I’ve not been to a vintage fair for quite a while and even longer as just a punter. I saw on the Vintage Home Show Facebook page that there was one happening not too far away in Manchester at beautiful Victoria Baths (made famous a few years ago by the BBC’s Restoration series).
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The Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2011 is being held this weekend in Manchester city centre – we went to the preview night on Thursday.
It was great to see designer-makers whose work we’ve long admired – there was also the thrill of seeing fresh, new exhibitors.
We featured Ken Eardley, whose ceramics are shown above in last year’s GNCCF blog post – once again, his stand had real impact. Things are going really well for him with magazine features such as this recent one in BBC Homes & Antiques.
Another striking space belonged to Jane Blease who works primarily with bentwood & reclaimed plastic often with her characteristic hand worked thread detailing. A recent artist residency in India has clearly inspired some of Jane’s new pieces. It’s interesting charting artists’ new developments & influences.
…and we loved her new seed pod window hangings.
Ruth Green, who we’ve seen at GNCCF in previous years, also had some lovely new works…
…and she’s also branched out into illustrated books, notebooks & note cards.
With autumn setting in, Andrea Lord’s &made display offered some warm seasonal comforts…
…such as these gorgeous cushions & cosies.
As we mentioned earlier, it’s really exciting to discover new makers and their work…
…we’ll highlight just a couple who made an impact on us.
The first was Gemma Truman, whose hand-blown glass & seagrass hangings and vases are absolutely exquisite – they’re inspired by South African weaverbird nests. We also thought they were very reminiscent of those old fashioned glass fishing net floats.
Second was Louise Hibbert.
Her pieces have a natural feel and use subtle, earthy, yet striking colours.
As you can see from her salt & pepper mills, they’re organic, tactile and oh so beautiful – they just cry out to be picked up, handled and caressed.
The show runs till this Sunday, so visit if you can! We’ve only featured homewares in this post, but there’s also lots of jewellery and fashion on display… and all of it’s for sale… so go on, get your Christmas shopping done early!
No, don’t worry, this isn’t some kind of weird x-rated blog post!
We’ve been preparing for our vintage fair debut for the past few weeks.
We’ve made our felt bunting…
…sewn some of our vast collection of vintage buttons onto card…
…made our tags…
…and have turned our spare bedroom into a vintage fair waiting room – packed to the gills with gathered goodies!
If you’re in the area, we’ll be at:
Both events start at 9.30am – come down and see us – we’re sure they’ll both be great days out!
The first 20 of our readers who email Mary at email@example.com get FREE entry to this Saturday’s summer fair.
All you need to do is put H is for Home as the subject of your message then just click “send”… easy peasy!
Check out the We Make London website for a sneak peak of the 80+ hand picked exhibitors!
We Make Summer Spectacular is open 11am-5pm, Saturday 26 June 2010 at Chelsea Town Hall, Kings Road, London. (nearest tube: Sloane Square)
There are almost 150 stands featuring the work of top class designer-makers from as far afield as Cornwall, Bristol, Argyll, London… with a strong representation from Greater Manchester and the North West. There was a huge turnout of visitors – many bagging themselves some fabulous early Christmas presents (for friends, family & themselves!).
We couldn’t blog about absolutely all the craftspeople there, so here’s a bit about some of the ones who especially caught our eye…
We were both really taken by these delicate and tactile hand-thrown porcelain vessels from Belfast-based Derek Wilson Ceramics. His display was the epitome of pared back, understated loveliness!
Adelle has a soft spot for colourful & playful jewellery like these felt pieces from Lynsey Walters…
…and a well-known penchant for vintage and vintage inspired handbags & purses!
These ones above are from Monica Boxley who, as well as using original vintage fabrics, makes beautiful handmade leather handbags inspired by a 1950s one belonging to her mother. It’s named the Marianne in homage.
As we’re on the subject of bags & purses, here are some lovely natural linen examples below from Teresa Green who makes an array of goods using textiles that she designs & hand prints.
If you’re a regular reader of our blog posts, you’ll know that we love pottery. The timeless slipware made by Hannah McAndrew is just the kind of thing that gets us excited.
Her pieces would sit equally comfortably in both an ultra modern pad as well as well as an antique furnished country cottage.
If you’re ever in the area, her shop Radiance is in Hebden town centre. If not, she also sells online.
Ruth Green Design had a lovely display of eye-catching silk screen prints.
In addition to screen prints she has a lovely selection of linocuts and oil on paper works available on her website.
Tricia Needham is another screen printer whose work caught our attention. She makes these tea cosies as well as cushions, bags, scarves and ties (seen adorning the neck of Jon Snow no less!).
One stand that was getting a lot of attention from visitors on the night was Ingrid Wagner‘s…
Ingrid was encouraging people to try their hand at knitting with her giant needles and huge balls of wool & fabric. Ingrid in fact broke the world record last year for ‘extreme knitting’ – using needles three and a half metres long!
The Fair’s on until Sunday 25th October so get down there, it’s well worth a visit!