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The Tailor of Gloucester (The World of Beatrix Potter: Peter Rabbit)

4.06 of 5 stars 4.06  ·  rating details  ·  3,191 ratings  ·  89 reviews
The Tailor of Gloucester was first published in 1903 and tells the story of a poor tailor trying to survive in his freezing workshop over a hard winter. He has a terribly important commission to complete for the Mayor of Gloucester's wedding on Christmas Day but is ill and tired, and before long is running out of food and thread, as well as time! How will he possibly compl ...more
Hardcover, 58 pages
Published September 16th 1992 by Warne (first published 1903)
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Community Reviews

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Good story of mice coming to the rescue at the eleventh hour of a foolish tailor who has agreed, probably without due consideration, to provide the Mayor of Gloucester with a coat for his wedding on Christmas day of all days. Thankfully the mice are handy with a needle and thread. The tailor has a morally questionable cat called Simpkin who is sent out to do the shopping when the tailor falls ill. Simpkin also has a penchant for storing well-dressed mice under teacups for treats later on, but th ...more
The Tailor that is referred to in Potter's tale is a hardworking tailor who provides the richest in his town with silks and other beautiful garments but he himself is very poor. One day, the Tailor gets his big break as the Mayor of Gloucester asks the Tailor to provide him with a coat for his wedding on Christmas Day. The Tailor of Gloucester gets to it right away as he knows this will lead him to gaining a fortune. He gives money to his cat, Simpkin, (magical realism?) to buy milk and the fi ...more
This story reminds me about the story of the elves and the shoemaker.
I found this book at a book sale and snapped it up, for it is a smart looking hard back. I enjoyed reading this to my son, who sat contentedly on my lap through the entire thing. I enjoyed the colorful descriptions of the tailor's work and his little quirks. What made me really like it was how the mice returned kindness for kindness to the old tailor, which in turn convicted the selfish cat who was repentant of his own wickedness and made the situation right. The illustrations were sweet and ele ...more
Una Kilcoyne
This is a really lovely book by Beatrix Potter. It tells the tale of an old Tailor who is to make a waistcoat for the Town Mayor for his wedding day. When the Tailor falls ill, he becomes under-pressure to get the waistcoat made in time. With the help of some friendly mice who work together to get the job done, the suit is made for the Mayor and in turn, the Tailor becomes successful for his good work. We are also introduced to Simpkin the mischievous cat who tries to capture the mice until the ...more
Tom Stickings
The Tailor of Gloucester is a sweet tale about an old man’s struggle to sew a beautiful coat in time for the Mayor of Gloucester’s wedding. The man is very poor and has a great deal invested in the coat, but being so frail, he is forced to send his cat, Simpkin, to buy the materials he needs. Whilst Simpkin is away, the tailor finds and frees some mice the cat has trapped, ready to eat upon his return. Simpkin is so furious, he hides the twist of silk he was sent to buy.

As the wedding approaches
Neville Ridley-smith
My kids (14, 11, 9) & I are reading through the Complete Tales of Beatrix Potter. On to book 3.

This was a departure from the previous two. Within just the first sentence we had to look up several words. No simple sentences for you! Periwigs, lappets, paduasoy and taffeta. Alack, I am undone!

There are some very strange things in this story. The character of Simpkin the cat is given money by the tailor to go and buy things - in some pictures he's wearing clothes, in others he appears as a norm
This was apparently Beatrix Potter's favourite, and so far it's my favourite too. It's rather different from the others, with the main character being a human person - a poor tailor, who makes luxurious clothes for the wealthy while wearing tatters himself, and who says 'Alack!' a lot. (Incidentally, it turns out this is a Christmas story - quite appropriate to the present season.)

Well, this tailor (who, unlike Potter's animal characters, doesn't appear to have a name) is making a fancy red silk
The Tailor of Gloucester tells the story of a tailor who must make a coat for the mayor’s wedding on Christmas Day. With barely a penny to his name he works with marvellous silks to create the finest coat for the occasion, all the while being watched by mice that live between the walls.

As usual in Potter’s wonderful style, there are clever animals that are highly personified while still looking realistic. With the tailor being the key character there is still a lot of character given to Simpkin
This is a story of a tailor from the town Gloucester who got the assignment to make some beautiful coats for the mayor. The tailor is impoverished and has a cat and very little money to buy anything. Finally some mice in his shop came to his rescue.

The story is filled with nice language and colorful words but it's wanting in something. Just can't see the magic.

Larry Piper
My spouse came home from a week in New Hampshire "worn to a raveling". Now, from whence comes that phrase? Well, Google says it's from The Tailor of Gloucester, so naturally, we had to hunt through our mouldering collection of Beatrix Potter books to read it. And so we have.

Basically it's the tale of an old guy with spectacles and crooked fingers—kinda like me—who must prepare a waistcoat for the Mayor's Christmas Day wedding. He gets all the cloth cut and set out, but he has "no more twist", s
- Miss Potter, may I ask what your new book will be about?

- Some mice help a tailor make a waistcoat. But the ending is flat.

- No twist?

- Ah... of course! A wonderful suggestion!
Marts  (Thinker)
The tailor has a most important job to do, but he falls ill and can't complete it, but guess what th job gets done by some rather unlikely friends...
Old boy takes credit for mouse needlework.
Provides best catchphrase ever "Alack I am undone!"
*melodramatic pose*
I loved reading the Beatrix Potter stories as a child with my mum (from what I remember she had the whole collection). I then saw this little book and several others being given away with a national newspaper, even though I had broken my foot that weekend every day I hobbled down to the shops to claim my book. I love this little story and the naughty Simpkin hiding the twist at the beginning and then learning the error of his ways after seeing the mice helping the sick tailor. the pictures in th ...more
I enjoyed rereading Beatrix Potter's The Tailor of Glouchester. In this delightful Christmas tale, readers meet a tailor, a cat named Simpkin, and some lovely mice. It begins, "In the time of swords and periwigs and full-skirted coats with flowered lappets--when gentlemen wore ruffles, and gold-laced waistcoats of paduasoy and taffeta--there lived a tailor in Gloucester." It is several days before Christmas. He's working hard to finish a coat and waistcoat for the Mayor of Glouchester. The Mayor ...more
Peter Jamieson
It's the season of Advent in about 1760 in the city of Gloucester. The Mayor is to be married at the cathedral on Xmas Day, and is going to have the most astonishing suit for the occasion. Frankly, next to the groom, the bride's going to look like she hardly bothered for her big day. Naturally, the tailor, being the craftsman creating this work of art, is paid next to nothing for his work - and, critically, cannot quite afford a little twist of thread for one of the buttonholes. The tailor's cat ...more
Dec 16, 2012 Jeremy rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: own
The tailor of Gloucester is a lovely story. The plot reminds me of that story I once heard in which dwarfs came in the night to do some dreadful tasks for the sweet and poor people who just couldn't get them done.

Beatrix Potter makes the tale even sweeter by setting it on Christmas Eve. That works rather well for this story as it really is one of those heart-warming tales that are just perfect to tell at Christmas.

I also like how the tailor 'earned' the aid of the mice by being kind to them. I
Nancy O'Toole
The Tailor of Gloucester tells the simple story of a tailor who must make a fine waistcoat for the mayor’s wedding, only he is unable to finish it. Fortunately, thanks to a show of kindness from the tailor, the waistcoat is finished in time with the help of local mice. The Tailor of Gloucester is a classic of children’s literature. Although it was written in 1903, there are many elements that will still appeal to children today. Fans of The Tale of Despereaux and other talking animals stories wi ...more
Jim Leech
I think that the Tailor of Gloucester is easily the hardest Beatrix Potter book for children to read. Gone are the simple, short sentences from Peter Rabbit and in their place are long and complex sentences like “For behind the wooden wainscots of all the old houses in Gloucester, there are little mouse staircases and secret trap-doors; and the mice run from house to house through those long narrow passages; they can run all over the town without going into the streets.”

The tailor in question is
Read as part of The Beatrix Potter Collection : Volume One.

The Tailor of Gloucester was so poor he could only hire a kitchen.

Good thing the mice helped him finished that waistcoat the Mayor ordered for his betrothal on Christmas Day.

Now the Tailor can probably hire all the kitchens in Gloucester.

Sara Lindberg
To be honest not one of my greatest reads. Seeing as it's written in 1901 it has quite an elderly language, and there were quite many words I didn't fully understand. This made the reading experience more difficult than I wished. I don't know what paduasoy is, or taffeta sufficeth. But the story is cute nevertheless, and as the anglophile I am it seems only right to read something by Beatrix Potter.
The tailor of Gloucester is a poor man and sends his cat(his cat!) out with the last of his money to buy some food and the thread he needs to finish the Mayor's wedding coat.

While the cat's gone, the tailor releases some mice the cat had caught, so the cat hides the thread in revenge.
I can't believe (given my love of Beatrix Potter) that I missed reading this book as a child. I just bought a copy for my nephew, so of course I HAD to read it myself. Love the whimsy of Beatrix Potter, and the illustrations, as always, are phenomenal.
I wish they still had these types of industrious mice nowadays. Mice who will hear your frantic plea for help to complete a deadline at work...and then they'll come running to complete your powerpoint presentation or spreadsheet. Maybe because they're from Gloucester?

Allen Atkinson's lovely illustrations make the Beatrix Potter classic even better. The tailor and his helpful mice made such an impression on me when I was small that I actually visited Gloucester. I never found the little rodents,
A strange little book - different from the others. I liked the good mice helping the kindly tailor. I was also glad to see the cat was repentant. It was an OK book, but I think I prefer the animal tales.
Maria Carmo
Reading Beatrix Potter because I saw the movie about her and was delighted by her sensible delicacy and mixture of imagination and pragmatism.

Maria Carmo,

Lisbon 2 February 2015.
A gorgeous book! It's easy to see why Beatrix Potter is so popular and so enduring. She has a lovely, whimsical writing style that's a pleasure to read.
The illustrations are so sweet. The mice come to the rescue of the tailor. The flow of the story a bit awkward at times, but still classic Beatrix Potter.
This is such a cute little story. Kind of like the elves and the shoemaker, but with mice and a tailor.
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Helen Beatrix Potter was an English author, illustrator, mycologist, and conservationist who was best known for her children's books, which featured animal characters such as Peter Rabbit.

Born into a privileged household, Potter was educated by governesses, and grew up isolated from other children. She had numerous pets and through holidays in Scotland and the Lake District developed a love of lan
More about Beatrix Potter...

Other Books in the Series

The World of Beatrix Potter: Peter Rabbit (1 - 10 of 23 books)
  • The Tale of Peter Rabbit
  • The Tale of Squirrel Nutkin
  • The Tale of Benjamin Bunny
  • The Tale of Two Bad Mice
  • The Tale of Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle
  • The Tale of the Pie and the Patty-Pan
  • The Tale of Mr. Jeremy Fisher
  • The Story of a Fierce Bad Rabbit
  • The Story of Miss Moppet
  • The Tale of Tom Kitten
The Tale of Peter Rabbit The Complete Tales The Complete Adventures of Peter Rabbit The Tale of Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle The Tale of Benjamin Bunny

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“No more twist!” 8 likes
“In the time of swords and periwigs and full-skirted coats with flowered lappets - when gentlemen wore ruffles, and gold-laced waistcoats of paduasoy and taffeta - there lived a tailor in Gloucester.” 7 likes
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