If you see the words ‘Craft Fair’, what immediately springs to mind? Is it a collection of rickety tables in a dusty church hall or school gym, populated with slightly bonkers people who crochet dolly toilet roll covers or glue glitter to everything? That was certainly my vision and, to be fair, was probably pretty accurate in times gone by. But no more!!
Nowadays you can find an artisan craft market most weekends, in most towns and villages, and many have strict rules about the standard of trader they will accept and the quality of the goods on offer. Hand Crafted isn’t the same thing as home-made!
Thanks to well-organised events by groups such as Naturally North Coast and Glens , Artisan Markets NI , Fine and Dandy Market and Causeway Speciality Market to name but a few, you can now find a huge selection of exciting, original and locally-made goods, most weekends.
Traders at their events must all hold Product and Public Liability Insurance and food traders are inspected and rated by their local Council for hygiene. Anyone selling cosmetic products or items for children, for example soft toys, must hold all the relevant testing and safety certifications.
All this means that you can buy with confidence, knowing that you are supporting local small businesses and buying something which has been made with care and real passion.
Over the next couple of weeks, you can find Bluebell Handmade Jewellery at the following events:
* Sunday 3 April, Merville House Newtownabbey, from 11 until 4. Free entry, free parking.
* Saturday 9 April, St Patrick’s Hall Portrush, from 10 until 1. £5 entry fee includes a cuppa and cake – raising funds for Causeway Community rescue.
Hope to see you there!