BUST Summer Craftacular 2017

Last weekend the kind people at BUST Craftacular invited me along to their summer shindig at York Hall, Bethnal Green. I’m a huge fan of Craftacular (dubbed ‘London’s coolest craft fair’), which brings together over 70 unique designer-makers, DIY workshops, tea and cake, and fun-loving DJs.

Craftacular UK_Shelley Makes-3678Photo credit: Shelley Makes®. Maker: Kinska 

If you’re looking for quirky handmade gifts, or just presents for yourself, Craftacular is the place to go. Last year I bought a gorgeous white trinket dish with a tiny leaf imprint from madebymememe (a humble #ceramicsmum), and the time before I bought a moon pin-cushion from Oh No Rachio (onr).

Craftacular UK_Shelley Makes-3679Photo credit: Shelley Makes®. Maker: Tea Party at the Zoo

This year, my sister bought some beautiful trinket dishes stamped with gold bees from potter Elizabeth of Limehouse Ceramics (who was also super friendly and chatty). Another favourite stall was Sparkle Child, who made fun sparkly crowns, garlands and wands for children – perfect for play-time.

Craftacular UK_Shelley Makes-3674Photo credit: Shelley Makes®. Maker: Sparkle Child

Craftacular always give a free goody bag to the first 100 people, so if you’re going, it’s worth getting in the queue early. In this year’s goody bag we got an issue of Mollie Makes magazine. Another highlight is the tea and cake from the Drink, Shop & Do cafe, which you can enjoy whilst listening to live DJ’s.

Craftacular UK_Shelley Makes-3701Photo credit: Shelley Makes®. Maker: Drink, Shop & Do cafe

Aside from shopping and eating cake, there are also craft workshops that you can join – some are drop-in and free, and others you have to book in advance, but the selection is always great. This year my sister and I tried an hour-long brush-lettering workshop with Betty Etiquette, which was great fun.

Photo credit: Shelley Makes®. Workshop: Brush-lettering with Betty Etiquette

Using brushes and pots of ink, Rebecca showed us how to control the thickness of the line by exerting different downwards pressure. We started with straight lines of different thickness, and then moved on to letters (thicker on the downstroke), and then finally words. Practice makes perfect!

Craftacular UK_Shelley Makes-3685
Photo credit: Shelley Makes®. Maker: Glazed and Confused Ceramics

Other workshops on the day included making i-cord necklaces with I Make Knots, and watermelon pinata-making with The Make Arcade. A few years back we even did a weaving workshop with Peas & Needles, which remains to this day one of my all-time favourite and most memorable workshops.

Photo credit: Shelley Makes®. Makers: Left – Limehouse Ceramics. Right – Mustard & Mint.

To add to an already great day, there were also two artist-illustrators doing live portraits at Craftacular. I’ve long been a fan of And Smile Studio who does colourful watercolour portraits, and Benjamin Phillips was also there penning portraits in black and white, so you had a choice!

Craftacular UK_Shelley Makes-3689

All in all we had a fantastic day, and I’d definitely recommend it to anyone. As well as the annual summer fair, Craftacular has a Christmas fair around November time, so there are a few dates for your diary!

Follow @craftacularuk for updates, and thanks Craftacular team for the invitation!

Crafty / Creative things to do in London in May

Hi gang! Here’s my round-up of crafty / creative things to do in London this May. Plenty of events and workshops occurring as always. Why not give them a go, and let me know how you get on!


Crafty Fox Market – Saturday 28th and Sunday 29th May 2016 (11am – 5pm) – FREE entry

I’m a big fan of the Crafty Fox Markets which bring together hundreds of designer / makers and artists over two days to showcase their work and sell their wares. This one, guest curated by Charlotte Abrahams (design writer, author and curator) takes us back to the CFM’s original home at the Dogstar in Brixton, and there is a different line-up each day. Not only does this make it the perfect shopping destination for unique handmade jewellery, ceramics, prints, gifts and cards, but you can also tuck in to tea and cake in the Tea’s Knees team room, as well as some drop-in craft workshops.

Workshop – I Make Knots necklace workshop: Using fabric yarn and knitting needles, I Make Knots will show you how to knit a chic and unique necklace that’s sure to brighten up any outfit. Pick two colours, and with our knot know how, you’ll be on your way before you even know it. £7 drop-in.

Workshop – Make a Pajaki (traditional Polish) Chandelier: Join Bobbin and Bow and make a traditional Polish Pajaki Chandelier. Whole day workshop (11-5), £50. Pre-booking required, visit www.bobbinandbow.com to book a slot, places are limited so don’t miss out!

You can read about my first Crafty Fox Market experience here. I made a butterfly tote bag screen-print with Mr. Wingate, and made my own bunting necklace with Lucie Ellen

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