A number of people ask how and where I sell my work, so I thought I would write a short blog on one of the ways I do this. As well as selling directly at retail and craft fairs, online and from open studio events, I also attend trade fairs.
This April I made my annual visit north to Harrogate, to attend the British Craft Trade Fair. This is a three day event where I display current work and share my new collections as Silversoles. The event gives me an opportunity to meet buyers (from retail outlets, museum representatives and gallery owners), who are looking for work to show in their exhibition programmes or stock in their outlets.
It’s a wonderful event, organized by Margeret Bunn and her team with attendance by selection. Only UK makers can take part with all work having to be made in Britian. It has been an honour and privilege to exhibit my work at BCTF along some of the best makers in the UK, producing exceptionally skilled work of such a high standard.
We arrived on Saturday morning to set up and transform the bare shell scheme, ( see below). Initially the walls have a clean, then we start installing furniture, electric cabling and lighting ( thanks Dad), before beginning the process of displaying the work.
Starting with an empty shell scheme and in boxes…
Beginning with the empty shell scheme…
Transformed to this…..
The space transformed and ready for the show to open on Sunday
Only a week to go and tickets selling fast for the Autumn Term Textiles classes and workshops I am running at the Midlands Art Centre. This term’s Fabric, Paper & Stitch students will be working toward a New Year exhibition of their work using Edible as their inspiration. The Explore Feltmaking course focus this term will be on 3d surface textures and drawing with wool to create landscapes. Also look out for the short weekend workshops planned throughout the Autumn starting with Silk Painting at the end of September. Autumn term starts on Monday 15th September, further information and tickets can be found at www.macarts.co.uk
Twelve week courses are;
Explore Feltmaking Mondays 13.00hrs to 15.00hrs, An introduction to traditional and contemporary felt making with opportunities to experiment with a range of fibres, fabric and wool.
Explore TextilesMondays 19.30 to 21.30, A practical introduction and exploration of textiles developing personal projects using batik, screen printing, feltmaking and embroidery with elements of paper making and dyeing.
Fabric, Paper & StitchWednesdays 10.00 hrs to 12.00hrs. An exploration of surface design introducing a range of techniques including printing (Block & Screen) hand & machine embroidery with surface design exercises to develop your own creative language.
Mixed Media Textiles Wednesday 13.00hrs to 15.00hrs or Thursday 19.30hrs to 21.00hrs. Experimenting with a variety of materials and trying different techniques to build mixed media tactile surfaces. Using batik, feltmaking & heat bonding processes combined with embroidery, wire, plastics and found objects you can try out new ideas and develop your own individual projects.
I visited the Royal Birmingham Society of Artists last week and caught Melanie Keevils’ (ARBSA) new exhibition of ceramic wall panels in the Craft Gallery. Many of the pieces featured are inspired by ancient civilisations, the colours and landscapes of France and Spain, and the geology of the Cornish and Welsh Coastlines. The ceramic panels have a 3d surface relief with each area of low relief filled with subtle coloured glazes.
The show features a range of Melanie’s new pieces called Fragments and her ariel images of Birmingham. I loved these ariel wall pieces, both the stunning larger single panels (see above), and the smaller panels (below). The small individual panels work both in isolation or grouped together giving a wider ariel grid view. Melanie’s work is an inspirational study of topography and her ariel interpretations of Birmingham are a cartographic delight.
Get yourselves down to the RBSA to see the exhibition – it runs until Saturday 11th October at the RBSA Gallery, 4 Brook Strret, St Paul’s, Birmingham, B3 1SA. www.rbse.org.uk