Page 1

SPRING 2017 ukhandmade

Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

1


The UK Handmade Members Gallery Come and join our growing Members Gallery! Founded on our successful online magazine, website and forum, our carefully curated directory brings together the best of UK Handmade and will allow viewers to search through our community of makers, designers and artists by location and creative discipline. An effective and professional platform to promote your talent, choose from either a Standard Directory Listing or Premium Portfolio. To find out more, visit: www.ukhandmade.co.uk/directory-application

Andrew Cunningham

Petals and Peas

Lesley McShea

Jacqueline James

Artepovera

Cathy Settle

2 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Contents... 4

contributors: Spring 2017

6

finds: Editor’s Picks Welcome to our first issue of 2017! We have a brand new year ahead of us, so let’s celebrate with inspirational tales of painterly stitches, colourful prints, botanical jewellery, and bright and bold illustrations. From small business advice to an incredible fund-raising campaign, our Spring edition has something for everyone. We also have our regular selection of fabulous finds, events, recipes and reviews to help you kick off the season in style.

Bebe. x

12

meet: Laura Baxter

26

meet: Chloe Giordano

48

meet: Tracey English

70

meet: Kathy Hutton

44

business: Writing a Press Release

98

business: Setting Up Shop

22

scene: Selvedge Spring Fair

38

scene: Midcentury Modern

58

scene: Country Living Spring Fair

86

scene: MADE London

104

scene: DESIRE Fair

62

live: Makers 4 Refugees

114

live: Rhubarb, Rhubarb

92

review: House of Plants

108

review: Ferment, Pickle, Dry

Editor & Designer/Maker

FRONT COVER: www.chloegiordano.com; BACK COVER: www.pixabay.com

Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

3


SPRING 2017

Contributors.. . Karen Jinks

Mich Yasue

Creative Director & Artist/Designer www.karenjinks.co.uk

Lisa Margreet Payne Craft Educator & Writer www.lisamargreet.com

Finance Director & Maker

Dawn Bevins

Deputy Editor & Designer/Maker www.dawnbevins.co.uk

Pip Wilcox

Ceramicist www.pipwilcoxceramics.com

UK Handmade Magazine, info@ukhandmade.co.uk, www.ukhandmade.co.uk • Copyright © UK Handmade LTD 2017. All rights reserved. Reproduction or redistribution in whole or in parts without written permission is strictly prohibited. The editor’s decision on all printed material is final. Unsolicited work is accepted but does not guarantee inclusion into the final edition. The views expressed by contributors are not necessarily those of UK Handmade or the editor. Creative Director: Karen Jinks info@ukhandmade.co.uk • Editor: Bebe Bradley editor@ukhandmade.co.uk • Design: Jo Askey design@ukhandmade.co.uk Deputy Editor: Dawn Bevins dawn@ukhandmade.co.uk • Advertising: advertising@ukhandmade.co.uk • PR: pr@ukhandmade.co.uk Events: events@ukhandmade.co.uk 4 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


page 70

Meet: Kathy Hutton-

Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

5


Spring finds

:

LESLEY STRICKLAND enquiries at www.lesley-strickland.co.uk

6 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


KIT ANDERSON enquiries at www.fotoceramica.co.uk

Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

7


8 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


SAM PICKARD Chrysanthemum & Fern Wall Panels, (this page) enquiries at www.sampickard.co.uk

KIRAN RAVILIOUS Verbena Linen Cushion, (opposite) enquiries at www.kiranravilious.com

Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

9


HUMBLESTICKS Katya Wall Lamp, enquiries at www.humblesticks.co.uk

10 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


LINESCAPES St Pauls Tea Towel & Mug, enquiries at www.linescapes.co.uk

Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

11


MEET:

Laura Baxter by Bebe Bradley Born and raised in the countryside of the Lincolnshire Wolds, nature has always been central to Laura Baxter’s life and work. From an early age, she made tiny objects as homes for ladybirds, seeds and tiny flowers from the garden. Life in miniature and the delicate features found in plants and nature have always captivated Laura; it makes her smile and remains a boundless source of inspiration for both her work and life. Who is Laura Baxter? I’m a jeweller and metalsmith. I make contemporary silver and gold precious jewellery, silverware, wall pieces and large public art works inspired by botanical forms, birds and the natural world. Tell us about your background; how has your making developed from this? I graduated from the ‘Three Dimensional Design Course’ - wood, metal, ceramics and glass - at 12 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Manchester Metropolitan University just over twenty On my foundation course, I really discovered metal years ago. This course offered such a diverse and started making hollow forms and bowls then. approach to materials, making, form and function, I knew metal made me feel alive inside and this and I absolutely loved it and flourished there. stayed with me at university. It was a second year project, using a fly press with silver, that sparked I always knew I was interested in making small my interest in jewellery and wearable art. I made things and I had a fascination for miniature objects. a silver pea pod pendant using the fly press, and a My father is a maker and artist too; he studied bracelet which rested inside it and looked like a row silversmithing and cabinetmaking in the 1950s and of tiny silver peas. This project was the first time I so, when growing up, his work and studio inspired had made a container as jewellery and the first time me and was a huge source of inspiration. I remember I had worked with a large piece of silver. Jewellery seeing silver and silver dust in his workshop and and metal totally captivated me and I have been being fascinated with it. making objects to wear ever since! Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

13


So what attracted you to metalsmithing and jewellery making? I am fascinated with the malleability of metal, how it

What processes do you engage to create a new piece of work? I make all my work using traditional hand skills

moves and how I can change it with shaping tools, texturing and punches. Contemporary jewellery can be so many things in so many different materials. It’s so diverse and you can express ideas, concepts, push a material in a new direction or mix materials together. This inspired me. It can be sculptural, functional or purely decorative; I see it as objects or sculpture that you can wear so, for me, jewellery must work in tune with the body.

and I mostly pierce, hammer and shape precious metal. I couldn’t live without my piercing saw. Day-to-day, I use shaping, piercing, die-pressing, soldering and forging techniques. Surface texture and finishes are applied using etching, roll-printing, punches and oxidising. Small silverware is hand raised and planished.

Your love for nature is quite clear. How does it provide inspiration and what aspects of this do The graphic style of your jewellery is instantly you most enjoy portraying in your work? recognisable as ‘Laura Baxter’. Tell us about the I’ve always had a connection with nature and inspiration behind your work. been drawn to the countryside. I see inspiration The inspiration behind the graphic style is the hand drawn line. I see my work as drawn lines in nature. I’m trying to capture the essence of a plant to create graphic silhouettes of nature.

all around me; from a twig at the side of the road to drawing plants in a botanical garden. For me, nature and particularly plants are an endless source of creativeness. I draw a lot and I am attracted to all sorts of plants at different times Who or what is influencing you right now? of the year. I live in Clumber Park, a National Trust I am exploring some new work using real winter park which has over 3000 acres of amazing old twigs, and drawing studies as inspiration for English woodland, open heath, formal gardens and wedding rings and brooch ideas. I’m also working a hugely inspirational walled kitchen garden. So I with some amazing rose-cut precious stones watch and draw plants change change and grow and diamonds in combination with botanical throughout the seasons. I hope my work reflects elements. these life-cycles. 14 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

15


What specific tools can you not do without? Yes, my 18th century piercing saw that my father gave me, a centre punch which I have had since university and a small Victorian pin hammer. You run a variety of wonderful workshops from your studio; is teaching integral to your creative life? I have always enjoyed imparting knowledge to others and sharing information. It’s a wonderful thing to be able to show a technique to someone so that they can express and articulate their ideas in metal. Teaching through my workshops allows me to show and share techniques to a small interested audience. Tell us about your current work space? How important is your environment to your work? I have a workshop which is supported by the Harley Foundation. My workshop is on the ducal estate Welbeck in north Nottinghamshire. The workshop is a shared space and I share it with my partner Simon Mount who makes contemporary furniture. My studio space has my handmade, oak jewellery bench on one side and a dedicated teaching space on the other, designed by Simon using his distinctive pop crates for drawers. It’s a hugely inspirational space and Welbeck is also a fascinating place to have a workshop. It’s peaceful, private 16 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


and home to a community of designers, artists and conservation specialists. My studio is only open by appointment but we have the hugely successful open studios at the end of November every year and, of course, I run my workshops from my space here too. What do you enjoy most about what you do, and what is the most frustrating? I love having the freedom to create, but find it hard and frustrating that there are just not enough hours in the day to do all that I want to do! I find juggling a family along with running your own creative practice very hard. It’s a challenging balance! Do you ever experience creative blocks and what do you do to clear them? No, never. I have never had a problem with this, I have ideas waiting in sketchbooks! Who are your favourite artists, designers and makers? There are so many. Contemporary jewellers such as Cynthia Cousens, Daphne Krinos, Grainne Morton, Tanja Ufer and Lina Peterson; I admire these makers hugely. Julie Blyfield, whose work in metal and working processes are so inspirational. Ceramicists Anna Lambert and Susan Disley; my house is full Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

17


18 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


of Susan’s work. Alexander Calder - the stylised, have included large wall pieces for a Simon sculptural and kinetic qualities - wow! The late Conder-designed house in north Devon, the huge great Lucienne Day; I collect her textiles, and her commission ‘Leaf Fall’ at 78 Derngate (the Charles distinctive approach and style of abstract pattern- Rennie Mackintosh house in Northampton) and over making is a constant source of inspiration. Also 60 metal birds for the parterre gardens at the Bowes Emily Sutton, Neil Pinkett and Jason Walker. Museum. So there’s a diverse mix! What does it mean to you, to own a handmade or hand-finished object? Our house is full of beautiful handmade objects by many contemporary makers and artists. We have collected work for over twenty years from shows, exhibitions and galleries. Our house is a celebration of the handmade and the collectable. C.F.A Voysey described the handmade, as “The head, the heart and the hand”, and I think this motto says a

What advice would you give to someone starting out on their own creative path or small business? Life as a creative maker isn’t the easiest path or career choice. You have to be or learn to be a multifaceted individual. It took me a long time to realise the importance of marketing and promoting, more so now than ever what with the power of Instagram and other social media platforms. I try to do in a monthly basis: one third making, one third marketing and the last third on research and

great deal about what it means to own a handmade development. It’s a hard rule to stick by! object. The ‘head’ for creativity, imagination and innovation, the ‘hand’ for skill and craft, and the It takes time to get established. Many makers have ‘heart’ for honesty, originality and for love. to offset and balance their time with another job to support themselves initially, so try and find Occasionally, you undertake commissions. What something that either inspires you or is totally has been the most interesting so far? different from your practice to give you a break. I have made unusual commissioned rings. A The dedication and commitment you need for the particularly notable one had a 300 year old family development of your work is immense. The journey emerald to re-set and design in 18ct gold; a can be full of twists and turns and choices, so really challenging, beautiful commission which made plan and think about what you want to achieve. Be me quite nervous! Other interesting commissions selective and do your research. Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

19


What is the best piece of advice that someone has ever given you? Stick to what you are good at. Take your time and make it well. If you had the opportunity to learn a new creative skill, what would it be? I have secretly always wanted to be a master sommelier - a professional wine expert and, of course, qualified taster - in South Africa and New Zealand. Do you have any exciting projects planned for the year ahead? I am working on several projects this year, including a new diffusion line of work called ‘Flaura and Fauna’, using a range of materials with new technologies. This is a completely new way of working for me and very exciting! There’s also a new collection of precious jewellery, featuring elegant rings, pendants and brooches using natural rose-cut diamonds, olive green tourmalines and sapphires. I want to revisit my large scale work and start making wall pieces again, as I have started to combine vintage botanical papers with my work. I am also currently working on an exciting garden interpretation project for Stoneywell, the Gimson Arts & Crafts house run by The National Trust. 20 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


For more information, visit: www.laurabaxter.co.uk Where can we see and find out more about your work? I will be showing my work at ‘Branching Out’ from the 18th of March - 24th of June, at Leeds’ Craft & Design Centre. There’s new collections for the Bircham Gallery in Holt and in early June, I will be exhibiting at the West Dean Craft Festival with MADE. Lastly, there’s also my best and favourite show Handmade at Kew which fits my work perfectly, and where I’ll be showing all my botanical collections from the 12th – 15th October 2017.

To follow Laura, visit: www.facebook.com/ LauraBaxterContemporaryJewellery www.facebook.com/laurabaxterworkshops www.twitter.com/jewellerlaurab Images courtesy of Ben Boswell (pages 12, 16 and 17), Keith Leighton (pages 13, 20 and 21), and Richard Edwards from R&G Photography (pages 15 and 18). Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

21


SCENE:

SELVEDGE Spring Fair On the 25th of March, Selvedge takes over the Tea Room in Bath’s 18th century Assembly Rooms for its Spring Fair. Curated by the team behind the renowned textile brand, the fair brings together some of the finest UK-based merchants and makers selling their rare fabrics and textile treasures. It’s the perfect place to find that special Mother’s Day gift. This will be Selvedge’s fifth fair in Bath, having previously set up shop at the Octagon and The American Museum. The Assembly Rooms are also home to Bath’s Fashion Museum, which will be showing Lace in Fashion. To coincide with the fair and exhibition, the Selvedge team will run a series of textile-inspired events, including behind-the-scene tours of the Museum and Austen-inspired walks around the city. Visitors to the Spring fair will also have the opportunity to make their own fabric flowers in a series of workshops inspired by Natalie Chanin of Alabama Chanin, the US-based ethical textile and slow fashion movement. 22 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

23


Selvedge is a springboard for makers and artisans, and has a strong community of textile-lovers at its heart. As well as being an internationally-renowned magazine, Selvedge also runs workshops and fairs throughout the year, and has both its own bricks and mortar and online store. Venue: The Tea Room, Bath Assembly Rooms, Bennett St, Bath, BA1 QH Opening times: 11.00 - 17.00 Saturday 25th March Standard Admission: ÂŁ5 on the door and online Accessibility: There is disabled access to the Assembly Rooms For more information and ticket bookings, visit: www.selvedge.org Images courtesy of SELVEDGE

24 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

25


MEET:

Chloe Giordano by Bebe Bradley

26 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Chloe Giordano began to sew in the last year of her illustration degree at Bristol’s University of the West of England. Since graduating in 2011, Chloe has continued to experiment with freehand embroidery, using sewing threads and handdyed fabrics to produce her work. Originally from Buckinghamshire, she now lives and work in Oxford. Her clients have included Penguin, Vintage Books, Liberty London and the British Film Institute. Tell us about your background and training; how has your beautiful and intricate embroidery evolved from this? I studied Illustration at the UWE and mostly worked in pencil and oil paint, but discovered textile art in my final year and fell in love. I tried out a few different things; appliqué, traditional embroidery stitches and making soft sculptures, but eventually landed on needle painting. What drew you to the art of stitch or ‘needle painting’? When I first began to explore textile art, I struggled to combine the new work I was doing, with my old work in pencil and paint. I’ve always been interested in representational art and spent a lot of time observing and drawing from reference, and didn’t want to let that go when I changed mediums. It took a lot of practice and making mistakes but in the end, I managed to develop my current method of needle painting which allows me to blend traditional drawing and painting with embroidery. Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

27


Who or what is influencing you right now? At the moment I’m looking at a lot of nature guides, which I’ve done for years, but also at other media

looking at nature guides and natural history books. I’ve always loved drawing animals and often focus on portraying them in my embroidery, I’m eternally

for inspiration on colour combinations. I’ve had images of the Unicorn Tapestries out for a couple of weeks now, while I dye fabric and choose cooler thread colours that would go well with an orangered background.

fascinated by them and by how to recreate and record them with thread.

What processes do you engage to create a new piece of work? I normally start with an idea about what colours I want, or vaguely what composition I have in mind, and then start sketching out rough ideas. Once I’m more certain of what I want to embroider, I put together a few reference photos and then create a more refined final drawing that I then work from for the embroidery. If the subject matter is something I’m less familiar with, I spend more time on the drawing stage and draw from reference photos a few times before going on to the final drawing. What is your favourite subject matter, and what aspects do you most enjoy portraying in your work? Nearly all of my work is about the natural world. I’m very inspired by the nature around me and love 28 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017

Occasionally, you undertake commissions. What has been the most interesting for you so far? Probably the Charlotte Bronte cover. I’ve done a few book cover commissions and my final term at university was spent setting myself book cover projects as practice. However, none of them ever came close to the level of detail in, what is for me, a large piece of work I knew would be reproduced in several formats. It was challenging and a lot of work, but worth it in the end. Tell us about your current work space. Luckily, my work doesn’t take up much space. I have my desk directly in front of a window as I prefer to work in natural light as much as possible, and then a couple of book cases hold all my spools of thread and any other materials. I live right on the edge of Oxford and can look out at the south Oxfordshire hills while I work. It’s a very relaxing environment. Aside from the spools of thread that like to take over my desk, I keep it all meticulously tidy as I can’t work in disorder.


Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

29


Are there specific tools you cannot do without? I don’t use a great amount of tools and can easily replace most of them - the wooden hoops, sewing thread, vanishing fabric markers - but I do worry about what would happen if I lost my thimble. It’s an old one given to me by a friend when I first started sewing and I’ve never stitched without it. What are the most rewarding and most frustrating aspects of what you do? I love embroidery and am always grateful that I get to do something I enjoy so much for a living. Even if I’m stressed about deadlines or invoices, I always find sewing relaxing. Sometimes the paperwork can get frustrating and I’ve had to accept that I sometimes have to give days over to admin and can’t do anything creative, but I’m lucky to get the amount of time I do have for creative pursuits. Do you ever experience creative blocks and what do you do to clear them? I’m a very strong believer in just showing up and doing the work. I sit down at a certain time each morning and work whether I feel like it or not, and the inspiration usually shows up not long after. Occasionally, I do feel stuck in a rut and will go visit a gallery or museum for inspiration, and then try to do something that really challenges me for my next piece of work. 30 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

31


32 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Who are your favourite artists, designers and makers? It’s hard to narrow it down, but some favourites are Lauri Faggioni, Mister Finch, Katie Scott and Ellen Jewett. Some more traditional artists I admire are John Singer Sargent, William Morris and John James Audubon. What does it mean to you, to own a handmade or hand-finished object? I’m quite selective about the art I buy, as I don’t have a lot of room. When I do invest in a piece, it’s something I really cherish. I think having other handmade works around me as I create is a wonderful way to stay inspired. Do you think that the attitude towards ‘craft’ and ‘handmade’ is changing, or has changed? I came at embroidery from an illustration viewpoint, and always considered it an art and assumed my work would be treated as such. It’s encouraging to see that more and more people are viewing embroidery and other traditional crafts in the same way. I can’t speak for everyone, but most of the people whom I talk to about my work, appreciate and understand how much time and patience it takes to make something handmade and don’t see it as a drawback. Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

33


What advice would you give to someone starting out on their own creative path? I think it’s important to have the right balance of confidence and self-criticism. You need to be able to put your work out there and believe it’s good enough, but also be realistic about your abilities and be willing to put a lot of work in to get to the level you want. What is the best piece of advice that someone has ever given you? Probably to not fall into a ‘production line’ way of working, which is very tempting when you pick up a crafts-related medium. Although I often revisit the same subjects, I don’t enjoy repeating embroideries exactly and have had to be firm with what work I take on, so that I don’t find myself making the same pieces of work again and again. If you had the opportunity to learn a new creative skill, what would it be? I’m always tempted to try felting. I’ve put it off because I tend to be very ‘all or nothing’ when it comes to creative pursuits and I’m not willing, at the moment, to put in the amount of time it would take to really get good at it, which I admit is a silly reason.

34 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

35


36 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


What’s next in the pipeline for Chloe; do you have any new projects planned? I have a big project that I’ll be working on this year, but can’t reveal what it is at the moment. Alongside that, I want to carry on expanding my online shop. I started selling prints and cards of my work at the end of 2016 and really enjoyed it, alongside selling original embroideries on there. I’m trying to make my work accessible to a wider audience. For more information, visit: www.chloegiordano.com www.etsy.com/uk/shop/ChloeGiordano To follow Chloe on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, visit: www.facebook.com/chloegiordanoillustration www.instagram.com/chloegiordano_ embroidery www.twitter.com/ChloeGiordano Images courtesy of Chloe Giordano

Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

37


SCENE:

Midcentury Modern If you don’t just wear vintage but LIVE vintage, you will LOVE this celebrated Interiors show! There’s modern mixed in too, so make a date in your diary to see 60 of Europe’s finest vintage dealers and 25 of Britain’s hottest contemporary designers. With prices from £10 to £10,000, and an array of furniture, vintage and contemporary textiles, travel posters, cool ceramics, glassware, wallpaper, lighting, stunning jewellery, industrial and original artwork, there really is something for everyone. If Eames, Jacobsen, Nelson, Bertoia, Wegner, Charley Harper and the Days inspire you, then this is the place to be. Enjoy it all in a unique Brutalist setting. Make a day of it with The Horniman Museum, Dulwich Picture Gallery and Belair Park and House all at hand. Refreshments, a buggy park and even delivery are available on site. 38 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


WALLPLAYPER

Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

39


40 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

41


SATO HISAO 42 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Designers who will be participating include Brilliant Neon with their retro funky neon, Biggs & Quail with simple, well made contemporary furniture, Oggetto with their latest Chesil furniture range, Waffle Design with a sumptuous array of hand-finished cushions, rugs and throws, Sally and Olivia McGill will be showcasing their beautiful handmade ceramics and Wallplayper’s stylish but fun children’s wallpaper will be making an appearance plus many more. Venues: Dulwich College, Dulwich Common, London, SE21 7LD Opening times: 10.00 - 16.00 Sunday 19th March Standard Admission: £10 on the door £9 online, in advance Online afternoon deal 2 for £10, from 2-4pm Available online HERE until Saturday 18th March For more information, visit: www.modernshows.com Images courtesy of MODERN SHOWS

BRILLIANT NEON

Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

43


BUSINESS:

Writing a Press Release by Bebe Bradley If you want to promote your business, the ability to write a successful press release must be part of your skillset. As Editor of UK Handmade, I receive several press releases every day, so here’s a few tips to help get you started. One of my biggest bugbears is when important information isn’t included. This can range from the name of the person sending it (yes, seriously) or the name of the business, to links and, if it’s an event, dates. So what information should you include? How long should it be and is it going to be of interest to the person to whom you are sending it? Before drafting out your press release, ask yourself what the USP (unique selling point) of your ‘story’ is. Will it be of interest to anybody other than you? So, you may be frazzled with excitement about your new range launch or event but is anybody else going to be? If you’re not sure, then hold back until you have something worth shouting about. 44 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Look at the publications and galleries, etc., where you would like to be featured; research and read the stories that they are typically interested in and carefully consider the angle you are going to take, to make it worth their while. Editors, journalists and galleries receive inordinate amounts of communication every single day so make sure that you grab their attention straight away. According to reports, we apparently spend just 5 seconds reading an email or press release before we decide whether or not read it in full so it obviously matters. Use that subject line to get straight to the point, with ‘press release’ or ‘article submission’. But don’t gild the lily; we can tell at a glance whether or not something is interesting or is going to be useful. If your communication is not clear then, I promise you, we will quickly move on. If your story is about the launch of a new product which is going to be on sale in Liberty, for example, then say exactly that, “New Product Available in Liberty”. The next hurdle is to get your recipient to actually read your email. If the first sentence doesn’t grab the attention, we still may not read any further. It’s imperative that you get the ‘top line’ of your story right at the beginning of the release; this is the first sentence that someone sees.

Every press release needs a top line and it should, in no more than 20 words, summarise your story. When writing your press release, remember to include the ‘W’s’ - who, what, where, why and when - in your top line. Keep it concise; the ideal length for a press release is between 300 and 500 words. That’s three or four paragraphs, with maybe a couple of quotes, and it should fit on an A4 page. If yours is longer than that, you’re wasting your words. Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

45


46 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Quotes can be a great asset, so use them wisely. Don’t just send the press release as an attachment. Any additional information, like addresses, contact An email containing the phrase, “Press release, details, social media and hashtags can always be see attached” and no other details is likely to be included in the ‘notes to editors’ section at the end.

binned straight away. It’s much easier just to send copy as plain, simple text in the body of the email, Increase your chances of success by tailoring your alongside a couple of good quality images and press release to your recipients. Tell us why and clear instructions on how to get in touch with where your story is going to fit. You can include you. It makes it much easier and quicker for us, as images but make sure that they are bright, clear and formatting can cause all sorts of problems and slow high quality. Please don’t clog up our inboxes with down the editorial process. big files, use a sharing application like Dropbox or similar to give us instant access. It means that we Finally, be realistic. I always say that, “If you don’t may be able to use your press release straight away ask, you don’t get!”, or in other words, if nothing is without having to chase you for extra information ventured, nothing is gained. Yes, we are inundated and images. with emails and press releases, and you may have to persevere to get noticed, but it’s a simple skill that can potentially bring you recognition and great reward. For more information and advice, visit: www.ukhandmade.co.uk For information on becoming a member of UK Handmade, visit: www.ukhandmade.co.uk/member-gallery Images courtesy of Pixabay

Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

47


MEET:

Tracey English by Karen Jinks

48 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Illustrator Tracey English’s fun and vibrant collages are made with painted tissue paper, creating colourful, textured images that work as well for illustration as they do for textiles. We take a peek into Tracey’s working day and find out what inspires her fabulous creations. Who is Tracey English? I live in SW London. Our home is a typical Victorian terraced house that I share with my husband, two teenage sons, a cat called Jelly and a dog named Daisie. I am someone who is returning to work after a long break while my sons were growing up. Both my parents were in the arts, so I was destined to always be involved with something creative! How did you get started; have you always been an illustrator? When I first left college, I worked in a ‘Colour Forecasting’ studio. I was also creating images on hand-painted silk, which I use to sell at various arts and crafts markets around London. This eventually led into illustrations for greeting cards, magazines and educational books, etc. Do you have any formal training? I did a two-year art foundation course and then a Higher Diploma in printed textile design. Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

49


50 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


What are your favourite tools of the trade? Scissors, PVA glue, acrylic inks and tissue paper! Please tell us about your workspace. I have two workspaces, one of which is in the conservatory at the back of our house. It has great north light but it’s pretty chilly in the winter. There I do all my snipping and messy stuff. I also inhabit the box room on our first floor where my computer, scanner and other essentials live! Your work is very vibrant and painterly. Can you describe your process for us? If I need to work with particular colours, I first prepare the tissue paper. I paint with acrylic inks onto the tissue, normally with a brush; you have to be careful not to get the paper too wet otherwise it falls apart. I will usually have either some reference images or a sketch to get me started and then I just tend to cut the design out, arrange them on the paper and gradually stick them down. I will then scan it into Photoshop and tidy things up a little, moving a few things around if necessary. What are your favourite things to draw? Probably nature, flowers, birds and animals, but it would be hard to choose between them. Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

51


Do you keep sketchbooks? How important are they to your creative process? I do keep a sketchbook and wish I had time to use it more. I always feel less pressure when using it, you don’t feel bad if you make mistakes and it’s the perfect place to experiment. Who or what inspires you? Scandinavian design for its simplicity and style, William Morris and Josef Frank for their use of pattern and colour. And, of course, nature and the world that surrounds me. Do you work freelance? What kind of commissions do you receive? Yes, I do work on freelance and licensing projects, and it has mainly consisted of greeting cards, gift-wrap and products for the home. I have just started on a book project, which is kind of exciting. What are the most rewarding and most frustrating aspects of what you do? The most rewarding is I can do something that I love every day. The most frustrating thing is that there are not always enough hours in the day to achieve everything that I wish to do. 52 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

53


54 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Do you ever get creative blocks? Luckily, not really. I will often have an online course on the go so that keeps me filled with new ideas and challenges. Who are your favourite designers, artists or makers? Of course I am inspired by so many, but naturally love Matisse and Eric Carle for their unique collages, and Charlie Harper for his stylized graphics. I also love and follow many contemporary artists on social media too. Describe your perfect day. I’ll wake up early to a sunny day and take our dog out for a walk around the park, followed by coffee in my studio, while I get started on some snipping! I’ll work until my sons arrive home from school, then stop for dinner and a chat, followed by a walk with my husband and dog, followed by some work on my computer and possibly tidying up something that I had snipped earlier! What advice would you give to someone looking to start a career in Illustration? Stay focused, don’t give up and keep on learning and developing. Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

55


56 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


What are your goals for the next 5 years? I would really like to produce a few of my own products. In the run-up to the holidays, I created some tea towels to sell, and it would be really great to try and get a collection of things together. If you could learn a new skill, what would it be and why? Probably Adobe Illustrator, as it looks like it could be a pretty useful tool; there are just some things that Photoshop doesn’t offer. Also, how to do a technical repeat - it’s definitely time I learned that! For more information, visit: www.tracey-english.co.uk www.tracey-english.blogspot.com To follow Tracey on instagram and Facebook, visit: www.instagram.com/traceyenglish www.facebook.com/ traceyenglishillustration Images courtesy of Tracey English

Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

57


SCENE:

Country Living Spring Fair This year, the Country Living Spring Fair brings lots of exciting developments, with more features and entertainment, more exhibitors, more talented craftspeople, more hands-on workshops and a brand new venue as it welcomes visitors to Alexandra Palace. Bringing the pages of the magazine to life, the Country Living Spring Fair champions inspirational start-ups. rural entrepreneurs, small businesses and craftspeople. Carefully curated, this delightful event celebrates quality and creativity with furnishings and fabrics, beautiful ceramics, fashion and home accessories and more, all designed to inspire visitors for the warm days of spring and summer ahead. Experts in sewing, floristry, homemaking and crafting offer new ideas, handson sessions and lifestyle tips for the home and garden. There is also a dedicated cookery theatre and a food market brimming with regional producers, as well as bars for refreshments. 58 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

59


Recognising Talent and Encouraging Start-ups The Pop-Up Market is a launch pad for would-be businesses to make their first forage into sales, finding out if their ‘kitchen table’ talent has real public appeal. The stalls are a hand-picked collection of crafters, makers, designers and artists who create their wares in their own homes. Nature and Nurture The opportunity to feed some lambs is perennially popular, and handreared orphans will be waiting to be bottle-fed by enthusiastic visitors and children. With more space at Alexandra Palace, the Spring Garden feature will be bigger and even more beautiful, and the perfect setting for a series of talks and demos on everything from bee keeping to growing your own lettuces. Experts Show You How There are a series of free, daily hands-on workshops in two Craft & Create rooms, where visitors can join in and make something delicious or decorative to take home. For the very first time at the Spring Fair, food lovers can find inspiration in the Country Living Kitchen, where there are demonstrations for cooking, baking and roasting. More tasty morsels can be discovered in the tempting food market. Tea, Champagne and VIP Treatment Take a moment for refreshments with teas and infusions in the Birchall Tea Room or stop for a glass of fizz in the Drunken Duck Champagne Bar to make the day something special. Why not consider the VIP ticket that includes a goody bag, fast-track entry, a cloakroom where you can leave your purchases and an exclusive lounge area? 60 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Venue: Alexandra Palace (Great Hall via Palm Court), Alexandra Palace Way, London, N22 7AY Opening times: 10.00 - 18.00 Thursday 27th April 10.00 - 18.00 Friday 28th April 10.00 - 18.00 Saturday 29th April 10.00 - 16.00 Sunday 30th April Standard admission: Adult advance £14 / £18 on the door Subscriber advance £12.50 / £14 on the door OAP advance £13 / £13 on the door Child (5-16) advance £8 / £8.50 on the door Children under 5 free UK Handmade readers can purchase tickets in advance for the special price of £13.50, using the code SM1. A fee of £1.50 applies to all advance bookings. Buy tickets online HERE or via the ticket line on 0844 581 1385. For more information and further booking options, visit: www.countrylivingfair.com Images courtesy of Country Living

Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

61


LIVE: Makers 4 Refugees by Pip Wilcox I should begin by warning you that 2017 may many other places too. There were days when I felt be a tricky year for your bank balance, but powerless and ineffectual… and profoundly aware for all the right reasons! Let me explain … of my privilege. During these times, making can seem like an insignificant and trivial activity, but it’s Over a weekend in late December, an idea that had what we Makers can do. Our collective ability is to been percolating gently for weeks bubbled right up make objects of use and beauty, and do it with love. to the surface and once it was there, I couldn’t think This project is about exactly that. It’s a way for over of anything else. I didn’t yet know whether it had 40 Makers from around the globe to come together legs because that depended on people other than and give our making extra meaning and purpose, me, but I needn’t have had a second’s doubt. Within by raising funds to support some of those people moments of having articulated it to a small group of currently living through such desperate times. Makers, it started to fly and it’s now pulsating with wonderful energy thanks to some incredible artists The Maker community is like nothing I have ever and craftspeople in the UK, Europe, the US and experienced and it’s an honour to be a part of it. Australia. It is with immense gratitude and pride That very first weekend, when I dreamed up this idea, I drew up a list of over 50 Makers whose work that I introduce you to Makers 4 Refugees. I admire; all of whom I’ve become aware of through Makers 4 Refugees is a simple project founded on a Instagram and some whose work I’m lucky enough desire to make a difference through making. 2016 to live with in my home. I’ve been working through was a year in which the world witnessed more than this list (and adding to it along the way!) and I’m its fair share of horror. The unimaginable happened bowled over by the open-hearted spirit with which again and again; in Syria, in Calais, in Greece and in my invitations to come on board have been met. 62 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

63


PIP WILCOX

How Does Makers 4 Refugees Work? The campaign launched on Monday, 6th of February and will finish mid-December. Each of the Makers involved has been invited to select a week from the 2017 calendar. During their week, each Maker is releasing a piece or collection of work which they will be auctioning or selling, and the entire sales proceeds (less shipping and processing fees) will be donated to Help Refugees through the Makers 4 Refugees fundraising page. Of the original 45 available Maker slots, there are now less than 10 remaining and even as I write this, I can’t quite believe the calibre of work that will be available to buy as part of this fundraising initiative. I want it all in my home! Thanks to the enthusiasm of the Making community, this fundraising project has started expanding in recent weeks to include several workshops run by skilled Makers. We hope it will give a lovely buzz to the people attending these courses - to know that whilst they’re having fun learning something new, they’re also making a difference. We’re currently finalising workshops on weaving, street photography, indoor photography and ceramics, with other exciting events in the pipeline. Details of each of these will be added to my website as and when they are confirmed.

64 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

65


A PETAL UNFOLDS

66 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


LUKE EASTOP

It’s an extraordinary act of generosity from each of the Makers who have said yes to my Makers 4 Refugees invitation. Having witnessed the recent success of similar projects such as Potters for Aleppo in the UK and Clay for Aleppo in Australia, I know that this generosity will be more than matched by the people who will support this endeavour by buying and bidding on the work that’s donated. Without them we’ll fall at the first hurdle! If you’re interested in staying up to date with which wonderful Makers

are on board, and when and where you can buy their work, Instagram is where I’ll excitedly be reporting on our progress. I’ll be sharing images and details of the beautiful work up for grabs, as well as updating my website during the year. We will all be using the #makers4refugees hashtag on Instagram if you want to follow along and if you’d like to check our fundraising progress at any point, the Makers 4 Refugees fundraising page will show a running total throughout the year. Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

67


The Makers The line-up of Makers who have come together from around the world is extraordinary. Concentrating here on those who are joining us from the UK, many of them have stellar careers as established Makers and you may already be familiar with some of them; people like Jono Smart and Luke Eastop (ceramicists), Kirsty Elson (driftwood artist), Jo McAllister (jeweller), Debbie George (painter), Luke Hope of Hope in the Woods (woodworker), Kathy Hutton (printmaker) and Flora Jamieson (stained glass artist). Other Makers have sizeable followings and in some cases (such as ceramicist Tom Kemp) are Instagram superstars but rarely release their work directly to the public. As well as Tom, we are thrilled that people such as Julia Hodgkinson (textile artist), Chloe Burke and Jim Boddington (ceramicists) are joining us. With over 30 leading Makers on board, there are far too many to mention by name here so please do take a look at the full line-up on my website. The campaign commenced on February 6th with an auction of my own work! Thanks to the generosity of the winning bidders, I was able to raise ÂŁ1,112 during my fundraising week before passing the baton to Lesley Bramwell of Essence + Alchemy (maker of small batch botanical scented goods). 68 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017

MADE BY HERONS


This year - as a global community of Makers and appreciators of handcrafted, artisan-made work from all around the world - we’re collectively going to do something very special. We’re going to make a real difference. I can feel it with absolute certainty. And for all the circumstances and people and confluences of chance that are making this possible, I am extraordinarily grateful. For more information, visit: www.pipwilcoxceramics.com To follow Pip on Facebook and Instagram, visit: www.facebook.com/pipwilcoxceramics www.instagram.com/pipwilcoxceramics Images courtesy of Pip Wilcox, A Petal Unfolds, Luke Eastop, Made by Herons, Rob Smalley of Scene Photography and Conrad Lee Photography

Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

69


MEET:

Kathy Hutton by Bebe Bradley

70 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Printmaker Kathy Hutton’s distinctive style features free-hand line work with splashes of colour. Her designs are hand-drawn from life and often show the simple shapes, forms and patterns of ceramics, pebbles and plants. Hand cut or torn, the screen printed stencils create strong, bold silhouettes which acquire their own character when combined with the spontaneity of monoprinting. Kathy doesn’t own “fancy equipment” and although she first thought it might be a disadvantage, it’s now viewed as a blessing, allowing the improvisation and development of a printing style that fits with her own unique handwriting. These are the techniques that Kathy loves to share in her workshops; she teaches a variety of printing methods using everyday materials, with an emphasis on accessibility. Tell us about your background; how has your printmaking evolved from this? As a young child, I went with my family to a printing workshop at the Walker Art Gallery in Liverpool, where we tried our hand at screen printing. I don’t remember much about that day apart from the runny colourful ink, and the magic and sheer wonder of seeing my own image appear beneath the screen. That feeling, seeing the image revealed for the first time, has stayed with me. Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

71


I went on to study a degree in Printed Textiles, (supported by Printmaking) at Dundee’s Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art. After graduating, I won an award at New Designers with Habitat and this led to design placements with some big names in the industry. Back then I was painfully shy and had a complete lack of self-confidence, something which I still suffer from today. Before the onset of the internet and social media, I found it much more difficult or near impossible to sell myself, working as a freelance designer. Despite having such early success, I just never believed I was good enough. I fell into a career of buying and product development, knowing all the time that I really longed to create my own work. So what attracted you to printmaking, and monoprinting in particular? Twelve years ago, we left London and moved to Wiltshire to start a family. I enrolled on an evening class in printmaking at a local college. There, I was able to recap on everything I’d learnt and had the freedom to start creating prints again. I really felt like I’d come home! I love workng with big blocks of colour. Sometimes with printmaking, I feel as if I’m building up a collage but using ink instead of bits of paper and fabric. I love the flat solid areas of colour that you 72 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


can achieve with screen printing, but I like to break this up with the softer black line work I achieve through monoprinting. Your work is distinctive; what inspires you? I was looking for a way to achieve a line drawing effect, without exposing an image onto a screen to print with. I experimented with monoprinting as I’d played around with it a long time ago. I was instantly smitten and loved how unpredictable it was. It’s the way the paper picks up different little marks each time you print, giving each print its own unique character. It’s not a difficult technique but it’s one that takes practice and patience. To begin with, I would ruin a lot of prints, completely obliterating layers of the screen printed colour I’d painstakingly built up. Either the ink would be too thick or I’d press too hard on the paper. Through trial and error, I’ve now developed an understanding for the process that I’m happy with. It gives me the unpredictable marks that I crave and the intense but soft, edged black line, whilst retaining a clean finish outside the printed area. Having said that, not every print turns out as you expect or hope for. Various factors affect how the ink reacts; temperature, air moisture, ink viscosity, the weight of the paper, etc. So I’m back to that magical experience again … living on the edge, not knowing how each print will turn out, literally holding my breath each and every time I lift a print away from the inked-up glass! Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

73


I’ve also started to experiment and use other printing techniques in my work, those that I explore during my workshops, such as lino printing and botanical monoprinting. Who or what is influencing your creativity right now? My work has always had a simplicity of shape and line drawings have played an important part. This perhaps recalls one of my earliest influences, the simple minimal illustrations of Dick Bruna. I have strong memories of a Miffy paper frieze in my reception classroom. It’s a style I’ve built on and my work changes as I grow in my technical ability, but I hope that my ‘handwriting’ is still recognisably mine. Over the past couple of years, I’ve fallen in love with nature writing. I’ve found that the descriptive and emotive work of authors like Roger Deakin, Nan Shepherd and John LewisStempel has changed my way of thinking. It’s opened my eyes to the minute details and beauty of the ordinary that’s found on my doorstep. I’ve also discovered inspiration through Instagram’s community of makers and artists. I’ve only been using it for about a year but have already felt so supported by like-minded creatives from a range of diciplines. Favourites include Julia Hodgson whose poetic nature observations are captured in her esquisite weavings, Rebecca Desnos who has an infectious love of natural dyes, and is so free and generous with sharing her processes, and Helen Redfern, another keen nature observer with a beautiful writing style that transports you to her fields. 74 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

75


What processes do you engage to create a new piece of work? A new piece of work always starts with a sketch; I like to draw directly from nature, rather than from photographs or books. This has an added benefit, meaning that I’m more likely to be drawing something currently in season. I might scribble some thoughts down with pencil, although a tutor once told me that I “tickled” the page! He meant that I didn’t commit, just lightly drawing lots and lots of lines but with no 76 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017

conviction. However, I’ve discovered that if I draw directly into the ink in the form of a monoprint, then I have to be committed to the lines I use and also use the lines sparingly. This often helps to clarify ideas that are forming, and I can see the direction I want to take for that new piece or series. Incorporating different hand-printing techniques into my work, I’ve been slowly building up layers with as much love for the process, as I have for the plants and forms that inspire them.


What is your favourite subject matter? I have a passion for ceramics, pebbles and plants, especially any plants growing locally. I’ve a burgeoning desire to know more about the botanicals I find each day. The more I notice changes in nature, observing the seasons, the more I see the little things. The patterns in leaves and stems, the formation of buds, perhaps just one leaf left on a branch or the twist of bark. I love the little imperfections in all the tiny treasures that I collect. I collect little fallen treasures, broken pieces of china and pebbles. You say that you don’t own “fancy equipment”. Are there specific tools that you cannot do without? My studio space and equipment has evolved as I’ve gone along but I still don’t own any proper printing presses. I love to be able to show anyone who comes to my studio, that you can do so much with printmaking on a shoestring. I have a big old table, that we found in the garden shed, topped with a glass sheet so that I can roll out large areas of ink for my monoprints. My dad made me a simple light box that I really couldn’t do without. Before this I was using a window if I needed to trace anything, which isn’t ideal if you’re mainly working at night or during the winter! I do get through a lot of HB pencils; they must be sharp so I’m constantly sharpening them and then find they’re all 1-inch long! Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

77


You run workshops from your studio; do you find teaching printmaking is an important addition to your creative life?

it inspirational. You’ll often catch me daydreaming and watching the birds or rabbits that live in the garden. It’s a brilliant space to run my workshops

Going back to the magical first time that I lifted the screen and saw my own image printed, is something I relive every single time I make a print. Being able to share that magic with other people is something I relish as a tutor. I’m always closely watching the faces of my students as they lift up the screen or pull back the paper; the sheer delight and wonder is clear to see and its priceless. Most of my workshops are for beginners and I love that everyone is starting from the same point. Quite often, at the start of a workshop, people tell me that they can’t draw for toffee or that they don’t have a creative bone in their body. I guide them through the process but everyone has their own style and way of working, and there’s no right or wrong way. You can repeat the same process time after time but the thing about printmaking? It’s always a little unpredictable and you can learn from it. I always come away with fresh ideas.

from, but normally a complete mess as I tend to work on so many projects at once! It has access to the house so my children can pop in, but as it’s not in the main body of the house, they’re not there all the time. My children are still young, so this is the perfect situation; if the studio was even just down the garden, I wouldn’t be in it so much. It’s perfect for when I’m running workshops or an open studio, as people can visit without coming into our family space. What are the most rewarding and most frustrating aspects of what you do?

Monoprinting my line work is a process that makes me feel a deep calm. I feel a connection, particularly when I’m sketching directly from nature into the ink. I have to focus on the shapes and lines in front of me and any other thoughts, worries or stresses I may be feeling, disappear. I have to concentrate hard to use only the minimal of lines; drawing directly into the Tell us about your current work space? I’m incredibly lucky to have a studio space at sticky ink leaves no room for error and no second home. It’s fairly large with great natural light, there chances. If I make a mistake then the print might are windows on three sides with views into my be ruined, although it’s the hand-drawn marks and garden and the fields beyond. I really notice the quirkiness that gives my work its unique character, seasons’ changes when I’m in my studio and find my style, my signature. 78 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

79


Because of the hand-drawn nature of each piece, I can’t mass produce my prints. In the past, this has been frustrating and I used to think that it could be more profitable if I produced more work in less time and sold my work more cheaply, more commercially. But that’s a route I don’t want to take, as I’ve come to realise it’s the process I love. I’d like to think that the time I have spent, adding each unique mark to the print, will come across. Do you ever experience creative blocks and what do you do to clear them? Occasionally I suffer from doubts about the direction my work is taking or I hit a wall and can’t think straight about what to do next. I know I’m not alone in this, I think most artists suffer from it. This usually happens following an extended period of intense work or a big project, or perhaps I haven’t been able to get into the studio and print for a while, like the holidays when I’m looking after my girls each day. Afterwards, I just slump. It can seem alien and daunting at first, to be back in the studio. I can quite quickly begin to doubt my ability, my purpose and this can be a downward spiral. Getting out into nature helps define ideas; I notice colours and little details, and things come together again as fears subside. Just drawing or sketching - picking up a pen and making a few lines - is a start and it can be all that it takes. There’s no expectation of producing greatness, it’s just finding my feet again and making some marks that begin to feel like me. 80 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Who are your favourite artists, designers and makers? I’m a fan of simplicity of line and, as I’ve mentioned before, the illustrator Dick Bruna has been a huge influence. In fact, I have a large collection of children’s illustrated books because I love the bold colours and strong outlines that are often used. I also love Andy Warhol’s pen and ink drawings from the 50s, his distinctive use of black line has such a lovely playfulness. Growing up, we had some Midwinter pottery at home which I always loved. I’m especially drawn to designs created by Jessie Tait and Terrance Conran, and the textile designs of Lucienne Day; the simplified motifs, the use of repeating lines and scratchy marks. I have a love for the open, negative space and simple form found in William Scott’s work and recently I discovered the paintings of Rachel Nicholson. Her pared-down still lifes featuring favourite ceramic pieces are beautiful. What does it mean to you, to own a handmade or hand-finished object? Where an artist or maker has created a piece by hand, you know that you’re getting something made out of love, with immense pride and care for the materials, the process and the finished item. They have imagined that piece, held it in their hand, moulded it and literally breathed life into it. It may be a vase, a painting or a piece of jewellery but it has become so much more than just an attractive finished item … it’s a unique piece of art. Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

81


82 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


I have a mug made by a potter I know. I drink out as too often I’ve let my lack of confidence get the of it every evening and I love the thickness of the better of me. It’s all too easy to look at someone who clay, the delicate pattern in the glaze and the way seems to be at the top of their game and compare its slightly irregular shape fits my hand. Every time I yourself, thinking, “I’ll never be able to do that!” The use it, I think of her and it gives me great pleasure. I truth is, you don’t know the path that’s led them to don’t take that for granted. where they are and you don’t need to. Be inspired by others’ successes but don’t be beaten down by You have worked in the industry since leaving art them, is something I remind myself of all the time. college. What advice would you give to someone Follow your own path, and take pride and pleasure starting out on their own creative path? in each little success. Find a community and become involved, be it on your doorstep or on the internet. There’s amazing If you had the opportunity to learn a new creative support out there which is crucial if you mainly work skill, what would it be? on your own. I’ve been blown away by the support Running around after my girls and fitting my work of other artists and makers whom I’ve come to know in, doesn’t leave much time for me to be creative and build relationships with, through social media. myself. However, that’s something I’m going to try On Instagram in particular, the positive comments to change this year. For a Christmas present, I was and help I’ve received from virtual strangers has boosted my confidence in my work tremendously. If someone tells you that your work has something unique or special about it, or that it moves them in some way, hold onto that and let that drive you. Believe in yourself. What is the best piece of advice that someone has ever given you? There’s a quote by Jon Acuff I’ve heard quite a few times recently, “Don’t compare your own middle to someone else’s beginning.” I wish I’d heard it sooner

given a place with Lucy Davidson (Peas and Needles) on one of her acclaimed weaving workshops. I’m really looking forward to it. I did attempt very basic weaving with my daughter last year, for her school homework, but I’d like to learn it properly so that I can wind down of an evening with some creative therapy. I am also dabbling with the thought of learning some pottery skills. Perhaps it’s time some of my printed marks left the page and moved onto a bowl. Who knows? Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

83


What’s next for Kathy Hutton; do you have any new projects you’re working on? What are your plans for the future? I’ve recently produced some pieces of work which will be sold and auctioned in aid of Makers 4 Refugees. I was thrilled to be asked to take part in the project by Pip Wilcox and jumped at the chance. My work will be for sale at the beginning of March. I have to be realistic about long term goals as one of my girls will be at home with me for the next few years. However, with my love of nature influencing my work, it’s also changing my way of living. It’s teaching me to slow down, to focus on the little things and take small steps that work with the time I have. I want to be able to make a living doing what I love. I’m a long way off that yet but I want to continue to create my own style, one that will allow me to keep growing and changing but which still has my signature. I love it that my work is collected by people who recognise it as mine and that they love it as much as I love making it. It’s something I have to keep pinching myself about. Where can we find out more about your work? You can find my prints in my Etsy shop and further information on my website. Later this year, I will be opening my studio for 9 days, from the 30th of September till the 8th of October, as part of my local Peacock Arts Trail. 84 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


For more information, visit: www.kathyhutton.com To follow Kathy on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest, visit: www.facebook.com/kathyhuttonprints www.instagram.com/kathyhuttonprints www.twitter.com/hutton1kathy www.uk.pinterest.com/kathyhutton1 Images courtesy of Kathy Hutton

Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

85


SCENE:

86 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


MADE LONDON - Canary Wharf is an exciting, new and free contemporary design and craft event, which will bring together around 120 of the best makers in the country.

PRILLY LEWIS

Part of the Canary Wharf Group’s diverse arts and events programme, MADE LONDON - Canary Wharf offers members of the public the chance to meet the makers, discuss their inspiration, design processes and future projects, and the opportunity to purchase work directly from the maker. The event will take place over two weeks; from the 17th to the 20th of March and from the 22nd to the 25th of March. Each show will present approximately 60 makers and each week will host a completely different selection, including original ceramics, textiles, glass, wood, furniture, fashion, jewellery, homewares and more. Canary Wharf has one of the United Kingdom’s largest collections of public art, with over 65 pieces of public artwork spread across the Estate. Art maps, detailing the fascinating self-guided walk, will be available both in the pavilion and in the lobby of One Canada Square. With over 300 shops, bars, cafés and restaurants, there’s plenty of choice for those visiting Made London at Canary Wharf; refreshments will also be allowed into the venue. Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

87


ALINE JOHNSON 88 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

89


KIRAN RAVILIOUS 90 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Venue: 2017 Canada Square Park, Canary Wharf, London, E14 5AB Opening times: SHOW No.1 11.30 – 19.00 Friday 17th March 11.30 – 18.00 Saturday 18th March 11.30 – 18.00 Sunday 19th March 11.30 – 19.00 Monday 20th March SHOW No.2 11.30 – 19.00 Wednesday 22nd March 11.30 – 19.00 Thursday 23rd March 11.30 – 19.00 Friday 24th March 11.30 – 18.00 Saturday 25th March Standard admission: FREE For more information, visit: www.madelondon-canarywharf.com www.tuttonandyoung.co.uk For a full list of exhibitors, visit: www.madelondon-canarywharf.com/artists Images courtesy of MADE London

CHRIS BOLAND Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

91


REVIEW:

House of Plants by Dawn Bevins It’s like something from a fantasy story. ‘House of Plants’, the company owned by Caro Langton and Rose Ray, began life as an actual house owned by Caro’s grandmother, a place where Caro spent some time growing up. When her grandmother passed away, Caro not only inherited the building but also the ancient collection of cacti, succulents and air plants that resided within it. Through trial, error and plenty of research, Caro and Rose have not only learned how to care for the plants but have also added to the collection. Having met each other on a fashion design course, both Caro and Rose possess an instinct and eye for visual aesthetics. Naturally, this has led to not only growing plants but displaying them in interesting and creative ways. After starting out with a small market stall to see if they could sell the plants, they found themselves in demand for workshops, shop-styling and weddings. 92 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

93


94 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


People came to them, wanting to know how to

book, are listed and there is also a useful list of

incorporate plants into their homes and lives. This book is for all those people who want to know the same thing; how to successfully grow, display and make plants part of their home. It takes the reader through the basic principles of caring for cacti, succulents and air plants, as well as introducing you to a number of specific easy-to-care-for plants.

the terms you will come across. There is advice on what to look out for and consider when purchasing a plant, and information on Watering, Pruning and Care and Common Ailments for each of the plant types covered by the book.

The chapter Nurturing Your Plants guides you through supplies and repotting recipes for homemade After introducing Caro and Rose and their compost and fertiliser, whilst Sharing Your Plants, philosophy, the first chapter, Knowing Your Plants, explains various propagation techniques that you establishes those that are most suitable for growing might like to try, such as leaf cutting, stem cutting indoors. The plants, which you’ll meet later in the and division. Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

95


The chapter entitled House of Plants takes up a significant chunk of the book, walking you through the various areas that you might have in your home and identifying the plants that would happily live in each environment. For that Vacant Corner, you could try a ‘Rubber Plant’, or if you have a free Bright Spot, you could choose a ‘Mexican Firecracker’. Slipped in amongst these chapters are You Create projects, a few small things to craft and make that will help you display your plants, such as a himmeli or concrete pots. House of Plants is a book that hands out essential knowledge generously. It’s an absolute treasure for beginners but still a pleasure for the most energised houseplant enthusiast. As well as being clearly written and presented, it’s also one of the most beautiful books I’ve been lucky enough to review. The design by Luke Fenech is clean, modern and radiates class, the luscious photography by Erika Raxworthy tumbles in abundance from the pages, and bright quirky illustrations by Alicia Galer are scattered throughout. What is clear from this book is how much Caro and Rose love these plants, how connected they are to them and how much they want others to feel connected to them too. Their passion reaches out from the pages, like a trailing ‘Golden Pothos’, and draws you in, making you feel that connection and passion. 96 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


I love this book! The wisdom, the look, the feel, the illustrated endpapers … it has it all. It’s perfect and I will use it, learn from it and cherish it. House of Plants by Caro Langton & Rose Ray is published by Frances Lincoln at £20, and is available from all good bookshops. Images courtesy of Frances Lincoln Photography © Erika Raxworthy ISBN-10: 0711238375 ISBN-13: 978-0711238374

Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

97


BUSINESS:

Setting Up Shop by Mich Yasue In October 2016, Petals & Peas opened in Penryn, Cornwall. Owner and UK Handmade Directory member, Ruth Hitchcock tells us about the challenges and rewards of setting up a bricks-and-mortar shop. Petals & Peas was an idea borne out of my absolute love of flowers. I love growing beautiful things and my hobby suddenly turned into a little venture a couple of years ago, when I was growing unusual and new plants from seed and selling them at markets and fairs in Cornwall. It was my intention to only do this in the summer and then concentrate on other things during the winter. However, someone asked me if I would come along to a Christmas fair they were running and suggested I make wreaths and Christmas decorations for the event. From this, Petals & Peas (as it is now) evolved and I began designing and making wreaths and garlands in my spare time, using faux flowers and greenery. It seemed to go down well and I really loved doing it. 98 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


I sought out the best and most lifelike faux flowers that I could find; nothing gives me greater pleasure than people, completely taken with the notion that they are real, sniffing the flowers or asking me how long they will last! Things have come a long way since those awful plastic and gaudy offerings of the past. The contemporary faux flower industry is pretty amazing and quite rightly, the whole notion is becoming more popular. By this point, most of my sales had been online or at local fairs. Quite by chance I had the opportunity

to take on a small ‘shop’ on an industrial estate in a local town. My husband had rented a unit on the estate, to store an old vintage boat which he intended to restore. At the front of this unit was the shop which had previously been the showcase for a very successful flip-flop retailer. My husband kept telling me that I should put my wreaths in the shop but I was reluctant to begin with and thought it would never work precisely because it was a small industrial estate. I just didn’t believe it would draw people in. However, when I (reluctantly) saw the unit, I was sold on it. Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

99


My imagination ran away with me and I was decorating it and fitting it out in my head before I had even got back into the car! In addition, I realised that there was a very popular ‘Factory Sale’ shop for a well-known Cornish clothing brand right next door to me. The traffic it was attracting made the whole idea viable. I figured that the people who shopped there would be interested in my products … so it was full steam ahead. The unit is not the most attractive from outside. I am still battling with finding a way to make it exciting and gorgeous so that people are drawn in, but the inside was a lot easier. I had a very tight budget for fitting the shop, bearing in mind that this was not a planned move and I had, to date, only been at craft shows and fairs. As much as I would have liked to have ploughed a fortune into the shop fit, I had to be careful. So we made a trip to Ikea, bought a set of utilitarian wooden shelves and then spent a lot of time painting them, alongside old bookshelves from home and the other various bits and pieces that we cobbled together. An old scaffold board and a couple of reclaimed porch roof supports, from my fatherin-law, were turned into a mantelpiece to display my garlands. Anything else bought to display the products is in the shop on the basis that, if it’s not screwed to the wall, it’s for sale! 100 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


It took a lot longer to open than I had hoped, largely due to commitments with my mother who suffers from a rare and serious form of Parkinson’s Disease. Regular trips to help out with her care, as well as continuing to maintain another company that I have run for the last eight years (providing marketing and business development support to commercial offshore marine companies, meant a delay of several months in getting the shop ready to open. Finally, on the 27th of October 2016, Petals & Peas flung open its doors! I had initially planned to open the shop only three days a week, which would allow me to juggle all the other commitments in my life, as well as have time in the workshop to make wreaths and arrangements. However, I soon realised that the shop needed to be open more than that, for people to take me seriously. With the run up to Christmas, I needed to exploit every opportunity to become known, so I opened five days a week for five hours a day. It’s been hit and miss, largely because I’m not on a high street and I am, at the moment, relying on the visitors to the factory shop next door, popping in to have a nose. I am working hard at the social media side and I put a lot of effort into Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, to try and excite people about the products in the shop. Besides my handmade floral décor, I have also brought in other select homeware items, including local Cornish crafts such as bespoke cushions, furniture and candles, and a selection of gorgeous things that I source from suppliers around the country. Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

101


102 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


The biggest thrill for me was the first customer who I don’t intend for Petals & Peas to become a huge drove down JUST to see me, and not to visit another commercial conglomerate. It’s a small shop selling company on the estate. In fact, it was so exciting, I beautiful things, some of which I make and all of told all my family and then had a little weep in the kitchen out the back! The business is still in its very early days but so far, I am quietly pleased with its progress. There have been days when no one came in and others when it was non-stop for several hours and I didn’t have a moment to think.

which I am proud. My ideas are still developing and I’m starting to refine the direction of the shop, with a clearer focus on where I am going to take it in 2017. I am going to concentrate on what I know and love, which is flowers. I have managed to secure some really exciting agreements to stock some stunning faux flowers, which will compliment my work in It’s not easy and it’s certainly not quick to get the creating gorgeous everlasting wreaths, wedding shop established. It will take time to build a flowers and home décor. I am really looking forward reputation but that’s what I am all about. I believe to this New Year and can’t wait to meet all my strongly that the shop has to reflect me and I can customers, both new and old. only sell something with which I am completely happy. I will not start to offer something just to Petals & Peas is at Unit 16, Kernick Business Park, please everyone. I get a lot of comments about Annear Road, Penryn, Cornwall, TR10 9EW. how I should offer such and such a product, but I can’t please everyone so I have to be true to myself and accept that my client base will not be allencompassing. Not everyone will understand me and appreciate what I do, and I cannot get upset by the people who walk in, sniff at my work and walk out! I am becoming thicker skinned as time goes on; I know the people who ‘get it’. The people who come in and gasp, ‘ooh-ing’ and ‘ahh-ing’ at the beautiful things in Petals & Peas, are the ones I am looking for. They give me immense pleasure and pride, and that’s why I do it!

For more information on the maker featured, visit: www.petalsandpeas.co.uk For information on joining becoming a UK Handmade member visit: www.ukhandmade.co.uk/member-gallery Images courtesy of Petals & Peas

Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

103


SCENE:

DESIRE at Chelsea Old Town Hall From the 3rd to the 5th of March, Chelsea Old Town Hall is once again the venue for the renowned Desire Fair. This stunning mixed media, jewellery and silversmithing event is not to be missed! Visitors will be able to purchase directly from contemporary designers and makers, selected from amongst the very best in the UK.

TANJA UFER 104 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017

Desire offers visitors a choice from approximately 90 individual jewellers and silversmiths selected for their superb and innovative craftsmanship, and who all have a genuine passion for the work they create. Visitors can view and purchase from an exciting range by both emerging British talent and more established designer/makers. Exhibitors include jewellers working in metals ranging from gold, silver and platinum to palladium, aluminium and bronze, and incorporating items ranging from felt, gemstones and glass, to buttons, silk threads and enamel in their work.


JEN RICKETTS Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

105


EMMA FARQHARSON Anyone celebrating a special occasion, such as a birthday or anniversary, may also wish to discuss or commission a bespoke piece of jewellery or silverware from one of the many designers and makers. Visitors in the past have commissioned engagement or wedding rings at this event and, by working with the designer/maker, have been able to create a unique and individual design that means so much more to the recipient. Many of the makers 106 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017

will also be happy to discuss the remodelling of old jewellery to give it a more contemporary feel. Amongst the silversmiths exhibiting at this year’s event are Jen Ricketts, who creates intricate handpierced functional silverware of city skylines, and Brett Payne with his range of hand-forged candlesticks and tableware.


Venue: Old Town Hall, King’s Road, London, SW3 5EE Opening times: 10.00 - 18.00 Friday 3rd March 10.00 - 17.00 Saturday 4th March 10.00- 17.00 Sunday 5th March Standard Admission: £6 For more information, visit: www.desirefair.com For full designer/maker list, visit: www.desirefair.com/exhibitors Images courtesy of CRAFT in FOCUS

GALLARDO & BLAINE Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

107


REVIEW:

Ferment, Pickle, Dry by Lisa Margreet Payne I’m a bit of a fermented food convert and am always up for exploring new (ancient) techniques and ways of food preservation, so Ferment, Pickle, Dry was a bit of a no-brainer, ‘gonna-love-thisbook’ choice for me. I remember the first time I made sauerkraut; I was terrified. I had read so many horror stories online about bacteria and food poisoning, and I totally believed all the hype. I let my husband do the taste testing of the first batch and when he didn’t get sick, I tried it myself! The first time I tried to make kombucha, I acquired a scoby from a friend and, following instructions online, made my first batch. However, after the required seven days were up, I lost my nerve and didn’t even try my kombucha. The look of the scoby freaked me out and those darn online bacterial horror stories … I composted the scoby and tried not to think too much about my failure. 108 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


In case you are wondering, ‘scoby’ stands for Symbiotic Culture of Bacteria and Yeast. Although you can buy these weird jellyfish-like structures, you can often get one from a friend as the ‘mother’ scoby will frequently produce a ‘baby’ during the brewing process.

amazing sour tang that seems to be a distinctly adult flavour; I believe foodies call it ‘Umami’. Nowadays, I’ve become quite proficient at making sauerkraut, even going as far as investing in a special anaerobic fermenting jar. Recently, I’ve returned to my kombucha experiments, although I must admit that I was swayed by my sister serving

I carried on experimenting with sauerkraut. When I kombucha cocktails on Christmas Day. The ability eventually tasted the first batch, I was blown away to turn a super healthy drink into a cocktail? Sign and thankfully not by food poisoning. It had that me up! Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

109


What sets Ferment, Pickle, Dry apart from other books of its kind, is that it doesn’t just feature recipes which produce multiple jars of pickles and condiments, and then suggests that you give them away as gifts to friends. The recipes are proportioned so that you can make just enough for yourself, and then it provides recipes for your new fermented, pickled or dried produce. My review copy of this book is littered with post-it note markers for the recipes that I want to try. Contrary to what you might think, they don’t all take days, weeks or months of pickling or fermenting. Some ferments are ready in as little as twenty-four hours and some pickles in as few as two. As I write this, I’ve got my Water Kefir brewing as a change to my usual kombucha, and I’m looking forward to turning some of it into a batch of Fermented Hummus. The Cabbage and Apple Sauerkraut is sitting in its salty scrub, sweating out its briny bathwater and getting ready to start fermenting. There’s also recipes for other fermented classics, such as how to create your own Sourdough Bread Starter, and recipes for Sourdough Tortillas and Pitta Breads alongside the more usual Sourdough Bread Loaves. 110 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

111


Also included are lots of innovative pickle recipes which stray far from the ubiquitous green tomato chutney. After details on pickling a variety of vegetables such as gherkins, celery and nasturtium seeds, there is a recipe for Roasted Vegetable and Buckwheat Salad which I have earmarked to try. Sadly, I won’t be able to make the Nasturtium Capers until much later this year, as nasturtium plants don’t give up their seeds until early autumn. I was intrigued by the miso paste pickles and so I’m preparing Misozuke Carrots and Cauliflower for lunch to have with Lightly Pickled Baby Spinach and soba noodles; these Japanese pickles are made using a reusable pickling bed called a miso-doko. This book also contains recipes for sweet pickles, such as traditional Dried Fruits Pickled in Brandy, which are then turned into a delicious ingredient for Coffee Meringue Cake. In this instance though, you’ll need to exhibit some patience as the pickling process for the fruit takes three months. Of all my previous preservation experiments, I had the most failure with drying food. A couple of years ago, I bought a dehydrator with the grand notion that I’d dehydrate surplus fruit and veg from my market garden. I had a couple of failed attempts where the veg went mouldy rather than drying out, and other attempts where I successfully dehydrated multiple trays of beetroot, but didn’t know what to do with them.They looked pretty in the storage jars, but they stayed there unused for ages, primarily because they tasted very bland. Ferment, Pickle, 112 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


Dry has a suggestion for this, noting that root vegetables are great for drying but that they need a bit of spice to give them some flavour. The recipes in the book are made using a basic dehydrator, but they could also be made in an oven. I eventually gave my dehydrator away after spending hours one afternoon picking raspberries, four days drying them in the dehydrator, and then having such a small yield that I ate the whole lot in ten minutes! However, this book has lots of interesting ideas for dried produce, from making instant vegetable stock powder, to crackers and crisps. I really enjoyed this book and highly recommend it; its practical nature with regards to recipe yields, and the provision of recipes for fermented, pickled and dried goods, is innovative and the design is gorgeous with excellent photography. Ferment, Pickle, Dry: Ancient Methods, Modern Meals by Simon Poffley and Gaba Smolinska-Poffley, is published by Frances Lincoln at ÂŁ20 and is available from all good bookshops. Images courtesy of Frances Lincoln Photography by Kim Lightbody ISBN-10: 0711237786 ISBN-13: 978-0711237780

Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

113


Rhubarb, Rhubarb by Bebe Bradley

For me, rhubarb signifies the onset of spring. Those flashes of pale pink stems and green, leafy nubs poking through the soil bring me joy. Forget rhubarb and custard boiled sweets - a major treat for me when I was a kid, was a rhubarb stalk and a bag of sugar to dip it in; I loved the lip-puckering sourness offset by sandy sweetness.

114 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


STEWED RHUBARB The most common way to cook rhubarb is by stewing it. Most of us at some point in our life will have (like it or not) experienced a rhubarb crumble. Top the fruity stew with a crunchy, oaty rubble if you must but this easy recipe is versatile enough for you to serve it with ice cream, cake, yoghurt, porridge or anything else you fancy. Serves 4. Ingredients 750g rhubarb, trimmed and chopped into chunks 1 large orange, juice and zest 100g caster sugar 1 tablespoon caster sugar 2 pieces of stem ginger, finely chopped (optional) METHOD 1. Place the rhubarb in a medium-sized saucepan with the orange juice and zest, 100g of caster sugar, 2 tablespoons of water and the ginger (if using). 2. Bring to the boil, and then turn down the heat and simmer for 5 minutes until the rhubarb is soft and cooked, but still holds its shape. Serve warm or cold, straight from the fridge. Stored in an air tight container in the fridge, it will keep for 3-5 days. Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

115


RHUBARB & VANILLA CORDIAL One of my favourite recipes from the wonderful The Modern Preserver by Kylee Newton. Simple, refreshing and delicious. Makes approximately 500ml of cordial. Ingredients 800g rhubarb, washed and trimmed ½ of a vanilla pod 50ml water 250g of caster sugar per 500ml of rhubarb juice 1 tablespoon of lemon juice per 550ml of rhubarb juice You will also need a sterilised, capped bottle in which to store the cordial.

METHOD 1. Roughly chop the rhubarb into 1-2cm pieces. Place the rhubarb in a pan with the water and heat gently. Stew for 10-15 minutes until very soft then remove from the heat. 2. Use a potato masher to break up the rhubarb and then strain it through a jelly bag or muslin set over a large bowl. Leave it to drain for 8 hours or overnight. Don’t be tempted to squeeze the bag as this will make the juice cloudy! 3. Measure the juice and add 250g of sugar plus 1 tablespoon of lemon juice to every 550ml of rhubarb juice. Pour the juice into a large pan. Split open the vanilla pod, remove the seeds and add both to the pan. 4. Gently heat the mixture, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Simmer for 10-15 minutes, constantly stirring to infuse the vanilla. 5. Remove the pan rom the heat. Skim off any scum from the surface of the cordial and then strain it again through a fine sieve. Carefully pour into the sterilised bottle (make sure that it’s warm otherwise it might crack!) and set aside to cool. Serve diluted to your taste with still or sparkling water. This cordial will keep, unopened, for up to 4 months. Upon opening, store in the fridge and use within 4 weeks.

116 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


RHUBARB INFUSED GIN If you have a rhubarb glut, then I recommend trying this. Why not plan ahead for those lazy summer afternoons with a G&T in the garden? Makes approximately 70cl of infused gin. Ingredients 70 cl bottle of gin (shop’s own brand will suffice) 400g rhubarb, washed and trimmed 50g granulated sugar Juice of half a lemon You will also need a large sterilised jar to infuse the 3. After two weeks, the gin will have taken on the gin and for later, a sterilised, capped bottle in which to pleasant pink hue of rhubarb. Strain the gin into a store the gin. jug through a jelly bag or muslin, and then decant into the sterilised bottle. METHOD 1. Place the rhubarb chunks and the sugar in the sterilised jar. Replace the lid and shake until the rhubarb is completely coated in the sugar. Leave to macerate for an hour, to let all those lovely juices leach out. 2. Add the lemon juice and gin to the rhubarb and sugar mixture. Replace the lid and shake well to combine. Store the jar in a cool, dark place for up to 2 weeks, making sure that you give it a good shake every two days.

N.B. If you are making a Rhubarb Gin & Tonic or any cocktails that require a touch of sweetness, it’s best to add a little sugar syrup. A simple syrup would consist of 2-parts sugar to 1-part water e.g. 70g sugar/35ml water. Heat it in a pan, stir to dissolve - around 10 or 15 mins - and store it in a sterilised bottle in the fridge. This gin is also rather lovely added to a glass of champagne or prosecco! Stored in a cool dry place, this gin should keep for up to 6 months. Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

117


118 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017


RHUBARB & CUSTARD CAKE A classic combination which speaks for itself! Serves 8. Ingredients 400g rhubarb, washed and trimmed 250g softened butter or margarine (I use Stork) 150g of tinned ready-made custard 250g self-raising flour ½ teaspoon baking powder 4 large eggs 1-2 teaspoons vanilla extract 300g golden caster sugar icing sugar, for dredging You will also need a greased and lined 18”/23cm, deep spring-form or loose-bottomed cake tin. METHOD 1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas 6. Cut the rhubarb into 3-4cm pieces. Place in a shallow ovenproof dish or baking tray, add 50g of the caster sugar and mix well. Making sure that the rhubarb is in a single layer, cover with foil and then roast in the oven for 15 minutes. Remove the foil and roast for another 5 minutes or until tender and the juices are syrupy. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool.

2. Turn the oven down to 180°C/350°F/Gas 4. Set aside 3 tablespoons of custard in a bowl, and beat the rest together with the butter, flour, baking powder, eggs, vanilla and sugar until smooth and creamy. 3. Spoon a third of the mixture into the prepared tin. Add some of the rhubarb and then add a third more of the cake mix, spreading it out as well as you can. Top with more rhubarb and then spoon over the remaining cake mix. You don’t have to be tidy - leave it in dollops. Scatter over the rest of the rhubarb and top with the remaining custard. 4. Bake for 40 mins or until risen and golden, then cover with foil and bake for 15-20 mins more. It’s ready when a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. 5. Remove from the oven and leave to cool in the tin. Dredge with icing sugar and decorate with candied rhubarb ribbons (optional) to serve. A big dollop of custard on the side won’t go amiss either! Stored in an air-tight container, this cake will keep for up to 3 days. Images courtesy of Bebe Bradley and Pixabay

Spring 2017 | ukhandmade |

119


See you in the

SUMMER

120 | ukhandmade | Spring 2017

UK Handmade Magazine Spring 2017  

Welcome to our first issue of 2017! We have a brand new year ahead of us, so let’s celebrate with inspirational tales of painterly stitches,...

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you