Autumn brings the smell of damp LRP kit, and the logistical challenge of storing things that I’m not that likely to need until summer. I go to winter events, but we don’t use the large tents as often and they need re-waterproofing at some point over the winter.
We have piles of costume from some of the summer events that need to be sorted, stored, washed and repaired. It’s also the time we do large jobs like rebuilding creatures so they can live for another year, and of course building things that we need to run future events.
Shortly we will begin working out which AV equipment has survived the year, and what gets used. Then we will work out a shopping list, and a selling list and attempt to start next year in a better place.
At the same time we’re building monsters for people to use for winter events, and the halloween and pantomime orders are already arriving. It’s a busy time of year considering it’s the “off-season”.
We tend to use Really Useful Boxes for a lot of things. They inevitably come in close to the right size and are usually sort of the right size for whatever we need to store. Our shelving is built to accommodate them, and we’ve only destroyed a few of them over the years. They’re waterproof, so even if you’re only looking after your own kit you can use them in a tent and your stuff stays dry even when your tent doesn’t.
Everyone knows about Really Useful Boxes. The Ikea Dimpa storage bags are probably less well known. They’re currently cheaper than normal at £2.95 a bag. I typically buy 10 every time I’m in IKEA. We use them when we build large creatures for people, for example our Trolls and Dinosaurs for Eye LRP, and also when we build and store our own stuff. They stack nicely and survive better than other similar bags.
I also typically spend this time of year working out new kit I want. I’m not brilliant at making kit for me. I have some stunning stuff I’ve made, but customer jobs come first, and if it’s for me I’ll inevitably decide to do something the really time consuming way. At the moment I’m building up post apocalyptic kit, so scouring ebay for bits and pieces that work for what I’m after. I also want to make myself Varushkan kit for Empire next year. This may go the same way as my Dawnish kit and be finishing in another 2-3 years. I’m kind of hoping that if I avoid the lure of hand sewing I might even get to wear it at some point.
Finally, I need to work out how to expand the range of masks Mandala offers. I’ve been adding photos of some of our masks to the shop too. We’ve been a bit lax in photographing masks recently, so I’ve taken the chance to make up some of the masks for which we are lacking photos. I’m getting to choose my own colours and patterns and I’m really loving the resulting masks. We’re also a lot more likely to sell them if we let people see them. Funny that…
What do you do with your kit in preparation for the winter?