This is a collaborative post with the Worcestershire Etsy team.
If you scroll all the way back through my blog posts, you may be surprised to learn that this was my very first post: LPM Made This: Envelope Back Cushion Cover. Every now and then, this blog of mine gets a little bit of crafting fun sprinkled over it – in fact, there used to be a whole crafts section until I made the sad realisation that I didn’t have the time for crafts like I used to. My love for all things homemade hasn’t diminished though, and so when I received the most wonderful parcel a few weeks a go from the Worcestershire Etsy Team, I was beside myself with excitement.
You see, I love browsing through Etsy, and the huge wealth of talent and creativity on there, the convenience of shopping online and then the excitement of happy post… but I also like supporting my local community. Last weekend, the Worcestershire Etsy team put on an incredible Designer Maker Market in Worcester at the Royal Porcelain Works, complete with a Rock Choir, offering the chance to combine all the things I like best in one room.
It also served the purpose of ticking a few presents off my Christmas shopping list (which I’ve been neglecting for too long), and I may have gotten a little too excited that so many of the stalls accepted card payments that I came home with a lot more than I anticipated.
If like me, you love all things handmade and appreciate the talent, skill and time that goes into these creations, let me introduce you to some of the wonderful businesses I encountered last weekend.
The whole reason I was even at the market to begin with is thanks to this lovely lady: Rachel from Eliston Button. We got chatting a while ago now after finding each other on Instagram originally (I think…) as we both live in the same town. I’ve long been admiring her handiwork, especially these gorgeous mixed media pieces and it was such a treat to finally meet in person – ironically, in Worcester, despite the fact I could walk to her house if I wanted to!
I’ve planted the seed that I think she should do a fabric collage of Arrow Valley Lake as I’d definitely buy it! Whilst at the market, I also bought one of her gorgeous prints as the sentiment was absolutely perfect for my best friend’s birthday later this month and I couldn’t resist buying LPD, Pickle and myself all matching Sprout badges.
How darn cute are these little guys?! I just absolutely love them. Never have pom poms had so much character. If you’d like to see more of Rachel’s work, she has a fantastic blog over at Eliston Button, her own Etsy shop and a cracking Instagram account (@elistonbutton).
I wish Smell-o-vision was a thing (anyone else remember the Children in Need 1995 Smell-O-Vision book?) as this candle is unlike anything I’ve ever smelled before. As soon as I sniffed it, I knew it needed to be bought for Little Pickle’s Dad. It smells like hearty old countryside pubs with log burning fires and wooden paneling. It’s so comforting and masculine and earthy – I absolutely love it, and I know LPD will too. I’d have never really thought about buying him a candle before, and it’s the last thing he’d expect I think, but I know he’s going to love it.
I also bought a set of Lemongrass and Ginger tealights which I still haven’t decided whether to keep for myself, or to gift yet. I love them. And I’m not quite sure I can bear to part with them. We’ll see…! Nat from Natty Designs also makes these gorgeous origami box lids for her tealight sets (you can just about see them in the above photo, apologies for it being wildly out of focus!) which reminded me so much of when my brother and I were younger and how we used to make and decorate little paper boxes so we could make ourselves homemade McDonalds.
You can find out more about Natty Designs on their website or visit the Natty Designs Etsy shop.
Munchkin Madness Makes
I absolutely fell in love with these wonderful hair accessories. As well as super cute and quirky options, there were also some wonderfully festive ones and I hear the unicorn sets were particularly popular! Most of the hair sets offered two hair ties, two hair clips and some even had an additional bow too. Whether you’re five years old or fifty-five, I think these are brilliant!
I bought myself this dinosaur set as I thought that would make me such a cool Mom! Imagine my delight when I came home to learn that LPD and Pickle had spent the afternoon watching The Land Before Time together. Amazing. If ever I’ve come across a stall that instantly put a smile on my face – Munchkin Madness Makes wins that prize hands down.
If your style is a little less quirky, then these cute pins are a really fun way to inject a little bit of colour and vibrancy to your outfit. I picked up two sets – one for me, and one for my sister-in-law who I think will really like them. Fingers crossed…
Paper Ink Alchemy
I like to think if I ever were to ever open a craft business, it would be like Paper Ink Alchemy. I absolutely fell in love with her papercuts – especially her work that features whales (it’s pretty much top of my bucket list to see whales in the wild). Lottie, the creative genius behind Paper Ink Alchemy, is also the Worcestershire Etsy Team Leader, so the whole market was largely thanks to her efforts. To pull off something so wonderful and successful on a first attempt is pretty special, I think, and I really hope the team do events like this at least twice a year.
From lovely papercut baubles, to necklaces and framed art, this lovely shop has something to suit every price point. And I really look forward to keeping up to date with Lottie’s latest work over on Instagram (@paperinkalchemy) to see what other beautiful work she creates in the months ahead.
If there’s one regret I have from the market, it’s that I didn’t buy one of By Charlotte’s absolutely adorable crocheted animals. Not only were the colours absolutely gorgeous, but I don’t think you could stop yourself from being charmed by these little critters. I know exactly where I’ll be heading next time I have a new baby’s arrival to celebrate.
I did buy a lovely hand lettering print from Charlotte though – again, another gift for a friend, where the sentiment just seemed to hit the nail on the head. I’m really loving including hand designed prints for decor at the moment – I think it adds such a lovely touch to a room, and make such thoughtful gifts.
My other favourites
I could end up typing pages and pages going into the detail of all the fascinating stallholders I spoke to, but I’d be here forever. I’d much rather show more of the photos I took and point you in the direction of the other Etsy holders, their Instagram pages and the ways in which you can continue drooling over their creativity.
Justine Morris Designs
I kept quite a wide aperature on these photos so you can’t see all the detail on each piece, but these gorgeous stud earring sets by Justine Morris Designs were right up my street. I particularly like the little solid triangle studs that look like little shards. I love the apparent simplicity of the designs, even though Justine said sometimes the simplest looking ones are the hardest to make.
The colours in OvariJewels pieces were really striking – I loved the calm, serene vibes that some of the pieces gave off, in contrast with some of the more energising ones. These little bracelets would make a lovely Christmas gift, whilst the necklaces are real showstoppers. I loved chatting to Mhari, and I’ll be wearing my own bracelet with a lot of pride.
Starr Fused Glass
Talking of Pride, these rainbow pieces from Starr Fused Glass really caught my eye. To celebrate Pride, Bryony made these wonderful hanging decorations, with 10% of every sale going to Mermaids UK charity. They’ve been really popular and I’m not surprised. I think they’re amazing.
Keep it Local
This is just a small selection of the wonderful local artists we have to be proud of in Worcestershire. I strongly encourage you to follow the Worcestershire Etsy team on Instagram (@worcestershireetsy) and remember that buying online doesn’t mean you can’t also buy local. I’m hoping I can meet up with Rachel and @mypotasaurus for a tea and crafting date soon as what a treat that would be – although, I hope they don’t laugh at my amateur crafting (lack of) skill.
I couldn’t resist buying two of these little keychains from @dippydaisydesigns – she even makes a keychain that you can keep your lipbalm in. How cute is that?
I had so much fun at this Designer Maker Market, and it was the perfect way to kick off my Christmas shopping this year, as well as get some ideas for things I’d like to add to my wishlist should Little Pickle’s Dad need some gift inspiration. I hope you’ve enjoyed finding out about these wonderful artists as much as I have.
Disclaimer: I was invited to the Worcestershire Etsy Designer Maker Market and offered a small fee for writing about it in addition to receiving a goody bag before the event. However, all items I bought were out of my own pocket and genuinely because I loved them. I was under no obligation to do so.