21 November 2014

MADE BRIGHTON this weekend at the Brighton Corn Exchange 22-23 November 2014

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~ Wedding Slipper , Caroline Lingwood
Made Brighton 2014 ~
This was my first visit to Made Brighton, the Design and Craft Fair, organised by the lovely people at Tutton and Young and I have to say that I had rather high expectations after visiting their Art Fair.

Taking place at the same venue as before, the Corn Exchange is a big space and in this instance is home to over 120 makers and designers.
~ Squirrel and acorn necklace @PhoebeJewellery
Made Brighton 2014 ~
Whether you are into unique pieces of jewellery, textiles, glass, ceramics, furniture, hats, wallpaper or candle sticks, there are stalls that will appeal.  Prices also vary from a few quid to hundreds of pounds, so whether you are looking for Christmas gifts or treats for yourself, you've got two days left to check out this really special collection.

~ Pavilion wallpaper @JoannaCorney
Made Brighton 2014 ~
For me, what is so good about this event by Tutton and Young Ltd, (artist and printmaker Sarah Young and head honcho, Jon Tutton), is that the selection of exhibitors is of the highest quality.  Every single stall has beautifully produced items and I could easily have taken hundreds of pics. So, please see the photos in this blog post as merely to give you a flavour of the type of work you'll find.
~ Rachel Eardley and Brighton pier
Made Brighton 2014 ~
Particular highlights for me included meeting artist Rachel Eardley whose work I have admired for the last ten years, as well as a necklace with squirrels and acorn on it, a wedding slipper, lampshades made out of maps and vases so miniature they have been designed to take only a small posy of wild flowers.
~ Porcelain, terracotta and stoneware spoons @BoltCeramics
Made Brighton 2014 ~

To see a full list of all the exhibitors and find out more go to Made Brighton website.

~ Kate Evans Ceramics, Made Brighton 2014 ~
E-tickets are available online at Eventbrite or on the door at £6.50 per person (children under 14 years free). This includes the catalogue, listing all exhibitors and a beautiful cotton goody bag - (subject to demand)

Saturday 22 nd November 10 am - 6:00 pm (last entry 5:30 pm)

Sunday 23 rd November 10 am - 5:00 pm (last entry 4:30 pm)

MADE14 takes place in the Corn Exchange, Church Street, Brighton BN1 1UG

~ @PhoebeJewellery, Made Brighton 2014 ~

10 November 2014

The last poppy will be planted tomorrow at 11am at the Tower of London - 11 November 2014

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Over 100 years ago on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month representatives of France, Great Britain and Germany met at a secret location, north of Paris to end the Great War.
~ Tower of London, November 2014
Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red ~

Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red, at the Tower of London was commissioned and installed to commemorate this event, which took place 100 years ago tomorrow.

In total 888,246 ceramic poppies were made, representing the number of British military fatalities during that war. Over the last three months all except for one have now been planted in the Tower of London's moat.  Created by ceramicist Paul Cummins and stage designer Tom Piper the impact of this most thought provoking and spectacular art installation is incredible.

~ Tower of London, November 2014 ~
Seeing it for the first time on Saturday night, I was struck by the scale.  I hadn't realised before that they are planted all the way round the Tower of London's circumference and it's a huge site.  When I first arrived, I looked down into the moat and my first thought was that it really did look like a sea of blood, the way the poppies had been packed in, in rows upon rippling rows. It was stunning and undiminished by the gathering gloom of the cold and rainy night. Despite the weather there was still a good number of other visitors walking around the perimeter. 

I kept walking onwards thinking the installation would reach its end, but the poppies kept beckoning me forwards, until I realised there was no end, remembrance to infinity. 

Fascinated by people's different responses I overheard scraps of information as this moment was intimately shared; "The poppies have all been sold", "Stand there, I'm either getting you or the poppies", "There's one for every person who died". Everywhere phones and cameras were held upright to capture the sight, people taking selfies and someone positioning their terrier to take a picture.  None of this however was out of place, there was a general feeling of hushed respect. The significance of this sea of blood was too impossible to ignore, the scale too vast for anyone to be unaffected.

~ Tower of London, November 2014
Sea of poppies  ~
Every one of the 888,246 hand-made ceramic poppies has now been sold for £25.00 each with all the net proceeds going to six nominated service charities - Cobseo, Combat Stress, Coming Home, Help for Heroes, The Royal British Legion and SSAFA.

The first poppy was planted on 17 July by the Tower of London’s longest serving Yeoman Warder, with the official launch of the installation on 5 August.  Over the last few months around 8,000 volunteers have taken part in planting the poppies over a staggering 16 acres, including my mother Judy and her band of buddies.  "It was an experience I will never forget, I am so glad I took part" said mum.

Tomorrow, on Armistice Day, 11 November 2014, the final poppy will be planted by a young cadet, who will place it in the moat before a lone bugler will sound the last post prior to 11am, after which the two minute silence will commence.

Click here to see photos I took last year of a field of real poppies outside Brighton in Falmer.

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5 November 2014

NEW Friends of Brighton Fringe membership scheme

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Brighton Fringe are delighted to announce an exciting new Friends membership scheme that will give members benefits year-round as well as during the Fringe (1 – 31 May 2015).

Friends of Brighton Fringe are now able to buy one of four levels of memberships; Platinum (£150), Gold (£75), Silver (£30) and Bronze (£15) entitling them to discounts at some of their favourite hotels, restaurants, bars, cafes and spas across the city.

Friends will also see benefits when Brighton Fringe tickets go on sale (24 February for Friends of Brighton Fringe) with the usual ‘in-festival’ offers such as priority booking, 2-4-1 offers, no booking fees, invites to launch parties and monthly e-newsletters still a core part of the membership package.

Platinum Friends of Brighton Fringe will be entitled to discounts at top-end establishments such as 10% off accommodation at Blanch House, 20% off wine and food at Ten Green Bottles, 20% off at Riddle & Finns, 25% off food at Graze plus offers from Plateau, Mange Tout, The Spa at The Grand, Drakes Hotel and Stanmer House. Platinum Friends will also receive all benefits in the lower tiers.

Gold members can expect to find discounts at Grow40, Bill’s, Curry Leaf CafĂ© and Hotel Seattle
whilst Silver Friends of Brighton Fringe will find exclusive offers at Little Bay, Chaula’s, Little Jasmine Spa and Strada. Both membership tiers are entitled to the offers in the tiers below.

Bronze members will still receive a huge number of benefits from Friends of Brighton Fringe partners such as The Seven Stars, Foodilic, The Brunswick, Bagelman, The Oriental, The Cyclist and Komedia.

  Julian Caddy, Managing Director of Brighton Fringe, said: “Brighton Fringe is now a year-round feature in the city- and anybody can benefit from it with an unprecedented and growing number of discounts for Friends of Brighton Fringe Members. Not only will you be able to save money, you are also providing vital support to a local arts charity while you are at it. Remember that the more members we have, the better Brighton Fringe will be!

Benefits will be constantly added to the Friends of Brighton Fringe membership scheme, with the latest offers all available on the Brighton Fringe website.

You can buy memberships by clicking this link: http://www.brightonfringe.org/friends


Brighton Fringe is also on the lookout for more businesses to become Partners in our Friends of Brighton Fringe membership scheme. If you are interested get in touch with Karla Hancock on karla.hancock@brightonfringe.org.

2 November 2014

Tune in Tomorrow Morning for the First Ever Crafty Beggars show, Monday 3 November 2014 at 9am on TLC

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~ Crafty Beggars tv show on TLC ~
As more and more people fall in love with the world of crafting, a new programme called Crafty Beggars is sure to become a popular tv show for the seasoned and the craft-curious alike.

With a fun, tongue in cheek presenting style from the ever-jolly Julie Peasgood and her fellow, equally golden Wendy Turner Webster, we are introduced to pairs of crafters who have to beg, borrow and buy items to turn into hand-made crafts for sale the next day. 

On day one each team is given a few hours and twenty quid, along with their ingenuity to obtain the raw materials they need to bring their ideas to life. Once these have been gathered, each pair set to work sewing, sticking, cutting, painting and generally getting creative for the following day's selling. 

I was lucky enough to be sent the first two episodes to preview and really enjoyed spotting familiar places around Brighton where the show was filmed.  The teams arrive at their pop up stalls, in the north laine area to sell their crafts and in each show the winning team is decided by who makes the most cash. 
~ Crafty Beggars tv show ~

Along the way, Julie and Wendy share some interesting trivia, hints and tips related to the craft making of the contestants in the show.

Added to this, Julie and Wendy have also created a fab Crafty Beggars website with their own blogs (loved the photos of Wendy's ceramics) and a link to Hobbycraft where you can find out how to get 15% off your next purchase.

The show premieres tomorrow morning on TLC, when Julie and Wendy will meet crafters who upcycle bottle-tops into jewellery and personalised hand-stitched cards (thread sketching), with origami and bunting in episode Two. 

TLC is available on Sky 125, Virgin 169, BT TV 413 and Talk Talk 413.


29 October 2014

TedX Brighton 2014, Many Hands - this Friday 31 October 2014

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This year's TedX Brighton is in less than two days time and the full line-up is settled. Taking place this Friday 31st of October 2014 at the Dome Concert Hall for its fourth consecutive year, the title is Many Hands. There are nineteen speakers listed, split into four themes: Reaching Out, Drawn Together, The Makers and Going Beyond. The over-arching themes are related to connectivity, convergence and community and will be covering such topics as the dark web, the wisdom of crowds and the new ethical supermarket initiative, hiSbe.

Here's a round-up of some of the speakers I'll be most interested to see and why.
~ TEDx Brighton 2014 ~

Have you ever wished you could predict the future? Karl Mattingly is a man who can do just that. Karl is CEO of Slow Voice, a company he created to harvest the wisdom of crowds in order to predict, among other things, the outcome of geo political events. The results have been scarily accurate and Karl is hoping to make some predictions about the future of Brighton.

Sam Roddick is an artist, radical activist, founder of Coco de Mer and a regular contributor to television and radio. Sam was one of the first people invited to talk as Sam Orams, the Producer, "just knew she would light up the stage with her passion, enthusiasm and fresh thinking. Sam’s the kind of person that you can’t help but listen to and admire, so I’m really looking forward to hearing her talk."

Anyone who loved the recent series “The Men Who Made Us Spend” will be looking forward to meeting the programme's writer and presenter, investigative journalist and broadcaster, Jacques Peretti. His new series, tackles inequality: what is really driving it, and why it has been accepted as inevitable. Jacques is taking part in the makers section of the day, during which we will be exploring the seemingly lost art of making things for ourselves.

Along with her sister Amy, Ruth Anslow  is a Co-Founder of hiSbe Food, a new kind of supermarket. Built on ethical and transparent trading practises and sustainable sourcing policies, it is a brand new type of independent supermarket. Their aim with hiSbe is to make good food more affordable. Ruth and hiSbe are on a mission to take on the mainstream supermarkets and make the food industry fairer and more sustainable. hisbe.co.uk | @RuthAnslow

Here's a list of the running order and times:

9:40 Session 1: Reaching Out
Karl Mattingly, Stefania Druga, Ju Row Farr, Deanna Rodger
11:00 Break
11:30 Session 2: Drawn Together
Peter James, Megan Leckie ,Ruth Anslow ,CiCi Blumstein
12:30 Lunch
14:15 Session 3: The Makers
Jacques Peretti, Ben Edmonds, Andoitz Telleria, EJ Osborne ,Tom Lywood, James Otter, Jim Fleeting
15:30 Break
15:50 Session 4: Going Beyond
Camille Baker, Alan Pearce, Fox Fisher, Sam Roddick
17:00 Close

There are only a few tickets left for this completely volunteer run and not for profit event. Every penny made this year will be re-invested into making next year even bigger and better.

Click on TedX Brighton, to read my other blog about this year's event.

20 October 2014


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This Monday, 20 October marks the start of a new year for Brighton Fringe. Everyone is encouraged to take part in England’s largest arts festival, which runs for 4 weeks from 1 – 31 May 2015; incorporating May half-term and both bank holidays.

Online event registration is open from noon on 20 October until 30 January and anyone wanting to showcase their talent at any venue from their front room to a large theatre is welcome to sign up using the online registration form here: http://registration.brightonfringe.org

Brighton Fringe are always looking for ways to make taking part affordable for participants, and this year is no different. Those that are well organised can save up to £30 by taking advantage of the Early Bird discount on registration fees by registering before 15 December.

To help with the cost of putting on a fringe show, Brighton Fringe has secured four funding schemes (with more to be confirmed) to support participants, including the returning Pebble Trust Brighton Fringe Awards, match funding from crowdfunding partners Zequs and IdeasTap bursaries.

Legal & General are also running a revamped bursary scheme, with 12 bursaries on offer to local Brighton Fringe participants over the age of 60. This is the first year of running this new scheme with the aim to engage older people with the arts.

During and after event registration, all participants benefit from professional advice, support and resources offered by Brighton Fringe, including a programme of Professional Development workshops with expert speakers and one-on-one sessions.

Brighton Fringe also runs an Arts Industry Service, which encourages Arts Industry Professionals from across the UK and the world to visit Brighton in May to look for exciting new work. In 2014 over 150 Arts Industry Professionals were accredited, and they attended 158 events. Many Brighton Fringe participants have taken their work elsewhere as a result of this service. The popular Family Guide will also be returning, expected to feature over 150 events just for families as their number continues to increase with the festival including the half term week.

Brighton Fringe are also launching a new Friends membership scheme on 20 October, to now include benefits year-round as well as during the festival period. Friends of Brighton Fringe will receive discounts at their favourite hotels, bars, restaurants and spas across the city on top of the popular 2-4-1 ticket offers, priority booking, paying no booking fees and invites to VIP events. You can become a Friend of Brighton Fringe on our website at www.brightonfringe.org/friends

The ever-popular Brighton Fringe brochure will hit the streets in early March, with the programme launching online at the end of February.

Julian Caddy, Managing Director of Brighton Fringe, said: “The beauty of Brighton Fringe’s format is that it is completely open access, meaning anybody can take part, putting on whatever you want to do, wherever you want to do it. This allows for the widest variety of events to be found anywhere in the country. The services that we provide year-round will help you at every step of the way, with ongoing professional development support, funding information and connections with other festivals, venues and events. Ultimately, our role is to help your work be as good as it can be, so you can benefit from all the opportunities that are available to you. The journey starts here and we look forward to joining you.”

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9 October 2014

“Best Venue” The Marlborough Theatre calls for applications to Brighton Fringe 2015

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~ Marlborough Theatre venue ~
Winners of last year’s “Best Venue” award at Brighton Fringe 2014, The Marlborough Theatre, are now welcoming applications for their 2015 programme.

Taking place throughout May at hundreds of venues across Brighton and Hove, Brighton Fringe is England’s largest arts festival and the third largest open access arts festival in the world. Every year the showcase of diverse art forms offers both local talent and artists from across the globe the opportunity to find new audiences and gain valuable media exposure. The Marlborough is at the heart of this fantastic celebration of culture.  

The Marlborough Theatre is one of the best equipped and flexible small-scale spaces on the Fringe. The beautiful proscenium arch stage, complete with velvet curtains, sits above a friendly and eclectic pub and hosts over 30 shows each year during the festival. Throughout the rest of the year The Marlborough continues to present exciting and boundary-pushing work to a diverse public from all walks of life. It’s also the home of Pink Fringe, year-round producers of Queer performance.
Last year’s line-up on the Fringe included “Best Performance” award winning play “Thief” by Liam Rudden, Argus Angel for comedy to Casual ViolenceRosana Cade’s Sister”, named Outstanding Show by Fringe Review, and two sell-out shows by comedy stars of the future Sleeping Trees. In previous years they have also attracted work by the likes of Neil Bartlett and Bette Bourne.  
Outside Marlborough Theatre
The Marlborough Theatre team are now looking for the best fringe theatre, comedy, cabaret and performance to fill their programme. You can find details on applying for their programme here
The Marlborough Theatre’s Autumn Season kicks off on Thursday October 16th, so there are lots of reasons to check out the venue while applications are open! See more here

Notes to Editors
-          The Marlborough Theatre won “Best Venue” at The Latest Festival and Fringe awards 2014, and “Thief” by Liam Rudden won “Best Performance”. You can see a full list of awards here: The Latest 2014 awards
-          Application details: DrinkinBrighton Marlborough application
-          Autumn programme: Marlborough Autumn programme

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