Tag Archives: work

It’s a Mans world!!

Or is it? As you all know I am a prop maker. We use tools of all kinds such an sanders, drills, saws and many many other tools of the building, decorating and carpentry trade.

Yes I am a girl and yes I have long hair, long nails, wear make-up and batter my eye lids when needed but I am in the trade. I went into B&Q not so long ago to enquire about a trade card and when I asked the man behind the counter he just looked at me. He said “You have to be in the trade” I said “I know!” Grrrrrr

So I then went into toolstation and was wandering again how I was going to be treated but this time I was treated really well. They were so helpful and really nice , even though I was given some in-approving looks from some other men who looked at me like I really didn’t belong there.

Then I went into Travis Perkins and I was just stood there like I didn’t belong and all these men were just stood there looking at me, not happy at all but I took a deep breath and asked about Plywood. I new what I wanted so I new what to ask for. This I felt quite happy about. But then for some reason my trade card details wouldn’t show up so I felt really out of place.

Anyway, it’s all sorted now and I am now able to shop where I want at trade prices. This make a huge difference because the materials I have to use can get really expensive. I’m now really looking forward to working with my plywood now 😀


Paper mâche. The tricks of the trade ;-)

Today I had a visit from a lovely lady who was struggling to make a prop for a production they were putting on. Now I don’t Normally give away my secrets but with this one, I couldn’t say no.

Where paper mâché is concerned it’s very easy to do but it’s not easy to get that smooth finish on your cardbored or plaster or expanding foam.

When I first started making props is want to get the job done quick so I would put huge pieces of paper on the item when using paper mâché. This would leave the ripple effect and raised paper instead of getting that smooth finish. So during my research I found out that if you use small pieces of paper (which will take you much longer) you get less raised pieces and a much smoother finish. Then this leaves you with a lovely surface to paint on.

I have attached photos. The first photo is of a very rippled surface which I used large pieces of paper to cover.
The second picture of of a very smooth surface which much smaller pieces of paper and no ripples.

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Star Ship Enterprise

I havnt long come back from the studio this evening. So tired but I managed to get loads done. I have finished applying the lights to the Thundercats logo and all is now ready to be painted around the sides and the back. I have also started to add the rest of the Star Ship Enterprise I am making. It hasn’t been easy but we do love a challenge. So tomorrow it will be to carry of adding pieces and to also finish painting the logo. Then it is into the Star Trek logo. No rest for the very wicked he he he

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“Their behind you”

It will soon be apon us, Panto Time. It’s strange isn’t it that I’m talking about this and it’s only June but has anyone else noticed how fast time is flying this year? It’s crazy but I will soon be building sets apon sets for stage and I’m so excited about it.

I’ve been off from work since Tuesday last week and it’s driving me crazy. I’ve had a small op done and I’m not aloud to be in work for 5 days so I’m just itching to get back in the studio. 20140614-044752 pm-60472051.jpg

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It just keeps getting better ;-)

As a new business it’s very hard to get off the ground but you still hope that it will and pray you won’t go it alone. Well I have been in my studio for 4 months now and I just love it. Proper paid work is extremely slow but that’s what happens. At the moment I’m just concentrating on getting the Prop Maker Wales name out there. I still have so much to learn though because incase you didn’t already know, I am all self taught. Not bad for a woman who became a Mum at the age of 18 and is now 34.

Some people have said “why are you doing this? What do you think you will achieve?” Well I’m doing this because I love it and have done for a year and a half, and I’m hoping to become far more skilled in this field and also pass on my skills and talents to students. I want to expand. Do well as a business. To me it’s not about the money, and it never will be. It’s about being known for doing well and spending my life making my kids and myself proud. I love it and I will continue to love it for a very long time to come.

I have a very busy year now, but first I am off for a week for a little op. Then it’s back to work all systems go till Christmas.

🙂 xxxx

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Name change from Managing Mischief Designs to Prop Maker Wales

We’ve had our biggest commission to date. An entire set for a pantomime of Cinderella to be performed over 4 days in December. I’ve got to say, the most exiting part for me is I get to make a fully working carriage full of lights and all sparkly he he. It’s all going so well for us here so we can’t complain. With so much to do, I feel our year is very much a busy one.

And after we had our meeting with one of our advisers, we have decided to change our name for the better and to make it easier for customers and most importantly our fans to find us.

Wer going from Managing Mischief Designs to

‘Prop Maker Wales’

Please spread the word of our change. The wheels were set in motion last week. But in the mean time we have a lot to do in the studio. So much mess to make and so much fun to be had 😀

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The Gargoyle Wings are now COMPLETE!!!! Yes they left the house last night at 11pm and had a very long but hopefully safe trip to Birmingham. They will be used in a performance next month so I will be reporting on that.

Wow what a learning curve though. I am totally shattered and have refused to get out of bed for anyone until now that is lol.

I was having a bit of a melt down yesterday because the wings just didn’t want to dry and the lady who was collecting them had come all the way from Birmingham to collect them. I have never felt so sick in my life. But with help from my customer, we got it dry together. That’s team work for you. Now she has offered to come back to the opening of my studio with her full costume on for all of you lucky people to see 🙂

I really enjoyed seeing the wings leave mind but I was totally blown away by how they came out. Granted they were very heavy but looked incredible. The lady in question told me that when she enquired to other companies about making some wings, they all said NO! She asked around 20 different companies/designers. So after hearing this I was determined to be the company who said YES!!!!

Never again though, I think unless someone offers me £1000 I may consider it but until then, these wings are a one off.

Now my task today is to buy my son a pair of shoes, and then finally continue with Audrey 2. More latex being used today 🙂

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Grand Opening Meeting

Today I had a meeting with some colleagues regarding the Grand Opening. This included my 4 year old son and my wonderful husband, plus a bag of freshly made hot doughnuts. What a combination.

We had plenty to discuss. First on the agenda was what we wanted to gain from this. The answer, to gain more business, more clientele, get our name out there, and to show what sort of things we do. Then it was the display we wanted to have. We had a lot of choices, and ideas for this. And it made me realise how much work I have leading up to this event. Then the next stage was the marketing of my business and the event. Again, this was a very interesting topic, and how we would go about it, plus grants, loans and so on.

So now, I have to start putting all these ideas into practice which isn’t going to be easy, but it is going to be a brilliant challenge indeed.

Watch this space 😉

Woo, what a Bank Holiday shift!!

Been in the studio all day today. What a shift. It’s been MENTLE.

Today my shift consisted on finishing painting the wings, adding all the edges, latex them and paint them, then add the first of the claws. It’s been bloody tough to do these wings, but the end is near.

Then the second job was to start making the leaves for Audrey 2 from the Little Shop of Horrors which was quite fun ha ha.

So all I’m doing is a quick blog this evening because I am completely shattered and I want to go to bed

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Being a Workaholic!

There are perks to loving your job, but there are problems too. I work 6 days a week and if the studio was open on a Friday, it would be all 7 days so maybe that’s a good thing lol.

In work I run on adrenalin but the second I get home I crash. It’s a stunning day out and I am chilling after my dinner and then wer all going to enjoy some ice cream with chocolate sauce (yum yum)

Tomorrow, if my stuff dries quick enough, I will be in work from 12 till 8pm. Still so much to do which is a good thing but I can’t wait to finish 🙂

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