The Depressed Cake Shop Pops Up

Depressed Cake Shop One in Four

Apart from the Volunteers Day at Clarence House this coming weekend, Leeds will also be hosting a unique and slightly surreal event – a pop up cake shop at Leeds Corn Exchange on Sunday from 10.30 to 4 p.m. It is part of a global network of shops selling grey coloured cakes and cakes which represent mood to raise awareness of mental health issues and provide a platform for discussion.

 The symptoms of depression can be complex – and vary widely – and so will the cakes on sale, many aiming to visually represent mental illness. For example barely decorated cakes or cookies will communicate how depression can affect your ability to work, the grey & dull consistent colour scheme that all fun can disappear from life. This will be a cake shop like nothing else seen before, the sad looking but delicious tasting cakes powerfully demonstrating the effects of depression. (You can take a look at some of the ideas at )

Cakes and baked goods on sale at Leeds Corn Exchange, fitting within the theme, have been baked by over ten bakers, both professional and non-professional taking part in the event. 100% of sales from each and every cake will be donated to Inkwell and Dial House, two very important and worthy mental health charities within Leeds.

Many of the cakes will also be made by those with personal experiences of depression, using baking as a way of expressing their struggles with, and experiences of, the illness. Speaking about the shop, organiser Alice Wood comments:

“I think this is a fantastic opportunity to bring all different kinds of people together over what is usually a taboo subject.”

The long term aim of this project is set up a series of baking therapy sessions around the UK, set up a support network for those who use baking to help combat depression and support bakers through the process of turning cake making into a business as their health improves.

Bakers wishing to contribute to the shop should contact Alice Wood on or visit the Depressed Cake Shop Leeds Facebook group at, or tweet @DCSLEEDS.

 For more information on The Depressed Cake Shop please contact Alice Wood at or Miss Cakehead at or @miss_cakehead 

The Depressed Cake Shop is an Eat Your Heart Out Event, a collective of UK based food artists leading the way with creative food presentation, innovative edible projects and ground breaking edible art techniques. The key aims of the movement are to promote creativity in food, give talented individuals the chance to shine, be discovered and build their own self sufficient businesses. As part of our support network we also offer guidance, advice and media training on how to manage the many media opportunities that come along as an inevitable result of being involved with Eat Your Heart Out.

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Volunteers Get Together


Volunteers Get Together

This looks like a good chance to find out what Leeds Mind are up to – especially if you’re interested in some volunteering. I’m a bit intrigued what ‘Yummy Food’ might be, but it’s a clear promise. The garden at Clarence House will be great at this time of year, whatever happens, so there are worse things to do of an August Sunday afternoon.


Moon Piglet


Full moon this evening, I hope it’s a clear evening! – some people make claims about it’s influence on our mental state, it affects mine in positive ways. I’ve been watching it’s progress this last couple of weeks, with awe, visible during it’s early waning from dark (new) moon, in the bright blue, day sky, and subsequently a few nights ago while strolling late evening, it nearing a full silvery circle.


The day had been one of the hottest of the year so the cool evening breeze enabled me, like the nearby trees of Woodhouse Moor, to take in oxygen, me having flights of fantasy about climbing up on one of it’s branches, reclining along them as people and animals do in the tropics, or stringing up a hammock and rocking to sleep, which had been hard to find indoors,  

-‘ Ain’t it just like the night to play tricks when you’re tryin’ to be so quiet?’,

lack of sleep is  notorious for altering one’s perception,  being outdoors, snoozing on a bench, as a friend suggested perhaps allowing nature to hug me – a dizzing moment when the boundaries separating me from things ‘out there’, almost dissolved.

Apparently it’s been reported that pigs also display pleasure on moon lit nights, by singing and playing more often than usual during them!  Jeffrey Masson, former psychoanalyst, writes so movingly and amusingly about their emotional life in his book ‘The pig who sang at the moon’, he relates about a pig in New Zealand called Piglet, who was often seen on the beach, swimming- singing (in a pig like grunty way),…I’ve had the book on long term loan from veggie/vegan friends, Masson himself a vegan, concerned about people misuse of animals as food, my attempts over the years to stay meat free have failed. I only started to read it because I had been invited to an ‘Adults reading children’s fiction’ book group– that week’s  book, ‘The Sheep-pig’  by Dick King-Smith and upon which the film Babe was based, the author was once a pig farmer and the seemingly unlikely skills and adventures Babe gets up to, not so fanciful, I was surprised to learn how intelligent they are and capable of tasks usually associated with dogs, being both clean and affectionate house pets, trusting  of humans, they enjoy a tummy rub.

I’d never been to a book group before, getting together with strangers where the focus might be different from our usual interests and social circle, might result in facing possible disparity in age, background, social standing, that can be  hard  regardless  of whether we’ve experienced mental distress or not, mostly I manage to overcome any colly-wobbles.

Vicky wrote in a previous post about being transported from Hyde Park corner to Greece whilst visiting one of the  many eateries bordering the moor, I’ve seen Adonis there occasionally myself!

 After rousing myself from my waking dream, I wandered to another exotic shore – Thailand. Or at least to Mamsy’s café where a plate of the most refreshing  ‘warm’ and piquant salad priced £6, was adequate for two, after 9.30pm we had the place to ourselves.



Possibly when the student population are around that might not be the case, Mamsy’s also do take-a-way and home delivery, I guess they will be busy this coming Saturday, when the moor is the stage for Unity Day.

In the meantime watch out for me tonight, I might just be communing with the trees in their respiration and giving voice at the moon!….indeed Hyde Park, as some are want to call the moor, once had it’s own Speakers Corner….amongst the rebel rousing speakers there, several suffragettes.(no name dropping!), each one played their part in emancipation for women, however lowly their status in the movement.



Spurn Point, Holderness – a beautiful painting by Leeds Artist: Jo Dunn

A fantastic painting by Jo Dunn, it makes me feel peaceful, almost as I am there – watching the sunset and the city skyline from afar.

Jo Dunn

Spurn Point on the longest day – sunset and moonrise, 180 degrees apart. We went for an evening picnic. These paintings are from the landward-side near the Spurn Bird Observatory. Whenever I go to Spurn I wonder why I stayed away so long and I never want to leave.

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A Hot Day at Swarthmore

DSC00332  My name is Daniel Tavet, I live in Armley, Leeds.  At the moment I am doing a training session with Leeds Wellbeing, learning about their web site and about blogging.  I took this photo with a Sony bloggie camera.  It was the first time I’d used these kind of cameras.  I took this photo outside Swarthmore college, today, on this hot Thursday.  Supposedly this is the hottest it’s been for seven years.  I think it’s been longer.

leeds well-being training day, a few photos from ‘mad’ Milan

I enjoyed the training in word-press/ well-being blog; I put everyone at ease with my happy, light, playful attitude. so no more words:

Old Chinese proverb: ”One [or 4] picture[s] is worth a 1000 words”

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The Orion Cafe, LS6 a lovely experience with great salad and coffee!

 Greek Salad at The Orion Cafe,  LS6.

If you fancy some Mediterranean food on a warm (or cold) evening,  I can recommend going Greek at Hyde Park Corner. I ordered a Greek Salad, which was so lovely I went back the following evening and ordered it again!

Orion has a charm about it.  It feels authentic, laid back and warm. The atmosphere along with the current heat wave made it easy to imagine that we were somewhere more exotic than Hyde Park Corner.  After dinner we attempted to put the world to rights whilst sipping Greek Coffee and sharing Halva!  It’s definitely worth a visit and salads are reasonably priced below £5.

Incidentally, I looked up  ‘Greek Coffee’  and found a splurge of articles written earlier in the year linking it to longevity. Whilst I tend to take claims of this kind with a pinch of salt, and understand there are mixed claims about coffee,  It certainly has made me think about swapping my Latte for a Greek !


PS. The photograph, wasn’t taken at the restaurant – but the cup did have the same cute filled-in handle!

🙂 Vicky