Taxidermy - a mouse in a day

The art of taxidermy is in preparing, stuffing and then mounting the skins of animals for display.  These could be as hunting trophies, or for museum use or maybe the preservation of a beloved pet.  Taxidermy is a Greek word for "arrangement of skin".  On this one-day course you will learn the basic art using a mouse.  Don't worry, it will have been bought from a pet shop (where they are used to feed reptiles) and killed painlessly using a gas.

Although embalmed animals have been found with Egyptian mummies (remember all those mummified cats they once used for fertiliser here?), the earliest methods of taxidermy came to prominence in the 18th century, mainly in europe, but the heyday of the art came in the mid 19th century, when a much more lifelike appearance was produced.  They were often displayed in beautiful domed glass cases, surrounded by suitable foliage.


Considering this was the first time that this course was run, I thought it ran incredibly smoothly. Not only because the taxidermy skills were taught effectively, but it also ran smoothly from a timing point of view and the number of people on the course was just right. The only thing that was slightly frustrating was getting a peek at what Jools was doing to that tiny mouse which was obscured by her hands. She did stop and show us regularly what we needed to see though. The materials provided were good too, anticipating the need for various items like glue or cotton buds, and the nice little touch of a bag to take your mouse home in.  And speaking of which, my mouse looks quite bewildered perched on a shelf in the kitchen…. stuffing an animal is a really creepy thing to do, in some weird way. But it was a fascinating experience and a wonderful day at the mill.  Last thing… if Jools does send you through the picture of all the mice on the window ledge, I’d love to have a copy.Fabulous course – great to be able to achieve a good result in one day.  I bought my own bits to pose the mouse as I wasn’t sure what was provided so that info up front would have been helpful.  Everything else absolutely fab.

Really enjoyed the course.  Jools was fantastic and had a very carefree and relaxed style which was great.  Food and cakes were delicious.  Excellent all round.

Wonderful course, tutor was very thorough with the step by step process.  Venue was beautiful.

I had the most fabulous day and Jools, Anne & Bob were so welcoming.  Lesley

I really good, fascinating course.  Surprised myself that my mouse turned out so good.  V ery good tutor.  Whole environment and catering excellent.  Very good value for money.  Graham L.

What a wonderful day.  Anne and Bob looked after us so well, with a wonderful lunch and a fantastic course.  Thank you.  Emma W.

Thank you so much for the wonderful course you ran on Saturday, myself and Su Ling had a wonderful time, from morning brownies to afternoon cake and a wonderful lunch, it all gave the day a personal touch that made it stand out as being truly special.


Jools Abbey
Saturday, 27 October, 2018

Times10 - 4.30


What to Bring

Small hand-held hair dryer.


Jools will bring everything you need but you might like to bring/create a setting for your mouse.  Have a look at the photos for ideas.  Last time, she brought some tiny dolls house furniture for students to take away.