Make a Fancy Sailor’s Ship

Our Kitchen Carnival Fancy Sailor’s Ship is based on the iron ships built in Canning Town in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. You can wear the Fancy Sailor’s Ship to perform in sitting down or standing up.
(If you are going to stand and move around, find a ‘sea colour’ such as blue, green or grey to wear on your lower half.)

To make the Fancy Sailors Ship you need:

  • A cardboard box
  • Kitchen foil
  • Some old jar lids
  • Scrap or coloured paper (blue, green or grey) and white paper
  • String or wool and something to make a hole in the cardboard
  • Scissors, household tape, a pen or pencil and a glue stick
  • Enough space to spread out in – my kitchen was too small, so I used the living room.

1)  Find a cardboard box that is big enough to fit over your head and shoulders and to sit comfortably around your body once the bottom is removed.

2) Remove the top and bottom and any flaps, keeping them safely.

3)  The original box, turned sideways, is the part you will wear. Extend your ship out to the front by using some of your left-over card and household tape. Here I have used the two halves of the lid to extend the shape, and the two side flaps to create a ‘prow’ at the front.

4) Now cover over the front of the ship using more tape. Here I have used the two halves from the bottom of the box.

5) Find a suitable piece of card to make the ship’s cabin and tape this on.

6) Cover your ship with kitchen foil, using your glue stick on the edges as necessary.

7) Glue your tin lids to the cabin make portholes. Use paper to glue waves around the bottom. I used long strips of blue paper and folded them and cut them out using a paper heart chain technique to make the waves, but white paper is fine. I cut thin strips of white paper and curled them around a pencil to make the tops of the waves.

8) Finally, cut two pieces of string or wool, each one just over double the length that will be needed to hang the Fancy Sailor’s Ship from your shoulders. Add your string by making two holes on each side near (but not too close) to the top of the box, one at the front and one at the back. Thread your string each side by pushing it through from the outside at the front and pulling it back through at the rear before knotting it loosely. Adjust the strings as necessary and then knot them tightly.

Kitchen Carnival Designs by ju90
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