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Mary Mary Quite Contrary

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Mary Mary quite contrary,

How does your garden grow?

With silver bells and cockleshells

And pretty maids all in a row.


A sweet nursery rhyme dating back to Olde England. A simple straightforward tale about a gardening green thumb?

mary quite contrary

Apparently not. Like many nursery rhymes that sound sweet enough, this one too has sinister roots. It tells of Mary Queen of Scots.

bloody-mary-Queen-Mary-I--007

How does her garden grow? Fertilized by the bodies of many, many protestants. How pretty is her garden filled with silver bells and cockleshells. No again. These were slang terms for torture devices. As for the pretty maids….  guillotines.

Twin GuillotinesMary Quite Contrary Wrapping Paper for my mum Mary (who is fortunately nothing like the Queen of Scots) using Acrylic paints, thumb prints and black marker pen.

thumbprint flowers ii

Birthday card made by daughter

1 drawing flower faces

1 thumbprints flowers card

How to make Floral Wrapping Paper with Thumb prints

how to make thumbprint flowers

Gift wrapped with Mary Quite Contrary Wrapping Paper

gift wrapped

 logo_fun family crafts

2 thoughts on “Mary Mary Quite Contrary

  1. Love this – I think even my little boys will do it with me…as long as we use blue paint!

  2. Ofcourse. Only blue will do! The same goes in my household with pink!

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