Our search for the uprights took us on a tour of the op-shops and dump/recycling shops of the lower North Island, with candlesticks, bed and chair legs, and pepper grinders amongst the options.
Tech table centrepiece
The base of the centrepiece is an enormous wooden candleholder from a Miramar op-shop, and the large cog platter is from a deliberately uneven, freehand drawing that George cut out of MDF for me (one of two, the other being used for the Head Table centrepiece). The parts took over a year to gather, but the assembly took a couple of hours, once the paint had dried.
Head Table centrepiece
The armature was easy enough, once George had made me the core piece to my design. I made an outline of the project out of wire, so I could get an idea of the tentacle lengths involved. Once I had the basic layout established, I built an armature over the wire out of aluminium foil. Then, I gradually built it up with little Pal Tiya pancakes, until I had my octopus built. It took three days of adding clay, because it was remarkably hard on my hands. Luckily, Pal Tiya can be wrapped and kept moist, and as long as you score the joining points, you can keep adding to it indefinitely.