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‘Hector’s Perfect Cake’ by Lily Clarke

Cambridge-based author and illustrator Lily Clarke is crowdfunding via Kickstarter to publish her first picture book titled Hector’s Perfect Cake. Less than 10 days into the campaign, Lily is close to hitting her initial target of £3,000 – but she really needs your support as the project will only be funded if it reaches its goal!

Lily Clarke, member of #WeAreCambsCreatives, works full-time as a technology consultant and also runs a small illustration business, Lily In Space. Lily decided to self-publish her first illustrated children’s story so that she could write whilst continuing the career she enjoys deeply.

Hector’s Perfect Cake is a 28-page picture book about accepting that sometimes things just don’t go to plan.

Lily says: “Children can become fixated on ensuring everything they do is ‘perfect’, believing themselves to have failed if they are unable to achieve this. Hector’s Perfect Cake is a story that teaches children that perfection is not always as important as it might feel.”


Hector is baking a cake for his Granny and he’s determined that it’s going to be perfect. It’s almost finished, there’s just one more ingredient to add – peanut butter! But when Hector discovers that the jar is empty, he decides that he must head out to find some more, or else his perfect cake will be ruined. It’s not long until the party though, so he’ll have to be quick! As time begins to run out, Hector’s luck begins to run out too. He may have to accept that sometimes perfection just isn’t possible.

The campaign is live on Kickstarter until the end of July and you can pledge your support here. Choose to donate any amount or select from one of the project rewards which include signed paperback editions of the book itself and full-colour illustrated bookmarks based on the characters from the story. There are also activity packs and teacher resources available too!

A fixed-format eBook edition of the book will be created if the project hits £3,500 and it will also become available as an additional reward. Pledge for any of the rewards and you will have your name listed on a dedicated supporters page at the back of the book. Find out more at:

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Could you sew Scrubs for Cambridgeshire?

Sewists from across the county are joining forces to help make scrubs for our local NHS and healthcare workers! Groups have been established and they are still looking for volunteers to get involved to assist in producing these vital items for hospitals and other organisations across Cambridgeshire.

Royal Papworth Hospital NHS Foundation Trust based in Cambridge have said: “To increase our provision of scrubs, we are asking the community to make scrubs and drop them off at the South entrance of the hospital.” They are encouraging anyone who is handy with a sewing machine to help out and have said there is no restriction on the colour or design of the material.

The pattern requirements can be found in the Scrub Hub document here.

Image Credit: Scrub Hub

Scrubs for Cambridgeshire, organised by local fashion and jewellery designer Gioconda Gomez (Gorgeous Little Things), is just one of the amazing community groups working together to help make a difference and support the NHS during the COVID-19 crisis.

Gio set out with the intention of creating and donating just 10 sets of scrubs but soon realised that the demand was very high and so reached out to students of her sewing club for help.

A Facebook group and fundraiser were also launched to help the group meet the requirements of Hinchingbrooke Hospital who were in need of over 100 scrub uniforms. Having raised over £2,000 in just 12 days, Scrubs for Cambridgeshire are now working to provide scrubs to other local hospitals and GP surgeries, including Addenbrooke’s and Royal Papworth – with the help of over 200 volunteers and supporters.

Image Credit: Jane Dean

Over on Instagram this week we have been following the #ScrubsForCambridgeshire project as well as Gio – who usually specialises in bridal and evening gowns – and other local creatives who have switched up their services in response to the pandemic.

Clare Szabo of River Elliot Bridal says: “So what does a dressmaker do when most of her work has been postponed? She makes scrubs. I’ve started on a mass production of scrubs to donate to the NHS.”

Clare also shared that she was able to make a special set of scrubs for her sister who works for the NHS – and that the donations received so far, which go towards buying fabric, are really helping the amazing workers on the frontline.

Image Credit: River Elliot Bridal
Image Credit: River Elliot Bridal

Frances Guinee of Frankie and the Sewing Machine who has been put in charge of making scrub hats says: “The demand is just crazy!” She has kindly shared the information you will need if you would like help out making scrub hats! You can find the printable pattern here and a video tutorial here.

Fran informs us that the fabric must be 100% cotton or polycotton, washable up to 60°C and not see through. She suggests you can use new or used bed sheets in good condition – and the fabric can be any colour or pattern. Please ensure you pre-wash any fabric at 60°C before you sew with it.

Image Credit: Frances Guinee

Cambridgeshire Scrub Hub is another group who are looking for volunteers and they are currently raising funds through a GoFundMe campaign. They say: “There is a now national shortage of scrubs and we are hoping that by setting up our own small local hub in Cambridgeshire, we can help at least some of the doctors who live and work close to us.”

The Cambridge Fabric Company, who are working alongside Make Cambridge Fashion School, say: “We have been blown away by all the amazing work our customers are doing to help the NHS. Masks, scrubs and wash bags are desperately needed and you guys are amazing. We are donating whatever we can – miles of elastic and cotton to help the cause.”

Katie, owner of the Cambridge-based fabric store, posted on social media earlier today saying that the response had been great but that more help is needed to meet the demands.

Kath, who is coordinating Make Cambridge’s effort, has received a request from the Stroke department at Addenbrooke’s Hospital for a large quanity of scrubs and is asking for your help. You can find out more information by contacting her via email to:

Image Credit: Gioconda Gomez

Do you any experience with dressmaking or are you a seamstress that could offer your time over the coming weeks to help? Please consider reaching out to one of these groups to help with their efforts in supporting our incredible healthcare workers.

If you are a member of a group making scrubs that we have not mentioned – or if you are a local business who have risen to the challenge of manufacturing personal protective equipment (PPE) or other products – then do get in touch as we would love to share your story.

Keep up-to-date with what is happening across Cambridgeshire’s creative scene by subscribing to receive our latest news posts via email – and follow our #CambsCreativeScene tag on Instagram.

If you enjoy content from The Trove Cambridge then please consider supporting what we do by buying us a “coffee” at: