Belfast, Co. Antrim

Project: Decorating walls and shelves.

Decoration design by On The Square Emporium

This was a very interesting project; to put character and elements of the historical shipyard into the new bar at the successful Titanic Centre!

We were essentially given a blanc canvas, a budget, a remit and a couple of days to decorate the bar. This is something that On The Square Emporium is in a unique position to do, as we have over 13,000 sq ft of interesting antique and vintage artefacts at our disposal! Some central pieces were agreed in advance like the huge Edwardian Duncan Alderdice “The Native Whiskey” enamel sign, but for the most part we filled a lorry and a van with an abundance of decorative pieces and set to work trying out different combinations.

The walls were covered in vintage shipyard prints, mirrors, clock faces and advertisements. Interspersed among these were original Victorian and Edwardian tools and shipyard implements. Some of these we mounted alongside brass plaques explaining their history and provenance. Like the casting molds from Harland and Wolff, these were the original wooden molds from which steel ship and engine parts were cast.

The shelves are a choreographed ramshackle of bottles, tools, antique books and other vintage bric a brac. Giving an effect that is both pleasing on the eye and bursting with interesting local history. A closer look at the shelves reveals long gone local Victorian ginger beer firms, Belfasts R Whites soda boxes, vintage Guinness bottles, whiskey memorabilia and a plethora of tools from the shipyards

There are also some large floor standing items like the fantastic Victorian rope crimper at the entrance way.

The tiny traditional band area was adorned with traditional instruments and even a small piano.

The bar is now an attractive and interesting place for visitors to have a wee pint or a bite to eat. Portraying the rich history of the shipyards and local interest of the Victorian and Edwardian period.