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You are more than welcome to use my designs and creations on your own site - as long as I am credited and you put a link back to www.pompomemporium.com
My niece, Amy, is directing a production at the King's Head Theatre London Stand and Deliver!. It's a late night production starting at 10pm, Amy tells me it's can be described as a comedy/musical an alternative pantomime!
"Spawned from Naughty Sport, an outrageous, award-winning football fanzine, comes Stand and Deliver! a unique comedy musical. Join ordinary bloke, Frank Goldenboy, on a time travelling romp to 1731 - where he seeks to realise his ambition of becoming a highwayman in an over-zealous attempt to safeguard the future of his beloved local football club.
Following a workshop production in July, Stand and Deliver! makes its London debut in style at the King's Head. Produced by the show’s writer, Wayne Gumble and directed by Amy Gunn, the show is like nothing you’ve ever experienced before. You’ll be whooshed along on a comedy excursion harking back to the halcyon days of Carry On movies, Camberwick Green, Dick Emery and Mr Benn. Accompanied on the journey by Frank’s children, Paris and Antwerp, you’ll meet Nell Cleavidge, a lady never short of innuendo, Clive Urinal, the referee with a secret life, and Boscombe Chart, the inspirational coach of AC Milan. Chuck in a heaped spoonful of panto style and a soupcon of ‘Pythonesque’ humour and you’re just about ready for a taste of time travelling tomfoolery. As you travel, your constant companions will be classic pop hits from the 1980s and the iconic humour and chants from the terraces of Frank’s beloved Enfield FC. If you struggle to keep up, television presenters Mmbop Hansen and Ulrika Pearce will guide you but be warned – you may never think of Stansted Airport in the same way again! Come along ready to party - Stand and Deliver! is the perfect laugh-out-loud (and sing along even louder) feel good adventure this Christmas."
To find out times dates and book tickets go to the King's Head website
This is a homemade gift that ticks all the boxes, charming, useful, quick, easy, low skill level and you don't need expensive equipment. The creative bit is to find a receptacles for your candles, look for vintage teacups, jugs, small bowls etc. in charity shops, have a rummage! They would not only make a lovely gift but also perfect for a vintage style wedding reception or decorate a party table. For my candles I chose little teacups, a small jug and a tumbler made from thick red glass.
You don't have to buy costly equipment you may already have the things you need around the house.
First of all you will need a melting pot and the safest way to melt wax is to use a double boiler, If you don't have a purpose made one to hand make your own.
Select a pan, find a Pyrex or a stainless steel bowl that has a diameter larger than that of your pan. I found a metal balti bowl in Pound World, it's ideal, it has handles making it easier to pour the wax. Fill the pan with 2.5cm (1") to 5cm (2") of water place the bowl on top, make sure your bowl does not fall into the pan or touch the water.
You can buy wax for the purpose but I used some tall dinner candles I had to hand.
You can buy wicks and wick sustainers (small metal disc) but if you are recycling candles recycle the wicks too and if you use tea-lights take the sustainer from the bottom of a used one and recycle that.
Break up and melt a candle in a double boiler. When the wax is liquid fish out the wick, lay it straight on newspaper and let it cool. With the wick cooled thread it through a sustainer and 'pinch' it in place, with pliers, to keep it secure. Anchor the sustainer to the bottom of your chosen container with either a little bit of molten wax or as I did with a glue gun. You need to keep your wick upright, taught and centred. To do this you need a 'wick holder' which can be improvised using a wooden skewer.
When the wax has melted carefully pour it into your prepared container, keep a little of the wax back for later.
As the wax cools and contracts you will notice a well forming in the centre of your candle. When the wax is set fill the well with melted wax.
Trim the wick.
This is just a taster but If you get an appetite for candle making you could invest in soya wax and scents to make more luxurious candles.
It's so easy to turn old scrabble tiles into fridge magnets, like my beer bottle cap fridge magnet tutorial.
Mix a small amount of tile grout, fill the cavity on the reverse of the tile, push in a magnet and leave to dry. I bought my 'spare' tiles from a stall holder,Curiosity Cupboard
at a Craft and Vintage fair held at the St Albans Town Hall.
This is a guest post by my friend Ann, an account of her experience as a Games Maker at the London Olympics 2012
August 14th 2012, was the day my role as a Games Maker at the Paralympics became a reality. August 14th was the day I collected my uniform and accreditation. It was official ... I was official!
It has to be said, the uniform didn’t do me any favours. I only had to touch the material of the shirt and the jacket, and it was enough to bring on ‘the vapours’. Not a good start to an average 8 - 10 hour shift each day. Add to that the glorious late summer heat wave we had while the Paralympics were on, combined with travelling on hot, busy tube trains and the danger of a complete meltdown was a very real possibility!
I was a volunteer at The North Greenwich Arena, the venue for wheelchair basketball, on the Protocol Team. The NGA is normally known as the 02 Arena, but was re-named for the duration of the Olympics and Paralympics, due to sponsorship reasons I believe. The last time I was there was in 2000, then it was known as The Millennium Dome!
The Protocol Team were designated to look after the members of the Paralympic Family. This could be anybody from participating countries’ Paralympic committee members to Royalty, Chefs de Mission for Athletics and Sports bodies, Sports Ministers, Heads of State etc. Normally I think they would be referred to as VIP’s!
There were about 40-50 Games Makers in the team, divided between two shifts. All my shifts started in mid to late afternoon, finishing between 11pm and 12.30am. This suited me, especially as I got to see the Gold, Silver and Bronze medal matches, and the medal ceremonies. The Women’s final was won by Germany and the Men’s by Canada.
Historically, wheelchair basketball is one of the best supported events at the Paralympics. It is an extremely fast sport, resulting in wheelchairs often tipping over, but athlete’s just right themselves and speed off again. Great to watch, especially with the volume of noise created by the spectators. During every time out period and half time there were presenters court side urging the crowd on.
I will never be able to listen to ‘We Will Rock You’ by Queen again, without instantly being transported back inside the North Greenwich Arena ... the atmosphere was electric.
As to all those well known VIP’s? Sadly they were a bit thin on the ground. The only people I encountered whom I recognised were Ian Duncan Smith and the Earl and Countess of Wessex. Apparently Matthew Pinsent and Boris Johnson made an appearance when I was off shift!
The working day consisted of long shifts, and if you weren’t lucky enough to have a chair handy, standing on your feet for all that time is very tiring. However the whole experience was one of sheer joy. The volunteers were happy to be there, giving freely of their time, and although you didn’t always get to see any sporting action, just that fact alone and being part of the Paralympics made it ok! One of the comments made afterwards by our team leader, was about how remarkable it was that although none of us knew each other beforehand, we all helped one another as and when it was required.
Finally I was lucky enough to be standing on The Mall which was reserved for Games Makers only, for the Athletes Parade through London on September 10th. This was a real treat, and we were able to see close up those athletes and their medals, who had made this such a memorable summer in London. I won’t forget it in a hurry.
I may volunteer for the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in 2014 ... watch this space!
In the summer we went to Newcastle-Upon-Tyne for a long weekend. We visited the usual local places of interest including galleries and museums and on a couple of days we took the Metro to the coast. On our final day, before we got the train back to London, we went to the seaside village of Cullercoats.
After an obligatory lunch of fish and chips at Bill's Fish Bar (highly recommend if you're in the area) we went down to the beach. Cullercoats is famous for its artist colony and in particular the celebrated American painter Winslow Homer, he painted seascapes and the local fishing community especially the 'heroic' fisherwomen in the 1880s. We both agreed Cullercoats beach was the perfect place for kids, sandy beach and lots of rock pools to explore, our children would have loved it when they were little.
I decided my artistic endeavour, involving no heroic locals, would be photographic, my still life would be seaweed and rocks.
This is such an easy make no artistic ability required!
You will need
-Beer bottle caps
Mix up a small amount of grout as per instructions on packet or you can buy ready mixed.
Carefully fill a cap with grout.
Place a magnet in the centre and gently push it into the grout.
Leave it to set hard for a couple of days.
If the grout is a little proud of the magnet smooth it down with fine sand paper
What could be better than a visual prompt, attached to the shopping list on the fridge, to remind you of your favourite libations.
This is a guest post by my friend Ann, an account of her experience as a Games Maker at the London Olympics 2012
Two years ago in the summer of 2010, I filled out an online application form to become a Games Maker at the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics. Living in London for many years, and loving all kinds of sports, albeit from the comfort of my sofa, it was too good an opportunity to miss.
I soon learnt that nothing in this process happened quickly!
One year later in July 2011, I found myself at the Excel Centre in London for an interview. After an initial application by 250,000 people I was one of the lucky 100,000 to be selected.
Even though it was a volunteer role I haven’t had any kind of interview for at least 25 years, so I intended to do my ‘homework’ beforehand. However, as it turned out, the date of the interview, which had been arranged in April, fell a few days after a family bereavement. I swithered, should I change it? I decided to stick with it, but my mind wasn’t on the job in hand, and certainly no ‘homework’ was done. I came away thinking that was that, not expecting to hear from LOCOG (London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games) in October, as they had promised. I consoled myself with the fact that I had done my best in difficult circumstances.
October came and went ... no word. Friends who had had interviews at the same time, had received their congratulatory emails, welcoming them to the world of the Olympic Games Maker. They had their initial training day, still I heard nothing. Then out of the blue in March this year I was offered a position as a Games Maker at the Paralympics. I was thrilled and accepted without hesitation. I had managed to make it in to the final 70,000 selected.
One of the treats I enjoyed as a Games Maker was going to the dress rehearsal for the Opening Ceremony of the Olympic Games. It was to be my only visit inside the Olympic Stadium but it was worth it. The stadium was full and the atmosphere electric. It’s almost impossible to explain, but for me the best moment, my ‘goose bump’ moment, was when the rural idyll was destroyed by the onset of the industrial revolution. The chimney’s and foundries were raised to the beat of thousands of drummers. The sound was incredible, all around you and coming up through the floor. The Olympic rings were forged into existence before our eyes. So much was going on it was difficult at times to keep up. Cameos of characters made their way around the track, recreating moments of British history such as the Suffragettes, the Windrush and the Jarrow Crusade. All aspects of our heritage and all very poignant. They make us what we are today.
We didn’t see the full show ... sadly The Queen, James Bond and Mr Bean were nowhere to be seen ... but that didn’t detract from what we saw one iota.
Danny Boyle made an appearance asking us to “Save the Surprise”. It seems everyone did exactly that.
Once all this and the Olympics were over I was to have my chance to actually participate in this whole glorious summer of sport. More of that in my next installment!
I have been itching to do some mosaic but I needed a few sunny days. Doing mosaic can be a bit hazardous when cutting and breaking tiles or plates, shards of sharp tiles can fly every where not to mention tile adhesive and grout. With a window of fine weather forecast, I rang my friend Sue to say "come and spend a few days in my garden, I will show you how to mosaic!"
I have a statue in the garden but his glaze (I think its paint) is peeling off his terracotta body. The statue became the candidate for my mosaic makeover, my other option had been a lamp base. For this project I used tiles I already had, this restricted and influenced my design and colour palette. Sue brought a large charger of a plate to decorate, broken plates and cabochons of glass were her tesserae of choice. We spent three productive days in the garden doing our mosaic. Sue finished her plate but still needs to grout it. I on the other hand took nearly a week to complete my piece, it is more time consuming than you think. Before his makeover my statue looked a little sad hidden away in the shrubbery now he has centre stage.
It was during the *London Olympics we did our mosaics, to commemorate the event I put '2012' on the back of my statue.
*I thought the London Olympics were excellent, the Opening Ceremony stunning, especially 'Pandemonium'. My ancestors were coalminers during the industrial revolution from working on the land to working in a dark pit, Danny Boyle illustrated it beautifully. It touched a chord with me seeing the turmoil and pace of change the industrial revolution brought, my forebears did that with blood sweat and tears.
My friend Ann is a games maker at the London Paralympics, she was lucky enough to be part of the audience that saw the dress rehearsal of the Opening Ceremony and although she kept the secret she hinted it was "so fantastic it gave me goosebumps" it did not disappoint. I am hoping Ann will do a guest post about her experience at the Paralympics, they have been excellent too.