Monday, 13 June 2011


For the past ten years all the children who live in Lewes (and thereabouts) that are moving on from primary to secondary school take part in a ceremony called the Patina Moving On ParadeAll the children parade through the streets of Lewes wearing the most fantastic costumes made from withies (sticks of willow) bent into shapes, covered with tissue paper, to form animals, flowers, anything. Last year’s theme was the jungle and the streets were crowded with exotic plants, crazy insects and frightening beasts. As well as being a spectacle, it is also extremely moving. 

I have always wanted to know how to make these structures and this weekend I 'volunteered' to learn how to do it so that I could help the children in our school prepare for the parade. The theme this year is Dance and our school are going as characters from Grease. In the end I didn't end up making a structure from withies, although I did learn how. Instead, with the help of Nicky, our allotted artist and genius withie-smith, I made a gigantic quiff out of newspaper. It's not finished yet but when it is I know it will be the favourite costume accessory in my family for years to come.


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