When I first moved to London I planned to spend every Saturday night clubbing, dancing like no one was looking until the early hours of the morning. My idea of a perfect Saturday night has changed a great deal since then, but even I was slightly surprised by this Saturday evenings activity. If my 18-year-old self had travelled forward in time and looked in through the window, I’m pretty sure he would have fallen to his knees and wept, then returned to his own time and mourned for all he would lose. Why would my younger self have been surprised? because on a Saturday night near Christmas, when many were out partying, I was at home making pom poms.
I haven’t started making bobble hats for a living, the pom poms I made on Saturday were to hang on the Christmas tree that stands on the town square. I wrote about the E17 Christmas tree last year, bored with its under decoration and less than festive barriers that surrounded it, some residents added extra decorations to the tree to cheer it up. Last year I wrapped tinsel around the barrier, but this year I was determined to make something my self. I did attempt to knit a bauble but it ended up looking like a woolly jock strap, so I fell back on pom pom making, something I learnt how to do at primary school. Ok, so it may not be very rock and roll to sit in on a Saturday night making Christmas tree decorations, but you know what, I enjoyed it. By the end of the night I had made five pom poms, I had already made a woolly E17 earlier in the week.
This morning we packed the decorations in a bag and headed up the high street to add them to the tree. We aren’t the first guerilla decorators to visit the tree, there are already lots of additions. E17 Xmas tree twitter birds, tinsel, a penguin, knitted baubles and a paper chain are already nestled in the branches and wrapped around the barrier. We hung the pom pom baubles in the branches and I tied the woolly E17 to the barrier. Walking back down the high street we were laughing to our selves, wondering if guerilla decorating happens in other places, or is this another one of those “Only in Walthamstow” things? One things for sure, decorating a public tree really cheered up a grey Sunday morning. There are still lots of empty branches and space on the barrier, so come on decorators of Walthamstow, whose going to be next to add some colour to the E17 Xmas tree?