Surprise Birthday present!
Around the end of August, I received a call from someone at TPGR ( Theo Paphitis Retail Group ) asking If I could make a special suprise birthday present for Theo, to be presented at the TPRG annual meeting in the beginning of October. I had been lucky enough to meet Theo before, and I knew he liked the Steampunk look of some of the clocks I have made. It was a relatively short time to pull it all off, but I accepted the task and readily got to work building the clock.
The Clock was made from a WWII RAF volt / amp meter and housed in a mahogany box - an excellent item to turn into something Steampunk. I was also tasked with adding in something that related to all of Theo's Brands, and also some 'Steam' and ' Mechanial movement ' would be a great idea. I went with the idea of having all of the brands made as brass jigsaw pieces, and a central piece as a dedication from all the people at TPRG.
I fitted a small smoke generator into a side chimney, and then found an old miniature steam engine in the workshop that then became the centrepiece of the design. The clock had two displays, one for London where Theo is based and the other for Limassol where Theo was born. Both syncronised and keeping perfect time. Items were added to the clock to represent what the Brands stand for - Rymans the Stationers, so I added some vintage pen nibs and a pair of compasses.. Robert Dyas for homewares, so a minature kettle and frying pan. Something for each Brand was added into the design, for Boux Avenue I inlaid some vintage lace into the top of the clock.
Delivery day soon came round, the location was the Hilton hotel at Birminghams NEC and a plan was hatched. I was to set the clock up and check it all over and then the TPRG would carry the clock onto the main stage, where Theo was addressing his companies staff at their annual meeting - Karen and myself waiting in the green room backstage and watching live on the monitors. It worked a treat! Theo had no idea and he was clearly delighted with his clock!
When lunch came round, Theo came into the green room and I was able to explain how his clock worked and where all the parts had come from. It was a wonderful opportunity to be asked to make this, a day I shall certainly not forget!Contact Us