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Harburn Village Hall - Craft Fair 2014




craft fair 1Another Festive Cheer Year for the Harburn Craft Fair

As a local Harburndonian (dictionary meaning – one who resides in Harburn), I have been attending the Harburn Craft Fair for over 14 years now (it’s been on the go for over 20 years – perhaps 30 years now) – so I suppose it was almost apt for me to be the chosen one (by ‘you can’t get out of this one’ Norry Boulting) this year to report back on my findings!
My son and I were greeted at the door by long standing (literally) Dave McDonald and his fine assistant Alistair who sold us our raffle tickets for the ‘donated by stall holders’ gifts on display. The great excitement and gasp was from my son Roan who was keen to win the largest item on this table – the all singing and dancing ‘with real smoke’ Santa Christmas train. “Well I hope you win it Roan” as we entered into the warmth and welcome from the Harburn Craft Fair stall holders and the glamorous Harburn Rural ladies at the ever popular cake stall and tea room. (Pictures: Heidi: Sales Team}

I decided to start anti-clockwise on my round of the stalls – no idea why but perhaps it was the welcoming waft of bacon rolls which was tempting me to head to the kitchen area and cake stall – I am sure it was. I resisted temptation though. Apparently, at lunch time the hall was heaving with all tables full. (Picture: Dave's Squad)
There were so many cakes to choose from but what caught my eye were the chocolate pop cakes – delicious they were too. I don’t think there was much baking left at the end of the day – a tribute to our local ladies who work hard in the background and donate their delicious baking and jams for sale.
The first craft stall was hosted by Irene Mulholland whose kind donations from sales of her handmade and second hand Christmas ware were all going to the Harburn Hall.  Proving popular were the delightful Christmas decorations which were selling fast.
The Crafty Cauldron drew me in with the gorgeous aroma of handmade aromatherapy bath and body gifts which are made with the finest natural ingredients and essential oils. I just couldn’t resist the fairy dust bath sprinkle on offer.
Susan Howie’s Calder Crafts stall was very appealing with some beautiful colourful animal themed patchwork, quilting and handmade festive cards. Worth a special mention though, was the Ferrero Roche knitted hat covers.  The must have item for Christmas 2014! I loved the spiced aroma hens. Of course I had to have the pink one.
Crafty Creations were back on stage this time with Liz Steele’s gorgeous Christmas trees and Christmas decorations. So much hard work and detail goes into Liz’s unusual colourful shimmer array of Christmas cheer.                  Joining Crafty Creations on stage were returning husband and wife duo Sue and Frank Whittle with their Funkrase Crafts. Sue was showing off her unusual knitted gifts and children’s clothing in which I was drawn to the gorgeous safari animal key rings and heart shaped handbags. Frank’s detailed and beaded bling earrings were gathering much attention from the men of Harburn. I suspect a Christmas gift for their loved ones…which was lovely to see. (See picture below right: Sue of Funkrase)
Next on my rounds I was expecting to turn round and see Jenni Tuffs at the usual fire exit door, and was surprised to see that Jenni had instead turned into the friendly wood craftsman Peter West who was camped out instead.  Jenni from Roundhouse Publications – we wish you a speedy recovery from your broken arm injury – we hope it’s not the painting arm!
Peter West’s display of craftsmanship is always a sight to see each year.  Everything you can imagine handmade from Scottish hardwood – from drum sticks to pestle and mortars and even envelope openers. My son is fascinated with this stall. It’s the first one he goes to each year so he can add to his collection of wooden spinning tops. However, new for this year and I can honestly say a new fashion accessory if you need one was the e-cigarette wooden neck holder. David McDonald jokingly remarked that it was actually worth taking up e-cigarettes just to own one!
Pat Provan’s stall reminded me of an enchanted forest with some beautiful pieces of jewellery and decorations hanging on her tree. Pat also makes fine wedding jewellery custom made to your specification. Lots of shimmering golds and silvers, and gorgeous Christmas beaded decorations.
I left Pat’s stall into another place in Narnia - Heather’s Craft Studio with her display of country, contemporary and mixed media altered art. Well I couldn’t resist – I had just bought some fairy dust from across the way and now I was debating on which handmade fairy door to choose. Heather said she had one in every room…I suppose that’s what fairies need but on this occasion we bought two – and will be saving up for more next year. Just what we needed said my husband when I got home ha ha! They do look cute though. Even the dog was sniffing at the door but the fairies didn’t appear. At least not yet.

 

Iona Allen attends the Harburn Craft Fair each year as a one-off annual  appearance to display her collection of wonderful gifts. She has some very nice pieces of jewellery made with crystals and semi-precious gem stones including some fab earrings, and this year new to her collection - some unusual furry friend brooches in all colours.
Another wood craftsman– Roy Pritchard was showing off his wood turning skills too with some lovely pieces – bowls, plates and pots – all made handcrafted from birch wood. A nice gift for your kitchen or display cabinet.
Harburn Craft fair wouldn’t be the same without Delightful Chocolates being there, and with mum Catherine who does a great job lovingly selling her son Alasdair Macewan’s scrumptious chocolates, in particular his new chocolate Christmas trees and Santa Sleighs. After having too many of the tasters, we opted for the delicious strawberry chocolate tasters to take home which didn’t last the length of our five minute journey home sadly. I must follow them on Facebook and Twitter or would that be bad for my figure?
And finally, in the same front entrance exhibit area as ever was Ray Kew from Kew Kottage Krafts with her fabulous collection of knitwear  (and cards including John Wilkinson’s old favourites) – all hand spun from her finest flock back home of naturally coloured fleece and honourably named after each one of them. I liked Ray’s new funky flower hair bands which were very popular with the ladies of West Calder and Harburn alike.
Well I had managed to get round all the stalls and was absolutely delighted with my purchases and of course the social chat. I think I did it in 45 minutes which is unusual for me – afterall I do like to blether.
All was left to do was check out our raffle tickets to see if we had won anything. “Roan – please go and check the door to see if our number has come up”, said I. Silence then….squeals of delight from one satisfied customer “Mum!! We’ve won the train!” (Thanks Irene Mulholland for the best ever raffle donation.)
All in all another successful craft fair for me as a serial craft shopper, and I hope for the local crafters too whose skills and work are a credit to our local community.
A special mention and a huge thank you should go to:
  • Isobel McChesney – Chief Organiser and the last one to leave the building!
  • Ray Kew for organising the advertising of  flyers and signage.
  • David McDonald and Alistair West (for such a welcoming reception and chief raffle ticket sellers – albeit you were absolutely frozen!). Maybe someone should knit these guys giant sized Ferrero Roche hats for next year.
  • The Harburn Rural ladies (too many to mention – but you all know who you are) for the wonderful hospitality, food, drinks and cake offerings. I believe you sold 60 bacon rolls! Well done to the whole team behind the scenes and front of house.
  • To the local crafters for supporting the Harburn Craft Fair
  • Everyone who came along to enjoy the festive cheer. I hope you found what you were looking for.
Roll on 2015 Craft Fair – Season’s Greetings.
Written by Heidi Idle, Harburndonian
Craft Stall Contacts
Irene Mulholland Tel: 01506 872709
The Crafty Cauldron Tel: 01506 834464 
Calder Crafts Tel: 01506 872441
Crafty Creations Tel: 01506 844688
Funkrase Crafts Tel: 01506 871040
Peter West’s Tel: 01501 7722790
Pat Provan Tel: 01506 435612
Heather’s Craft Studio email:  heatherfs33@blueyonder.co.uk
Iona Allen Tel: 01506 873073
Roy Pritchard Tel: 01506 492400
Delightful Chocolates Tel: 01506 239058
Kew Kottage Krafts Tel: 01506 883517 Want to book a stall next year?
For the Craft Fair 2015 – contact Isobel McChesney email: i.mcchesney@btinternet.com

(Picture right: Heather's Craft Studio and various above: more of the Kitchen Team. Judging by smiles, early doors!)