Afternoon Tea at the Milestone Hotel in London
The tearoom at the Milestone Hotel, London

I’m a graphic designer and illustrator who enjoys writing, and history involving art, architecture, home & garden. I design personalized stationery, prints, bookplates, and labels by day, and cook, bake and pore through cookbooks (modern and historical) by eve.

Willow Wicke is a fictional house based on the English country manor. Though it’s imaginery, the projects within this website walls are real…

Througout history, there are certain eras that always fascinated me. Most specifically Ancient Rome, Medieval, and Victorian. That said, the Renaissance is always interesting, and the Regency era that Jane Ausen describes so well in her novels, holds my attention.

The Antique world still has inspiration to offer the modern cook, baker, and gardener. Their use of plants for food, medicine, and in ceremonies, just like the folks of the Medieval era, is intriguing. And then there’s the Victorians…

The Victorian era was a time for explorers, of all different kinds, be it half away around the world hunting for exotic botanical specimens, or in the kitchen, conceiving a new dessert.

The art of cooking and baking greatly expanded during the Victorian era and the industrial revolution. It’s during this period preparation with presentation in mind came to the forefront with elaborate new food molds, and techniques for beautiful ornamentation.

Specialized societies popped up to cater to those interested in particular fields such as Archaeology, Botany, and so on. The phrase, gifted amateur comes to mind, as members were not necessarily professionals in the field.

I love taking inspiration from many different eras and I enjoy using modern means to experiment. That doesn’t mean everything is an interpretation, working with historical recipes, designs, and documents is fun and educational.

Far from being stuck in the past, studying different periods makes the present that much more interesting.

-Nancy Nikko