Makers Corner: Abi Gill Calligrapher

Screenshot_20180529-221616_1

We caught up with Abi who kindly shared her hobby and passion with us.

Please tell us about yourself?

I’m Abi and I am the founder of Abigail’s Calligraphy based in Haringey, north London. I started practicing calligraphy seriously about three years ago and have slowly started turning it into a business, mainly providing calligraphy for weddings but also making cards and gifts.

Can you please tell us what inspired you to turn your hands to calligraphy?

I’ve always admired beautiful handwriting. It’s a huge part of someone’s individuality. But it’s also something we see less and less of, as we all communicate through our phones and computers. I don’t know what most of my friends handwriting even looks like! I decided to take a couple of calligraphy courses to unwind and rediscover the beauty of creating something hand written.

The more I practiced and learnt, the more inspired I became. There are hundreds of different styles of calligraphy, known as scripts, many dating back hundreds of years. I learnt to write italic script, which is one most of us are familiar with. Perfecting a script takes years of practice and an eye for the technical, each script has different rules on the necessary angles and line heights. I branched into modern calligraphy too, which is a little more free flowing and is popular at the moment. This is what I use for most of my products.

What is it like to juggle your passion whilst holding down a full-time job?

Calligraphy is my hobby and it’s how I relax. I try and spend as much time as I can writing, but it can be hard. I work full time for the youth homelessness charity Centrepoint. Sometimes it can be hard to find as much time as I want to for my calligraphy after a full day at work. If your craft isn’t your main income, I think it’s important to be kind to yourself and not pressure yourself to work on it when you’re not in the right headspace or you’re tired, otherwise it becomes a chore rather than an enjoyment.

How do you limit your impact on the environment?

I create a whole range of calligraphy based products but I’m mainly selling cards at the market. The thing that strikes me about most card shops is the amount of single use plastic wrapping every single card. Nobody wants a grubby card, but we also don’t need the plastic to be single use. My cards are in plastic so you can pick them up and have a good look, but when you buy one I’ll keep the plastic to use again and you take it home in a recyclable paper bag.

Can you please tell us of your future aspirations?

I feel like I am very much at the start of my calligraphy business journey and I’m really excited to see where it will go! I love providing calligraphy services for weddings as it’s such a special thing to have something unique and handmade at your big day, so I hope to reach more brides and grooms! Alongside cards and postcards, I also want to explore where else I can use calligraphy. Ideas are always welcome and I’m always up for collaborating with others!

You can view more of Abi’s pieces at our 6 July Makers Market at The Bernie Grant Arts Centre. Until then…

Screenshot_20180529-221443_1

Makers Corner: Frances Wood

In the lead up to our Spring Makers Market taking place on 2 -3 March, we have been sharing the amazing designer-makers who will join us at The Beehive Pub. Do take a few moments to read up on these amazing humans!

Today, we meet the lovely Frances Wood of Fran Wood.

What inspired you to become a maker?

I’ve loved art and design for as long as I can remember, especially print and pattern. Also I’ve been both a graphic and textile designer in the past. I wanted to find a creative outlet that would combine all the above elements and after doing a screen printing course in 2015, found the ideal process. After this I set up Fran Wood Design as an outlet to promote and sell my pattern inspired screen prints.

DIRECTORY Fran Wood Design 01

Can you please share with us where you get your inspiration?

I start by collecting images that inspire me. I use Pinterest as an online scrapbook to collate these. As well as this I take photos when I’m out and about and have a collection of art/design books.

And the very obvious next question, what is the design process?

My designs always start out as sketches/ideas inspired by my collections and I have lots sketchbooks filled with many ideas! Once I’m completely happy with a sketch, I produce a final image based on it. I often hand cut this from paper and complete it in Photoshop, making it into a PDF format ready for exposing to a silk screen. I then hand print the design onto paper and/or fabric products at home on the kitchen table. 

Twitter and Instagram: @franwooddesign

Makers Corner: Noemi Bizzocchi

We love sharing the varied designers and makers that we work with giving you a good scope of all the items that will be featured at our markets. Please read on the learn of our newest member.

nobidesigns_201902071420024503365842272820266.png

How did ‘nobi’ come about?

Nobi is a brand I developed in 2017, born from my passion for creating handmade jewellery. I work with polymer clay and my brand style is contemporary and minimalist. I like geometric, clean lines and bold block colours.

Where do you take your inspiration from?

My inspiration comes from observing the urban context and from much historical jewellery. Each piece is unique, hand-shaped, handmade, baked and then refined. Metal components are also handcrafted using 100% recycled sterling silver or stainless steel. I aim to create unique objects of design, expressing style, valuing the preciousness of receiving and wearing a handmade creation. This is important to me in contrast of a culture where mass production of identical things is available.

nobidesigns_201902061239292056560528651949131.png

Why is jewellery so important to you?

For me making jewellery is a practice of giving significance. A jewel is a feeling, an emotion, a memory and through the simplicity of my designs, the purpose of my work is to enhance the wearer’s own personality and uniqueness aiming to make them experience a sensation of identity empowerment.

Find Noemi at our Spring Makers Market taking place on 2 -3 March 2019 at The Beehive Pub, N17 9BQ.

Etsy: nobidesigns

If you can’t wait until then, do check out her Instagram, @nobidesigns

Makers Corner: Angela Hunt

In the lead up to Etsy Made Local Tottenham, we’ve been catching up with the amazing makers who will bring their handmade items to market on 1-2 December.

Today we caught up with a Tottenham creative, Angela Hunt of Ribbon Gibbon.

20181022_124050.jpg

What is your link to Tottenham?

I first discovered Tottenham when I started working for a charity near White Hart Lane. That was also where I met who was to become my husband and a few years later we moved into the area. We have been living in Tottenham for 9 years and in that time we have seen a huge amount of change but the constant has always been the fantastic community spirit! We have two small children and feel very fortunate to be living in such a family friendly part of London. The incredible parks, cafes, toddler and baby activities, family days as well as the amazing community of local businesses – we love Tottenham!

What inspired you to became a maker or, please describe the making/designing process?

I’ve always been a frustrated crafty! I love creating beautiful things, I find it relaxing and rewarding. When planning our wedding day, I spent many happy hours making all the decorations from scratch and I was delighted and very proud with how everything turned out. Hen dos, baby showers, 1st birthdays, naming days, milestone birthdays and other parties followed and I always loved getting the decorations just right. When going on maternity leave with my second baby, I decided to take the plunge and turn my hobby in to a business. I set up my Etsy shop and have been loving the journey ever since! It makes me extremely happy to think that I have been able to play a tiny part in so many special occasions for people. I am really positive about the future and hope my little company can continue to grow!

20181030_173502.jpg

What is it like owning your own business or like many, juggling multiple jobs?

One of the biggest struggles of running a small business alongside work and family life is simply the lack of time!! There are just not enough hours in the day!! I have so many ideas and things I would like to achieve and I am currently on maternity leave but it’s usually after my gorgeous children have gone to bed that I get to concentrate on my business. Rather than getting overwhelmed with all the things I want to do, I try to break things down in to manageable chunks and keep chipping away. Slow and steady wins the race! Who knows where this journey will take me and that situation may change in the future but, for now, the juggle continues and even though it’s very busy, I love it!

Can you impart a quote or words of wisdom to inspire?

Something I read once that really stuck with me is: ‘Don’t compare your beginning to somebody else’s middle’. I think this really applies to setting up a business. There is so much to learn, so much to think about and so many things to adapt, all of which is a massive part of the fun! But you can sometimes fall into the trap of comparing what you are doing with others, forgetting that they themselves have been on the exact same journey, they are just further along. Keep being you, believe in yourself and who knows what wonderful things you can achieve!

20181022_124631.jpg

Thank you so much for speaking with us. You can find the lovely Angela on Day 1 of Etsy Made Local Tottenham (Tottenham Town Hall) along with many other talented local makers and don’t forget, this is a two-day bumper handmade only market! Find us on Day 2 at The Beehive Pub on 2 December. See you then!!

Ribbon Gibbon

Instagram

Makers Corner: For Your Glory Gifts

Our next maker specialises in pick ‘n’ mix mini toiletry gift sets. As pleasant as the suggestion, these are not edible!

Marketing pic full

Hello! Who is the lady behind For Your Glory Gifts?

Hi. My name is Kelly Kellz and I am the founder and creator of For Your Glory Gifts,

What inspired you to become a maker?

I have always had a creative flair and started making personalised gifts after organising my friends Bridal shower which included making gifts for the guests. Since then, I have incorporated other elements items adding greater variety.

What is it like to manage your own business, or like many, juggle multiple jobs?

It can be challenging, but I am an entrepreneur at heart and always dreamed of having my own business so this is just the beginning. I really enjoy marketing, networking and being creative so that side of it I don’t consider ‘work’ because I enjoy it too much!

Can you tell us what is it like juggling your passion whilst holding down a day job?

It can be a little distracting as I would love to do this full time, however I motivate myself with my day job by using my hard earned money to continue investing in new ideas, new ways of adding to the gifts an taking that risk that it might or might not sell. I like to have options myself to keep the creating interesting for me also, so I hope that also keeps my customers interested too to see what’s next.

Can you impart a quote or words of wisdom to inspire?

I am a big believer in the power of our thoughts and words, so everything I do is done with a positive thought, outcome or word connected. I have to say it works and would encourage others to do the same!

Thank you very much, Kelly.

Team mingle meet up, November 9th 2017

Date: Thursday, 9th November

Time: 6.30pm – 9pm

Venue: 5 Miles, Markfield Road, N15 4QA

Crafty North Londoner will have our first team gathering on November 9th at 5 Miles, Tottenham.

We are very excited to meet fellow makers and designers ahead of market day and no doubt this will be the first of many.