The Crafty Crofters go Etsy!

In the past months a lot has happened. This pandemic has made an impact on all of our lives in one way or another. I realise I have been very fortunate as for me personally the Covid-19 pandemic meant that although unfortunately I lost my main job as a hostel manager at Achmelvich Beach YH other opportunities emerged. It also made me realise how wonderful my community is and how much I love living where I live and love what I do. With my income from the fire service (yes I am a firefighter!) I was still able to pay my bills and being (partially) unemployed had a positive side effect. I now had so much more time available for my crafting. I have been experimenting with dyeing , worked on my weaving skills, have been knitting, spinning, crocheting and sewing. Curious about what I’ve been up to these past months? Follow the Crafty Crofters on Instagram @craftycrofters.

Thanks to all this creating and experimenting I found myself in a situation where I finally had enough stock to think about starting our own Crafty Crofters Etsy shop. As the local craft markets have unfortunately been cancelled this year due to covid-19 restrictions this seemed to be the prefect time to find an online market for some of our lovely handmade items. We’d been thinking about this for a while but never quite got around to actually getting it done. Want to have a look what we’ve got in our shop? Click here: TheCraftyCrofters.

Crafting in times of Coronavirus

It has become more and more apparent over the past 4 weeks how serious the current crisis caused by the outbreak of the novel coronavirus is worldwide. The economic impact of measures taken to slow down the spread of the virus is unprecendent in its scale. Businesses big and small are suffering from the collapse of economic activity, the cancellation of events and travel restrictions. Small craft businesses and individual crafters who rely on Craft Markets during the tourist season have suddenly lost their real world sale opportunity as so many others have lost income which they otherwise might have spent on presents for friends or souvenirs from their travel. As the Craft Markets in Lochinver have been cancelled until further notice, we, the Crafty Crofters and other stall holders, are currently looking into setting up a means to hold a “virtual market” through the Made in Assynt Website as well as Facebook pages and our own business websites. When this has been set up, we will publish the links and invite people to support their local crafters by browsing online with the opportunity to contact businesses directly and perhaps buy online and have items posted. Stay tuned and even more importantly, stay safe and well.

While we are not getting together physically as we did at the beginning of March for a session with natural dyestuffs, we know we will be staying in touch by other means. And if you always wanted to take up making things yourself, maybe now is the time to get the knitting needles out or to learn a new craft with the help of the many tutorials already out there in the world wide web of crafting knowledge.

Christmas Made in Assynt Market 2019

Only one week to go until this year’s Made in Assynt Christmas Market in Lochinver Village Hall. It looks like it’s going to be a busy market which will extend beyond the main hall into the community room. Jorine, Sue, Clarinda and myself have all been busy making new things for our stall. Birds that you can see around Assynt inspired Sue to make her beautiful whimsical glass birds, while Jorine knitted wonderfully soft and colourful legwarmers. She also designed and wove a collection of bands or belts on her Inkleloom. They can be used for example to make straps for a bag or a camera or can be worn as a belt.

For those looking for an alternative to (often single use) paper gift wrapping, I made a range of different sized drawstring gift bags in Christmas fabric. These bags can be reused many times either within a family or passed on with another gift by the person who received one in it this Christmas.

If you like Harris Tweed, you may find something on our stall: Cushions, purses, brooches, glasses/phone cases and knitting needle cases all made from the gorgeous woollen fabric. These and more lovely and useful things are waiting for you to explore. We hope to see you in Lochinver Village Hall, Saturday 30th of November from 10-4pm.