One of the things I love about Brighton is finding out about all the interesting people who live here. People who focus on the living side of the work / life balance, people who find ways to embrace their creative sides and people who take risks to make exciting things happen. Sam Holland is one of those people and it is a pleasure to share her story about how she is making things happen (pun intended) and to tell you about the Brighton Craft Alliance Fair this Saturday 20 July, where you can expect to hear some great music provided by Fiddlesparks while browsing.
|Brighton Craft Alliance|
How did you get involved in the Brighton Craft Alliance and why?
After spending 17 years commuting to London and working in banking, I left after redundancy in March 2011 and soon realised I wanted to pursue my dreams of becoming a creative, in some shape or form. I felt I had always been very creative, and since my 30's had performed on and off stage at several theatres in Brighton, whilst somehow managing to fit it in around my demanding career.
After a few twists and turns following the redundancy, in the summer of 2011 I found myself learning how to source, make and design jewellery, and 'Hung on You' was born. I decided to take the plunge and sell my jewellery at some of the local craft fairs, which I loved, and then the entrepreneur in me raised it's head and I decided I wanted to create my own craft fair, which I did, with a friend, and Brighton Craft Alliance was born. We started off in a small, lovely space at The Brunswick pub, Hove, bought a dozen trestle tables, made lots of bunting, marketed the event, had lots of people interested in, and off we went.
What have been the high points so far?
After several months my friend decided to leave, and being determined, I vowed to carry on and grow the business. I decided I wanted to move things forward and move to bigger venues, and most importantly creating more footfall, and I would say our high points so far is exhibiting in the Garden Marquee at Stanmer House and also Brighton Unitarian Church, where we had our first and very successful pop-up cafe 'Hello Treacle'.
What are you most looking forward to at the next fair?
Our next craft fair is at The Shoreham Centre on Saturday 20th July. This is another new venue and a chance to reach out to yet another new community. We're very excited to have lots of new exhibitors on board, and thrilled to have 'Hello Treacle' popping up again serving tea, cake and savouries all day.
Anything else you can tell us about what makes the Brighton Craft Alliance fair special?
We are an arts, craft and vintage fair, showcasing the brightest talents in contemporary handmade and vintage purveyors. We jury all exhibitors via our online application to bring our fairs an eclectic range of products to suit all tastes. Held monthly in locations in and around Brighton, we welcome applications from creative types offering goods in a wide variety of media, ranging from jewellery, fashion, ceramics, furniture, home accessories, furniture, bath and body products, screen printed art and paper goods to name a few. We are also always keen to hear from anyone willing to host a creative workshop at our events, including musicians interested to play for an hour or more.
For further details, see Brighton Craft Alliance Facebook page and Twitter BrightonCA, or call Sam Holland regarding any of our events on Tel: 07860 596908.