The Mill working with INT Works (part of It’s Nice That) and the national charity for homeless people Crisis, have created a festive window, featuring a Christmas Wish Machine installation. The machine encourages people to tweet in Christmas wishes to @themillwishes, with each wish written out and then added as a flake to the snowstorm. For every wish received 10p is donated to Crisis.
The Xmas Installation brief was a chance to try and do something really ambitious and act as a bit of a spectacle. “The surrounding area will be so full of Christmas decorations that we wanted to create something in-keeping with the look and feel of the season, but also make someone stop and look twice. The fact that people can also get involved in the window just by tweeting was also exciting” says Alex Bec (Director of INT Works and It's Nice That).
The storm is achieved by creating a separate space within The Mill’s Great Marlborough Street window, backed by a 2m x 3m clear perspex panel on hinges, and powered by two fans that have been stripped back with bespoke stands. All of this created just the right air vortex, to turn the perfectly sized tissue paper pieces into a snow storm. A full scale mock up of The Mill's window was actually set up in the INT Works warehouse. There were multiple testing stages to get the storm factor just right, including the fan power and weight of the ‘wish flakes’.
The Mill’s Social Media Manager Bethan Barker said about the success of the installation so far: “I think the concept of wishing is close to everyone’s hearts at this time of year, and has certainly captured the imaginations of those who have tweeted in so far. From health, white Christmases, turkey sandwiches and ‘less hipsters’, the wishes certainly have been a mixed bag. I think it’s extremely exciting to see something virtual like a tweet, turn in to something physical like the ever increasing snow storm and the charitable donation.”