Friday, 4 December 2015

Buy handmade crafts and share the love....

Chris Boland ring
Buy Handmade crafts this Christmas! Resist the siren call of the green-eyed consumer monster without turning into Ebernezer Scrooge.

Crafts offer some of the most gorgeous and original gift ideas at any time, from jewellery to toys to gifts for the home. Plus by buying locally you support an artist, boost your local economy and pump energy into your community.

What could be lovelier than buying something unique, handmade and buzzing with authenticity for your nearest and dearest? I think that's what you call a win-win situation.

The North West has many brilliant makers and plenty of places to buy their work. Here are just a few:

Little Northern Contemporary Craft Fair
An off-shoot of the wonderful Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair

The Atkinson, Southport
Their shop sells a range of delightful crafts for all ages

Manchester Craft and Design Centre

The Craft Shop at the Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester

Bluecoat Display Centre, Liverpool

Blackwell House - Cumbria
Sells lovely crafts in their shop  - all in the setting of a brilliant Arts and Crafts House. Part of Lakeland Arts

Gawthorpe Textiles Collection - Padiham, near Burnley
Reopening after refurbishment in Spring 2016, you can still buy fabulous knitting patterns inspired by the collections online via their Ravlery shop at any time. Great for the crafters in your life!

Harris Museum and Art Gallery,  Preston
Features a selection of small-scale craft pieces in their shop, usually by Preston-based makers

The NW Craft Network aims to promote and strengthen high quality craft in the North West. For more about the Network, click here.

Tuesday, 1 December 2015

Seriously good Craft in the UK's North West this December

Natural Makers, Touchstones Rochdale
A host of seriously good Craft exhibitions and events that span pondering the meaning of art, making, material, process through to brilliant possibilities for Christmas presents. And making stuff. Enjoy...

You can also see and (if you're an organisation) add new events in our publically available Google Calendar here

Opening this month

Modern Japanese Design at Manchester Art Gallery. 4 Dec to January 2017.

The Pilcrow: launch. More about the pub that Manchester built (or is building, to be precise) here 4 December.

Little Northern Contemporary Craft Fair. Altrincham Town Hall, Market St., 
 WA14 1PG (NEW venue!) 6 December.

Natural Makers at Touchstones Rochdale 12 Dec To 27 Feb 2016. Stuart Cairns, Laura Ellen Bacon, Adam Buick, Sharon Adams.

Sculpting Stories at Gallery Oldham, including studio ceramics from their collections. 19 Dec to Summer 2016

On now
Art_Textiles at the Whitworth. To 21 Jan

Back to Black. Contemporary jewellery at Manchester Art Gallery - extended to 31 January

Jarred: Ceramics from the Collection is on at Touchstones. To Spring 2016

'All Wrapped Up' & 'Esben and Wolfe Screen Prints' The Craft Shop at the Royal Exchange Theatre. To 3 Jan at

All That Glitters at The Bluecoat Display Centre to 16 Jan 2016

Exploring Wonderland at MCAD to 14 Feb

Coming soon
New gallery space opens in January 2016 at MMU MarketPlace Studios, Stockport. Keep an eye out here