It has begun! The countdown to the Remarkable Recycling Gala has officially started and we have a great line-up for you this year. As one of the main organisers of the event I have invested a lot of time in making sure that it runs smoothly, and although there is still lots to do I feel like everything is falling into place.
And the fact that it is such a community event reassures me that the people will make it happen on the day. You only have to go to one of the Sherwood Art Week meetings, or pop in on them putting together an event like yesterday’s Secret Garden Craft Fair and you will see what I mean. They are a committed bunch of volunteers!
Yesterday’s craft fair was well thought out and as excellent as ever. There was a good variety of stallholders, some new and some more well established, and the buzz was audible as we approached. A lot of effort goes into making these events feel special, the endless strings of handmade bunting, the interesting layout of the stalls and the variety of entertainment. There has been meeting after meeting, by the core group of volunteers, and the impact was great!
Having spent a fun Friday afternoon setting up the Recycling Gala window with fellow paper folder Kayrakise Evans, I was keen to take in the full extent of the yarn bombing and the ‘Art in Shops’ displays so started at the bottom end of Sherwood and took a steady stroll up Mansfield Road on Saturday afternoon. The sun shone generously on the bright knits and dangly bits and I really enjoyed the display of talent by Sherwood’s knitters.
I particularly enjoyed watching this young man, lost in his imagination, playing under the ‘pom-pom tree’ for quite a while, lost in the magic that the yarn bombers had created late on Friday night in the empty streets.
The variety of work on show up and down Mansfield Road was also good to see as it is a fantastic way of integrating art into everyday life, I mean we all go shopping, drink in cafes and eat in restaurants right? I had heard so much about the hours of work and preparation that went into Kayrakise’s dragon that I made sure it was the first exhibit that I saw. It was as impressive as I thought it would be, completely filling the front window of the Chinese Restaurant and looking right at home in all its red and silver splendour.
I received a lot of friendly smiles at the craft fair itself and was pleased to see some of my favourite makers where there. It is also the kind of event where you bump into people that you know and there was plenty of that too. An event like this is so important for the community, it brings people together in such a positive way and encourages the celebration of creativity. And getting together such a wealth of talent in one area makes for one colourful and exciting backdrop to your Saturday afternoon.
It’s been hard work, putting the gala together. Even with fantastic support from Sherwood Art Week organisers and Oksana and Irene, there have been a lot of late nights and certainly a lot of my spare time has been taken up by answering emails and organising this and that. The end of the exam period couldn’t have come at a better time and now I finally have time for the final push on making some stock to put on my stall alongside all the other recycled makers.
But seeing it all in action yesterday did remind me what an amazing event we are all taking part in and that all the hard work is truly worthwhile. And now to make sure that everybody knows what an impressive collection of innovative recyclers and performers we have gathered together and order some sunshine for next Saturday.
And then to create something similar in Beeston…
Until next week