17 Nov 2010

Show Round Up

Having just returned from showing at Lustre in Nottingham this year I thought I'd have a round up of the retail shows. This was my first time doing 3 large shows in one season (and I haven't really got into the retail show market much yet....only Lustre 08 and Origin 09 before). I don't think I'd apply to do the 3 shows again for various reasons...mostly sheer exhaustion, not being able to make enough stock and being away from home for too long.

My first visit to The Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair (GNCCF) was a good one. I was impressed with how much work had gone into the organising of the show and it's promotion (great to see the two main organisers Angela and Ann-Marie on site all the time). The venue for the show seemed a great place (not knowing Manchester at all) it felt vibrant, clean and safe with many fantastic restaurants to visit (oh I do miss good dining out experiences....not that there aren't any in Dumfries and Galloway but mostly catering for people who eat meat and fish). Many visitors to the show, mostly with some sort of craft knowledge and passion. They did experiment with a smaller marqee alongside the bigger one this year which didn't seem to work that well but I didn't feel that we had less visitors just less of a 'buzz' going on.

My best sellers of the 3 shows (and now I look at this picture I can understand why I got a few comments of how well I was doing for a graduate!!). The graduate selection for GNCCF by Kelda Savage was excellent...Catherine Carr a particular favourite of mine making glass vessels from crocheted fibre glass....stunning work.

All in all, a good weekend and glad I applied.

Lustre this year was fantastic....the quality in every sense was great. I love the set up of the show and the fact it's not in a marqee just heightens it's quality. The stands are lovely and I still love my name on a lampshade. I like the fact that it's not hundreds of makers, just 55, so the visitor doesn't get too overwhelmed visually. Lots of nice places to sit and relax, have lunch.

The private view was really buzzing and again lots of visitors (even though this was the first time they had charged to enter....didn't seem to affect the show at all).

It was great to meet some new makers and see some brilliant work but now 'retailed' out. I'm glad I had my new plinths as I think they worked well at each show (all with totally different set-ups)....although I get bored very quickly so would need to change things a bit when showing again (not for a long time i hope).

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