I just got back from a trip to South Africa! Yeah, it was pretty great! Especially sweetened by the UK having terrible cold and snow while I was in the sun…
However, this isn’t a travelog blog, so instead of tales about safaris and speedboats, you get to read about the suitcase I took with me(!)
This grey fella is the Tripp suitcase that my parents take on holidays. I borrow it from them for my own hols, seeing as I go away way less than they do. It’s utterly indistinct, so to identify it as ours we apply stickers to it, tie coloured fabric around the handles, that sort of thing.
A few weeks before the big trip, Mum brought the tired-looking thing over to my place, saying that I could tart it up a bit.
I chose a Springbok for my design. It’s South Africa’s national animal, the symbol of their national Rugby Union team, and the symbol of the Friendships Association: They helped us visit my expat family over many years. I’d layer it over a green background, like below.
The Stag Do was done and dusted. Now, with a few weeks to go until the nuptials, I could focus on building and buying various decorations and gifts for the wedding itself.
I’ve posted before about my “trilogy” of handmade greeting cards, which the couples received for their respective weddings. Above is the card I made for the newest newlyweds…
A pen drawing coloured in with watercolour paints, based on Potter Puppet Pals, writing (with a quick quotes quill) and… sysadmin stuff (a phone, displaying a monitor, displaying a skull and crossbones). Also featuring their cat in the middle.
I drew it out in pencil on A5 paper, then (to make things more complicated than necessary) scanned it in and moved elements around in Photoshop. I also roughly digitally coloured it.
Then I printed the lines out again at A6 size, with higher contrast, and traced it onto my watercolour postcards via the light box.
Part 1 was about the largest (and most fun) props from the Stag Do I hosted last month.
Now onto part 2, which focuses on the smaller props and accessories I made for the par-tay…
A golden hat
The Groom needed to stand out from the rest of us plebs. Sashes are for hens, and this was not the kind of group to all go out in full costume. I ruled out the ‘Helmet of Justice’ from Knightmare because, well, you can’t see where you’re going. That would get old fast.
Being a Discworld fan (and he’s a bit of one himself), I plummed for a Moist Von Lipwig inspired hat… with a bit of local hero Fred Dibnah mixed in.
The base hat was a flat cap from Primark. Four reasons led to this choice:
- You don’t want to repaint and cut holes into something pricy, or riun a costly item and need to buy another!
- It came in One Size (fits all), so no chance of a cap that’s too small.
- The groom had tried it on briefly on our suit shopping trip.
- The hats in the costume shop were made of an uncomfortable, hard plastic.
Did I mention I was picked to be a Best Man this summer? Well, that happened. Which means that one of my duties was to organize the Stag Do.
Here’s post 1 of 2 about the props I made for my friend’s Stag Do, and a few things I learned along the way.
- the historical role of the Best Man was to stand guard, in case the adbucted bride’s family came a’knocking,
- because we’re all nerds,
- I thought that gently beating the Groom would be funny,
Ladies and Gentlemen… a sword and shield on a budget.
And the nerds rejoiced.
My company has giant cheques. You know the ones; when there’s a donation to charity, or someone wins a cash prize, you see a photo in the paper of a happy chappy holding an oversized rectangle.
We had a number of big paper cheques, supplied by our chosen bank, rolled up in a fat parcel tube. It was decided that we needed something better, ideally personalised with our own branding, and more hard-wearing.
This is what we came up with.
The basic layout of all cheques is the same, so I took a lot of measurements of the big paper ones we had, with both tape measure and ruler…