Oct 31, 2008

Designer Spotlight- Chi Chi Moi

Chi-Chi Moi started almost by accident in 2005 by textile artist Jan Ollis, who had trained in printed textiles before becoming totally hooked on crochet and knit. Jan had original learned these skills as a young girl, but did not use them professionally. It was whilst searching unsuccessfully for a corsage to give as a present that she decided to make one herself. The present was a great success and soon word spread and the corsages began to be sold in shops.

Now although Jan still makes many of the products herself, she also employs a small team of talented craftspeople to help her. She is constantly inspired to create new products, from quirky knitted rings and retro inspired cushions to nostalgic pearl corsages often using vintage materials in her designs.Chi-Chi Moi products can be found in shops and galleries around the country and also online. It also offers a bespoke design service, from small individual products to large orders and has been working with a large national company for several years. If you are wondering what ‘Chi-Chi Moi’ means, the loose translation is fashionably frilly me.

Waiting For We Make Christmas?
Jan is currently working on a hand knitted parcel, which can be used either on a ribbon as an advent calendar or individually as Christmas tree decorations. These will be available at the fair. Jan will also be bringing a range of her chokers and knitted and crocheted items.

Can’t Wait For We Make Christmas?
If you can’t wait till the fair to sample Chi-Chi Moi’s pretty designs then take a look at her website www.chichimoi.co.uk, you may even get a sneak preview of her knitted parcels.

Oct 29, 2008

Designer Spotlight- Sheepshape Spinning

Looking through Elizabeth’s shop is every knitter's dream. She enjoys knitting, crocheting and dyeing but her main love is spinning.

‘The instant that I spun that first spindle I knew that I was hooked.’

Elizabeth uses a Kromski Sonata folding spinning wheel and a Woolee Winder flyer assembly. All of her yarns are hand spun and/or hand dyed making them soft and in a wonderful range of colours. She hand dyes commercial sock yarn, which can be used for socks, toys or baby clothes, and also creates handspun yarns suitable for a variety of uses.

Waiting For We Make Christmas?
Elizabeth is currently working on some tiny knitted sheep which are small enough to fit into your palm. She is also making unique glow-in-the dark bears, cats, and rabbits by combining special glow-in-the-dark wool with her own handspun wool.
‘The animals glow for hours after exposure to light and everyone who has seen them absolutely loves them.’

Can’t Wait For We Make Christmas?
Take a look at Elizabeth’s online shops
sheepshape.etsy.com and avanutria.etsy.com. They have a beautiful selection of her wool and knitted items.

Oct 27, 2008

Designer Spotlight- Big Blue Bed

Alix loves working with different fabrics and yarns to create stunning purses, bags, buttons and hair accessories.

‘Fabrics and yarn talk to me. I love to hold them and feel it and imagine what it could be. I love colour and texture. So most of my items are colourful. ’

Alix also enjoys knitting. She has a pretty range of scarfs and cuffs. Colour is a big influence in Alix’s designs with bright coloured wools, yarns, fabrics.

Waiting for We Make Christmas?
Alix is currently working on a new and exciting project., Dorset Buttons.
‘These are a traditional button that was made before the Industrial revolution. It is a beautiful button that can be any colour and used to decorate many items or just as a button.’

Alix sells these by themselves, in sets, attached to snap clips and also bobby pins. They take quite a bit of work but Alix loves the tiny stitches that are needed to make them.

Alix is also working on some new matching bags and purses.

Can’t Wait For We Make Christmas?
Check out Alix’s online shops. They are full of colourful, fresh designs. Lots of items that will make perfect gifts.
bigbluebed.etsy.com and bigblueknits2tog.etsy.com

Oct 25, 2008

Demonstrations at Wemake

We Make are excited to announce that there will be a series of craft demonstrations throughout the day at We Make Christmas. These will be fun sessions where you can either watch or make some exciting things and take home your unique handmade pieces.

Our demonstrators include:

Flock is a group of experienced knitters. They run workshops for every knitting stage, whether is be an experienced knitter of a complete novice. Flock will be giving a taster of their workshops with some simple, fun projects.

PennyDog Jewellery: www.penny-dog.co.uk
Kerry will show you the different types of resin and equipment used, and demonstrates making a pair of swirled dye earrings, as well as exploring the processes behind other items in her ranges and she will answer all of your questions.

Mungbean: www.folksy.com/shops/mungbean
Natalie Morris will be showing you how to make fun, colourful finger puppets. Her range includes all kinds of animals, dragons, skeletons and zombies. So why not come along and make a special santa finger puppet.

Oct 23, 2008

Designer Spotlight- Peppermint Twist

Araine loves sewing, working mainly in leather her purses are meticulously hand-crafted to create stunning designs.

Araine takes her inspiration from vintage Hollywood glamour of the 40s and 50s, as well as 60s-70s movies.

‘I use mostly leathers, the nappa (lamb) variety, as it supper soft and has a great textural feel. It also ages well, so my purses should last a long while. More recently, I have been working with fabrics such as denim, fleece and velvet/cords.’

Common features on Araine’s purses are appliqu├ęs of horses, ponies, hearts and doves, star-shaped cut-outs, punched motifs, and studded decorations.

Waiting For We Make Christmas?

Ariane is working on some new ranges, including her studded range and jersey range. She is very excited about some new and exclusive designs that will not be seen until 6th December.

Can’t Wait For We Make Christmas?

Ariane’s Etsy shop www.peppermintdesigns.etsy.com is full of peppermint goodness, with a purse for every occasion you won’t be disappointed.

Oct 21, 2008

Designer Spotlight- Flurogoddess

Jennifer studied engineering and gained a Design degree but couldn't find the inspiration for what she wanted to do. She then stumbled on Heidi Kenney's website http://www.mypapercrane.com/. Taking great inspiration from this Jennifer crafted her first piece, an everlasting birthday cake. Since then Jennifer has experimented in lots of crafts like knitting, graphics, screen printing.

Jennifer’s ‘Keep calm, carry on’ are one of her best sellers. Available in bags, cushions, posters they make great gifts.

Waiting For We Make Christmas?

For We Make Christmas Jennifer is working on some eco-friendly Christmas trees, lovely garlands and alternative Christmas decorations.

We Make Christmas will see a range of Jennifer’s designs including some of her best sellers like her ‘Tea Cup’ candles; they add an unusual twist to candles and make a fantastic present. Also her screen printed items that are natural and fresh designs.

Jennifer also has a range of eco friendly, recycled note pads.

Can’t Wait For We Make Christmas?

Flurogoddess Dawanda shop has a great range of her products. Bags, posters, cards, badges and much, much more.

Oct 18, 2008

Autumn Gift Guide

A fantastic reason to come to We Make is to start buying your Christmas presents for your friends and family. To help you with some ideas and to give you a look at what kind of wonderful items you can expect to see at the fair we are putting together some gift guides as ideas for your nearest and dearest. We decided to start off with an autumn gift guide to show you all the wonderful autumnal products that you can buy from our wonderful stall holders.

This beautiful floral necklace by myaprodite drums up an image of the end of summer. The pretty green and red beads add that autumn touch, perfect to take you into the winter season.

The days are certainly getting chilly so why not warm up yourself with a good old cup of tea. This tea cosy from chichimoi will brighten up even the dullest of teapots.

Wrap up warm with this scarf from Urbanknit. I love the way it twists and turns so that you can either wear it long or wrapped around your neck to keep the winter chill at bay.

After a long day at work, there is nothing more relaxing than a bath with delicious soap. This one from hedgewitches' kitchen smells like autumn; sweet rosehips and warming ginger, perfect for a warm bath on a cold night.

Oct 17, 2008

Designer Spotlight- Bombus

Creating through Decoupage

Bombus wonderful creations are made using her own unique decoupage technique. Combining fabrics, vintage book and comics Amelia creates fresh recycled products.

Amelia has always love making things from an early age making clothes, bags for school friends. It was Amelia’s mother that introduced her to the exciting world of decoupage.

‘People often ask how I got into ‘decoupage’ which I suppose is quite a specialized process and I realized recently that this was something my mum had introduced me to at around 4 years old. She would give me a pair of scissors and an old mail order catalogue. I remember sitting carefully cutting out hundreds of images and organizing them in piles. She then taught me how to fix the little cut out pictures onto large pebbles and varnish them for doors stops.’

Bombus (Latin for Bumble Bee) has taken many twists and turns before becoming the much loved business it is now. Bombus chairs are much loved by the press, there uniqueness make them a flagship for Amelia’s business.

Waiting For We Make Christmas?

Amelia’s map plates and bowls make great wedding gifts each one is made from maps, comics, and stamps making them an unusual present.

For We Make Christmas Amelia is making some smaller more affordable trinket bowls.

Can’t Wait For We Make Christmas?

Bombus’s Etsy shop http://bombus.etsy.com is full of wonderful unique creations. Amelia hasn’t added her winter collection he Christmas collection is coming soon......

Oct 14, 2008

Designer Spotlight- Notes

Diane’s bags are truly stunning. Inspired by current trends they are both unique and fashionable. Diane has been sewing since she was a teenager and is constantly teaching herself new techniques. ‘I think having some kind of creative outlet is extremely important, and I love making things. I always like to have a project on the go; it keeps me busy. I’m constantly being inspired by what I see online and in magazines, and the smallest little detail can give me a new idea.’

Diane tends to not use patterns for her bags, but creates her own unique designs making no two bags the same. They are simple, practical, durable and unique. They’re made with care and attention to detail. ‘I love strong colours, patterns, buttons, birds, polka dots, leaves, lovely fabrics… all of these elements (and more) are embodied in my designs.’

Waiting For We Make Christmas:
Diane’s big, pleated tote bags are great sellers, along with her hand stitched ‘Bird on a Line’ and ‘Sage Leaves’ bags and ‘Big Buttons’ totes. Diane is currently working on some new and exciting designs.

Can’t Wait for We Make Christmas:

Diane’s has been working on new clutch purses, she has been experimenting more with different fabrics. Check out her online store for some of these exciting designs. http://notes.etsy.com

Oct 13, 2008

WeMake Tote Goodie Bags

As many of you may know this summer we held the very first We Make fair in London to great success. One of the elements of the fair that we had a positive feedback from was the promotional tote bags which we organised.

Each tote bag was sponsored by a We Make stall holder and individually decorated in the style and technique of that person. We had a great mix of styles and colours, something for everyone.

Each tote was then filled with great promotional items and business cards from the stall holders and other UK designers, makers and artists. These cotton bags also proved a great way for customers to carry around all of their wonderful purchases from the fair. Our tote bags are a great alternative to throw away bags.

For We Make Christmas, we are excited to be doing the totes again but even bigger and better. We have more designers taking part in sponsoring and decorating the totes not to mention even more fantastic items donated to include in the totes. From earrings, to art cards, to magnets and even more you will thrilled with your goodie bag.

Oct 10, 2008

Designer Spotlight- Arty All Sorts

Helen has always had a passion for photography. From the age of 12 she could be found snapping away. She has a talent for spotting shot’s just waiting to be taken. Helen finds a lot of inspiration in nature.

‘My style is definitely eclectic – I shoot whatever takes my fancy or whenever the opportunity arises and if I see a style I like, I often try to emulate it until I understand how it’s done then move on to the next. I do have an affinity for flower photography though especially close up and macro – the sheer beauty of that 1/2inch bit of flower always amazes me.’

Helen has perfected her technique making her photographs beautiful works of art.

Waiting For We Make Christmas?

Helen will be bringing a fine selection of her photography among these will be her best sellers ‘The Barn Owl’ and ‘Three Fishing Boats’.

‘I think the clarity of the water makes the first boat look like it’s floating on air and people seem to be amazed by it.

Helen is also working on calendars, magnets and note cards. These will make stunning Christmas presents. Helen’s next project is to have one of her pieces printed on an aluminium panel. This is the latest unusual presentation format in the photography world.

Can’t wait for We Make Christmas?

A beautiful selection of Arty Allsorts work is available in her online store. Her attention to detail of some of natures beauty is a real treat to see. http://artyallsorts.etsy.com

Oct 4, 2008

Designer Spotlight- Sisily Love

Adding A New Twist To Recycling

Ever wondered what to do with those old unusable vinyls? Keep finding bits of lego that the children are told old to play with. Then take a look at Sisily Love’s fantastic jewellery. Jo brings a whole new life to recycling. Her designs are so stunning that they leave you thinking, wow was that really a old record. Jo’s recreating start from an early age, she loved dressing up as all young girls do. However, Jo could never quite find the right dress or accessory, so she made what she wanted herself. Jo is now recreating her own unique jewellery. Combining techniques and materials that are beyond normal use.

‘I try to create things that have a decadent twist - a story or juxtaposition. I like to refashion things as you have never imagined, changing their significance or purpose - giving the material a greater value by recreating it with a twist of kitsch sparkle. I like my products to be punky and fresh.’

Waiting For We Make Christmas?

Jo is currectly working on some Christmas decorations with a twist. They will be made from vinyl. Silily Loves current vinyl ranges contain beautiful flower brooches and Wrist embellishments.

Jo's vinyl collection all come packaged in handmade boxes made from old vinyl sleeves.

Jo’s Lego range is a big hit, its unique twist design makes it a must have. People are fascinated with a recognisable object in a unrecognisable form. With heat manipulation Jo has turned a common play thing into a stunning design.

Can’t Wait For We Make Christmas?

Silily Love’s stunning creations are available through her Etsy store sisilylove.etsy.com and upcycleme.etsy.com

There will also be a sneak preview of the vinyl Christmas decorations.