Monday, 12 January 2015

Shopping Independent for Christmas 2014

As a small, independent illustrator/printmaker, I'm increasingly aware of where I am spending my hard earned money, and thinking where it will be appreciated.

It means so much to me every time someone buys something from my little shops.  Whether it's a complete bargain for a couple of pounds in the sale, or it's a commissioned, one of a kind piece which is worth a fair amount.  Every little bit counts!  So, if thats you, then thank you.  You give me the means to keep going (money) and the feedback I need to know I'm doing the right thing (spending your money on my illustrations).

In 2014, I tried to get most of my Christmas shopping done at Renegade Craft Fair London in November.  With so many makers, crafters, illustrators and printmakers, I had so much to choose from - I was spoilt for choice!

Promises Promises
- I sat opposite these guys for two whole days!  With a table full of lovely jewellery and sweet little taxidermy mice…I would of regretted not making a purchase. (Will update with a link soon!)

Hello Harriet
- I've followed (/known?) Harriet for a couple of years and love her work - as does my sister!  We'd be cooing over her gorgeous new dresses, but with a somewhat sensible budget for presents, I couldn't quite stretch but took a look anyway.  And I lucked out.  Harriet had also been a busy bee and done some adorable scarves which I knew my sister would adore.  Another tick on the present list.

Colette Moscrop Shop
- Also opposite me (at a diagonal) at Renegade, lovely printed materials - I could spy pouches from my view point.  Getting closer and I picked up a sweet little pin cushion, but with an added extra - you could also buy the material + filling to make your own!  What a lovely idea!  However, I am no expert at the sewing machine so i opted for this little nugget ready made.  Colette uses crushed nut shells to fill her pin cushions as they help keep pins sharp (and shiny too).

Sean Mort Print Shop
- I absolutely love Sean's work.  He seems to always have the right piece for a tricky-to-buy-for man in my life.  This year it was my Dad.  For the man that has everything and doesn't really have anything he wants….I got this great print for a man in a crafty house!  To put things in perspective, when I moved out, my Mum made my room into a 'sewing room'.

Mollie Makes
- Perfect for my Mum.  I know it's a bit of a bigger company, but they do well at advertising smaller independents.  My Mum is always asking for my copies when I have them , so a little 3 month trial subscription of her own was a great idea.

Dear Colleen
- I've bought tea towels from these guys in the past, but just couldn't resist this one for my little sister who has just gone off to University.  Bought a smile to her face when she opened it too!

Lucky Dip (Cat) Club
- Not at Renegade actually, but should of been!  This is one of the most fantastic ideas I've seen come out of 2014.  On a monthly basis, you can buy a single (or sign up for a 3/6 monthly subscription) 'Lucky Dip Box'.  Each month has a different theme and all boxes come with a personalised item.  Following on Instagram and it all looks amazing…I don't think I dropped enough hints though as Father Christmas didn't bring one.  I was at least, fast enough for the Cat Club box, which I gifted to my sister, as it was a collaboration between Lucky Dip Club and Hello Harriet!

(Photo to come soon!)

Old Letterpress Type Drawers as Shelves.
- Found at Portobello Road Market, they have a fantastic stand of letterpress bits and have a great selection of trays made into shelves.  This I thought would be great for my Mum to display all her sewing threads in.  They can all be on display and then she knows exactly what she has amiable to use.

- I found this Little Bag of Happiness when searching for stocking fillers on Not on the High Street, and it was just the sweetest thing!  I got one for my sister, as she's away at University in Leeds now, she's not able to be home every time she wants to be so hopefully this will cheer her up when she needs it!  You can get your own little bag of happiness here.

Do you opt to shop in independent shops when you can?  Share your favourites below!

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