This past weekend, I attended a local arts fair in the industrial north-side sub-community of Edinburgh, Leith. In the past few years, Leith has begun to see a revival, though some more posh inhabitants of Edinburgh still regard it as the 'bad' neighborhood and advise against it on late weekend nights. I, for one, love it for its unassuming character, graffiti and community vibe. There is a catch-all community centre a few blocks down from my friend Susan's flat, that hosts events from yoga to senior dance classes, clothing swaps to art fairs, all served with a side of home-made cakes and strong coffee.
All of the artists and crafts persons were local, and the variety was wide, but I've included some pictures of those that caught my eye. Many have just started up their business and are unfortunately not selling their works online yet, but for those who have, I've provided the links. I bought the leather wallet with the heart, which I absolutely adore, from the two delightfully charismatic Irish women pictured just before it. If you're local and also need a hair cut, Aoife will help you out with that too. Although she isn't currently selling her wallets and smoke satchels online, she might be coerced to do a transcontinental transaction you one if you emailed her kindly at:
Aoife O'Callaghan firstname.lastname@example.org
I was also thrilled by morag macpherson tEXtILES. Morag worked first as a graphic designer, but has transferred her talent to designing and printing one-of-a-kind textiles on a variety of fabrics. Based in Glasgow, Scotland, Morag finds inspiration in the colours, cultures, and environments of her personal travel experiences. And she is well traveled, having been invited to many top international design exhibitions. Morag will be attending the 23rd annual International Contemporary Furniture Fair in NYC, May 14-17, 2011.
If you like industrial environments as I do, you may fancy the graphic artwork by Edd Wellesley-Davies. Mainly featuring scenes in Edinburgh and its surrounds in his latest works, he creates his images by starting with a photograph, then layering it with colours, textures and other scenes to create images that emanate the vibrancy and grit of a living cityscape.
If I had unlimited suitcase space, and an unlimited fashion-splurge allowance for that matter, I would have come home with a furry sheep wool lined jacket that look oh-so-Kate Moss and a black and gold 1960s mini dress. Just thinking about it makes me have non-buyers remorse, if such a term exists. Aside from the wonderful vintage apparel, Adrienne Oloughlin makes some gorgeous understated prints of calming nature scenes. Her prints can be bought from her e-shop on folksy.com – the UK's equivalent to etsy.com. You can also follow her blog, The Windmill Stump, to keep an eye on upcoming prints.
Caroline Engel for Danish Teak Classics