A Celebration Of Artists and Makers

16 December 2014

I think I have just discovered a new collective noun!!

The Last weekend in November was a celebration of makers.

In my last post I told you about this years workshop sale, the annual retail jamboree in South East London when I go and help my friends Rob and Andy.

Well, that same weekend was the Camberwell Open House event- where a number of artist/makers throw open their doors and welcome in the adoring public.

I did not have time to go to everyone, but I did seek out the house of Gabriela Szulman.

Now, until that weekend Gabriela was unknown to me, but by various convoluted connections over the  web I discovered that a) she existed and b) was hosting an open house. I was overcome by temptation. Pop over to her website and have a look at her blog.

Gabriella had tucked artist makers into every corner of her lovely house. All floors of her town house were taken over.  She herself was in the kitchen - I mean she was using the kitchen to display her work.  Three artists were in the living room on the first floor and two more were up in the bedrooms on the second floor. 

So, who did I meet ( apart from Gabriela herself)? 

Well first up I have to mention Kim Winter, also known as Flextiles

Kim and I have known each other via our blogs for a few years now and we have been watching each other grow as artists and makers.  She has fallen in love with felt and shibori and has a wonderful range of recycled scarves that she then gives the beautiful shibori treatment and a good old dunk in the Indigo bath.

The results are stunning and up-cycled. Perfect.

And what was so amazing, was that although we had never met before it was like meeting an old friend. We sat and chatted for ages. I still find the Internet quite amazing because, in all honesty, without it I cannot see how Kim and I would ever have met!

Next up was Archiemac.

This little design house produce cushions, clutch bags and other textile items but the key point is that the patterns used are the most vivid kaleidoscopes of colour. Each pattern tells the story and you have to really dig deep into the pattern to find that story. Robyn the designer is a lovely person, to boot. So pop over to the website for a bit of insiration.

And finally a big hurrah for Sarah Hamilton of http://www.sarahhamiltonprints.com. 

Now Sarah is worth knowing for herself - her prints are just lovely. They have a very mid century feel to them. But Sarah is the driving force behind a fabulous new campaign to get us shopping locally and supporting local artists and makers.

Here is the inspirational quote that set her on her way. 

“If everyone who’d complimented our beautiful gallery had bought just a card we’d still be open.”

"When I read this quote by shop keepers who’d recently closed their gallery I thought - enough is enough - we need to fight back! As an artist and designer,  who also makes cards, I know just how valuable each and every sale is, not only to independent shops  and galleries which make our High Streets unique, but to their artists and designer suppliers. Regrettably it’s too late for that gallery, but others need our valuable support, and this is why we started our campaign JUST A CARD - to encourage people to appreciate just how invaluable every single purchase is."
The initiative has the support of Mollie Makes and the Design Trust. 
You can find out all about it at http://www.justacard.org
Meanwhile, back in the studio the sewing machine has been primed up! 

And we're being all creative with rip stop nylon and tartan. 

But I cannot tell you any more at this stage - it would spoil the surprise! 


  1. Rip stop nylon and tartan sound intriguing. Have a lovely Christmas and a Happy and Creative New Year. x

    1. I'd show you the outcome, but (wails) I've mislaid my camera with the piccies on it!!! I'm no on a camera hunt!!

  2. Sounds interesting....can't wait for the results!!

    I share the "just one card" sentiment!!

    Let's get it all together next year and try to turn the tide of "Closed" signs!
    x C

  3. Thanks for visiting us Hilary - it was fantastic to meet you in person at last after so long! Wishing you happy blogging and making in 2015!


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