Meet the Maker - Alex Lucas

Friday, November 28, 2014
If you live in Bristol, especially around the Stokes Croft area, you may have well noticed the work of Alex Lucas.  Alex is a true Bristol talent, producing large scale murals for many Bristol institutions, shop and local events.  We are super delighted that Alex will be at our Made in Bristol Gift Fair at the Colston Hall this year, where you can buy a piece of her lovely work to adorn your own walls.  We caught up with her recently to find out more her and her inspirations...
Please can you introduce yourself and tell us a little about your work? 
Hi I’m Alex but I often go by the name of Lucas Antics. I have been illustrating for about 15 years. I prefer to draw animals as I feel they can be easily anthropomorphised and the viewer can relate to them more easily, often associating my illustrated characters with people they know. My most enjoyable work is painting large scale murals which can be seen across Bristol; Triodos Bank, The Bristol Bike Project and The Playing Cards on my neighbours’ seven foot gates (Picton Street) and inside The Birdcage, Bristol’s first coffee and vintage clothing boutique. I now run the Little Shop on Stokes Croft with a fellow artist friend Amber Elise. 
How do you prepare yourself & your work in the months running up to the Gift Fair? 
I have been quite organised this year by ordering my stock fairly early. I am working on designing some unusual packaging for my cushions and tea towels. I am also thinking of ways to present my stall and not leaving things to the last minute! 
Do you have any tips to someone who is just starting out, on selling at Christmas markets? 
To keep going and try lots of various Christmas markets. Also to apply early, I contact me in March for a stall! Some Christmas markets can really differ from others along with the customers. It’s important to make your customers feel welcome with big smiles. 
What special little touch do you offer your customers? 
I am terrible at gift-wrapping and think people would be quite unimpressed if they saw my attempts! I like to make my illustrations fit to a certain size the client needs and am happy to alter them if necessary. 
What handmade item is high on your Christmas wish list? 
I could really do with a new set of acrylic paints and drawing pencils- boring but necessary! 
What is your favourite part of Christmas? 
Eating loads of satsumas. 

Which UK artist/maker’s Facebook or Twitter feed do you find most inspiring and why? 
I really enjoy the artists featured on oohdeer.  Humour in art is really important to me. 
What is your favourite family Christmas tradition? 
We always go for a really long walk and usually get lost in the dark so we won’t have Christmas dinner till about 10pm and the Chicken (we don’t have turkey) is about a third of the size as it has been cooked for way too long! 

Finally, if you could re-design a Christmas decoration, what would it be and why? 
The Christmas fairy. She could really do with a make over/under.

Thank you Alex!  We love your alphabet poster, some amazing creatures on there.  You can find Alex and her beautiful work on the Entrance Level tomorrow (29th November) and on the Upper Level on the 7th December.
Made in Bristol Gift Fair
Colston Hall 
Bristol

Saturday 29th November 2014
Sunday 7th December 2014
10am - 4pm

Saturday 13th December 2014 
10am - 3pm
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Meet the Maker - Clare Lloyd

Thursday, November 27, 2014
We at Made in Bristol are colour fanatics and love to find creative people who are just as loopy about colour as we are. Such as jewellery designer Clare Lloyd.  Clare creates beautiful jewellery in a rainbow of hues, we just new her pieces would be perfect for the Christmas Design Temporium this year.  We chatted recently to discover her inspirations and her Christmas traditions...
Please can you introduce yourself and tell us a little about your work
My name is Clare Lloyd, I live in Frome, Somerset and I design and make a range of colourful jewellery using polymer and resin clays set into sterling silver called 'Colour Designs.' I started to learn how to make silver jewellery about ten years ago and I really wanted to find a way to introduce colour into my work so I started to experiment with polymer clay. Each element of my jewellery is made by me; I keep the shapes and designs straightforward and simple and let the colour do the talking. 
What do you love most about working in your chosen discipline? 
I am completely obsessed with colour and with polymer and resin clays I have found materials that enable me to mix the clays like paint to create a multitude of wonderful shades and tones. There's no end to the colours I can come up with and I really enjoy putting different combinations of colours together to create my designs; I love it! 

What is your favourite family Christmas tradition? 
I think my favourite family Christmas tradition is putting up the Christmas Tree and decorations. I've got a bit of thing about glass baubles and each year I will find just one lovely handmade glass bauble to add to my ever growing collection. 
What handmade item is high on your Christmas wish list? 
I'd really like a lovely, chunky, hand knitted scarf for Christmas, one of those really soft, long and snugly ones with fringes on the ends. 

Do you have any tips on selling over the Christmas period? 
I'm still pretty new to selling my jewellery so I could do with some tips myself! I think the one thing I am learning is to make sure you have plenty of stock! 
If you could choose a fellow artist/maker to collaborate with, who would it be and why? 
I really, really like the up cycled furniture made by Harper & Harper; the colours they use are fabulous and I love the vintage and mid century designs that they breath new life into. In my mind I can picture my jewellery laid out on their gorgeous coloured sideboards and tables to create a wonderful world of colour. 

Which artist do you find inspiring to follow on Facebook or Twitter? 
I'm very new to the world of Facebook and Twitter so I'm still getting to grips with them both, however, through Facebook I have discovered the work of Silk & Willow who use plant material to hand dye silk to create the most beautiful array of colours in their ribbons, scarves and fabrics. I find their posts and beautiful photographs completely inspiring. 
Finally if you could design a Christmas decoration, what would it be and why? 
Because of the bauble obsession, I'd love to have a go at designing my very own glass bauble, I don't think it would turn out very well though and would be more blob than bauble! 

Thank you Clare.  Your jewellery pieces make perfect Christmas gifts.  You can find Clare's colourful items in our Christmas Design Temporium alongside a plethora of beautiful design inspired Christmas gifts.

More details about our fab Christmas pop-up can be found on our Facebook page.


Christmas Design Temporium
The Architecture Centre
Narrow Quay
Bristol

Tues - Sun: 10am - 6pm

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Meet the Maker - Juliet Foster

Wednesday, November 26, 2014
With only a month until it's Christmas!! It's time to seriously start shopping for that perfect gift.  Luckily our annual Made in Bristol Gift Fair starts this Saturday!  The foyer of the Colston Hall will be filled to the brim with local talented artists and makers.  One such person is jewellery designer Juliet Foster (aka Jules & Clem).  Juliet's pieces are glittery & geometric in shape, a perfect gift for Christmas in our eyes.  We caught up with Juliet to find out more...
Please can you introduce yourself and tell us a little about your work? 
My name is Juliet and I am a jewellery designer/maker, living in Bristol with my husband Matt and daughter Lizzie. I started my jewellery label - Jules and Clem - in 2009 whilst working as a production assistant for a Children’s publishing house. The influence of Children’s books and fairy tales can clearly be seen in my early work which was full of bunnies, cats, birds and dancers. I designed jewellery to tell a story, it was great fun! I still make and sell lots of pieces from that time, but as my life has changed so have my influences. Now, as a busy mum, I am drawn to simpler forms and shapes. I make pared down minimal pieces in subtle hues which are still playful but easy to wear. 
How do you prepare yourself & your work in the months running up to the Gift Fair?
I work hard on my stand, making sure it’s up-to-date and visually appealing, and that it reinforces my brand. This year my Dad has helped me make a bespoke peg board display which I’m really excited about! Then it’s just make, make, make! 
Do you have any tips for someone just starting out on selling at Christmas? 
Price everything clearly, no one likes to ask how much things costs and it might be the difference between winning and losing a sale. 
What special little touch do you offer your customers? 
This year I will be selling customisable monogram necklaces. Stop by and have a look! 

What handmade item is high on your Christmas wish list? 
I really love the work of Bristol designer Sally Haysom (MyBearHands). 
What is your favourite part of Christmas? 
Food, presents, baileys coffee (in that order) 
Which UK artist/maker’s Twitter feed do you find most inspiring?
I’m not a huge twitter fan but love the instagram feeds of @jenniferloiselle, @cardboardcities and @ladybirdlikes. All offer an inspiring mix of life and work. 

What is your favourite family Christmas tradition? 
I don’t come from a particularly traditional family (one year we cancelled Christmas altogether!), so since having our own child my husband and I have been trying to carve out a few traditions of our own. So far we are failing miserably - last year we didn't even have a tree! Hopefully we’ll do better this year… 
Finally, if you could re-design a Christmas decoration, what would it be and why? 
I’d like to make something to replace tinsel. Maybe a garland of some sort? Still sparkly but less naff.

Thank you Juliet!  You didn't have a tree last year?  But where would you hang your sparkly garland? 

You can find Juliet on the middle level of the Colston Hall foyer on both Saturday 29th November and Sunday 7th December. 
Made in Bristol Gift Fair
Colston Hall 
Bristol

Saturday 29th November 2014
Sunday 7th December 2014
10am - 4pm

Saturday 13th December 2014 
10am - 3pm
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Meet the Maker - Rachael Baralos

Monday, November 24, 2014
It's nearly time for the Made in Bristol Gift Fair!  This year we are delighted to introduce textile designer Rachael Baralos, who will be joining us for both the 29th November & 7th December dates. Rachael creates beautiful pictures, cards and jewellery using a technique called 'free machine embroidery'.  The result of which are beautiful, intricate pieces of work.  We caught up with her to find out more about her designs...
Please can you introduce yourself and tell us a little about your work? 
I’m Rachael Baralos, the maker/designer of sewn by Rachael. I create free machine embroidered cards, brooches and pictures. Quite often hot air balloons and landmarks such as the Clifton Suspension Bridge can be found in my work! 

How do you prepare in the months running up to the Gift Fair? 
Sew, sew, sew! I would say that most of my work throughout the year is commission based, but as it comes closer to Christmas I have to balance the commissions alongside stock for stalls such as the Gift Fair! As this is my first Gift Fair I’m hoping that I’ve sewn enough! 
Do you have any tips on selling at Christmas markets? 
I think it is a challenge to offer something completely unique! But offering products at a variety of price points means that if your makes are admired, everyone has the opportunity to purchase something from you! 

What special little touch do you offer your customers?
I particularly like that I can inspire people to design their own commission and ideas to create their own personalised unique piece of machine embroidery. I have a book of commissions on my stall to share and inspire ideas! 

What handmade item is high on your Christmas wish list? 
I’m really trying this year to buy all of my Christmas presents direct from makers or independent shops! Although for myself, I’d love one of Samantha Bryan’s fairies! 
What is your favourite part of Christmas? 
I love the togetherness of Christmas, having worked in a school and now having a young family, it’s lovely to spend that time with those closest to you! 

Which UK artist/maker’s Facebook page do you find most inspiring and why? 
I have recently discovered Grace Gatley Textiles, she has a great tone to her Facebook page, sharing progress of projects, engaging with likers and beautiful pictures of her creations. 

What is your favourite family Christmas tradition? 
When we were younger we used to have ‘Christmas tree presents’ which in the afternoon each member of the family would sing a song or play an instrument to entertain everyone else! When you finished your piece, you would open your Christmas tree present! When my boys are a bit bigger, it would be something I’d love to start again! 
Finally, if you could re-design a Christmas decoration, what would it be and why? 
Every year I seem to like a different style and colour scheme, so I’d love to have a new set of Christmas tree decorations that lasted until 6th January and then combust! Would save that time wrapping up everything individually and finding somewhere to store them!

Thank you Rachael, we love the idea of your family tradition.  To entertain everyone before you get to open your presents, it sounds lovely!

You will find Rachael's stall on the middle level of the Colston Hall foyer during the Christmas Gift Fair on Saturday 29th November & Sunday 7th December.  For more information about the Christmas Gift Fair please visit our Facebook page.


Made in Bristol Gift Fair
Colston Hall 
Bristol

Saturday 29th November 2014
Sunday 7th December 2014
10am - 4pm

Saturday 13th December 2014 
10am - 3pm

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Meet the Maker - Cristina Valladares

Saturday, November 22, 2014
Are you a fan of crochet?  Of course you are! Who isn't?  We are delighted that crochet design Cristina Valladares will be joining us at this year's Made in Bristol Gift Fair at the Colston Hall.  We chatted with Cristina recently about her designs and her home in Spain...
Please can you introduce yourself and tell us a little about your work? 
My name is Cristina Valladares and I’m the person behind Tenguerengue Art Works. I started selling my amigurumis and other crochet things two years ago, when I moved here to the UK. Here there is a nice tradition with craft markets that we don’t have in Spain (my home country). I do all kind of stuff but what I enjoy the most is to do amigurumis such as burgers, cupcakes, hot dogs, fries… I love to do all kind of crocheted food. I’m also passionate about animals: foxes, hedgehogs, elephants are some of my favourites. 

How do you prepare yourself & your work in the months running up to the Gift Fair? 
I usually try to plan with months in advance, to think about which are the favourite objects of the people and the best-sellers in previous markets. It always takes long time to create the amigurumis so I need to start soon to have enough time to make all I want to make. I always have an ongoing ‘to-do’ list (or several) with designs, supplies etc. Previous days are always quite hectic. 
Do you have any tips to someone who is just starting out, on selling at Christmas markets? 
I’m still struggling with some things on craft markets. Every time I attend to a fair I learn a lot. I believe that consistency is a good tip to start. You have to believe in your work and go for it. I started doing different types of things (I still do) and as the time pass I’m focusing more in the things I really love. To work hard in your display is also very important. Your sells depend on your ability to attract buyers and this depend on your display. It worths the effort planning the design of your stall in advance. 
What special little touch do you offer your customers? 
I offer a gift wrapping service included in the price of my goods. I also do commissions so my clients could get exactly what they want. It’s lovely to work with somebody to create a gift for a loved one. 

What handmade item is high on your Christmas wish list? 
I always die for handmade note-books. 
What is your favourite part of Christmas? 
My favourite part of Christmas is, with no doubt, to meet my family in Spain. Since we are no longer in the same city is difficult to meet all of them at the same time so Christmas is the perfect time for that. I’m specially looking forward to see my little nephews Pedro and Blanca and to spend time with them. 
Which UK artist/maker’s Facebook or Twitter feed do you find most inspiring and why? 
It’s difficult to choose but I really love to follow the work of Sarah London or Lucy from Attic24 mainly because I find very inspiring the use of colour in their work. 

What is your favourite family Christmas tradition? 
Well, in Spain we usually wait for the Three Wise Men more than Father Christmas. It’s a little bit later, on the night of the 5th of January. That is our gifts night and I love it! 
Finally, if you could re-design a Christmas decoration, what would it be and why? 
More than a re-design, I would be keen to do a customised Christmas. I believe we tend to decorate the Christmas tree in the same way every year. Every year is different so we could try to add some new touches to show that. 

Thank you Cristina, so lovely to hear about your Christmas family traditions in Spain.  We can discover Cristina's crochet creations for yourself at the Made in Bristol Gift Fair on Saturday 29th November & Sunday 7th December, on the Middle Level of the Foyer.


Made in Bristol Gift Fair
Colston Hall
Bristol

Saturday 29th November 2014
Sunday 7th December 2014
10am - 4pm

Saturday 13th December 2014
10am - 3pm






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Meet the Maker - Scout & Boo

Friday, November 21, 2014
Scout & Boo are husband & wife team, David & Teresa Beswick.  Together they create a range of beautiful ceramics and upcycle furniture with their graphic designs.  We are super delighted to have their work on sale in our Christmas Design Temporium shop this year. We chatted to them both recently about their inspirations and love of good design...
Please can you introduce yourself and tell us a little about your work? 
Scout & Boo are David & Teresa Beswick (and helpful toddler Gracie too). S&B started as a dream whilst living in London 10 years ago, we dreamt of having our own interiors business incorporating recycled pieces and making and designing our own ceramics range and furniture too. We moved to Bradford on Avon six years ago and we’ve been going full time on our dream since June of this year. We have a range of graphic upcycled furniture, artwork, ceramics and lighting, fabrics and our own furniture range will be coming in 2015. 
What do you love most about working in your chosen discipline? 
Teresa: I love the diversity of our work. No two days are the same. One day is working on colour schemes for the furniture and the next is designing packaging for our ceramics line. Bringing together the various aspects of each product to build a brand that we’re happy with inspires me daily. 
David: Having graduated twenty something years ago with a Degree in Furniture Design and spent the last 18 years working as an illustrator and graphic designer, I am now able to bring together my two passions into creating products which utilise both disciplines. Not having a boss to answer to (other than Teresa) gives you free range to explore creative possibilities. It doesn’t always go to plan but the sense of achievement when it does and you finally see a completed piece is unsurpassable. It also enables me to spend more time with my family. 
What is your favourite family Christmas tradition? 
Teresa: Turkey! Got to love the turkey (and sherry for breakfast) This year our daughter will be almost two at Christmas so we’re getting very excited about building some new family traditions with her to help make her some special childhood memories. I’m sure there will be a letter or two to Santa and some homemade decorations. 
David: Baileys Irish Cream! 

What handmade item is high on your Christmas wish list? 
Teresa: Oh so many! I am in love with Mister Finch’s work at the moment and would love one of his very special pieces; maybe a hare, or a bee (or ideally all of them). I’d also quite like a Fornasetti incense burner, I love them a lot. 
David: Gracie made a 2014 calendar at nursery last year, complete with foot print sleigh and hand print reindeer – genius. Can’t wait to see what they come up with this year. 
Do you have any tips on selling over the Christmas period? 
This is our first Christmas for selling so we’re pretty excited about it. We’re focusing on getting our display absolutely perfect along with our packaging and always having a smile. We’re finding organisation is key too. Every element of the brand and what we’re about has to reflect our aspirations to deliver a stylish, quality product. 
If you could choose a fellow artist/maker to collaborate with, who would it be and why? 
David: Growing up in Manchester, it would have to be two designers who have influenced me the most - graphic designer, Peter Saville and interior designer Ben Kelly. Peter Saville designed record sleeves and posters for Factory Records and often used visual references from other genres and historical imagery which he reinterprets in his work. 
Ben Kelly designed the Hacienda nightclub, formerly a yacht showroom. The design utilised the existing industrial structures and materials which he transformed through colour, light and texture. The result was an industrial aesthetic which stayed true to the building’s warehouse origins. This ethos of using existing objects and images and reinterpreting them are what our upcycle projects are all about. Creating pieces to fit in with modern living doesn't necessarily mean throwing out the old, merely reinventing it. Construction methods and materials used in household furniture 50 years ago produced pieces that were made to last. By recycling them we hope that they live on and are used and enjoyed for generations to come. 
Which artist do you find inspiring to follow on Facebook or Twitter? 
Teresa: I love the updates and photography from Mister Finch (as I mentioned before he is a bit of a fave of mine at the moment) he makes me want to get the sewing machine out and start making beautiful work, unlikely as I cannot sew but he inspires me! I also love a local artist Patricia Volk who produces some amazing sculptures and Yvonne Ellen is a new favourite too with her quirky ceramics. 
David: What is Facebook and Twitter? (Social Media-phobe) 
Finally if you could design a Christmas decoration, what would it be and why? 
This is a long-standing joke in our house. The crowning glory on top of our Christmas tree has been a star made out of a green coat hanger that has been with us for 9 years. We really need to make more of an effort this year - saying that I’m quite fond of our slightly imperfect tree topper.

Thank you David & Teresa, we adore your designs.  We are also huge Mister Finch fans here too, those mushrooms!  You can discover the world of Scout & Boo in our Christmas Design Temporium shop which is at The Architecture Centre on Bristol's historic harbourside.

Join us TONIGHT for our shop launch and party!  More information can be found on our Facebook page.

Christmas Design Temporium
The Architecture Centre
Narrow Quay
Bristol

Tues - Sun: 10am - 6pm

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Meet the Maker - Charlotte Filshie

Wednesday, November 19, 2014
Charlotte Filshie's colourful jewellery had us at 'love at first sight'.  Unique and oh so colourful. Her latest range uses the most unusual of materials, so interesting in fact, that we had to find out more...
Please can you introduce yourself and tell us a little about your work? 
Hi! My name is Charlotte Filshie and I design and made jewellery from some odd materials. My current jewellery focuses on wall-covering and vinyl floor tiles. I love the tactile nature and the array of colours and textures of the wall-covering. In the past I have used kitchen bench samples, leather, cork, milk bottles and magazines. 

Apart from creating things what else do you do? 
Since moving to London from Melbourne, Australia I spend a lot of time visiting markets, cooking (and subsequently eating), watching sunsets but never sunrises, travelling, and power watching Netflix. 
When did you know you were an artist/maker? 
I guess I knew I was a maker when I was studying. I don’t really have an artistic background as I favoured graphic design subjects over art at school. I have always helped out friends with wedding invitations and even did my sisters visual communication homework when I was a kid because it was always more fun than my own. 

What do you love most about working in your chosen discipline? 
I love the freedom to create pieces from materials that aren’t normally associate with jewellery. 
Where does your inspiration come from? 
Anything can be inspiration, walking around and seeing graffiti or a building or even just random geometric shapes and patterns. I also use the materials to guide me. When I look at the different patterns, colours and textures of the wall-covering I see different things. Sometimes the materials remind me of things, and sometimes things remind me of the materials. 
Describe your studio or workspace? 
I work from my dining table in London overlooking a bright leafy square, shared garden and balcony. Luckily, I have very good housemates who tolerate me leaving bits of jewellery here and there so I don’t have to completely pack up my equipment every day. 

If you could peek inside the studio of any artist, designer or craftsman (dead or alive), who would it be? 
How would you describe your creative process? 
Once I have an idea I get out my folder of wall-covering and flip through to choose colours and textures. I sketch on graph paper and scan the pictures to Illustrator then play around until I am happy. I use the Illustrator images as a template. Sometimes this is a quick process, other times I give up and go back weeks later. 

What handmade possession do you most cherish? 
The pieces I made while studying are very important to me. It reminds me of where I started and how far I have come. 
What do you when you are stuck in a creative rut? 
I usually work on something else until things become clear. If that doesn’t work I take a break and go for a walk or watch some TV. 
Where would you like to be in ten years? 
I would love to have my own shop selling my designs and pieces from other designers and makers.

Thank you Charlotte, for such a cool interview.  We adore your pieces, and have already put some on our Christmas wish lists!  If you too, 'need' a pair of Charlotte's ear-rings, we do!, then head on down to the Made in Britain shop.

Made in Britain
Quakers Friars
Cabot Circus
Bristol

Mon - Sat:  10am - 6pm
Sun:  11am - 5pm
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