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Handmade Heroes #4: Ben Rothery illustrator

Posted on April 19, 2016 by The Makery | 0 comments

We are back with another instalment of our regular 'Handmade Heroes' feature! It is such a great feeling shouting out about our fave makers and this week we are bringing you somebody very dear to our creative hearts, it is the stupendously talented Ben Rothery Illustrator

Ben's studio is based in the honey coloured city of Bath, a place where he has become somewhat of a famous creative force. His intricate, highly detailed works have gathered a massive following and you can see how. He combines multiple processes to create intricate and delicate illustrations and repeating patterns full of fine detail and vibrant colour. 

You may recognise the illustrated Singer sewing machine print from our shop and website! We love to adorn our walls and work spaces with Ben's prints, they add a bolt of colour to the room and the high detail and remarkable quality of his work draws your eyes in making it difficult to look away! He has been a firm favourite with our customers looking to spruce up their sewing corners or work spaces. 

How one man can have that much control over a pencil we'll never know! Ben has the most insane portfolio, we wish we could just show all of his work here, but there is such an incredible variety we would be here for donkeys years! Whenever you see a new piece of work come from Ben be sure to watch out as you know he has started a trend, he has an amazing way of knowing what we are all going to love before we know ourselves. 

Not only is his work visually pleasing, but isn't he also a treat for the eyes? We know we will make him blush, even more reason to love him. Get in line though, he is in high demand, with collections for John Lewis and work popping up everywhere we see such an incredibly long and successful career for our Ben. He is a testament as to what talent, hard work and being an all round stand up guy can get you. We wait with bated breath as to what is around the corner and hope we can share such an amazing creative journey with him.

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Handmade Heroes #3: Lost Shapes

Posted on April 08, 2016 by The Makery | 1 comment

Huzzah! It's that time again, we are so excited to be bringing you another instalment of our regular 'Handmade Heroes' feature. This week we are shouting out about Lost Shapes!

'LOST SHAPES is thoughtful, creative design, with an honest upbringing of wholesome crafts, having a good time in the party world of fashion.' This is how Anna Brindle the creator of Lost Shapes perfectly describes her incredible company.


Anna is based and works from her studio in the very beautiful Devizes, Wiltshire. A
esthetically, these areas are stunning places to live, but Anna draws inspiration from man-made bits and bobs such as logos on freight lorries; signage by roadside burger vans; stuff in charity shops. 

Now what sets Lost Shapes apart from the rest and the biggest reason companies like this need to be shouted out about is their ethics. We love everything Anna believes and how she merges this into Lost Shapes. The printing market is saturated with poorly made t-shirts covered in harmful chemically filled inks that are churned out by underpaid and overworked employees, something Anna is having none of! Lost Shapes uses organic, environmentally friendly, fairly traded products. Most of the Lost Shapes t-shirts and sweatshirts are from the EarthPositive range by Continental Clothing, 100% organic with 90% Reduced CO2!

Lost Shapes have a range of unique and exciting products, from clothing to home-wares and by special request, she is able to look into commissioned pieces, if you are looking for something one of a kind and artistic Lost Shapes is the answer.

We are so excited to say that we have Anna Brindle coming to The Makery, she will be running numerous Workshops dispensing her wealth of screen print knowledge. It is something we have never done before and know it is going to be a hit! With Anna being so ethically correct it feels right to have her here with us, how could you not support and love someone who is spreading such a positive message in the world. 

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Eggcellent Non-Chocolate Easter Eggs!

Posted on March 25, 2016 by The Makery | 0 comments

We all love a chocolate egg this time of year, but what if like us you're still recovering from all those festive treats from a few months back, or just fancy something a little more creative this Easter. We have compiled some cracking Decoupage Eggs that will have the whole family getting crafty this Easter.

We have looked high and low and found a fantastic range of techniques that can be used to decoupage your eggs. Our first faves are these golden wonders by Miss Renaissance, they just have maximum impact, imagine these sat as the centrepiece to your Easter Sunday dinner. You can find the tutorial on these incredible eggs on the Miss Renaissance Website. The metallics are a clever way to nod to the holidays but carry it out in a fabulous fashion!

Decorating eggs doesn't have to be creative chaos, if you want to keep it clean, then there are some nifty ways around it, plus kids are guaranteed to love them. How about simply wrapping eggs in wool or string, start with a plain string then with colouring pens create a rainbow of colours that can be wrapped around. It's best to use duck eggs as they are much more durable or hard boiled eggs. They are such a fab way for you all to get stuck in and spend some quality Easter time together this easter.

These eggs are out of this world, quite literally. We are all caught up in Star Wars fever at the moment and these appeal to everyone, young or old, boys and girls. If you want to get creative with the kids and keep them distracted while dinner is in the oven, then this is a super simple way to do so.

The main reason these are our ultimate faves is that they cost next to nothing! If you want to make them so your little ones might can get a lot of play out of them, then use wood or plastic eggs that can be picked up cheaply online, but if you just want to have creative time and are not too worried then normal eggs will suffice. All you need is just ordinary shop bought acrylic paints and brushes to get the detail. You can find the tutorial over on Frugal Fun 4 Boys Blog.

Now if you want to get messy and embrace creative chaos, Glitter Eggs are the way to go! We found them on Martha Stewarts brilliantly inspiring website, again any type of craft glue, PVA for example and of course lots of glitter. These eggs are a brilliant all rounder, they don't have to be just for Easter, they work for any occasion. Glitter eggs displayed in a vase is a fabulous way to bring a pop of colour into a room, you can match your eggs to a specific holiday such as Christmas, red and green glitter with a bit of ribbon. Mix the glitters together to get a real shimmer. 

We hope these have given you some food for thought and got you looking at your hard boiled egg shells a bit more creative in the mornings now. Please share with us when you make your own decoupage eggs this Easter, we are always looking to be inspired.

Happy Making x 


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Handmade Heroes #2: There's Only One Amy Laws

Posted on March 24, 2016 by The Makery | 0 comments

We are so excited to be bringing you another edition of our new regular feature Handmade Heroes!

We've given the odd mention to this maker before, but we can never shout enough about how much we adore the incredibly talented There's Only One Amy Laws. We've been smitten with her quirky designs from day one!

Amy Laws creates handmade and hand screen printed clothing, using vintage inspired cuts updated with a bold colour palette and prints that are guaranteed to put a smile on your face. 

To create each unique garment the fabric is cut from hand drafted patterns, and each piece is then printed using handmade silk screen frames that she builds herself - Amy Laws really is a one-woman making machine! She regularly uses our workshop spaces here at The Makery where she has her sewing machine roaring away all day - there really is NO stopping this girl! Its so inspiring to see such a young talented artist at work, and we are honoured that we can get a glimpse into her creative process. 



The inks Amy uses in her work are all water-based inks that are safe for the environment and she sources all her fabrics from UK based companies - another important reason why we want to shout out about our Handmade Heroes! We all love a bit of 1950s nostalgia but it can sometimes be overdone, whereas Amy has come at it with a completely fresh, contemporary twist.

The character that shines through her work is palpable, you can wear her skirts on a grey day and you're going to feel like the sun is shining wherever you go. We're on the edge of our seats with excitement to see her creative brainchild grow, but one thing's for sure: There Is Only One Amy Laws!

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Pom Pom Bunnies Tutorial!

Posted on March 18, 2016 by The Makery | 0 comments

Spring is just around the corner and if you are slightly upset you didn't receive your very own bunny for Easter don't worry we have got it covered. A super-duper tutorial to get creative and make one of your own little Thumper! 


We fell in love with these Pom Pom Bunnies as soon as we saw them - who wouldn't? They are so simple and easy to make, perfect for children of all ages. If you fancy having a go, hop along and follow our step-by-step tutorial! 

You can use any kind of wool to make your bunnies, and different pom-pom makers for bunnies big or small!

You will need:-

  • Wool
  • Pom-pom maker (small and large)
  • Scissors
  • Felt
  • Strong glue

 1. Start by wrapping the end of your wool around one side of your pom-pom maker as shown. Keep wrapping, working from side to side - the more wool you wrap around, the more thick and fluffy your bunny will be! (picture 1)



2. Once you’ve filled one side, fold it into the centre and move onto the next side, repeating the process. When both sides look even, fold them into the centre and cut the wool leaving a 10cm tail. (picture 2)

3. Cut an additional piece of wool, about 20cm and place it aside. Now start carefully trimming the layers of wool along the outer ridge of your full pom-pom maker, holding it together firmly as you go. (picture 3)

4. Once you’ve trimmed all the way around, take your 20cm length of wool and slot it into the outer ridge. Meet up both ends of the wool and tie it in a very tight knot! Do a couple more knots for good luck. (picture 4)

5. Now you can prize away the pom-pom maker which separates into two pieces, leaving you with a lovely bundle of fluff! Give your pom-pom a roll in the palm of your hand to even it out. You can give your pom-pom a trim if you like, but leave the long tails as we’ll need those later.

6. Repeat this process with the other pom-pom maker, so you have two different sized pom-poms. Now tie them together tightly using the long strands, creating a body shape. 

7. Cut out your bunny’s ears and eyes from coloured felt, and attach them using your strong glue. You could even add feet and a little tail if you like! (see above picture)

There we go, I hope it keeps your little ones - and you of course - busy. Now you just have to name them. Happy Making! 

Check out The Makery Youtube channel for a pom-pom tutorial and more!
You can buy the pom-pom makers used in this tutorial here

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Handmade Heroes #1: Meticulous Ink

Posted on March 15, 2016 by The Makery | 0 comments

For yonks now we've been wanting to start a regular feature to shout about all the incredible creative talents we come across, so we've started a regular post called 'Handmade Heroes'. 

There's no contest who to feature in our first post: Our very good friends at Meticulous Ink. Athena & Charlie launched this wonderful business just a few months after The Makery on the same street as our original shop, so we've always felt an affinity to them. 

meticulous ink

They were recently featured in Barbour's Wild Britain Handmade Tales series; if you watch ANYTHING online today, you absolutely MUST watch this:

 Meticulous Ink are a traditional printer and stationer. A walk past their shop is a wondrous thing: Seeing the smooth, repetitive motion of their glorious Heidelberg Windmill letterpresses, you can't help but stop and take a moment to watch. 

calligraphy workshop bath

We were so excited to welcome Athena as our regular 'Hand-Lettering and Calligraphy Workshop' Tutor, and she's been running sell-out workshops with us now for a couple of years. It's the workshop that all our team here were clamouring to assist on, and we can tell you it's genuinely the most cathartic 3 hours you can imagine!

calligraphy workshop

There is something so connecting about focussing on your handwriting - as Athena mentions in her video, people rarely take the time to actually write these days. It's one of those workshops where you get out so much more than you anticipated. 



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