Opening the studios of Banks’ Mill

This weekend has seen the studios at Banks’ Mill in Derby open to the public. We are associate members of the mill, so packed up our wares and occupied an empty studio to welcome in customers.

We had a brilliant time talking to everyone and used the weekend to launch several new styles that have yet to hit our webstore, the feedback has been wonderful. We are branching into accessories in the near future, which included one of a kind textiles made from wonderful vintage fabrics such as French Linen. Keep your eyes peeled over the next few days as we are going to launch one of these on the web in a blog giveaway which will also include one of our silver pieces!

The Mill is a listed building, visually this means it oozes artistic character, practically it means a heck of a lot of stairs and no lift! If you can make it to the top floor not only are rewarded with the knowledge that you are quite fit, but you find such delights as jeweller Lucy Palmer.

I was trying to think how I could describe Lucy’s work and do it justice and I’m not sure I can, to put it simply it’s magical!

Opposite us was Lyanne McCredie who makes the most fantastic stained glass, if you ever watched Kirstie Allsops ‘Homemade home’ then you would love this studio. The precision, time and effort in these pieces makes you gasp at the patience that must be required.

We also met the lovely Helen Meakin who is a woven textile artist. Helen’s studio houses a large loom but instead of thread she weaves in metal! Her lampshades have an earthy brilliance and the golden accents catch the light to amazing effect.

Several other artists were kind enough to let me photograph their work to show you, the vibrant studio of Sara Taylor couldn’t possibly fail to catch your eye, infact I had my picture taken looking at this very wall for the local paper!

Next door to us was the wonderful Sheena Holland ,her work has graced the pages of several top magazines and it’s easy to see why when you look at these pics

My final artistic mention has to go to illustrator Tracey Meek who was selling these whimsical badges which instantly caught my eye.

There will be another open weekend before Christmas check Banks’ Mill website for details. It’s such a great way to meet artists in their own environment and to buy pieces which you might not otherwise see. Plus a lot do specials just for the weekend.

Many studios host open evenings/weekends so if there is one near you it is always worth checking. A lot of them will feed you too, we offered our visitors small heart biscuits with AE for ‘Angel Eden’ on them. Even though the tag said eat me in an Alice in Wonderland homage, many people didn’t realise they were real.

Remember to check back later this week for our competition.

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