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!

Finalist in the UK Blog Awards 2016

I’m delighted to announce that I am officially an Arts & Culture Finalist in the UK Blog Awards 2016! Thank you so much to everyone who voted for me. The awards received 73,000+ votes in total!

Over the years, I’ve seen the awards recognise some exceptional UK blogging talent; when I wrote my blog post In it to win it, I never imagined that I’d end up as a finalist, and I’m thrilled.

finalist_instagram_Shelley Makes picIntroducing the 2016 Arts and Culture Finalists…

There are ten finalists in the Arts & Culture category, including Aditi’s Pen (personal, fictional, and travel tales), Blazing Minds (film, theatre and event reviews), Film Doctor (a script and film consultancy), HCMOVIEREVIEWS (film reviews), Hello Emma Kay (theatre reviews), Hookedblog (street art blog), Making A Scene (community arts project), SLM Pickings (cultural events and entertainment), Shelley Makes (me!), and Urban Kultur Blog (street art, underground dance music, and urban culture).

If anyone needed any more proof that the blogging community is the best, I found out that I was a finalist via some awesome blogger friends (and previous winners) on Twitter – what sweethearts!

Thank you once again to everyone who voted for me. I’m thrilled to be waving the flag for UK arts and crafts, designer-makers, and creators, and am honoured to be a finalist in this category.

Thank You Facebook

The overall winners will be selected by a panel of judges over the next few weeks, and announced at an awards ceremony on the 29th April. I can’t wait to attend, and meet the other finalists!

Until then, stay tuned for #BlogHour which runs on Tuesdays at 9pm. The next chat (2nd Feb) is co-hosted by Hills Balfour, and we’ll be discussing press trips, social media and periscope!

Renegade Craft Fair London 2014

You might remember back in September, I told you about the upcoming Renegade Craft Fair at London’s Old Truman Brewery, just a stone’s throw from Old Spitalfields Market.

After waiting patiently, I was excited to attend the fair today. Packed full of talented stall holders, the Old Truman Brewery was the perfect venue to showcase an array of festive crafts.

From jewellery to cards, there was the opportunity to buy a range of wares in different styles. My favourite stalls were Mister Peebles, Peggy & Kate, Hello Harriet, and Blank Inside.

Blank Inside Design:

Blank Inside was the first stall I fell in love with – feat. gorgeous wrapping paper, gift tags and cards.


Blank Inside_' - www_blankinsidedesign_co_uk - Copy

Mister Peebles:

Mister Peebles had some truly gorgeous illustrations which he’d adorned on a range of stationery.

Mister Peebles

Peggy & Kate:

I was constantly drawn back to Peggy & Kate’s stall, as they use such a beautiful deep blue pallet.

Peggy & Kate

To conclude, Renegade Craft Fair was a blast. As well as browsing stalls, there was the opportunity to take part in some workshops such as pom pom making and letterpress printing, for a small fee.

I was also pleased to receive a complimentary ‘geometric neon mug cosy’ kit from Mollie Makes. The fair is open tomorrow (Sunday 23rd Nov) for the final day, so do check it out if you can!