Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Handmade Arcade - The May Edition!

Last Saturday marked the anniversary of the Exeter Blitz, another bank holiday weekend and if you made it through the time warp in the city centre and followed the chalky trails down to the West Quarter, you would have found the colourful corner that is McCoys Arcade, home to Handmade Arcade - Exeters celebration of independant creative culture. A monthly affair that always leaves us inspired and eager to see what the next one will bring!

This months edition saw the arcade packed full of characters - some of them held together by stitches or found within the pages of beautifully bound books. Friendly faces of local makers, flavours of a relaxed buzzy atmosphere - conversations interspersed with layers of music from Laura Dugmore and Paper Anchor.  There was a host of up-cycled jewels and a frock or two, zines, prints and cards each well seasoned with the spirit of DIY -  An extension of No Guts No Glory that is unique, everchanging, mindful and independent!

Thanks to all of you who came and perused the many stalls, sampled the delights of McCoys Cafe or just came to soak up the light, bustling feel that is Handmade Arcade! If you couldn't make it down there's always the next one on the 2nd June to get enthused about !

If you weren't able to join us here are some recorded memories of that wonderful day in May...

Laura Dugmore's strong and soaring voice filled the Arcade as it began to get busier and busier, I was secretly hoping that the brilliant Emma Cocker would accidentally leave the wooly craftydermy antlers behind.... they were even naturally striped, genius!


Guy Millon, the chap behind Exeter's Independent and Intimate pop-up cinema Butterscotch Sunday, came to share news of their next event that is be held at the marvelous Bike Shed Theatre this coming Sunday (13th May)! A spectacular  Wes Anderson charity film festival featuring Rushmore and The Royal Tenembaums alongside an unhealthy amount of Butterscotch Popcorn, as well as a selection of badges, zines and sinful sundae cupcakes! It's a Sunday sundae must!

Tickets are just £10! and available from the No Guts No Glory shop - all profits are going to the quiet mind centre, so there's even more reason to come along.. not like you need any.

We had some fruity glass jewels that looked like candy, all made by the skilled hand of Elise Ruffell the sweet trend spread through the arcade with Kimbows stall adding a colourful splash to the day - her affordable sweet inspired jewellery and bow shaped cushions were a welcome addition! 

It was great to have Bee Watson there on the day, sure to be a more regular fixture - the mighty re-maker of weary garments! Bee is an all round lifter of spirits... and her clothes are pretty rad too.. I can vouch for this as I am now the smug owner of a beautiful dusky pink number which was a snip at £10! Bee will be back again at a future date with a selection of remade frocks tops and smocks! In the meantime if you have anything you would like to save from the bin please get in touch with Bee and she'll be happy to intervene!

Elena and friends from Unearthed Gallery, near neighbours of Fore Street arrived with their fired pieces - cups, planters and pottery of different shapes and sizes. It was so nice to see products from their ever so affordable pottery workshops which happen frequently and great to meet the makers! Joe Sellman-Leava came with a selection of his prints and original paintings it was great to meet this friendly chap and talk to him about the upcoming show at the Bike Shed Theatre

I saw so many people leaving with ears poking out of bags, i'm pretty sure this was due to Scrappies popular up-cycled creations! Also with ears Benjamin Smith joined us with a suitcase full of recorded journeys. Zines and cards capturing the escape of rabbit and his adventures... keep an eye out for more of Ben's photographic stories.

Handmade Arcaders Patrick Cullum and Frances Matteson set up camp outside the No Guts No Glory Shop for the second round - here you can see Patricks colourful illustrations swaying in the breeze, Frances had a wonderful selection of black and white illustrated cards and prints!

It was great to meet Emma Cocker and her taxidermy inspired creations... she also does great things in the way of fabric illustration, and takes photos of the characters she creates turning them into fascinating subjects for cards and prints.
Penny Dreadful had a stall full of up-cycled bits and bobs all fashioned into interesting and affordable jewellery more of which can be seen on etsy!

The next market day is Saturday the 2nd June, mark it in your calendars and come join us!
It was fantastic to see everyone there and great to see new connections being made and people really embracing the project! Please continue to support us by spreading the word!

 for next month!! We're looking for makers of indie art and craft from the local region so please get in touch if this is you - now is also the time to nag that ever so creative they should really be selling their work kind of friend and give them even more reason to get making!

If you have any feedback about the event i'm all ears!  We would love to be able to make this corner of culture a permanent fixture in our town so if you have any ideas about how we can make it grow please don't hesitate to drop me a line!


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