Monday, 20 January 2014

Create Cafe, Ilkley - A Review

Last weekend five of us got the train over to the town of Ilkley for the day to celebrate my bezzie friend Lucy's 30th birthday to get down to some seriously raucous behaviour and debauchary to end her twenties.

Or not.

We headed over to Create Cafe to get messy with paints and put our creative skills to the test by painting pottery. It possibly didn't help that we'd already been drinking on the train on the way there, so we were a little rowdy, but upon entering the (fairly quiet) cafe and being greeted by a birthday party for a young teen party quietened us down quite quickly.

We were skeptical about how the afternoon would pan out, to say the least. We don't realise how much bad language we tend to use as a group until you're being frowned at by a mum of the birthday girl.

So what happens at the Create Cafe, you ask?

Upon entering, you are asked to select a piece of pottery you'd like to paint. I was completely guided by price and wanted to choose something that wasn't overly expensive but that I would use in my home. I picked up a teapot (what? I'd use that!) and put it down VERY quickly when I saw the price tag of £18. I'll just buy one from Ikea...

I selected a ceramic tile for the reasonable sum of £7. I justified it by saying I'd put a hot saucepan on it, but in reality after spending so long painting the bloody thing I'll just display it somewhere.

So, you have your piece of pottery and all the paints are waiting for you on the table, so all that is left for you to do is think of a design and get painting.

This is harder than you think. Being stared at by a blank piece of pottery when you're a little tipsy surrounded by children's birthday parties is quite stressful. "I DON'T KNOW WHAT TO BLOODY PAINT!" I cried several times.

Of course I got started and buggered it up straight away by forgetting to use the white paint first as a base coat. BLOODY HELL.

I wasn't happy with mine from the start but I refused to stop, despite wanting to run away to the nearest pub and cradle a glass of red wine.

On I went, painting and ignoring my more talented friends. There was a period of about seventeen minutes where no one talked, such was our level of concentration.

Two hours quickly went by and I got my tile to a stage where I wasn't cringing with embarrassment, and actually started to really enjoy myself and relax. Ta daaaaaaa maybe I should be a painter?

Here's a shot of our finished products - take a look at our skills!

On the whole, for a two hour activity, it's really reasonably priced when you consider it cost £9 which included a slice of cake. Of course that depends on what you choose to paint, the big bowl in the picture above was the most expensive at £30. It was fun to try something new as a group, and much more productive than drinking all afternoon...

All the materials are included, but you then have to go back and collect your item once it has been blasted in the kiln, so consider that if you don't live in the area. We had a fun afternoon, more fun that we originally expected and the only advice I'd give if you're a little creatively challenged like me, is to look around on Pinterest for some inspiration before you get started. There is no EDIT>UNDO button on pottery :)