Tag Archives: Malvern

Window Dressing for Christmas

Wow, what a day yesterday was! Totally manic, but then again, when isn’t it? The big deal about yesterday was of course the window display. I have been having to keep this project somewhat under wraps as we were waiting for confirmation that the tenancy at the new shop was all OK to go ahead. When I say ‘we’ I really mean Mr Sean Austin, purveyor of fine cards and stationery at Austin & Co, formerly of The Courtyard, Belle Vue Terrace, Malvern. Sean now has a brand spanking new shop – biggerer and betterer than the last, and with two huge windows right in the heart of Malvern’s premium shopping area (that’ll be 18 Belle Vue Terrace then)

So how did this come to be, a second window display…..well, I have to say, we have been discussing it for some time. I wanted to give myself a new challenge, and Sean was willing to take a gamble in the hope that between us we could create something fantabulous. Of course it had to represent Malvern, and so we have the Malvern Hills in the background, with Malvern stylee houses and the famous Malvern street lamps, and even a row of average Malvernites strolling along the front (is that what they call themselves do you think?) And of course the new shop, pride of place in the middle, including window display!

We thought we would be cool and classy and keep it all white. I had a great idea to use foam board rather than card to give a bit more depth, and as we talked about this, our vision grew and grew until we had come up with what you now see. RIght up until the last moments of a very long day, we were a little unsure how it would turn out, and how would tackle certain issues – speaking of tackle….yes, well, we did end up using a lot of fishing line (sorry, that really wasn’t very funny at all – I’ll stop the’ joke’s now).We had been a little concerned about how best to light the display, and had all sorts of ideas planned out, but as is often the case, a much simpler solution showed up and we were pleased! I think that with projects like this, a great deal of flexibility and lateral thinking is needed to pull them off. And so with a few wobbles up a precarious ladder, our best efforts at guestimating measurements (Sean: it’s about one of my handspans, Me: ok, one of my handspans plus a little bit it is then) we managed to do it. Have a look at the pictures – I would love to know what you think, so please send me an honest comment….

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OK, now before I go, you have to promise me that you will go check out and ‘like’ the Austin & Co. Facebook page – NOW!!


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Window Display

I had a great week last week – and the best part of it by far was doing my first ever proper window display. I am so excited about it, I will show you the picture first, and then tell you about it after….. look……

Tromans window display

Whaddyafink? I was rather pleased with it! I shall tell you more about it….. well, firstly, incase you hadn’t guessed, the window display was done for an opticians, being Tromans Family Eyecare of Malvern Link. I know Andrew, the owner, through school – his daughter and mine are in the same class and we are both on the PTA.

The majority of the display is made out of foamboard, which I have rediscovered – I love working with it, it is a very satisfying material to cut, but it does need a regular change of scalpel blade and a confident slicing action – if you are too slow with the cutting it seems to catch a bit for some reason.

I can;t take any credit for the colourful logo int he middle – this was designed by Andrew’s sister in law – its fun though, do you like it? I cut the two families on either side in a similar style (or tried to) – was very pleased to have got the holes to put the actual glasses through in the right place….that was a relief I can tell you as it was my last sheet of foamboard so would have been in trouble if I had cocked it up!

So….how many of you wear glasses and live in driving distance of Malvern?! I hope you will pop down and have a look for yourself, and check out the shop – excellent service and great choice of frames too. Oooo, here’s a thought – why not go and check out their website and see for yourself from the comfort of your armchair?! Tromans Family Eyecare I actually bumped into a friend of mine whilst I was working there – she had popped in to try to find a new pair of glasses. I helped her try some on – take a look at these ones, what do you think? I think they look fab! Hopefully Jill’s husband will think the same! By the way, Jill is super crafty – checkout her website.

Tromans Family Eye Care - trying on glasses


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Craft Fair and Craft Market

So what is the difference between a craft fair and a craft market? Well I haven’t a clue! If you know, please tell me! The only thing I do know, because my back hurts, my fingers are blue from cold, and I am starving hungry,yet in a good mood, is that I have done one of each this weekend. I’ll tell you all about it in this link-tastic blog post … I am writing this now before I forget, or get too busy with other things – I have worked out how I can write it now, Sunday afternoon, and post it to you lot on Monday morning – very clever!!

Firstly there was the craft fair at The Swan, Newlands – this is a pub fairly local to me, where I go every couple of weeks to meet up with a craft group (we sit and do our work, have a chat and a pint, and it is all quite interesting!) So the craft group decided to do a craft fair at the pub. What a great idea – a craft fair where you can have a drink – excellent! It was just a small event, but well attended and I actually did really well – I sold out of stock in three card designs! All the artists and crafters were local, and a real varied range – hand-made walking sticks, decoupage, hats, cushions, baby bouquets, artwork….that wort of thing. We were very lucky with the weather – glorious sunshine – and I think that really helped.

Secondly, I have just got back from a craft market at The Fold at Bransford. This is going to be happening once a month from now on, so it was a bit like starting a new job – checking out your workspace, sussing out your ‘colleagues’ and finding the best place for a pint after a hard days work (at the stall opposite me!). I am so excited to have finally found a market that I think really suit my work. There is only one downside – I am likely to spend a large amount of the profit with the other stallholders, especially in the run up to Christmas. They were all of a great standard, and also very friendly and helpful. So let me introduce you to some of them…

The Friday Beer Company – these chaps had the stall opposite me – both a good and a bad thing I guess – fortunately it was far too cold to be wanting to drink much beer, so I managed to stay sober! I have, however, bought home four bottles of Friday Gold and am looking forward to one in a few hours time.

Panache – I had the pleasure of being next to Frankie and her fragrant stall – she is going to do so well on the run up to Christmas – and I will definitely be asking if I can do a trade with her for a Christmas wreath. She does lots of other non Christmassy stuff too – check out her website!

Hatty Baggins – amazing felted stuff, made from wool from the lovely Steve the sheep and his sheepy friends Alan, Issy and Bluebelle. I have put in a request for some fingerless gloves for the next market as it was brrrr-cold today and my fingers are still not back to normal.

Vineyard Pottery – beautiful pottery in gorgeous soft colours. See Neil at the next fair (28th October).

Chilli Pepper Plantation – as the name would suggest, all things chilli! Pam has a huge range of homemade james, sprinkle,s chocolates, oils and also chilli plants so you can grow more at home.

Canapes By Gill – I have met Gill before at another craft fair and I knew she would be there today, so I didn’t bother taking any lunch with me! Gill makes the most amazing cakes and savoury tarts, and as I found out today, amazing scotch eggs too! Additionally, she does party and event catering – and can do it in your own home – fantastic!

Smoffy Photography – Karen had some wonderful prints of her work available – some mounted, some framed. Really lovely work – check out her blog and see for yourself!
Christine Harmer – beautiful enamelled jewellery from Christine – check out her website and look for the peacock stuff – amazing!

Ecowood Products – Stellan creates amazing stuff from locally sourced wood, all hand turned. He can also use a real spinning wheel!! He doesn’t have a website at the moment, but you can see him at the next Fold Monthly Market on 28th October.

Rainbow Cottage Crafts – Andrea had a range of handmade sterling silver jewellery incorporating ethically sourced gemstones – find out more on her website.

Plantation Cottage Herbs – Lynda has the most delicious looking range of jellies and vinegars all made with home-grown and local fruits and herbs, and if you check her website you will see she is one of Rick Steins Food Heros!! An also, she sells sheepskins! They looked very, very snuggly today when it was oh so cold and wet!

Artisan Forge – Gary is a traditional style blacksmith and I am in awe of his work! Pop down tot he next market to see some of it!

A&S Enterprises – Andy and Simon make very smart looking signs from slate – come and meet them at the next market.

Bread By Bike ( or B to the power of 3!) he lovely Simon and his yummy bread. Lucky people of Bransford are able to have their bread delivered to them by bike! For the rest of us, we have to wait for the monthly market. The bread is actually cooked in The Fold’s kitchen. If you want to know more, contact Simon at simoncox83@gmail.com

Norbury’s Norrest Farm & Cider Company – supplying a range of apple products – juice, cider and apples! See them at the next market.

And of course Kevin with veg fresh from The Fold Care Farm – click the link to find out more. I managed to come away with two potimarron which I have exciting plans for!

I also met a couple of artists who are full time residents of The Fold (well, they have studios there) Sharon and Tony

There were other people too – sorry, I didnlt have time to chat to everyone! Oh, and of course a tombola for St Richards Hospice – I won some body lotion!! And a stall for The Gateway Retreat run by Andy and Ann of the Worcester Satsang Meditation Group. It is an interesting project – have a look in further detail – The Gateway Trust

OK, well as you can probably tell, and if not the certainly guess, I am cold, hungry, and tired – plus my son has started drumming and ‘singing’ on the table next to me and really needs some attention! toodlepip!


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Bizart Fair Tomorrow

It has come round so quickly, but I thin I am just about ready for the second Bizart venture – taking over the whole of The Lyttleton Well in Malvern tomorrow.

Just have to remember the extension leads – now where did I put them?!

Still unsure if I should take any original work with me – these are the ones I was thinking of….. just a little worried that I won’t have enough space to show them properly.



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They’re here!!!

I picked up what is hopefully the first print run of my first series of greetings cards today. I am so pleased with them – they look like proper, actual, real cards like you can get in the shops! So as of tomorrow, they will be available to buy from Austi & Co. in Malvern (www.austinandco.co.uk). If you want to see what the six designs look like, check out the mrsmcindoe Facebook page.

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mrsmcindoe makes cards

This week I have mostly been thinking about and working my first range of greetings cards. It’s all rather exciting, if a little nerve-racking. Who knew it was so much effort for a greetings card!

A local design and print company has been sourced and engaged (The Whole Hog – http://www.thewholehog.biz), envelopes and cellophane bags have been sourced and purchased (and have actually arrived), and my first invoice (for the card shop) is about to be produced.

So, all being well, you should be able to buy my cards in the shops (well, just the one shop to start with!) by the middle of next week – yay! The shop in question is Austin & Co. at The Courtyard, Malvern (www.Austinandco.co.uk) It’s a great little shop if you are a fan of all things paper – pop over and have a look!

I am hoping they will be available to buy online by the end of next week too, with another exciting new venture – watch this space!

In the meantime, here is a sneak preview of the original artwork for one of the six cards….

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Exhibition Month

I have been so tied up with my own exhibition setting up that I completely forgot to mention that my amazing new friend Jill has got an exhibition of her own happening this month. If you happen to be in Malvern, please do go and check it out – Malvern HIlls Gallery


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