Last Friday I was lucky enough to be invited to the Made by Hand craft fair in association with The Contemporary Craft Festival, held in Cardiff’s City Hall. With 140 stalls on two levels and work from ceramicists and jewellery makers to printers and stationery designers, the fair was well-worth a visit. The work featured at Made by Hand was well-made, exquisite and unique and I went away wanting far more than I’d actually bought.
The fair was held on the 31st October until the 2nd November and, as well as the stalls, there were plenty of expert talks and workshops for participants to try too. Workshops included making miniature story books, mosaics and embroidery with Craftivist Collective founder, Sarah Corbett.
Although some crafters had come from further away, there were quite a few local and Wales-based designers, which I was particularly happy to see, and overall the standard of stalls was brilliant.
There really was a lot to see and the event is annual, so I’ll definitely be going again next year.
But for now, here is a selection of some of my favourite exhibitors. As there were too many for one post, part two will follow tomorrow.
Virginia Graham creates her range of colourful ceramics from a studio in Cardiff. Her work includes mismatched teapots and mugs, floral coasters and even ceramic brooches. Her work is sold throughout the UK and a list of stockists appears on her website. You can keep up to date with her news via her Facebook page here.
Helaina Sharpley is a wirework artist based in West Yorkshire, who specialises in detailed and beautiful wall art. Her work ranges from postcard sculptures to more intricate posters, like the above. Helaina says it takes her many hours to make each piece of work. You can follow her on Twitter here.
I really loved Ruth Green’s screenprinted notebooks and cards. The artist sells on Not on the High Street and works from her studio in Birmingham to create prints inspired by the flora and fauna of the British countryside. You can see more of her work here or here.
All of the items sold by Grace & Favour Home are handmade in Devon. Creator Rachael Rowe works from her studio on the edge of Dartmoor to make unique products, including bunting, cushions and stationery. You can follow her work on Facebook or Twitter.
I’ve come across the work of Mid Wales based company Llynfi Textiles on many an occasion before and their work is always lovely. Specialising in woollen garments, the brand is run by Sue and Emily James, a mother and daughter team. Llynfi Textiles also has a Twitter, Facebook and a blog, so follow away.
I just loved the ice lolly necklaces that My Bear Hands was selling. Jewellery designer Sally Haysom’s pieces begin life as a watercolour painting or a sketch with digital colour and she then turns them into wearable jewellery using digital or hand applied techniques. You can follow her adventures on her website, Facebook, Twitter or blog.
I absolutely love screenprinted posters like the ones on sale by Print Garage. Each design was different and I particularly loved the colours of the prints. Creator of Print Garage, Iain Perry, also runs a selection of workshops for anyone interested in learning the craft which you can find out more about here. The Print Garage Facebook page can be found here and its Twitter is here.
I can imagine having a lot of Katie Almond‘s ceramics in my home as they’re incredibly lovely. Inspired by vintage textiles, Katie creates jugs, cups, plates, teapots and cake stands full of colour and with quirky designs. Plus she also does commissions! Keep up with Katie’s work through her Facebook page, Twitter or blog.