Twinkle Toes dazzles followers of the herd

A baby elephant covered in thousands of rhinestones has been dazzling Herd In The City trail goers.

Created by Havens Hospices and Wild In Art, the 118 elephants will be in place on the streets of the Southend-on-Sea, Shoeburyness and Leigh-on-Sea until Monday 4 September.

The most sparkly sculpture, named Twinkle Toes, is covered in around 150,000 2-5mm rhinestones and took creator Sarah Nash, Finance Director at Ipeco, over 200 hours to create.

After designing the Ipeco baby elephant, P-Nut, Sarah was itching to create something sparkly, and it just so happened that there was an unadopted baby sculpture at the time.

Sarah devised the design for Twinkle Toes after researching pictures of elephants and mandalas and looking for patterns that could work with rhinestones. Once designed, she started to outline the sculpture with a pencil before painstakingly filling it in one rhinestone at a time with specialist glue.

Sarah, who has previously run the London Marathon for Havens Hospices, says, “I thoroughly enjoyed working on Twinkle Toes and P-Nut. It definitely re-lit the spark in the creative part of my brain. During the process, I have met some super people from the charity and various event sponsors and partners – it’s been great.

“As well as all the wonderful money raised from events like these, the positivity and community spirit is incredible. Being around the elephants brings joy and puts a smile on people’s faces – they have a tremendous feel-good factor about them.”

Sarah has also been supporting the trail by making a tiny rhinestone elephant for a competition prize and jewellery to be sold as merchandise. The beaded elephant key chains, woven elephant bracelets and elephant earrings she made proved extremely popular with trail-goers and sold out within three weeks at Herd In The City’s Herd HQ, next to Toni&Guy on Southend High Street.

Asked why she feels it’s important to support Havens Hospices, Sarah says, “It’s very easy to take good health for granted. We are very lucky to have Havens Hospices in our local community for those who need their care and compassion. For that care to be available at no cost to those in need is extraordinary. It’s important for people to support in whichever way they can to keep these facilities available to those most in need.”

Ipeco, a world leader in aircraft crew and executive jet passenger seating, has been a massive supporter of the Herd In The City art trail, including storing the elephants when they arrived and, before the trail started, providing painting space for artists and hosting events for the art trail.

Sarah says, “The whole experience has been fantastic. Watching the elephants leave us blank and seeing them come back brought to life by all the various designs was amazing.”

Twinkle Toes is delighting trail goers in the window of the entrance to Southend-on-Sea’s award-winning pier along with her boyfriend P-Nut, who is made up of hundreds of nuts and bolts usually used by Ipeco for their aeroplane seats and galley units.

Havens Hospices provides specialist care and support for people of all ages living with incurable conditions and their families. This care and support includes everyone, extending to partners, family and friends to make sure the right support is there for patients and the people who matter to them, where and when they need it.

The care is provided absolutely free of charge and is only made possible thanks to donations and fundraising initiatives such as Herd In The City.

After the trail ends, the large and baby sculptures will join together to say goodbye at the

‘Farewell Weekend’ on 23 & 24 September at Saxon Hall. This unique opportunity will allow people to see all the large and baby elephant sculptures in one place after their summer showcase across Southend-on-Sea. Find out more and book tickets at

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Sarah Nash standing next to a baby elephant sculpture covered in thousands of sparkly rhinestones