There’s a hint of wistfulness that can set in when dismantling a window display. It’s a bit like the undoing of a spell: the one that magically transformed a borrowed 1960s typewriter on a desk on top of an old moth-eaten rug, into a fantastical keyboard where the beginning of a story is being typed in woollen words on a knitted scarf-ream of paper. In the 4 weeks since it’s been there, passers-by have stopped to stare and wonder about that story, not realising that they are in fact at the centre of it.
Now that November is over, so too is the typewriter story. Last Thursday, we took all the pieces out of the window. The rug got rolled up to go back to my mother’s spare room, the little table returned to its nested siblings in the corner at home, and the typewriter is back in its carry case in my hallway, ready to return to the kind student down the road who let me borrow it while she was away at university. And like Bagpuss and his friends, the scarf and all the other props are just ordinary objects again.
In case this is all starting to sound a little melancholy, I should add that there’s really no need to be sad, for the last 9 years have taught us that in the universe of The Window of Number 116 Lower Clapton Road, we can rely on a law with a surprisingly anti-gravitational, reverse-umbrella logic. This law holds that ‘whatever comes down, something new must go up’. And so no sooner has, for example, a duckling bath turned back into a preserving pan, or a giant polaroid camera become a cardboard box again, than a new spell is cast and the next display rises .
And so it was on Thursday. As soon as the window was empty, Hana Whaler arrived with her tool box, paints and mahl stick, to paint the year’s final window, which announces that we are now ready for December. In a miraculously perfect hand drawn arc, her beautiful lettering now dances across the glass…
So what’s the story?
This year we celebrate our knitterly love of counting by chiming in with the 24 days of advent.
Each day in December, a marvellously painted numbered door will open to reveal all manner of things from small to big, kookie to practical, all objects that may one day have a place in the stories that you carry on telling in the things that you make.
Pass by the shop or follow along in our Instagram stories to discover what’s behind the doors in this year’s December window.