September has passed in a whirl with so much going on, so much planned for the months, and year, ahead.
The last Sunday Market of 2016 was early in the month. We've really enjoyed helping get it off the ground, it's a wonderful community event with people from Clevedon and beyond experiencing beautiful products from local producers, as well as having a good look around the shops that the Hill and Sea area has to offer. We look forward to its return in the new year, and we'll definitely be part of it.
We also held the Have Market at the Curzon Cinema. 500+ people came to see us, with 25 stalls over three floors it was a real Curzon ‘take over’ with a buzzing atmosphere and a strong sense of community between the stallholders as makers, collectors and designers as well as the local people of Clevedon who'd come to see their wares.
We raised £475.00 for the restoration fund for the cinema building by asking for £1 donations, which was amazing. We also had the added bonus of a leg and arm workout, helping everyone move their stock up and down the stairs!
We loved networking with the stallholders, all so creative and working hard as small business owners. We love supporting them, and found the day really inspiring to try and fit more making into our schedule. We, by necessity, spend much of our time doing admin ...although we do buy, style and paint for 19...and run a graphics business in the studio- so not all not creative! But we want to craft more! It is an early new year resolution.
Naturally, following the launch of a new business, it has been a struggle to take time off and get away, partly due to not wanting to miss opportunities and partly because of the volume of work involved. However, Vic took a holiday! She went away for a week in the sun with her partner Rich, leaving Bec at the helm, superwoman that she is, running workshops, the market, design projects and of course, shop sales.
September has seen the return of the workshops after a little summer break. We started off with the ever-popular lampshade making, where we were joined by textile artist Emma Giacalone and shown the process of making a lampshade with workshop tutor regular, Sarah. Then, we hosted Ruth Broadway's lino cutting for both morning and afternoon workshops. We met Ruth some years ago in Bristol as part of the Made in Bristol pop up shop, and have since produced the vinyl decals for her new venture, Paper Plane in Bristol. Ruth was an amazing tutor, confident and knowledgeable, inspiring a creative and fun atmosphere. We strung a washing line across the studio for the participants to hang their images on, and everyone made the most wonderful work, after all claiming they were not creative! Finally, we were joined by Emmeline Simpson for Cityscape illustrations again, we were booked up for a double workshop. We met Emmeline while networking and she has been stocking 19 with her cityscape coasters and mats. We've been chatting for some time about working together on a project so we loved getting her into the studio teaching and sharing her techniques for creating illustrations, with her friendly and down to earth style. The two groups were quite different, the first more nervous to start with but the second enthusiastically getting stuck in with laughter, chatting and lots of tea drinking. Emmeline mainly works from home and enjoyed meeting the attendees some of which were Instagram followers she could then meet in person. This is the wonderful part of the workshops, people coming together face-to-face to be creative and sociable, many attendees swap numbers and make firm friends.
Both Emmeline and Ruth's workshops return in 2017.
We've also been working away on booking in workshops for 2017, growing the range of things on offer and seeking out new tutors. Having to think so far in advance is pretty usual for a small business, especially in retail, but its still hard to think in terms of months in advance and even harder to get others to commit.
We want our workshops to be led by artisans, delivering contemporary, on-trend skills with take away results. We want to offer them to everyone, being fairly priced and with a lasting product to enjoy. We'll be doing a post to introduce some of them soon.
Lastly, we can't avoid the fact, Christmas is coming. We are preparing 'below stairs' with stockroom moves, tidying, buying and sorting in the run up, as well as adding to the shop with some new storage and display furniture. Screwdrivers and paint brushes at the ready!