to stationery, which were inspired by the Hunt of the Unicorn series. Full sized versions of the series, widely regarded as the world’s finest surviving European medieval tapestries, are currently being recreated to hang on the walls of Stirling Castle. The originals are in the USA.  The recreation of the tapestries is linked to a major project to return the royal apartments at the castle to how they looked in their Renaissance heyday.

Notes for editors
  • Alice is currently working in London for a fashion house. She is contactable via her website
  • The mugs retail at £4.95, the jigsaws at £4.95, notebooks £1.95 and bookmarks 75p. They are on sale at Historic Scotland’s abbeys and cathedrals or can be purchased online at or phone 0131 657 8440.
  • Historic Scotland has 345 outstanding historic properties and sites in its care. These include some of the leading tourism attractions in the country, including Edinburgh, Stirling, and Urquhart Castles, Fort George, Linlithgow Palace, the Border Abbeys, and Skara Brae.

For further information

Kate Turnbull
PR Executive
Marketing and Media
0131 668 8959