When Malcolm and I were asked to help out with preparations for the #hsgardenparty, we jumped at the chance. We’re both creatives; making and designing for a living, but the Hope and Social projects we have worked on in the past haven’t just produced some of the work we are most proud of; we’ve had proper good fun doing it at the same time.
The brief was characteristically loose. Make a beautiful hammock where people could lie back, listen to music and stories and relax. Oh, and H&S-themed too please (if possible). Different ideas swirled back and forth in emails and Skype chats, but eventually the penny dropped when Ben recalled the opening line of the album, which was right under our nose the whole time.
“Sleep Sound where you lay…”
It was perfect. We got to work, and quickly came up with a design that worked with the long proportions of the hammock sling. Many an evening was then spent sourcing the various parts, washing the fabric (temporarily turning it pink thanks to a housewife fail on my part!), backing the cloth with positional bondaweb, cutting all the elements out, and then painstakingly laying it all out.
I finally finished the first stage of production the night before Malc left to go up North for two weeks. I spent hours in the evenings after work pinning and then ironing everything down, and when I finally fixed the last bit of the design into place around midnight, it was so beautiful that I dragged him out of bed to hold it up so I could take a picture. (He’s only got his boxers on behind there, you know!)
From there, the hammock then travelled to Firbush Point Field Centre, where Malc spent his evenings sewing the design securely into place with Loch Tay as his backdrop. As working environments go, it’s pretty unbeatable, don’t you think?
You may have seen some of the live webcasts he did over the course of the week he was working on it – if not, they are collected here. (Beware, there is audio, and may be a few sweary bits!) If you watched them, thank you, and if you chatted to him using the chat box while he did them, thank you even more for your cheeky heckling (you know who you are).
On his return to Edinburgh and with a week to go, Malc drilled the solid beech spreader bars, and we sat on Sunday morning threading it all together with soft cotton rope. We took it to the park to give it its first proper test that afternoon – bad timing – as we had to contend with loads of defeated Hibbs fans who started to pour out of the nearby football stadium just as we got it tied between the trees!
We really hope you will all come and have a little lie down in it (or one of the other hammocks that will be there on the day), and enjoy soaking up the atmosphere that the team have worked so hard to create over the past couple of months. It’s going to be a special day – just keep your fingers crossed for sunshine…