Canal festivals

Magnificent Middlewich FAB Festival 

The 17th and 18th May 2017 was my fifth time facepainting at Middlewich – four times at their Folk and Boat Festival (FAB), and once at a Roving Canal Traders Association Floating Market in 2015. The past three times I recall the weather was cool and intermittently raining. Hurrah though, this year it pulled out a scorcher which makes a tremendous difference. Not just for my business, but for everyone who has worked tirelessly for months to organise such a large event. Of course it’s also great for the people who come and have fun – it’s always better when the sun shines.

I facepaint close to the Floating Traders who line the canal from the town bridge to The Big Lock pub. It means I don’t have to far to carry my gazebo and all the kit which I use – a high chair, two tables, design boards, banner, paints, brushes, sponges, glitter for tattoos and faces, a bucket of clean water, towels, baby wipes, etc. I’m really happy with my set up now, it’s taken me three years of investment but worth every penny.

Also at Middlewich, on the festival field by the Historic Narrowboats, was a large company called ‘Wish Upon a Sparkle‘ who specialise in ‘festival eyes’, glitter beards and chests. As it’s such a party atmosphere all weekend, there was an abundance of glitter-clad folks shining brightly in most locations who’d been decorated by them. There’s plenty of people around for us both.

I adore facepainting, especially at Middlewich. Young and not so young males and females all come to sit in my FUNtastic chair and get painted – and yes glittered and jewelled. Many return year after year. This time I added hair feathers to my offerings, and a number of young women took the opportunity of a colourful adornment which can last around six months.

I’m still hopeless at taking photos though! The only ones I managed were of my own legs which I painted in the mornings before the crowds arrived. Once people come, the last thing on my mind is pictures. I just enjoy creating colourful faces and arms, and doing it as well and as speedy as possible to keep the queue down so folks don’t have to wait too long.

Ah well … I really will get better. If not taking them myself, maybe making larger signs asking customers to post and share their own images.

Watch this space to see if it happens!

A bit of a break till August

We’ve got friends on board the boat in a week’s time, and then we’re in Scotland with another 18 people celebrating a friend’s 50th birthday. So no facepainting events are planned for July. My next festival is at a place called Fenny Stratford Canal Festival on the Grand Union Canal near Milton Keynes on 6th August – my first time there so I’m looking forward to meeting new people to paint happy.


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