This weekend seasonal shopping events are popping up all over the capitals and beyond. Here are just a few of those on offer. So maps, diaries and pens to the ready to curate your own excursion.
Starting in the east, it is open studios at the Chocolate Factory in Hackney on Saturday 30th and Sunday 1st December. You can meet the artists, talk about their work and buy direct from each of the 27 studios with fine art, design, illustration and ceramics. Close by there is also the Dalston Christmas Market on Sunday 1st December.
Made in Clerkenwell, kicks off this evening, Thursday 28th November (5-8pm), with an open studios in conjunction with Goldsmiths’ Centre featuring 150 designers and makers across 3 venues in Clerkenwell selling fashion, jewellery, accessories, ceramics, printmaking, illustration and interior products. This little polar scene is a card by Decarbonice, purchasing the card will offset a week’s work of Christmas carbon, and that must be a heavy load with festive lights, paper, and travel. MIC is open over the weekend, for actual times check the website. Tickets are £3, and free for under 16s.
From east London, we head to central London, and the Cockpit Arts Open studios in Holborn (the Deptford open studios is 6-8th December). Tickets are £5 for entry all weekend, and under 15s go free. We all enjoyed the summer Cockpit Arts, with my daughter enjoying the show and tell element as well as the delicious food from the Hand Made Food cafe. This weekend highlights will include a kids competition to create a woolly jumper for Baatholomew the sheep with Mary Kilvert and the Head Buyer of Paul Smith is sharing her top picks from the Cockpit collection. You could even try your hand at weaving with Bonnie Kirkwood who will be giving a demonstration on her hand loom.
A little bit north in Queens Park, it is the Homeworks Christmas Bazaar on Sunday 1st December from 10am-2pm in the Salusbury Road Rooms. Homeworks was set up by a group of like-minded women who work from home, and like to make and buy things that are made with care. A couple of the highlights are this coral light from Charlotte Peake, colourful felt accessories from Isolyn, and Lou Rota‘s beautiful flora and fauna designs on vintage china.
Further west to the Chelsea Old Town Hall where the third Selvedge Winter Fair is taking place on the 29th and 30th of November. As the name would suggest Selvedge’ speciality is all things textiles. There will be over 100 stands of antique textiles, talented designer makers and vintage haberdashery. Tickets are £5 or £7.50 for both days.
A little bit south it is the Boutique Christmas Market in Kew Gardens. Organised in conjunction with We Make London, Kew Gardens is opening up after hours with an illuminated trail and the opportunity to buy distinctive ceramics, textiles, prints, fine art, home wares, jewellery, kids toys, needlework and accessories.
Westward ho to the Bath Christmas Markets which run from Thursday 28th November to Sunday 15th December. The streets and square between the Roman Baths and Bath Abbey are colonised by over 150 wooden chalets selling unusual and handmade gifts and decorations.
On the east side of the River Severn the Made in Bristol Christmas Gift Fair is taking place this Saturday 30th November with handmade jewellery, original illustrations, interior products in ceramic, glass, paper, metal, wood and textiles, as well as clothing from established and emerging designers and makers from the region.
A leap across the River Severn to the Cardiff Arts Collective Christmas fair taking place this Saturday 30th November with over 30 designers and makers from South Wales selling jewellery, textiles, decorations and cards. Among my top picks would be the lighting ByKirsty and textiles and fantastic geometric prints on cushions, textiles and wallpaper by Sian Elin.
And I am sure there are many more in a town near you. If there are, please and them to the comments!!
- Open Studio and Christmas Fair in London (live-style.co.uk)
- awamu at Kew Christmas fair (awamu.co.uk)
- Five must-visit Christmas markets (yha.org.uk)