Monster making is one of my favourite things to do, so you can imagine that making an 8-foot knitted monster to celebrate 25 years of one of the UK’s most warm fuzzy charities was a monstrous offer I could not refuse.
BT and the NSPCC got in touch with me earlier in the year to beckon me into the world of blank-faced telephone boxes and a whole herd of artists. Childline, a charity I remember launching way back in 1987 with a catchy theme tune to remember the number, gave children a telephone number to call if they were in trouble and had nowhere else to turn. In my 10-year-old world I remember a spate of kids at school proudly declaring they’d threatened to call Childline in tense moments of being told to tidy their room or eat their sprouts, but under the amusement there was a definite feeling that everyone now had a friendly grown up there for anyone who needed them. And the lovely London telephone box was the best place to pour out your worries.
Some of you might remember that I have already decorated three telephone boxes, though in both cases I had to run away afterwards. So the idea of creating a crafty kiosk with permission, for such a fabulous cause had me Snoopy dancing around my living room.
So I joined the ranks of 86 BT Artbox artists to make my very own arty telephone box. Woo hoo!
I’ll keep the story of my BT Artbox for a future post, but before all that may I introduce you to my latest and largest creation.
Ladies, gents and tiny people, may I introduce to you my BT Artbox, Dial M for Monster! You can call him Muncher.
Muncher was released into the wilds of Trafalgar Square on June 15th, and will be living on the Trafalgar Square roundabout (along with Mini Big Ben by the lovely and colourful Mandii Pope) until July 18th. There’s a map below to help you find him.
Here’s Muncher’s Tale (which you can also read over on the BT Artbox website):
“Once upon a city there roamed whole herds of London’s wild British Phone Box Beasts. These cubic creatures hunted the streets pretending to be a real telephone boxes, in order to trick tasty grown ups who entered the box to make calls (he would never eat a child though, too many small bones).
Since the advent of the mobile phone sightings of these boxy beasts have become rare indeed. Muncher is one of the last surviving in London’s wild. He’s become rather hungry due to lack of callers, so the monster has become a forager. He now survives on the half-eaten kebabs that people sometimes drop by his side on their way home from the pub. Though he does enjoy the occasional pigeon. Burp.”
Yes he’s woolly, yes he’s out there in the rain, and yes, he’s a giant knitted monster made from 100 balls of wool and handsewn by little old me.
I invite everyone to go and meet him, give him a hug and support the amazing charity that is Childline.
View Dial M for Monster BT ArtBox in a larger map
Muncher will be up for auction after his stint in the city. If you want to bid for him check out the BT Artbox website for more info. He needs a home. He’s house trained and will only eat people occasionally.
London, please look after my monster. He’s all alone out there.
Huge thanks to BT and the NSPCC for inviting me to make my monster. Also thanks to Gary Northfield (tail plaiting assistant), Sarah Kerry (machine knitting dynamo), and Mims Reilly and Colin Holder for being buttoneers.