We've been custom costume, mask and prop makers for over 25 years.
This blog is a peek behind the Tentacle curtain, written mostly by Bev.
19th November 2014
15th November 2014
Our super-shiny spinning top, custom-made for the Christmas Window at Harrods. It's hard to tell scale in this photo, but it's all giant sized- the spinning top is a metre high...and it's actually spinning!
We are working on a custom commission for the Dutch Government at the moment, a large sculpted puppet figure for a public safety campaign. It's still under wraps until the campaign is officially launched, but here's a progress photo of the articulated robot hands and arms for the figure.
7th November 2014
We've just finished a nice commission for the theme park "Six Flags Over Georgia". We created two handmade animal masks for their Christmas show, where the dreams of two horses come true; each of the horses magically transforms into a "Rudolph" - complete with reindeer antlers and shiny, red nose - which allows themto gallop to the rescue and help a friend in trouble. All together now. Ahhh... :)
9th November 2014
Custom fish and custom Penguin costumes, we handmade for this year's Lord Mayor's Show, London. Commissioned by the Worshipful Company of Fishmongers!
4th November 2014
Just testing the panorama function of Bev's iPhone upstairs in the costume workshop. Oh boy, that table needs a tidy!
24th October 2014
Custom made Star Wars Imperial Walker (handmade costume for a dog!) private commission for a customer in Arizona. Bet that dog eats Wookie steaks for dinner, even though they're a little Chewy...
UPDATE!!!! 3rd Nov. Just got an email with this picture from the client, "Just to let u know. Leo won best costume. Thanks so very much." I'm sure Leo is smiling inside, he's just looking serious for the camera!
23th October 2014
Custom Monster bug costume, we created for a Halloween event. We did a quick video
whist trying out the costume. Aaargh! see those scary monster legs wiggle!
19th October 2014
Stunning photography for French fitness model Jess Vill's new calendar. Large custom made angel wings by Tentacle Studio, photography by Salvador Pozo (www.salvadorpozo.com, www.malephotography.eu), modelled by Jess Vill (www.jessvill.com).
14th October 2014
Handmade Zebra heads finished- we're very happy with them, and so is the client!
11th October 2014
We've been meaning to add a new handmade mask to our 'ready to wear' range for simply ages, but we've been so busy with other commissions it just never happened. But we were asked by stylist Sjors Mercx to create 4 masks for a TV ad. (for smoked sausage!) that's about to be filmed in Maastricht. We're still in the prototyping stage, but I bet you can guess which animal it's going to be!
26th September 2014
It's been an eclectic, hectic week...the giant spinning top for Harrods is getting it's first coat of glitter, we've just finished the staff uniforms for London's big Star Trek convention, and two bear heads for a new Lipton's advert. Klingons and glitter and bears, oh my!
8th September 2014
What a cracking weekend! There was a massive firework display over our local lake- fire and light in the sky, and their shimmering reflections in the water. Fabulous! Photos by Russell Gilbert.
1st September 2014
Christmas is coming - and it's already snowing at here at Tentacle, as flurries of soft white polystyrene fall from the lathe! We're creating a giant glittering top that will whirl away the festive season in Harrods' Christmas window.
23rd July 2014
The giant teapot and huge prop cups that we made, on stage at the Milkshake Festival. Nice eh?!
18th July 2014
Tea vs. Milkshake - Tentacle Studio takes the biscuit!!
Just finished hand carving this giant teaset for the Milkshake Festival in Amsterdam. First we deliver it to the Festival site, then we're taking the afternoon off - the picnic blanket is packed with cucumber sandwiches, cakes and other tasty treats. Today everything stops for tea!
17th June 2014
Summer time, and the lovin' is squeezy!
Furry fun as our custom animal costumes get happy hugs from Festival goers around Europe. Photos © Sue O'Donohue and Nhar Entertainment.
26th May 2014
Custom-made Maleficent Wings. With over 500 fake feathers, each one labouriously hand carved, sculpted and painted. Finally finished and ready for the Premiere of Disney's Maleficent film in The Netherlands. Bev couldn't quite manage to look malevolent for the photo, but settled on giving the camera a serious look!
22nd May 2014
Giant custom handmade black wings in progress for the Dutch premiere of the Disney film 'Maleficent'. The finished look will be all sucked in cheekbones and gothic darkness, but Bev couldn't resist having a quick flap round the car park!
5th May 2014
Summer is coming, and we're basking in the sun outside the studio at lunchtime! Inside the studio, we have have a commission for a UK energy company's new Autumn TV campaign. So we've custom-made a big white (fake) fur coat and fabulously unique, custom made hot water bottle costume. Each of the diagonal lines on the hot water bottle had to be carved on by hand. Phew :)
29th April 2014
Just finished a smiling, handmade donkey head for Academy of Ballet Arts in California. He'll soon be trotting through their Midsummer Nights Dream. Also making a Fabulous custom-made, jewelled Puss in Boots character with fully handmade costume, mask, and of course big, buckled boots! For a restaurant complex of the same name near Amsterdam. Custom-made animals are us!
30th March 2014
Finished! The giant custom-made hiking boot is just about to be loaded in the van and delivered to the Responsible Business conference at the Barbican Centre, London.
25th March 2014
Mike's roughing out the basic shape for a giant hand carved hiking boot that's bound for an exhibition at the Barbican. It's snowing polystyrene in the workshop as the fall out from the carving gets everywhere!
10th March 2014
After 10 years in our old costume, props and mask workshop, we are making the move to upgrade our facilities, and have just signed a new lease for a big, bright workshop at the heart of the thriving business park, not far down the road from our old place. There are just a couple of projects we need to complete before moving, and have already started packing boxes. But oh, so many boxes! At last count we had 65 banana boxes filled with just fabric. Aargh!
17th February 2014
Behind the scenes at the Flyzone Photo Studio, Science Museum, London. Our Biggles costume is readied for take-off, with our Spacesuits in the background. Up up and away!
2nd February 2014 We were very excited to find our horse masks featured in Yahoo News Photo of the Day!
We handmade these horse heads for the Chinese New Year Celebrations in Sydney, Australia. It's the year of the horse, of course! Photo © Jason Reed/ Reuters.
29th January 2014
I've just noticed that the City of Sydney, Australia has used some of the special horse masks we sent them (for the forthcoming Chinese New Year Parade) on the home page of their website!
23rd January 2014
We're creating a whole menagerie of custom-made jungle creatures, for a touring theatre production of Rudyard Kipling's The Jungle book. Custom-made tiger, panther, bear, and wolves, lots of custom-made wolves! The brief from the show's producer was, "We DON'T want Disney style. Not cute. Make them look real... but remember this is a children's show!" These are definitely animals with attitude.
17th January 2014
It all started when we answered the phone to a lovely but slightly stressed chap whom urgent needed a custom-made large, bejewelled, 'Oryx' mask, to be delivered to the Arabic state of Qatar in just a few day's time. After a calming chat, we assured him that this sort of thing was all in a day's work for us... so we set to, Bev sculpting the head, Mike twisting the distinctive horns that characterise the Oryx (a type of African antelope). There were jewels, there was glitter, and just a touch of swearing when the glue wasn't drying as fast as we'd like! But finally the head was finished, just in time. Phew.
After a mercy dash to the airport with the finished head, and a well-earned sit down with a cup of tea, we faced the glitter-strewn wreck of our workshop, and started to tidy up!
And then we're usually on to the next job with never a backward glance. Although we do get photos and 'thank you' emails, it's often the case that clients (especially the big city ad firms that we often work for) are just too busy to let us know how they got on with what we've made. So it's a case of 'no news is good news'- if we don't hear of a problem, I guess they liked it!
So it was a nice surprise when Neil of Globestar Management (for that was the stressed client's name) took the time to text when the head arrived at the International Conference Centre in Qatar "It is there and client loves it. A million thanks xxxxx" He also sent a lovely thank you card (complete with sequins that echoed the glittery glamour of the head!) and this photo of the Oryx head taken at the event rehearsal in Qatar. I like the fact that you can see men in traditional Arab dress in the background! A last minute job that turned out magnificently. Sometimes I love my job :) Photos © Neil Armishaw Globestar Management UK.
28nd December 2013
This week they're having lots of fishy fun at Goatsbridge Trout Farm, with the scintilating custom trout costume we handmade for them. Seen here with Ireland's biggest chat show host Ryan Tubridy, there's plenty to smile about- they've just won a well-earned award for business innovation.
2nd December 2013
Soooo busy this month! For our regular client Inspiration Point, we are making singing mermaids, Roman warrior women, and even a boat! All for their spectacular new dinner theatre extravaganza set in ancient Rome. No photos of these yet... it's all under wraps til their show opens on the 18th December. We are also working on a wonderful production of The Jungle book for the UK biggest touring theatre company, and here's a photo of Shere Khan the tiger in progress.
29th November 2013
Chocks away! We've been flying high this month, with a big batch of custom-made costumes for London's Science Museum- the costumes will be used in an interactive photo project about the joys of aviation. We created Biggles costumes and full spacesuits, in every size from 'tiny tot' to 'man mountain', so if you're in London in the next few months, why not pop into the Science Museum, slip on one of our costumes and prepare for take-off!
25th October 2013
Freaky giant fungi, hand made for the amazing 'Amsterdam Spook' Halloween party. We used kite-making techniques; carbon fibre rods and ultra-light weight fabrics so the mushrooms, despite being 7 metres tall at full stretch, will magically fold away flat, but be ready to pop up large again for next year's party!
20th October 2013
It's definitely Autumn now, the stormy weather outside is blowing the leaves from the trees, and whirling them all around the our workshop.
We are currently knee deep in gore and gristle, making costumes and decorations for many Amsterdam Halloween Festival events around the city. But in sunny Los Angeles, Hap E Camper, the mascot we created for the Dixie RV company, is frolicking in the sun!
10th October 2013
Custom deaths-head mask, custom-made helmets and armour we created for Riot Games at Gamescom 2013, the biggest video gaming exhibition in the world. This year we helped the organisers bring to life their most popular game characters, Pentakill, live on stage, playing hardcore metal music live to 340,000 hyped up, geeked out gaming fans. They rocked!
As the saying goes "I have come here to chew bubblegum and kick ass...and I'm all out of bubblegum."
Photos © H+H Photographics.
9th October 2013
The large, custom-made resin sculptures we created for Life B.V. in position on the exhibition stand in Brussels.
20th September 2013
A deadly silver resurrection of the Terminator robot is striding through the advertising world, promoting a new type of... bed! To misquote Mr Schwarzenegger - "I'll lie back."
11th September 2013
This spooky photo marks the end of today's photoshoot with the Fenec Fox head we made - the heavens opened and torrents of rain came from those clouds!
6th September 2013
Just playing around on Google Maps this month, we put together a few of the places we've delivered to recently!
Tentacle Studio: Worldwide Map of Clients
5th September 2013
The Hijack House crew from Antwerp are out and about again- this time they're wakeboarding in the custom DJ mask we made for them!
Our Mr Prickles the custom-made hedgehog costume we created is now strutting his spikes on 3 new UK TV ads !
26th August 2013
We created these fabulous handmade turquoise and pink 'Bo Peep' wings for Melissa Leigh Morrison's appearance at the WBFF(World Beauty Fitness and Fashion) competition in Las Vegas. Photo © Monique Kabel.
10th August 2013
It's all very hush hush this month. We are just completing some giant battle armour and tattoed muscle bodysuits for a top secret event at Gamescom in Germany, the world's largest trade fair for interactive games. We could tell you the details, but then we'd have to kill you... that should be easy enough in the computer gaming world, where there's always plenty of ridiculouly large weapons to choose from - and we love the names of them; Warmogs, Bloodthurst, Athene's Unholy Grail, the Bilgewater Cutlass and Madred's Bloodrazor!
15th July 2013
This bright new version of Cats the musical, with colourful, innovative custom costumes and headdresses, premieres on the Isle of Man on August 5th. This headdress we created was used to great effect on the show poster! Photo © Taylorian Productions.
2nd July 2013
Introducing our Mr Prickles, who is about to star in a new UK TV advert for car insurance. He's possibly the world's first hitchhiking hedgehog!
Created for Dj Mystique in Antwerp, we brought the signature character of his Hijack House Music gigs to life.
Coming soon to a club near you, dude!
We made this stilt-walking Ganesh costume for the Emporium Festival. This year's Festival theme was "Colours of India". Have you ever seen an elephant lookin' more fly?
All 3 handmade (human sized!) figures in the Company's head office, just about to depart for Brussels!
Custom-made culpted figure for Europe's Largest Property Exhibition, Realty, in Brussels.
We're currently working on two more custom made, lifesize figures for the same client.
Giant Heads For Delta Airlines
We've just finished these custom giant character mascot heads for Delta Airline's new international commercial campaign. Love the pilot's glasses!
Custom-made giant heads with your own branding etc are now available in the Tentacle Studio shop.
New Designs for Fetish Nocturne Couture
After many months of hard work, the sassy latex garments we created for the Fetish Nocturne Couture company are finally out there! Below is just a screen grab, but you can see (and buy!) the gorgeous designs at the new interactive website...
Can you spot the poodle in this photo ?! FetishNocturneCouture.com
Photo @ TommyO.
Meiomi Wines, Nappa Valley, California
We just finished making Bruno the giant grizzly bear, who will be used for promotional events in the vinyards of Meiomi Wines. Wearing a bear costume might be thirsy work in the hot Californian sunshine, but luckily they'll be plenty to drink at the winery!
Photo on the right shows Bruno at a recent wine event, being kept in check by a friendly Park Ranger.
The X Factor ITV Television
We just finished 12 large headdresses with a chess theme for Uk's The X Factor. Here they are in action on TV!
Photo © Metro.
24th August 2012
Holiday on Ice 2012 - Speed.
The new ice extravaganza, for which we created many props, is now on the European leg of its successful world tour. Skaters, dancers and aerial artists from all over the world perform a show combining death defying stunts, burlesque, skating, dance and circus.
24th July 2012
Olympic Games- London.
We just finished a costume for Coca Cola's re-launch of their Vitamin Water at the beach volleyball Olympic event on 31st July.
Lady Gaga wears Perspex crown custom-made by Tentacle Studio. Live in Australia!
Commissioned for Lady Gaga by designers 'Void of Course'. Watch the video here!
20 May 2012
Ebony Bones headlines the BikiniTest Festival in Switzerland, with two of our glittering horse head masks!
1 May 2012
Panda heads for Renault - we make another 10 Panda heads for the European launch of the Renault Twizy car.
Ke$ha "Blows" away the audience at the 2011 Billboard Music Awards, in Las Vegas. Tentacle Studio created these red unicorn masks for Ke$ha's impressive performance at the Billboard Music Awards 2011, which critics agree was the highlight of the night. Watch the video here!
2019 The Masked Singer
2018-2019 DJ 2 Hearts
2017-2018 Work for Dior
2015-2016 Dinosaur Wedding
2014-2015 Piggyback costume and the Ghost Tree
2011-2014 Harrods and Horses