The British Craft Trade Fair takes place in April each year and I’ve been attending the show since 2015. This year’s show was cancelled and the majority of my 30 UK stockists have closed their doors due to the Covid-19 breakout.
This means that one of my main income streams has now come to a standstill and I’m not alone. So many designer/makers are in the same boat. I’m lucky that my studio is in my home, so I can carry on working, but without orders I have very little work to do.
As a maker I rely heavily on Trade Shows and wholesale orders from shops and galleries for income. Orders from the general public, directly or via my website keep me going in between shows.
Please Support Small Businesses
I’m hoping individuals will still opt to support small businesses, like mine, during this crisis.
With regards to income, designer/makers like myself will be solely reliant on online orders at the moment to get us through. I’ve amazingly had a very good Month with online sales. Mother’s Day helped a lot. But I’m not sure what the next few months will be like.
So for the next few iterations of my #FridayFaves posts I thought I’d go through the BCTF 2020 Catalogue and pick out a few of makers each week and post up images of their work, as well as links to their catalogue pages, so that you can go and find out more about them. If you like what you see, visit their websites, see if they have an online shop and maybe place an order. No matter how small, each order will help these individuals financially, but also with morale.
We really do do a little dance whenever an order comes in!!
This week I’m going to select a few makers who, like me, work with recycled materials….
Anna Roebuck Art and Jewellery
Anna Roebuck creates contemporary jewellery and artwork using a variety of media. Her first passion is recycling and she has been recycling plastics for 18 years. Her ‘Nocean’ jewellery range, which I love, is made from recycled plastic bottles and is full of gorgeous colours and forms.
Linda Lovatt of Beastie Assemblage makes assemblage and jewellery incorporating vintage china and found objects, using copper and brass sheet with tin solder.
Leigh Shepherd Designs
Upcycled jewellery, cards and mixed media pieces made from sixpence coins and vintage Scrabble tiles, as well as wooden draughts and domino pieces. The designs are made with my own ink drawings and Japanese papers.
Maybe Mabel specialises in designing and making a range of handbags, backpacks, toiletry storage, purses and accessories using sustainable recycled leather.
Lucy Wray is inspired by the British countryside and created Cards, Gifts, Brooches, Contemporary Craft and Art from salvaged materials.
So there you have it – a wee taste of what would have been on show at BCTF this year if it had gone ahead.
The next few months, for me, will be a great time to devote my attention to many of the tasks I have had on the back burner, to work on my website and to experiment with new ideas.
However now that the schools are closed, I’m also homeschooling, so getting into the studio is not something I’ll be able to do very often. My partner and I are working together though to make sure we both get some quality ‘alone time’ in our respective studios, otherwise I think we will go insane.
I hope everyone is staying home and keeping safe!