Victorian Ceramic FairingsWritten by Andy Graham
If you visited fair during mid 19th century until early 20th century you would have probably come home proud owner of a little ceramic figure now referred to as a 'Victorian Fairing'. They were originally given away to working classes as prizes at fair and were mostly about 3.5" long and about 2.5" deep and 3" tall, mounted on a rectangular base. They were normally made from white, glazed, soft-paste porcelain and were intended for display on mantelpieces. The typical subject matter for a Victorian Fairings cover risqué humour to politics; for example marital scenes such as 'married for money', 'Shall we sleep first, or ....'. Victorian Fairings were manufactured from middle of 19th century to outbreak of first world war.
‘The last to put out light’ is a common example that you will have no trouble finding. Numerous examples of this figure exist, differences appear in figure, colours, tablecloth, candle holder, and arms or legs maybe positioned slightly differently. You will typically find candle broken off as this was done for good luck.
Fairings can be grouped into a number of key themes, marriage with examples such as ‘Married for money’, ‘Three o’clock in morning’, ‘When a man’s married his troubles begin’ and ‘Twelve months after marriage’. I doubt its necessary to explain all of these captions as sentiment is still applicable today, but I do like ‘Returning at one o’clock in morning’ as it shows a man tripping over a chamber pot in middle of night clearly inebriated and being chastised by his wife, a situation I’ve never found myself in!
Simple steps to build a Tabletop Water FountainWritten by Rachel Paul
Water is essence of life. Creating your own table top fountains is a wonderful way to bring out your creativity and self-expression while simultaneously relieving stress and enhancing your interior décor. There are many unique benefits to having a fountain at home or work:
# The gentle soothing sound of flowing water can help you relax and meditate in your bedroom after a hard day’s work; # Start day listening to music of splashing water and enjoy invigorating effect it has on your mood. # Fountains humidify indoor air, especially if your home or workplace is dry due to continual air-conditioning. This is extremely helpful in preventing your skin from drying out. # Fountains release negative ions, said to promote better moods and concentration. Building a water fountain can be as simple as putting some stones and a small pump into a container with water. It does not have to be expensive or fancy. Nothing can compare to feeling of accomplishment from creating your own fountain.
1 A waterproof container or bowl of proper depth. Choose a container between 8-16 inches across in diameter and depth of at least 4-6 inches. The water has to cover pump; otherwise, pump will burn out. You can use ceramic bowls, plastic flower pots, glass, or wood boxes. The easiest and least expensive containers are plastic pots or ceramic bowls. Some plastic pots tend to vibrate when you put everything together. Ceramic bowls are more solid, lessening vibration Look in your cupboard for a casserole, serving dish, punch bowl, or fruit bowl if you're in a hurry to make a fountain.
2. A small water pump (less than 100 gallons per hour) and clear plastic tubing (1/2" inner dimension or 5/8" outer dimension). Fish tank pumps are fine. The smallest ones work well for typical size containers. Some shops supply suction cups with water pumps. Both pump and tubing can be found at an aquarium, hardware, or garden supply store. To straighten hose, boil it in water for a while.
3.Rocks; pebbles; slate; crystals; semi-precious stones; drift wood pieces; shells, anything that goes in water can be used. Each item can have a special meaning, thus adding to individuality of your fountain If you select rocks from your garden make sure you clean them well in a water-bleach bath. You can substitute polyethylene spray foam for bigger rocks thus reducing need for heavy rocks.
4. Plants add greenery to your fountain. A small clipping will do nicely. You could also use a small pot or glass bottle [baby food jar], fill it with water, put plant inside and place it inside fountain bowl.