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The Contemporary Craft Fair

The Contemporary Craft Fair is the best show I do in terms of the range and quality of crafts on sale. Everyone is selected and for that reason it is the best craft show in the South West.
As some of you know I have a foot in various camps, yes that’s right I have 5 feet! My first love and passion is green woodwork, followed by making and designing seating, then comes sculpture, photography, and the list continues. I have been demonstrating at this show for some years now and I appreciate that it has demonstrations of traditional crafts whilst showing contemporary crafts.

I love demonstrating and passing-on my knowledge. This year I was not only worked on the pole-lathe and made spoons, I was also showed how to make fan birds. It rained all day on Saturday and I did not have much custom in the way of sales or people watching my demonstrations, so I managed to make up plenty of blanks for Sundays demonstrations. It is fine to do a half hour plus demo at the Bodgers Ball but most people at other shows tend to wander off half way through, so in great Blue Peter fashion I have birds in various states of completion. Fan bird demonstrating is a bit like the never ending story: as new people turn up I have to go back and explain how I start the birds.

I met Chris Nangle for the first time at the show, I have been seeing his work all over the internet for some years now, and have much admired his outdoor seating. Chris gave me one one of his oak bowls. I am sorry about the quality of the photos, I could not have done worse if I tried

The DevonFurniture Makers stand was next near my stand this year. Here is Allen, in front of his elm mirror.

The Craft fair has a very large children’s workshop tent where all sorts of things are made whilst parents can have a good look around or relax and have a drink. There is plenty of entertainment as well with Punch and Judy, choirs, singers and comedians.

Below is a photo of Sarah James, the show’s organiser. This photo is taken at about 6.30 pm on Sunday as I was breaking down the stand. As I turned up on Sunday morning I saw Sarah spread straw in the car park over the churned up mud, a consequence of Saturdays rain. I have never seen a show organiser take such an active role as Sarah, so well done to her and her team. This fair is one of the best and well organised shows I have been to. It is a shame that so many organizers at other fairs are not as conscientious.

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