Hiring the National Self Portrait Gallery

I am certain, my dear cultured readers, that you have heard of the National Portrait Gallery. In fact, I have no doubt that many of you have visited it on possibly more than one occasion. Perhaps you visited when you were younger and not quite in proper awe of the gloriousness of the gallery. Perhaps you visited the National Portrait Gallery when you were older and took a foreign friend to show off our grand gallery. Regardless of when you have visited (or plan to visit), I am convinced we can all agree that the National Portrait Gallery is indeed a fine jewel in the majestic crown of our national galleries.

But I am not actually writing this to endorse the virtues of the National Portrait Gallery, which, naturally, is superior to any other portrait gallery in the world (a jest my non-British friends, a mere jest!). Providing one is in London, one can go visit the National Portrait Gallery when it suits. But how many people can boast about the astounding experience of visiting a National Self Portrait Gallery?

Here at Photo Cutouts we have so many nifty items, but one that may have been overlooked a bit is our National Self Portrait Gallery. My illustrious predecessor wrote a few blogs about this wow-factor piece; however, since it has been a little while since our spectacular self-portrait gallery was in the spotlight, I thought I would bring it to your attention again. And you are very welcome!

An eye-catching centre-piece

National Self Portrait Gallery

First – and most importantly – if you like big things, our Photo Cutouts National Self Portrait Gallery is the item for you! As we have demonstrated with some of our other pieces (see our blog of March 28 of this year) bigger is always better, and the National Self Portrait Gallery is certainly big (though in a manageable way). Second, at what other gallery can you get so close to the portraits that you are actually in the portrait? Now you have a chance to see what your portrait would look like if you were the muse for, say, Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa. And, third, you can immortalise said self-portrait with a push of a button on your phone. Twitter it, Instagram it, Facebook it, Snapchat it, Pinterest it…you get the idea.

Earlier this year, the students at the University of Suffolk clearly demonstrated how good their education truly is: they contacted our great team at Photo Cutouts when they wanted something amusing and unusual for their May Summer Ball. Allow me to act as your tour guide and lead you through the simple process…


The exceptionally clever students at the University of Suffolk were looking for a focal point and fun photo opportunity for their annual May Summer Ball. One of the student organisers used our online form to enquire. We included 2 wavy mirrors to compliment the visual nature of the gallery and give even more photo opportunities to guests. With availability checked and logistics sorted, the booking was completed.

Take a look at our sister company Fun4Guests to see the options that we have available to hire for events.

Or give us your brief and we will respond with a bespoke package to meet your objectives.


After all the details were sorted, we sent a team to deliver and set up the National Self-Portrait Gallery (it took about 90 minutes). The required floor space is approximately 25 to 30 square metres, which allows for ample room behind the portraits. Depending on your dimensions, our Photo Cutouts team can set up the gallery either as a faux room inside a room, or we assemble the gallery more as a long portrait wall.

THE EVENT (May Summer Ball hosted by students at the University of Suffolk)

University of Suffolk May Summer Ball

Needless to say, the students had a ball! (Yes, yes, I am aware that many of my dear readers have just rolled their eyes, but how can one not use such a fun pun?) The University of Suffolk posted some images on their social media pages, and we shared some of their merriment on our Facebook page and left us a lovely review:

“We hired the National Self Portrait Gallery and Wavy mirrors for the University of Suffolk Summer Ball experience. This was a great and really fun addition to our party and we really enjoyed it. The communication with the team prior to the party was great and the delivery and set-up at the venue ran smoothly. The team worked independently on the night which was very helpful. Thank you very much for everything!”


Once the festivities were over (that is, the following day), our team came to dismantle the gallery, and brought it back to our headquarters (that is, our office).


A jest, another jest (I am feeling rather jovial as I have been testing out some Christmas cocktails). Whilst I will not be subjecting you to an exam of how truly easy it is to hire the Photo Cutouts National Self Portrait Gallery, we should perhaps still do a quick revision:
1. Plan your event (as amazing as we are at Photo Cutouts, we really cannot do this for you).
2. Peruse Fun4Guests and/or Photo Cutouts websites to decide which of our many fun-filled options are best for you! Possibly the National Self-Portrait Gallery…
3. Contact us by phone or via email or by using our online form.
4. We deliver the goods for your party event (and provide assembly as needed).
5. You and your guests have a fantastically fun time.
6. We come to pick up the goods.
7. You post photos of frolics at your festivities, and you revel in the fact that people are in awe of your fabulous party-throwing skills!

We look forward to hearing from you!

Tel: 01284 848330
Email: office@connectedshopping.com
Online form: https://www.photocutouts.co.uk/contact.htm

Short on space…

If you don’t have the floor space for our full gallery, we now offer individual portraits as handheld selfie frames. You can still get the fun effect of putting your face into a work of art but this version is more mobile – perfect for passing around guests and no assembly required.

Mona Lisa selfie frame


Looking for a modern style…

Why not turn your event into a modern, urban, street scene with our Street Art Gallery

We’ve turned urban street art into face-in-hole boards so you can get into these famous images – literally!

Street Art Gallery

This too is available to hire as a full gallery or as individual selfie frames.

Get in touch

If you are interested in our fun photo opportunities for your next event then give the team a call. We can talk you through the options available and come up with a solution to meet your objectives, and your budget.

Tel no: 01284 848330

Email: office@connectedshopping.com


Charitable ideas for #GivingTuesday

If you haven’t already heard, amidst the hype of Black Friday, it’s #GivingTuesday on 3rd December. A one-day global movement that celebrates and encourages giving. There is no better time for such a day in our opinion, coming just after those well-known shopping days of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, Giving Tuesday is a great opportunity to get into the real spirit of Christmas and give to causes close to your heart.

We’ve collated some of our favourite charitable ideas to give you some food for thought in the run-up #GivingTuesday.

Donate with a huge charity cheque this #GivingTuesday

Boost the profile of your charity by donating with MEGA cheque. Using a giant presentation cheque creates a great photo opportunity for both the giver and the charity.

Photo Cutouts Maxi Cheque was used last week on This Morning and in the words of Holly Willoughby “it’s a whopper!”

Giant cheque_ThisMorning

Giant cheques could also make the perfect gift for an avid fundraiser.

We have all come across those amazingly devoted charity fundraisers who are always challenging themselves to some sort of activity in aid of a good cause. If you have one in your circle, why not gift them a reusable personalised big cheque this Christmas? A giant cheque will create a great photo opportunity, extra exposure for your fundraiser’s cause and a huge unexpected gift to unwrap on the big day.

Big cheque_Steps to Hope.jpg

Here’s a truly inspirational 3-year-old, Casey, the youngest fundraiser we’ve seen so far, presenting Steps To Hope with the money she and her family raised for the cause.



Choose Love and Help Refugeeschoose love

Choose Love helps to fund projects for refugees in Europe by both selling real products for refugees and selling powerful slogan t-shirts via Asos.

The Choose Love clothing collection is a take on the iconic Choose Life slogan of the 80s. There are lots of variations and products and make a perfect gift for any fashionistas in the family.



giant_jigsawDonate a giant jigsaw

Design & donate a giant jigsaw to your local hospital’s Children’s Ward for those who are too unwell to make it home for Christmas. Our giant jigsaws are fully waterproof and wipe-clean, so easy to keep those germs at bay in a medical setting. For businesses, you can include your logo and boost your corporate social responsibility profile while benefitting those in need.



Give a Christmas present to a child with Salvation Army Christmas Present Appeal

Until mid-December, many Salvation Army churches and centres across the UK will be running a Christmas Present Appeal.

Support your local Christmas Present Appeal by finding your nearest appeal and donating new, unwrapped toys and gifts for children who might not otherwise receive a Christmas present.

The gifts will then be wrapped and distributed to those in need.

Find your nearest Salvation Army HERE.


Take part in Christmas Jumper Day

Wear your festive woollies to work on Friday 13th December and donate £2 to one of the world’s biggest children’s charities, Save the Children. The charity offers support globally to children in need.

We have made promotional cutouts for Save The Children’s Christmas Jumper Day. The cutouts are used as a tool to promote the launch of the campaign.Christmas Jumper Day


Here’s a blast from the past… Our Shelley and Martin sporting their festive sweaters for Save The Children – we’ll be recreating this beauty of a picture again this year! A fun, and easy to execute, idea for a great cause.

Register with Save the Children and receive a free fundraising pack HERE.


Photo Cutouts Charity Toolkit

At Photo Cutouts, we have worked with many a charity over the years. As we specialise in large format print, there are a number of products that we produce that make the perfect PR toolkit.

Take a look at our Charity Toolkit for #GivingTuesday inspiration and get in touch to discuss any ideas that you might have.

01284 848330


Charities We Have Worked With

TI Media Christmas Roadshow

The events team at TI Media have been busy little elves this year. Before the Christmas rush set in, they took time out of the workshop to visit some of London’s top advertising agencies for some festive fun.whats on tv logo

The TI Media portfolio includes the well-loved ‘What’s on TV’ magazine. An essential for households over the festive period. To promote this top-selling edition, TI Media & ‘What’s on TV’ went on a roadshow across the capital to visit ad agencies The Grove Media, OMD, Carat, Mediacom, Wavemaker & Vizeum to get the planning teams into the festive spirit.

TI Media created many a photo opportunity for the agency teams, including Instagram frames, photo walls and our (unbiased) favourite – photo cutout board. Agency staff were invited to take part in the mince pie challenge and enter the photo competition by sharing photos with the hashtag #timediachristmas.

#TIMediaChristmas_Twitter collage

As the team were continuously on the move, they needed a photo board that could be easily transported. Our folding photo board design fitted the bill. The folding board design has extendable legs that are easily attached on-site with included nuts and bolts and the finish is seamless, you can barely see the join!


Photo Cutout boards look great when used for magazine covers. People can put their face in the hole and literally become a magazine cover star. Include a hashtag and run photo competition and see photos with your branding trend across the socials.


Here are some other magazine cover photo boards that we have produced in the past.

Magazine cover promotional board

Get in touch

Our team would be happy to discuss your design and your requirements to come up with the best solution. We do offer face-in-the-hole boards in a variety of formats, as well as photo walls, selfie frames & other props, so get in touch and we can talk you through.
Tel no: 01284 848330
Email: office@connectedshopping.com

Event theme ideas for any budget

You’ve decided to host an event or party, now where do you start? Having a theme can help you to give your event planning some focus. An event theme can steer what entertainment you chose, what colour scheme to go with, the design for your invitations and how you decorate your venue.

Themes are endless and it can be exceptionally difficult to decide on one. Our advice would be to keep in mind what would appeal to the guests you are hoping to attend and to remember your budget – some themes are easier to achieve for less money than others.

We have shortlisted some of our favourite themes to give you food for thought…

Circus themeCircus theme_Trinity Park_Ipswich

Roll up, roll up… Create a stunning backdrop to an event venue with a circus theme. If you are looking for an opportunity to add a touch of the unusual to your event or venue P.T Barnum style, then circus theme is the way to go. Opening doors to a range of fun, visual entertainment for guests. Circus theme is suitable for adults and children alike and excellent for any time of year.

Seaside theme

Seaside theme events

Oh I do like to be beside the seaside… And don’t we all! Seaside themed events are great for guests to take a break from the mundane and have fun. Although typically associated with summer events, why not spread a bit of sunshine, a hint of nostalgia and cheer up those dreary winter months? Saucy postcard photo opportunities, giant deckchairs, crazy golf course, candy floss cart, the possibilities are endless and all very achievable whatever your budget.

Funfair theme

If you can’t settle on one theme, the funfair theme can encompass elements of circus and seaside. Dress your venue with candy stripes or a circus tent, add hook-a-duck, a coconut shy or tin-can alley and budget depending, hire a merry-go-round!

Festival themeFestival themed events

With so many genres of festival out there, this theme is fantastic for all budgets. Depending on what feel you are going for you can go hippy, grungy, trendy, or family-friendly, either way, the aim will be to offer a real experience – with live acts, performers, street-food and photo opportunities. The festival theme lends itself to those on a tighter budget. The DIY feel of a festival allows for a field as your venue, haystacks for seating & tipi tents for cover.

Dinosaur theme

Hempstead Valley Shopping Centre #HVDinos

The Jurassic period will spark the imagination of little guests at any family-focussed event. Depending on your budget you can go BIG with a colossal dinosaur structure or smaller with a dinosaur egg-trail. Homemade volcanos or dry-ice and jungle-style plants can be used to dress your venue. Everyone is bound to have a roaring good time (sorry… couldn’t help myself)

Mods & Rockers theme

This is a brilliant theme for any indecisive event planners! The colour scheme is already chosen, the music picked, and the dress code all sorted, even 60s style finger food is easily achievable. Swinging 60’s style parties may not work for a kids birthday party but bound to be a lot of fun for anyone old enough to appreciate it.

Sports theme Sports theme events

Base entertainment around sports such as Beat the Goalie, crazy golf, table tennis or Footpool. If guests will be seated, tables could be themed for a particular sport or you could choose your colour scheme based on different sports teams. Works for indoor and outdoor events and easily tailored to suit the age range of your guests.

About Photo Cutouts

Photo Cutouts face-in-hole board can bring that something extra to a party, corporate event, wedding, family fun day, school fête, charity event, store promotion, product promotion… anywhere fun and engagement are required.

We have off-the-shelf designs that can be customised with logos and hashtags, or our brilliant design team can custom design a board to suit your requirements. People love to put their face in the hole and have their picture taken, so a photo cutout board is a great icebreaker and helps to make your event memorable.

Circus theme photo boards Seaside themeFestival theme photo board
Dinosaur theme photo boardsSports theme photo boardsMods and Rockers theme photo boards

Get in touch

Give our team a call today to discuss your branding requirements for your next peak season!



01284 848330


Santa’s Been! Photo Cutouts unwrap NEW Christmas designs

Photo Cutouts have been busy working away in our workshop on some new themed photo boards for Christmas. We are pleased to reveal that our new face-in-the-hole board designs are now ready to book for hire or to buy.

New Christmas Designs

Santa’s Workshop – a large 1.5m wide, 3 face hole photo board, perfect for families or groups of friends to create a fun photo opportunity.

Large Santas Workshop Christmas photo board

Selfie with Elfie – a 1m wide, 1 face hole photo board with an eye-catching design. Great for engaging with people and making events memorable.

Christmas Selfie-with-Elfie photo board

Christmas Wreath Selfie Board – a large handheld festive photo board. Ideal for passing around at Christmas events or parties.

Handheld selfie board_ Christmas Wreath Design


All of our Photo Cutouts Boards are made from an industrial PVC with a high-quality vinyl print so they withstand a lot of use. The quality is miles apart from cardboard versions, they are even waterproof. As the boards are mounted onto a sturdy steel frame they are suitable for use at outdoor events such as Christmas Markets, skating rinks, to entertain families queuing for Santa’s Grotto or in a retail environment to attract the Christmas shoppers.

Face in hole board Christmas elves


As with all our photo board designs, we have the option to customise with your logo and encourage adding social media handles for photos (and your branding!) to be shared across social media. Customising is an option whether looking to hire or buy just get in touch with our design team to discuss your requirements.

Natural Christmas Tree Company Branded Christmas Photo Board


Photo Competition

Photo Boards lend themselves perfectly to Christmas competitions. Several companies we have worked with previously have used branded photo cutout boards as a competition mechanism. Encourage people to share photo’s in your face-in-the-hole board across social media to win a prize and select your favourite photo. To tempt customers to share their photos on social media, Klondyke & Strikes ran a ‘Show us your best festive face’ competition last year, with a prize for the best snow globe photo. Check out the hashtag #KlondykeSnowglobe on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram.

Christmas #KlondykeSnowglobe_Instagram


For inspiration on how you could use Photo Cutout boards as part of your Christmas marketing campaign or seasonal event, take a look at some previous blog posts featuring boards from….

Klondyke and Strikes Garden Centres

Odin Events Nutcracker Trails

Natural Christmas Tree Company

National Trust Hardwick Hall

Get in touch

Give our team a call today to discuss your branding requirements for your next peak season!



01284 848330

Summer makes me think of…Christmas!

The last month of summer stretches before us, with the sun shining, and the bees still buzzing. However, here at Photo Cutouts, locked in our windowless offices, we are thinking about Christmas, and us worker bees are buzzing with excitement about some new photo cutout boards!

Coming Soon new christmas designs

My dear readers, I am well aware that there was a collective eye-roll when you read that the theme for this week is Christmas. After all, we are still in the hot, hazy, lazy days of summer, and one does not wish to think of the cold, the possible snow, and the chaos of Christmas shopping.

Whilst I agree, allow me to also explain our (or at least my) reasoning of broaching the Christmas topic. Shopping for the holidays can be stressful and frantic. We are bound to be grumpy when stressed and overwhelmed. But, some fun and giggles can certainly alleviate that stress. What is a good way to have a bit of a lark? A nifty face-in-the-hole board of course! Just think: in that frantic shopping, you pause because some genius business has an awesome Christmas-themed photo board prop – it draws you in, and you simply cannot resist that fun photo opportunity. Suddenly, holiday hecticness turns into some holiday merriment.

Christmas Photo Boards

Yes, I have simplified things a little bit, and have added my own special brand of logic – but, as usual, I am correct. I would also like to add that we at Photo Cutouts are like magical Christmas elves helping everyone out. We are actually doing more than providing some striking piece of eye candy for a storefront. We are helping businesses attract more customers, and we are helping customers have a good time…. And in our spare time, we are still working on world peace.

Anyhoot, back to our Christmas theme. Christmas is certainly a time for photo opportunities and Photo Cutouts has helped to create some memorable ones. Last year Klondyke & Strikes Garden Centres ordered Snow Globe boards for their stores in England, Scotland, and Wales. (Did I mention that they suddenly became our favourite garden centre?).

Garden Centre Christmas Snow Globe

Odin Events used our Nutcracker boards to organise Nutcracker Trails with the aim of promoting Christmas shopping in town centres around the country.

Christmas Nutcracker Trail photo board

The Natural Christmas Tree Company and Thetford Garden Centre have also been our Christmas fans.

Christmas face in the hole Thetford

So, why not jump on that Christmas bandwagon (or sleigh), and start thinking about how you would like us to help you with creating buzz-worthy Christmas peep board prop. (As always, contact details below.)

In the meantime, do keep reading our blog, since, very soon, our Fun Think Tank Team will be revealing those new and exciting Christmas-themed boards!

Tel: 08450 570 321
Email: office@connectedshopping.com
Online form: https://www.photocutouts.co.uk/contact.htm

Innovative new design for Hempstead Valley Dinos #HVDinos

Hempstead Valley Shopping Centre has been having a roarsome time this Summer with their dinosaur-themed activities. The shopping centre management team came to Photo Cutouts with the challenge of making several dino-themed photo opportunities for their retail entertainment during the school holidays.

Our fabulous designers came up with 2 dinosaur-themed photo cutout boards and, a Photo Cutouts first, a double-sided photo wall.

#HVDinos Face-in-the-hole board

The face-in-the-hole boards had 2 head holes at a suitable height for children to have their photographs taken. Children really seem to engage with the photo cutout boards and completely get the concept of posing to be part of the scene.

#HVDinos retail entertainment Photo Cutout board

Double-sided photo wall

For the photo wall, our innovative team put together 2 designs. These were printed and mounted back to back on 2 panels of sturdy PVC foamex. The double-sized photo wall provided a mammoth 3m x 2m backdrop for shoppers to pose for a photo opportunity.

Hempstead Valley Shopping Centre retail entertainment #HVDinos_PhotoWall

Photo Cutouts have made photo walls in the past however a double-sided version is certainly a first. The team adapted our usual design for a 2-panel board of this size so that fixings were concealed within the board. This gave a blank canvas on both sides for 2 great designs and 2 great photo opportunities.

Hempstead Valley Shopping Centre retail entertainment #HVDinos_PhotoWall

Hashtags for social sharing

The peep boards and the photo wall both included the shopping centre logo, social media handles and the hashtag #HVDinos to encourage visitors to share their photos. Photos were shared across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and the dinos have proved to be a roaring success in increasing footfall to the shopping centre.

Mark Rumfitt, Centre Manager of Hempstead Valley Shopping Centre said:

“We’ve turned the clock back by more than 400 million years with this new dinosaur trail and are bringing something that’s fun, exciting and educational to Hempstead Valley. In the first few days of the arrival of our dinosaurs, we have seen a huge influx of families spending time together and enjoying this new event.”

Hempstead Valley Dinos are at the shopping centre until 18th August – be quick to catch them before extinction (last pun I promise!)

Retail Entertainment

Photo Cutouts have worked with a number of retail spaces in the past as shopping centres, local councils and BIDs, look to combine retail and entertainment. We are experts in creating custom made, branded photo boards. If you are interested in adding our products to your next shoppertainment project, then please get in touch.

Call us: 01284 848330

Email: office@connectedshopping.com

Photo Cutout Boards at Countryfile Live

BBC Countryfile Live returned this year to showcase the best of the British countryside. The event runs across 2 weekends in August, the first at Blenheim Palace and the second at Castle Howard. Visitors are treated to presentations from the shows’ presentations, theatre productions and food demonstrations, all surrounded by stands and food outlets from a range of exhibitors.

Photo Cutouts have proudly supplied bespoke face-in-the-hole boards to some of the exhibitors at this year’s Countryfile Live event, including Rohan Clothing and London School of Tropical Medicine for their Bug Off campaign.

Countryfile Live Exhibitors

A great engagement tool…

The exhibitors were looking for a great visual engagement tool to attract people to visit their exhibition stand.

Photo Cutout boards are perfect for trade stands. An interactive marketing prop with an eye-catching design which includes the company logo, creates a great photo opportunity and makes the stand memorable for visitors.

Countryfile Live_Rohan stand

Encourage social sharing with a competition

Rohan chose to use their board as part of a competition mechanism. The design called for people to snap and share their photos on social media using the hashtag #RohanBestinShow. This is a great way to encourage visitors to share their branded photographs across the web and become advocates for the company, brand or cause. The theme of ‘Best in Show’ was in line with the agricultural nature of the Countryfile Live event and generated some humorous photos of dogs in the face holes (which we always love to see!)


You can view posts from the Rohan Best in Show photo competition on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, searching for the hashtag #RohanBestinShow

Photo Cutouts offer marketing props for exhibitions stands

Visit our Exhibitions page to see how Photo Cutouts can help increase footfall to your exhibition or trade stand.

If you are exhibiting at a similar show and are looking for a great portable engagement tool to attract people to your stand, then please get in touch and we would be happy to work with you on a great design.

Website: photocutouts.co.uk

Mail to: office@connectedshopping.com

Tel no: 01284 848330