Fancy Sailors

The main London 2012 Host Borough of Newham where Together! 2012 CIC is based is London’s nautical capital – find out more by exploring the links below.


Sing our Sea Shanties ‘Donkey Riding’ and ‘A Nice Cup of Tea’.

Make a Fancy Sailor’s Kazoo here.

Make a Fancy Sailor’s Collar and Cuffs with Tie Ring here.

Make a Fancy Sailor’s Ship to wear as part of your costume here.

Traditional accessories for Fancy Sailors include canes. If you or a member of your household use a walking stick, wheelchair or frame, you can add pom-poms or tassels to make it Kitchen Carnival-ready. You can also use the tassel design to make an Octopus to add to your costume or film. Find out more here.

We found a brilliant video by Unbox Burrito on YouTube. It shows how you can fold a piece of paper to make a paper sailor hat for your Carnival costume, and a paper boat and a talking ‘Metapod’ to use in your film. You can personalise these designs by decorating and adding to them with anything that you have available. Tips: 1) Pause the video when you need more time to fold your paper, don’t rush. 2) Glue down the corners after folding them over. 3) Make a boat or metapod first, using an ordinary sheet of paper. Then use a sheet of newspaper or glue two sheets of paper together to make a hat big enough for you to wear. If the video doesn’t display below, click here.


You can find out more about the history of Newham’s docks here, and about African, Caribbean and Asian seafarers and dockworkers here.

Visit the Museum of London Docklands to find out more about the role that London’s Docks played in the Transatlantic Slave Trade.

Explore the cultural history linked to Canning Town’s shipbuilding and docks industries in Ju Gosling’s online exhibition Canning Town Folk.

Visit the Royal Museums Greenwich online to find out more about the famous clipper ship Cutty Sark.

Octopuses are awesome. They are highly intelligent, can change colour in an instant, and can also change the patterns and textures of their skin. They are invertebrates – they have no spine – so they can squeeze through the smallest gap to hide or hunt (they mostly eat crabs). The rest of life on earth evolved separately to the octopus family, so they have half a billion years of uniqueness. Octopuses are survivors – their mother dies after hatching around a quarter of a million eggs. Without the protection of their mother, the tiny octopuses provide food for other species. Most survive only days, and almost none reach adulthood.  Without protection, they have to experiment with different ways of disguising themselves to survive. Their average lifespan is just a year, so they have to learn very quickly. To find out more about octopuses, see BBC iPlayer’s documentary The Octopus in my House – watch through to the end to see the octopus constantly changing colour and texture as it dreams. If you have Netflix, the documentary My Octopus Teacher is fascinating, but also very emotional.

Kitchen Carnival Designs by ju90