Tag: craft fair

A Crafty Chai at The Handmade Fair

Just over a week ago, I hotfooted it down to London to explore the first Handmade Fair. I was really interested to see what it was like, but also I wanted to see Kirsty Allsopp & Cath Kidston! I bought my ticket a while ago to take advantage of the Early Bird deal and to make sure I got a seat for the Kirsty/Cath chat.

It was raining when I left home, so I made sure I dressed appropriately, only to be greeted with glorious sunshine in London! It was boiling and so was I! Plus, I’d taken the train and had no idea how far Hampton Court Palace was from Paddington. The answer? It’s far. If I go again next year, I’m totally driving. Anyway, Hampton Court Palace is a great place for this event. It’s got such beautiful grounds that it’s worth making time to take a tour around them while visiting.

There was loads to see, do and buy, without it being overwhelming. When I booked my ticket, there were only a few of the skills classes available but I would’ve liked to go to a few different ones. I attended the Pom Pom making class (and yes, I did have to buy some Pom Pom makers afterwards!) and was supposed to go to the Papercutting class, but my train was late. I had a lovely day and am definitely thinking about going back next year. Lots of the stall holders had offers on and the food offerings were great too! Take a look.

Hampton Court PalaceMasterclassesPom Pom Making      Pom Pom Stitch Story Paper Tassles Chamby & CorWashi Tape Vintage Bloomers Lush Flowers Giant Knitting Spinach and chickpea curry Shopping Rowan TentKirstie AllsoppCath and Kirstie

I’ve been a Cath Kidston fan for many, many years now so it was lovely to finally see and listen to the person who has been so inspirational and whose products I’ve bought and cherished for many years.

Did you go to the Handmade Fair? What did you think? Have you got a pom pom maker?!

Renegade Craft Fair

Shutter

About this time last year, I remember hearing about the Renegade Craft Fair & thought that I would definitely go next year. Well, a year later I (along with my OH) find myself heading towards Brick Lane. Never having been to Brick Lane at all, the whole day was an adventure. The area around Spittalfields, Brick Lane & the Truman Brewery is amazing.

Renegade Craft Fair

Eleven and a HalfAfter cycling across London on the hideous Boris bike (great idea, just not for me) we had breakfast at The Luxe which is part of Spittalfields Market.

The whole area is absolutely beautiful & I couldn’t take enough pictures of the architecture. Take this door for example. We walked down a road beween Commercial Street & Brick Lane and all the houses were very elegent – like something off Upstairs, Downstairs. I especially liked this house, which was in between house number 11 and house number 12. It reminds me of Harry Potter & platform 9 and 3/4!

This wasn’t the only amazing feature we saw on this street. Most of the houses also had wooden shutters – something I’ve always wanted. But not only that, they had these gorgeous little iron men to hold them open. Have you everShutter
seen anything cuter? (Other than a pug, obviously!)Most of the houses had them, and those that didn’t looked sadder because of their loss.

All this set me in great spirits as we headed towards the Renegade Craft Fair.

When we arrived, we decided to walk around the outside first then look at stalls in the middle. It was amazing! There are so many talented crafters, designers and creative people is was very inspiring. To say I was a little overwhelmed is probably an understatement!

The range of stalls was pretty impressive, while owls seem to be everywhere, as does acrylic, every stall had their own style. Fortunately, or unfortunately, depending on how you look at it, most stalls only took cash, and as I didn’t have much (when do I?!) I wasn’t able to go mad. But I did find enough (of my OH’s) money to buy some washi tape, some stamps and a Renegade Craft Fair pencil – I do love a good pencil! I could have bought a lot more & actually wanted to but forgot to go back. It’s a good job I picked up plenty of business cards so I can order online!

RenegadeRenegade

After a good old mooch about, we headed off to enjoy the rest that Brick Lane had to offer & we weren’t disappointed. Such a cool place – I’d definitely go back, with an empty credit card! If you didn’t make it to the Renegade Craft Fair this year, then you could do worse than to put it in your diary for next year. It was a lovely experience and everyone was so lovely. It’s well worth a visit! x

My First Craft Stall

A Crafty Chai Stall

As you know, I’ve been very busy making my craft products for my first ever stall at the Oxford Bake Off. I had a fab day! Oxford Town Hall is a lovely place for this kind of event, especially when it is decorated with bunting from the lovely people at Oxford Bunting Co (one of whom bought one of my iPhone/pod covers! Thanks!)

We arrived in plenty of time to set up, having done a ‘dry run’ at home, making sure everything would fit & look okay. My lovely OH was on hand to help with everything thank A Crafty Chai Stallgoodness! He made me a fantastic poster advertising the stall too.

While we were setting up, lots of people who had entered the bake off competition were nervously bringing in their entries & setting their cakes up. The standard was very high & I was lucky enough to sample quite a lot of the cakes later on in the day!

Once we had everything set up & prices laid out, we had time to get ourselves a drink (giant chai for me, obvs!) & have a good old look around the other stalls. There was quite a variety of stalls mixed in with cake sellers. We were next to Made in Jericho who made some fabulous pies & muffins (yep, sampled those too!) Our first port of call however, was to the very lovely Oxford Cupcakes, who make the best cupcakes & macaroons! Not only did they have these delicious treats for sale, but they also had some cupcake decorating going on. Fun for everyone. Later on in the day, after my first few sales, my OH visited the tea shop. The tea was provided by my favourite tea company, Jeeves and Jericho, who also had a stall at theA crafty chai jewellery bake off.

There was a constant stream of people throughout the day, but when the bake off judgement was due, the place was packed! I managed to sell quite a few pieces and something from every part of my range. It was lovely to hear so many compliments from people as they looked through all my stock. It’s good to know what other people think!

I was pleased with the amount of stock I had on display & I’m pleased that I’ve got enough left to restock my Folksy shop. This means I can work on making some things for me & presents for other people. (Yes I’m already thinking about Christmas!)

I would definitely do another craft stall. It was nice meeting people from Twitter; hearing nice things about my products, and of course, selling things too! It was also a great opportunity to network with other local sellers & to get tips from them.

I did learn a few things too!

  1. Don’t park in Oxford City Centre! It almost wiped out my profit! I didn’t see the tweet from Oxford City Guide about cheaper parking until later. Should’ve moved the car then.
  2. Take a packed lunch. Not taking lunch did mean I got to eat a mushroom & goats cheese pie from Made in Jericho and a whole lot of cake, but it’s not cost effective.

I’m sure some other things will come to me the more I reflect on it. When I do another one, I think it needs to be closer to Christmas. Most of my stock is suitable as a gift so people will only buy it if they’re looking for a present or a treat for themselves. And with money being tight, it’s not the time for treats.

I really hope the Bake Off raised lots of money for the charities it was supporting. I had fun, even though I was exhausted by the end of the day!

My craft stall

I’d like to say a massive thank you to Kate for organising the event & to my OH for helping to run the stall, carry the stock, get my chai etc! Couldn’t have done it without him! x

The Oxford Bake Off

Oxford Bake Off

A few weeks ago, the lovely Kate from Oxford Bake Off tweeted me to ask if I would be interested in taking A Crafty Chai along & having a stall at the event. I ummed & ahhed about it for a while, wondering if I would ever be able to make enough stock but thought that I’d give it a go!

This will be my first ever craft stall and I am so excited and nervous at the same time. I have so many things to think about: displays, bags, a float, will I have enough stock, how much do I need, what if no one buys anything, will I spend all my profit on the cakes that are for sale at the event?…it goes on! But am I so excited and chuffed about being asked.

I am going to be crafting so much over the next few weeks. I’m going to be selling my jewellery, cosies & brooches and maybe headbands as well as cards, including some of the Blom flower cards that I made recently.

Below is a list of the stalls that will be in Oxford Town Hall on 24th March. Look, there’s me! So proud! There’ll be cakes a plenty, lovely local tea company Jeeves & Jericho (my latest tea obsession) and vintage china from The Jolly Vintage Tea Party in the pop-up tea room.

Oxford Bake Off

If you are free & around Oxford on the 24th March, pop along and support some of these excellent causes: Oxfam IWD, Coppa Feel, Cecily’s Fund and Oxford Rape Crisis.