Springingtiger's Blog


Walking Workshop in The Westend

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Among the activities suggested at the Annual Meeting of the Glasgow Ubiquitous E Steampunk Society was ‘walking workshops’. These are not as you might suspect lessons in walking, but in shopping. As we all know the great joy of Steampunk is upcycling and repurposing items secured at minimal cost into Steampunk costumes and accessories. On the Walking Workshop society members with local knowledge of charity and antiques shops lead a group around an area so that they can gather the raw materials of their next ensemble.

Today (Saturday 21/05/2016) we had the first GUESS walking workshop led through Glasgow’s Westend by the ‘Sky Captain’ Stephen Taylor. After an initial rendezvous at the Hillhead Underground Station the walk commenced at the magnificent Victorian glasshouse, the Kibble Palace. The Westend is rich in charity shops, antique shops, and vintage clothes shops and provides rich pickings for the bargain hunter.

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With so many shops to visit the day could have been a little too much for the participants. We took a break from the hard work of shopping for a late lunch in an old fashioned café, the University Café in Byres Road. Refreshed we explored Dumbarton Road. Until eventually the members had dispersed happily with their purchases apart from the diehards who finished their day in the Three Judges.

Most of the participants choose to come in what one might call ‘Steampunk light’, obviously Steampunk, but dressed for shopping. The consequence of this is that we attracted a fair amount of interest and enabled us to hand out leaflets and talk to people as we shopped. We were made very welcome in the various shops who seemed to enjoy the Steampunk invasion.

We haven’t yet had a lot of comments back from our merry band of walkers, but those we have had suggest that the Walking Workshop is something they would like to see more of. Today’s attracted people from as far away as Dundee, perhaps the idea will spread. The great thing about The Walking Workshop is that it costs nothing except what the participants choose to spend in the shops and on refreshments. All that’s needed is a rendezvous and someone with the knowledge to put together an itinerary. It doesn’t matter if there are not a lot of participants as some of the shops are quite cramped. We got up to fourteen which was the upper limit of what the shops could cope with.

Some members were sad they couldn’t make today’s workshop. It looks very much as if there will be another soon. A simple idea and a very successful day.

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