A Walk in the Park

To celebrate my mum’s birthday this month, she chose to go to Stanley Park where there is an Art Deco Café called “Parks” for a light lunch. We had a lovely time and I wanted to capture our visit as well as my mum’s favourite spring flowers namely daffodils, tulips and iris which I always buy and arrange for her as part of her birthday present.

Firstly I added three strips of plasterboard/drywall tape to the page and applied Blueprint Sketch, Twisted Citron and Hickory Smoke Distress Inks with a blending tool. I wanted the tape to act like a stencil so I removed it revealing a white grid pattern. I stamped a tree stamp by Art Impressions using Rich Cocoa Memento Ink and then I used an A6 Docrafts stamp set to stamp a bigger tree onto my page as well as a piece of brown patterned paper from a Design Pad. I cut out the tree from the paper using the stamp outline to guide me and positioned it over the tree I had stamped on the page using a UHU Stic. On the bottom of the page I added the daffodils, iris and tulips that my mum loves so much, I cut the flower shapes from pieces of napkin which then melted into the page when I used Liquitex Matte Gel Medium to stick them down. Next I added the names of the flowers and the month which are rub-on transfers. The wooden frames are from Poundland and I created different pictures to remind me of our day out together. I filled one with the same napkin flowers, another with the logo of the café we visited which is from a leaflet I collected whilst we were there and the last one with a piece of card that I stamped with a recurring “Happy Birthday” using black Archival Ink. I embellished each one with a strip of green ribbon and a mini gel star sticker and stuck the framed picture to the page using Glossy Accents. To finish I covered the tree with cherry blossom flowers and dotted some fallen petals amongst the spring flowers, these are mini gel stickers and depict the lovely pink blossom we saw whilst we were in the park.

As we were “Out and About” celebrating my mum’s birthday, I’m pleased to be able to join Yvonne from Meggy’s Way over at Art Journal Journey.

I thought you may like join in our celebration; this is the view as we walked though Stanley Park which is in Blackpool. Visiting the park brings back many fond memories from my childhood because we use to visit regularly to feed the ducks at the lake, walk the paths to see the different gardens and, possibly my favourite thing in the world when I was young, to jump up and down on the outside trampolines.

This time we went to the Italian Gardens which is situated in the centre of the park and has many flower beds, a large number of benches and a central fountain made from Italian marble which is surround by sea horses.

There are great columns and a number of statues in this garden, this includes a pair beautiful of Medici Lions situated either side of the steps that lead to the café. I used to stand and look at them in awe when I was a child, they are so magnificent!

The “Parks” café overlooks the Italian Gardens and was built in a traditional art deco style. It is an imposing building and a focal point of the park.

The inside of the café is so beautiful; it is such an elegant setting with its original art deco features and palm trees.  The menu of breakfast, lunch and afternoon tea seems a bit pricey to me but the quality of the food is excellent.

We all had the most delicious ham and cheese toastie for lunch and I had a ginger beer whilst my parents both had coffee. As T Stands for Tuesday, I’m saying a big hello to the T Gang and wishing you all a Happy T Day!

These are the flowers I bought for my mum and arranged in a lovely metal jug, she loves the combination of the yellow daffodils, red tulips and blue iris – don’t they look bright and cheery!

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Blueprint Sketch, Twisted Citron, Hickory Smoke)
  • Memento Ink (Rick Cocoa)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Dark Sepia 175 B)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm)
  • Art Impressions wood mounted rubber stamp (P-1398)
  • Docrafts A6 clear stamp set (Build a tree  DCE907130)
  • Crafter’s Companion Vintage Floral Collection Acrylic Stamp (Floral Sentiments VF-ST-FSENT)
  • Napkin from a café
  • Poundland Design Pad (Changing Seasons CRO701/16PL1)
  • Parks Art Deco Café leaflet
  • 151Adhesives Plasterboard & Drywall Tape
  • Home Bargains (Mini Gel Stickers 30287)
  • Royal & Langnickel Rub-on Sentiments (Spring Sentiments #ROY-506 Rub-on)
  • Poundland A Beautiful Life collection (Wooden Frames LCWDN001)
  • Green ribbon
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • UHU Gluepen
  • The Range double-sided tape

Winter Gardens

We love to go to Blackpool Winter Gardens, we have been there a number of times to see shows, to find out about the history of the building on the Heritage Tour and just recently we attended the open day where you have access to all areas and can take your time exploring all the amazing venues.

Firstly, I coloured the background by painting alternating concentric circles of diluted Navy and Marine Spectrum Aqua Marker ink, this represents the beautiful glass domed ceiling and the blue accent colours that you see in the Floral Hall when you enter the Winter Gardens. Next I stamped a sheet music stamp by Woodcraft using Paris Dusk Memento Ink and a script design by Kaisercraft using the same Navy Aqua marker, this depicts the entertainment facilities, as well as the music being played on the famous Wurlitzer organs while we were there. I then stamped a palm tree from the Tropical Travelogue set by Hampton Art and scroll work stamp by Craft Sensations using London Fog Memento Ink. I used these same two stamp sets to add the chandeliers and art deco border using black Archival Ink as there are lots of chandeliers and art deco designs throughout the different areas of the Winter Gardens. To produce a watermark effect (fainter impression) I secondary stamped a series of images on the background from the Steampunk set by Docrafts using black Archival Ink, these images tie into the Victorian era when Winter Gardens was built and opened. I used a trellis design stencil to apply white gesso, Chipped Sapphire Distress Ink and modelling paste as we saw lots of beautiful ironwork and plaster work throughout the building. With the background finished, I embellished the page with bronze art deco style outline stickers and tickets which are rub-on transfers; the words “Explore”, “Discover” and “Adventure” on them describe our time whilst we were there. The old images of Winter Gardens are from a leaflet; I cut them out with serrated scissors and stuck them to the page using double-sided foam tape.  I think they capture the magnificence of the Winter Gardens venues and finish the page beautifully.

As we are “Out and About” in Blackpool exploring Winter Gardens, I’m very pleased to be able to join Yvonne from Meggy’s Way over at Art Journal Journey.

Winter Gardens is an entertainment facility located in Blackpool town centre and contains ballrooms, theatres, large themed rooms and spaces in a variety of styles. It is a magnificent building that opened on 1878 and has changed and expanded over the years. It is now undergoing further refurbishment to restore and uncover its original features. There is a wide range of decoration including Victorian ironwork, Art Deco styling and the most amazing plaster work. As you enter the building you are greeted by this beautiful domed ceiling.

Then you enter the Floral Hall with its beautiful palm trees, tiling, blue accents, yellow columns and lights. This is where you have access to all the other venues including the Empress Ballroom, the Pavilion Theatre, the Galleon Bar, The Baronial Hall, the Spanish Hall, Horseshoe, Olympia and the Opera House.

There are a number of venues designed by Andrew Mazzei who was a well known Hollywood film and set designer. In the 1930s he worked on the plaster work and decorations for the Baronial Hall, the Floral Hall, the Galleon Bar, the Olympia Hall, and the Spanish Hall. The photo above is the Spanish Hall designed in the art deco style with a three-dimensional frieze surrounding it which depicts the Andalusian Hills and Villages; it is very atmospheric.

The Galleon Bar was also designed by Andrew Mazzei and it’s my hubby’s favourite! It is a very creative recreation of an old Galleon Ship from the Spanish Armada, complete with oak beams which are all actually plaster work!  It really does look like real wood, doesn’t it!

While we were exploring the different venues at Winter Gardens, music was being played on the Wurlitzer organs located in both the Opera House and the Empress Ballroom.

The magnificent Empress Ballroom is my favourite venue. It was built in 1896 and has a spectacular barrel-vaulted ceiling, pristine parquet flooring, ornate balconies and the most amazing sparkling chandeliers! I can just imagine the olden days and the excitement of arriving in a horse and carriage to find yourself in such a spectacular venue, the stunning dresses, the dashing gentlemen and the stories that filled the ballroom; I guess I’m just an old romantic at heart!

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Navy, Marine)
  • Memento Ink (Paris Dusk, London Fog)
  • Tim Hotlz Distress Ink (Chipped Sapphire)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Pébéo Modeling Paste High Density
  • Woodware Clear Magic Singles stamp (Sheet Music JGS111)
  • Kaisercraft clear stamp (Script CS752)
  • Craft Sensations Clear Stamps (CRO274/16R2)
  • Docrafts A5 clear stamp set (Steampunk DCE907125)
  • Hampton Art Graphic 45 cling mounted rubber stamps (Tropical Travelogue ICO134)
  • Creative Expressions That Special Touch of Mica Masks (Moroccan)
  • Kaisercraft Rub Ons Up, Up and Away collection (Colour Rubons RB870)
  • Unknown – Bronze Outline Stickers
  • Winter Gardens Trust Leaflet
  • Fun Cut Scissors
  • The Range double-sided foam tape

Music at High Tide

We always have fun when we walk along the South Promenade in Blackpool, and the last couple of times we have been lucky to have been there when the tide has been coming in. This is because we get to listen to the Hide Tide Organ, which is a sculpture that has pipes running through the centre and down to the shoreline, so when the tide comes in it makes the most amazing sounds. You can imagine my joy on hearing it so I had to capture this in my journal.

music-at-high-tide-ajp-new

I mixed blue, green, apricot, yellow and parchment acrylic paints to produce the background colours that represent the sea, sky and golden sand, and then applied them to the page with a baby wipe. I kept the paint strokes angled towards the right of the page so it looked like the tide was moving into the shoreline. Next I added strips of music note washi tape to represent the musical sound the tidal organ makes and merged them into the background using paint. Then I splattered white acrylic paint over the page, I did this by applying the paint to an acrylic block adding a little water and flicking the paint from the block with a paintbrush. This represents sea foam and I concentrated my splatters on the left of the page fading out to the right. The seaweed leaves are fussy cut from paper by Kaisercraft from their Rock Pool Collection, they are stuck to the page using Liquitex matte gel medium. I painted two wave-shaped paper borders blue and then added wavy detail with a white Uniball gel pen; they were easy to stick to the page as they are self-adhesive. To make my tidal organ sculpture I created a rust effect on a piece of card. Firstly, I stippled modelling paste onto the card to give a rough textured foundation and let it dry thoroughly. I then mixed yellow, red and black acrylic paints to produce brown and orange rusty hues, and then I stippled these colours along with black acrylic over the top of the modelling paste trying not to overwork the colours to avoid them blending together; the idea was to create texture and for it to look patchy like rust. Once the paint had dried I used a template which I had drawn to cut out my sculpture, then I coloured the cut edges with a Sanguine Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt marker and I stuck it to the page using a UHU Stic. I stamped the words in an undulating pattern using a Docrafts Alphas Folk alphabet set and black Archival Ink. To finish I added a couple of seagulls, which are cut from white paper and stuck down using a UHU Stic; we often see a seagull perched on the top of the sculpture.

I’m so pleased to be able to join Yvonne from Meggy’s way who is hosting this month’s challenge “Out and About” over at Art Journal Journey.

high-tide-organ

The High Tide Organ is a sculpture which is 15 metres (49 ft 3 in) tall and is described as a “musical manifestation of the sea”; it is one of a few examples of a tidal organ.

plaque

“The sculpture was designed by the artists Liam Curtin and John Gooding, and was constructed in concrete, steel, zinc and copper sheet. The harnessing of wave energy, and the sculpting of the concrete and metals is said to produce a unique interpretation of Blackpool’s natural and man-made environments. The instrument is played by the sea at high tide through eight pipes which are attached to the sea wall. These are connected under the promenade to 18 organ pipes within the sculpture. The swell of seawater at high tide pushes air up the sea-wall pipes and causes the organ pipes to sound. The best time to hear the High Tide Organ is two to three hours before or after high tide. On very calm days the organ is silent for part of its cycle. The pitches of the pipes are based on the harmonic series in B flat” (Wikipedia). It makes quite an eerie sound, as you can hear for yourself on this link.

rust

Being by the sea, you would expect this metal structure to rust and it has a lovely texture to it as a result.

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Liquitex Artist Color Acrylic (Swedush Blue, Christmas Green, Ivory Black, Apricot, Cadmium Yellow Medium, Cadmium Red Medium Hue/Lacquer Red)
  • Colvin & Co Artist’s Acrylic (White Titanium)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Sanguine 188 B)
  • Docrafts A5 clear stamp set (Alpha Folk DCE907115)
  • Kaisercraft Rock Pool Collection paper (Seaweed P834)
  • Hobbycraft Paper Borders (White 5895891000)
  • Hobbycraft Decorative Tape (Assorted Black & White 5971481007)
  • Pébéo Modeling Paste High Density
  • Cardboard
  • White paper
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • UHU Stic

Dance of the Starlings

As the weather was so nice, we decided to go for a walk along the beach promenade in Blackpool to watch the sunset and the winter ritual of starlings roosting, which is called a murmuration. This magical event is captured on today’s journal page.

dance-of-the-starlings-ajp-2

As Spectrum Aqua markers are a water-based ink, I applied some of the ink onto an acrylic block and diluted it with water to paint the sunset background of oranges, gold and grey, gradually building up the layers to intensify the colour.  I drew the birds onto white tissue paper using a black Uni Pin fine line marker in a murmuration pattern and stuck it to the page using a UHU Stic. The pier silhouette and lamp posts are cut from Kanban background paper; I edged them with a black Sharpie permanent marker and used a UHU Stic to stick them to the page. The struts at the bottom of the pier are drawn using a thicker tipped Uni Pin marker.  To finish I added some nylon thread using a Zig Memory Glue Pen and I used Glossy Accents to stick on the little black beads to depict the strings of lights between the lamp posts on the pier.

As this page is telling the story of the dance of the starlings, I’m so very pleased to be able to join Erica who is hosting Art Journal Journey’s January theme “Tell me a Story”.

pier-3

The murmuration of starlings at North Pier was amazing to watch; they were dancing and swooping in unison. Clouds of starlings kept joining the throng and I found myself hypnotised by their splendour.

pier-2

Starlings perform their acrobatic dance just before they roost for the night. It is thought that they roost together for a number of reasons, there is safety in numbers and grouping together helps them to keep warm during the night. Here’s an interesting video if you want to know more (although the video was shot in Rome, not Blackpool!).

sunset

This is the fabulous sunset that we saw; I love the starburst effect my hubby captured on the photo.

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Spectrum Aqua Artist’s Markers (Peach, Spice, Orange, Gold, Yellow, Charcoal)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm and 0.5mm)
  • Sharpie Fine Point Permanent Marker (Black)
  • Kanban Mackenzie Background Card (Data Black CRD1756)
  • White tissue paper
  • Nylon thread (Black)
  • Small black beads
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
  • UHU Stic
  • Zig Memory System 2 Way Glue (The Dual-Action Glue Pen)

The Imperial Hotel

We had a great start to the New Year at the Imperial Hotel in Blackpool, we went on a Heritage tour of this majestic Victorian hotel finding out about its history and enjoying a lovely afternoon tea. As a special treat for 2017 I also enjoyed their famous “Mayflower Spirit” cocktail in the No. 10 bar after the tour had finished.

the-imperial-hotel-ajp-1

I applied a thin layer of Parchment acrylic paint to the page using a baby wipe. Once it had dried I added strips of tissue paper which had a lovely holly design; it reminded me of the luxurious silken wallpapers at the hotel. I arranged the tissue strips so they looked like the panels we saw in many of the rooms whilst on our tour and used a UHU Stic to stick them down.  Next I stamped ornate picture frames using black Archival Ink to depict the beautiful plaster work, pictures and mirrors found at the hotel. I stamped the frame onto some of the holly tissue paper, then fussy cut the centre oval and added it to the centre of the frames I had stamped on the page using a UHU Stic. I collected a variety of booklets, leaflets and postcards from the hotel reception during our visit and used these as part of my design. I cut the images out with Fun Cut scissors to give them a serrated edge and used a Cold Grey Faber-Castell Big Brush marker along the edge to give them more definition, then stuck them to the page with a UHU Stic or double-sided foam tape. For the palm tree I stamped the image onto the back of one of the postcards from the hotel using Archival Ink. I also saved the tea bag tags from the green tea we had as part of our afternoon tea and added them to finish the page.

ajp-outside

The Imperial Hotel, Blackpool, opened in 1867 and is situated on the North Promenade seafront and enjoys spectacular views over the beach and sea. The hotel retains the opulence and glamour of its Victorian heyday, and has welcomed a host of famous guests including Charles Dickens, Sir Winston Churchill, Fred Astaire, The Beatles, Princess Margaret and Princess Anne.

ajp-churchill-collage

The Churchill Room was named to honour the many visits Sir Winston Churchill made to the Imperial when he was prime minister and leader of the Conservative party. The room is much the same as the old photograph, although with one surprise. Recently, the photograph pictured has come to light and it shows a magnificent stained glass domed ceiling in the room. Exploratory holes were drilled into the current ceiling to discover that the stained glass ceiling is still there, although it’s not in great condition and is estimated to cost over a million pounds to restore.

ajp-louie

The Grill Room is now the Louis XVI Function Room and has the most beautiful plaster work, wall coverings, mirrors and chandeliers.

ajp-palm-court

The Palm Court is now the Dining Room and looks very elegant especially with the beautiful dome chandeliers. In Victorian times, palm trees were considered very exotic and a demonstration of wealth.

ajp-ballroom

The Ballroom now called the Washington Suite has one of the best dance floors in Blackpool and the most wonderful plaster work of cherubs, flowers and sea creatures. The National Dance Championships have been held in Blackpool since 1920 and the Imperial Hotel is very popular with competitors as they can practice on the dance floor before heading off to the competition.

ajp-turkish-bath-collage

Recently the hotel discovered that a room used for storage of employee files was once an impressive suite of Russian, Turkish and seawater plunge baths which were built in 1901, but had been plastered over and hidden. They are slowly being restored in conjunction with the Blackpool Civic Trust. In the photo (above) you can see that the magnificent tiles were painted and then plastered over and part of this has now been removed to reveal the original tiles once more.
ajp-no-10

The original glass-roofed billiard room retains its stained glass canopy but has been turned into a bar and named No. 10 after all the UK prime ministers who have stayed at the Imperial whilst in office.

ajp-cocktail

During the tour we found out about the Head Cocktail Bartender who had won a national competition to invent a new cocktail in the 1950’s, so we had to try one.  It was one of those all shots and no mixer cocktails, and was delicious and very warming! I’m saying a big “cheers” to the T-Gang over at T Stands for Tuesday – Happy T Day!

ajp-afternoon-tea

Not forgetting our lovely afternoon tea served on beautiful fine china. We choose green tea to accompany the finger sandwiches with traditional fillings of ham and mustard, egg and cress and smoked salmon with cucumber, Victoria sponge, strawberry Eton Mess, chocolate delice, mini lemon tart and warm fruit scone with strawberry jam and clotted cream. I’m sorry, but it looked and tasted so yummy that we tucked in before we remembered to take a photo.

As this page tells the story of our visit to this magnificent old hotel, I’m very pleased to join Erica from BioArtGal who is hosting January’s theme of “Tell me a Story” over at Art Journal Journey.

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Liquitex Artist Color Acrylic (Parchment)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Cold Grey IV 233)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm)
  • Uniball Signo gel pen (White)
  • Crafter’s Companion Vintage Collection Acrylic Stamp (Floral Sentiments VF-ST-PSENT)
  • Hampton Art Graphic 45 cling mounted rubber stamps (Tropical Travelogue ICO134)
  • Aldi The Night Before Christmas Range (Printed Tissue)
  • The Imperial Hotel history booklet, postcard and leaflets
  • Fun Cut scissors
  • UHU Stic
  • The Range double-sided foam tape

Neon Lights

There is a Neon exhibition at a local art gallery, so we went along to have a look and saw some wonderful works. I’m pleased to be able to join Valerie over at Art Journal Journey for this month’s theme “Light & Darkness” with my Neon Light interpretation.

neon-ajp

I started by colouring three strips of paper from a Design Pad that I had in my craft stash and coloured them neon yellow, pink and blue using different coloured highlighter pens. Then I stuck them diagonally onto the page using a UHU Stic, which I actually used throughout the page to stick things down. I had some post-it notes in the same neon colours so I cut a rectangle of each and stuck them around the edges of the page, so they look like light boxes. Then I cut the art exhibition flyer into strips and used them to add a light tube in each box. I fussy cut a black and white patterned napkin and stuck the pieces onto the page with a UHU Stic. When the glue had dried I added the same neon pink, yellow and blue to the centre bauble shapes so they looked like lights hanging vertically down the page.  I added more strips of flyer and then used a green highlighter pen along one of the edges so they looked like they were glowing with light. I cut squares of post-it note then stuck them down and used different highlighter pens along one of the edges. The name of the gallery, neon sign and art picture are also from the flyer. I edged them all with highlighter pen and stuck them to the page using double-sided foam tape. To finish I outlined some of the elements with a black Uni Pin marker.

gallery

The The Grundy Art Gallery in Blackpool holds a series of Art Exhibitions throughout the year, at the moment it’s “NEON: The Charged Line”. The building is Victorian and with its large rooms, white walls and high ceilings it’s a wonderful space to exhibit an interesting mix of wall and free standing art.

words

The first room was filled with words made from neon, which were fairly hard to photograph as they were so bright and you couldn’t get any distance away from them. I thought this sign was so clever, it  is referring to “Neon” which is “an object that is self-defined”.

sack-barrow

In another room, sat in one of the corners was this sack barrow, the glow of the light really lit the space beautifully. I really like the tile floor in this room too, which I think is original.

wall-shapes

In the next room, we were greeted with this explosion of colour!

mixer

This piece made me smile – I’ll never see a cement mixer in the same light again (excuse the pun!).  On the left of the photo is a lovely original antique radiator, which was warming the room wonderfully.

us

To commemorate our visit, we set up the camera to capture me and hubby standing by one of the signs. We had such a fun time and really enjoyed the exhibition.

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Stabilo Boss Original Highlighter Pen (Yellow, Pink, Blue, Green)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm)
  • Uniball Signo gel pen (White)
  • Lyreco Sticky Notes (6 Pack Multi Colours)
  • American Crafts DIY Shop (48 Papers 366665)
  • Alio Napkins
  • Flyer
  • UHU Stic
  • The Range double-sided foam tape

The Grand Theatre Blackpool

Last month for my hubby’s Birthday we went on a Heritage Tour of The Grand Theatre in Blackpool. It is such an interesting and magical place that I created a journal page.

the-grand-ajp

First I wanted to re-create the plaster work that is a feature of the theatre so I applied Pébéo modelling paste with a palette knife in straight lines along the border of my page using a stencil. Then I applied more modelling paste using a wedding place card as a stencil which had a die cut design that I thought looked like the intricate and delicate plaster work we saw. Once the modelling paste had dried overnight, I painted parchment coloured Liquitex acrylic paint over the whole of the page.  Next I added the cherub and rose images which are torn pieces of napkin, they are stuck to the page using a UHU Stic. I painted Gold Size onto the page with a paint brush and applied some gold leaf, then added plasterboard/drywall tape over the top to mimic the patterned gold leaf in the theatre. I also applied gold leaf to some filigree cut outs, which are from a wedding favour box and added them to the modelling paste design. I used outline stickers to add the gold lines and small teardrop shapes to further compliment the modelling paste patterns and embellished it further with self-adhesive gem pearls. Our tour guide kindly allowed me to keep one of our tickets and the images of The Grand are cut from the Heritage Tour leaflet.  I adorned them all with gold leaf cut outs and pearls and stuck them to the page with double-sided foam tape. To finish I added two cameos that were in keeping with the Victorian Baroque theme. This page really reminds me of our visit; I was inspired by so many different design elements that we saw at the theatre which my hubby captured beautifully in his photos too.

theatre-exterior

The Grand was designed by architect Frank Matcham and was opened in 1894 after a construction period of seven months, at a cost of £20,000.

ceiling

Matcham’s brief was to build the “prettiest theatre in the land” – I’m sure you’ll agree he achieved just that!

stage-right

Matcham built over 80 theatres although now there are only about two dozen left. We feel very privileged to have been able to visit one of his stunning theatres and one in such good condition too.

stage-left

We are also pleased to be able to support the marvellous work that The Friends of the Grand does, who were formed in 1973 to save the building from demolition. The first Friends were literally ‘hands-on’, painting the dressing rooms, repairing holes to the ceiling and getting the theatre into shape. Nowadays they raise funds towards projects such as the provision of new carpets, seating and technical equipment. The theatre is gradually being restored to its original Matcham splendour with the upholstering being changed back to its original blue English velvet, along with the plush curtains and draperies.

safety-curtain

We also went back stage, which isn’t as glamorous as I thought it would be, very functional. This is the back of the safety curtain which is made from metal in case of a fire to prevent it spreading into the theatre. Over the years actors who have performed at The Grand have adorned it with their names, comments and the show they performed in.

seating

Matcham designed seating on four tiers and you may notice that he thought of everything as all seats have a good view of the stage. This is truly a feat of engineering as there are no columns to block the view of the stage, the tiers being built on the steel cantilever principle.

lower-ceiling

The theatre is magnificent in every detail; the general scheme of decoration is in white, buff and pink. Alongside the intricate plaster work and gold leaf, there are many cherubs, flowers and spectacular paintings.

cream-tea

What better way to celebrate our tour than tea and homemade scones with clotted cream and homemade bramble jelly – my hubby requested these for his birthday and it was a delicious way to celebrate! I’m so pleased to say a big hello to the T Gang over at T Stands for Tuesday – Happy T Day!

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Pébéo Modeling Paste High Density
  • Liquitex Artist Color Acrylic (Parchment)
  • Sharpie Permanent Fine Point marker (Black)
  • Ranger Claudine Hellmuth Studio 6×6 Stencil (Our Town HSC36920)
  • Magenta Style outline stickers (Daisy Gold 93326G)
  • Hobbycraft outline stickers (Gold Scenes 5934211001)
  • The Works (4 Cameo Embellishments)
  • Poundland (Pearl Embellishments U-80929)
  • Gold Leaf
  • 151Adhesives Plasterboard & Drywall Tape
  • Dunelm napkins (Grace 30220549)
  • Dunelm (Place Cards)
  • Tour ticket and leaflet
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • Annie Sloan (Gold Size)
  • UHU Stic
  • The Range Double-sided foam tape