Monday, 15 April 2013

Keswick Crafts

Bill and I had a day out at Keswick after Sarah and 'the Simons' had gone.  Martin and Helen went in a different direction and we got back together for dinner.  I was thinking I'd been to Keswick before, but perhaps it was Kendal...all those Lake District villages, all those K names...

I noticed the lovely old Congregational Hall.

Bill was the one that noticed there was a crafts fair on.  Bless him.

I mainly look for ideas, but then when I was looking at some things made around maps, the gentleman behind the table began to talk to me.  

I was taken with his little map-covered notebooks, about 3 x 5 inches, if that big.  He explained that he started framing map sections and cutting his own mats. He had developed his own style of what looked like double matting, but was in fact just a second groove cut to frame the hole in the middle. He hated to see the matting from the hole wasted, not to mention the bits of map that were outside the framed section, so he began making these cute little notebooks.

I was saying how much I admired people who could 'make something from nothing'.  He said he disliked the terms 'upscaling' or 'up-cycling' or even 'recycling'.  He preferred to think of it as giving something a new life. He went on to show me his price tags.  They were tiny sized tags the usual shape of a rectangle with a pointy end.  He said they cost a lot to purchase, so he started making his own. Sure enough, the back of his cardboard tags showed that he drank whiskey and ate cereal.  By that time, I was so impressed I had to buy one of his little notebooks.  I was just going to tuck it into my backpack, but he insisted I needed a bag:  it was a lovely replica of a brown paper bag, made from magazine pages!

He had no business card or I'd be sharing that with you.  He was quick to point out he wasn't a business, this was just his hobby.  Bill would probably say that in fact the man was in sales and that, as with all sales jobs, he sold himself well.  He was certainly easy to talk with.

I then went on to he next table and spoke with his wife, who had enjoyed eavesdropping on our conversation as she stood there knitting.  

I admired her fabric wares, but didn't feel the need to purchase any.  I will admit to taking note of some ideas, particularly for what she called a 'Wendy basket', after her friend who shared the idea with her.  If I ever get around to having a go at that I will certainly share it.

All the while, Bill wandered off and snapped a few photos. 

I finally caught up with him and we went for a pot of tea and a couple of scones at Bryson's, just hitting the last of the late lunch rush.

After standing in a queue for a bit, we lucked out and got a table in the window.  We sat drinking tea, watching the world walk by and baking in the sun!


Beryl said...

Thanks for the village tour! A small map covered notebook would be just enough different for very cute gifts.
It's a little grey here today, and Tea and Scones sounds Heavenly. I think I'll plan on baking some this weekend.

Shelley said...

Beryl - The precision of that man's work is completely amazing. I was actually a bit disappointed in Bryson's scones - fresh out of the fridge and not toasty at all. That sun was delicious though...wish I'd been able to bring some home with me.

Carolyn said...

That man sounds a man after my own heart.. or should that more correctly read that I am after his own heart? I'm never sure whether that saying is age based or not... Anyway, what a gorgeous day out! The photos of the village are so lovely, and the afternoon tea a real treat!

Shelley said...

Carolyn - I would take your first phrase as correct. He was a man after my own heart, definitely. No idea about the age thing. It think it just refers to common interests or something. It was a good day out and the afternoon tea was just cream on top...