The Koi Carp under construction

The workshops were open for business Saturday and Sunday.

As well as an array of small lanterns, there are some large, ambitious constructions this year.

One family came in to continue work on their koi carp. They came with flasks and sandwiches, and  the fins, tail and whiskers they had made at home. Their children made stars and a scooter whilst they added a lot more detail to the carp.  They have made progressively more complex lanterns over the past couple of years, and learned a lot about technique in the process. They have applied them all here; beautiful, realistic and with an elegantly flipped tail, it is an inspiration.

Janette, Corrie and Zana are a great team. They have quietly solved the legs and feet of the T-Rex. With a few more additions, it’s  become a stalking Stegasaurus.

Gilly and Janette discuss the technicalities of a dragon lantern...

As well as working on the dinosaur, Janette’s also responsible for Harry Potter and a dragon, and all three find time to help out with jobs. This morning, we all worked together to ‘fettle’ the children’s lanterns – checking they are ready to cover and adding more detail where necessary.

At the weekend, everything stopped for lunch.

Mr Repton serves the stew

The kitchens were manned by school staff and we were served with stew or soup and mounds of fresh bread. We all sat and ate together around big, square tables, chatting and laughing.

Sunday was the first ‘covering day’ and about twenty lanterns were finished. The big ones were still being made, and fitted with stretchers and lighting. A family arrived late in the day with a big lantern that had been finished at home. They had made a couple of lovely small objects – too small for candles.

The small glittered frames.

Necessity being the mother of invention, the frames were glittered. Gilly has donated a couple of small, battery-operated mock tealights to make them glisten.

Today, children from Year 6 joined the team and helped the young ones with the papering of their lanterns. Year 4 have been working on a blog post. The school staff had a Lanterns planning meeting at the end of the day. We were invited, but the workshop was too busy to leave. It was busy, and also full to the brim with good company.  Tired as we are, it is such a pleasure working here, helping folk to realise their designs, make their beautiful objects and have such a great time in the process.


Angela Woods · January 31, 2012 at 10:25 am

I can’t wait to see photos of the carp – it sounds amazing!

Lamin Fatty · February 1, 2012 at 10:46 am

We are all looking forward to take part in this year’s Tilery lantern parade – being our first since our move to Stockton. Musa and Fatima are ready for Thursday evening, and to parade their house, boat and fish lanterns alongside several wonderful lanterns we’ve already seen been made…

Mike · February 1, 2012 at 1:47 pm

I’ve sent a sample blog entry about Tilery to our research colleagues in Australia and I’ve asked them to look at the other blogs. So it’s hot news Down Under too…


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