I went back to Cocoa Amore last week to add the sign writing to his new shop in Silver Street, in the medieval part of Leicester. The job was to paint a permanent logo in the centre of the huge windows, add opening times, a building number and bullet points, and then make a right old Hallowe’en spectacle in the windows - those to last only a few days, to give way not long after to Christmas.
Here’s the shop in all its glory, and how it got there!
This was my first experience with proper sign writing materials, and it was a bugger to get used to. I used an ivory enamel to match Pete the owner’s existing colours, and built up layers to make solid letters:
- never work with children or animals:
Then, the split cocoa pod at the top was added, and a shout line. Kneeling on two bags worth of dried cocoa beans, the crunching and constant chocolate smell made for a bittersweet agony/ecstacy environment (Pete wasn’t shy of keeping the hot chocolate coming either):
A freestyle building number now nestles under the Victorian gold swags:
And then the job was to add some opening hours too:
- remember everything is painted in reverse, on the inside of the glass!
Of course I made sure I was appropriately attired. Yes, yes, overalls - but more importantly the chocolate brown lip colour (mixed from two different shades) and brown and copper eyeshade. (Question: why can’t you get brown mascara anymore eh?)
Once the main sign writing was in, it was all about getting the temporary Hallowe’en painting up for the opening night. On this I could unclench a bit and relax into painting familiar shapes with a series of non-permanent Posca inks applied with a brush - the sign writing took four times as long as the Hallowe’en work, due to the concentration required of an amateur combined with sticky, enamel-based paint!
All was now ready for the pre-Hallowe’en Grand Opening, by invitation only, to the shop which sits just in front of Leicester Cathedral where King Richard. As far as I know, he was invited, but no-one saw him. OR DID THEY...