We just wanted to say a big thank you to everyone who supported our Craft Scotland Summer Show this year: visitors, makers and partners. Our fourth Craft Scotland Summer Show during the lively Edinburgh Festival Fringe proved to be incredibly popular with locals and tourists alike.
Up on the second floor of White Stuff, visitors were delighted to see a charming selection of textiles, homeware, lighting and jewellery. It was amazing to see the public engage with makers and learn more about the inspiration and provenance behind their work.
2016 saw 31 makers from around Scotland to showcase the very best in contemporary Scottish craft. We showed you the minimal ceramics of Natalie J Wood and intricate knitted textiles of Hilary Grant. There was dramatic lighting from Yellow Broom, vibrant prints from East End Press and sophisticated jewellery from Filipa Oliveira, to name a few.
Tracey Wilson said "I'm really delighted to have been part of such an amazing show"
Sarah Jane Brand from Hejsan Goods said "It was an absolute pleasure taking part in the show - I loved it! I'm so pleased with the reaction to my baskets and I've had lots of interest from retailers looking to stock my work."
Running from Friday 5 to Sunday 28 August 2016, the Summer Show saw an increase in both visitor and sales figures this year. We welcomed 4,100 visitors in the 24 days the show was open to the public. This translated to a total of 456 items bought, making up a gross sales value of over £19.5k (compared to £18.3k in 2015).
Over 150 people came along to our Private View and celebrated the handmade with us. Our opening event was sponsored by Motel One, who served tasty cocktails in their signature blue colours.
Once again, thank you to White Stuff for hosting the Summer Show. We think their brand fits very nicely with our ethos and we were delighted to be working with their Edinburgh team for a fourth year.
The White Stuff story began in the mid-eighties, when their ski-loving founders, George and Sean, started selling 'Boys from the White Stuff' t-shirts and mad cow hats to fund their fun on the snow-covered slopes. Six years later, the boys waved the French Alps goodbye and opened the first ever White Stuff shop in Battersea, South London. The company now has shops all over the UK and Europe as well as an online store. White Stuff works with high-quality, ethically sourced materials, and are big on little details and hand-drawn prints.
Meet Your Maker at Summer Show
Chantal Allen, from Warped Textiles, demonstrated how colour compositions can alter a pattern with paper weaving. Laura Spring shared her pearls of wisdom from five years in business, talking about the value that commissions and collaborations bring to her creative practice
Visitors experimented with some simple textural knit techniques with textile artist Lucy Donnell. Jo Pudelko taught participants to use a traditional jeweller’s saw to create colourful acrylic pendants. Jewellery designer Eleanor Symms, whose work combines reclaimed and precious materials, shared her unique approach to making.
Meet Your Maker at Edinburgh International Book Festival
Following on from the success of previous years, Craft Scotland once again teamed up with the Edinburgh International Book Festival to bring their audience some engaging Meet Your Maker events in Charlotte Square. On Wednesday 17 and Thursday 18 August, visitors joined willow artist David Powell as he created a giant willow sculpture of Roald Dahl favourite, the BFG (Big Friendly Giant). Willow artist David Powell uses natural colours and the line of the willow rod to draw and define three-dimensional forms both figurative and abstract, utilising steel, willow, and stone to create bespoke permanent and transient works for schools, gardens, events and the home.
On Saturday 20 August, silversmith Bryony Knox and storyteller Erin Farley guided visitors in making beautiful fish and fin brooches from recycled materials. They took inspiration from the stories of Scotland’s weird and wonderful sea creatures, including Orkney's furtive Finfolk and the secretive selkies.
VIP Bloggers Night
Seven Edinburgh lifestyle bloggers came along to our VIP Bloggers Night to discover all the stylish and innovative products being made right here in Scotland. Gilly Langton, jewellery designer, and Kirsteen Stewart, fashion designer, ran a hands-on workshop for the bloggers on how to knit a necklace and how to create a fashion moodboard respectively.
On the last Thursday of the Craft Scotland Summer Show, we celebrated with a special late-night shopping event. Visitors had the chance to meet Beth Lamont, a ceramic jewellery and accessories designer/maker based in Edinburgh, and the Craft Scotland team. We teamed up with Urban Reivers for the night, a new Scottish lifestyle brand, and they introduced us to their amazing new perfume and scarf collection.
The first 15 lucky shoppers through the doors won a goodie bag filled with delightful things from our Summer Show makers, from the Biscuit Factory (Newcastle), Urban Reivers and JustBe Botanicals.
What’s Up Next?
Following on from the success of our Summer Show, Craft Scotland have a number of exciting projects coming up. We've teamed up with Emergents for a Scotland: Craft & Design pavilion at London Design Fair. This prestigious showcase of the finest quality Scottish craft will take place in London Thursday 22 to Sunday 25 September 2016. Discover the full list of makers.
Friday 7 October sees the return of our annual Craft Scotland Conference. Our event is shaping up to be a great one! We have confirmed more speakers including Nicholas Oddy, Head of Design History & Theory at Glasgow School of Art, and Emily Millichip, fashion designer. Read more about our speakers and their talks.
Early October sees a selection of Summer Show makers head to Newcastle for an exhibition at the Biscuit Factory. More details to be announced.