Event Review: Made By Hand Craft Fair 2017, City Hall, Cardiff

Taking place in Cardiff’s City Hall over the weekend was the contemporary craft fair, Made by Hand.  The high end hand-made crafts fitted in well with the very grand venue it was staged in.  With over 130 stalls, visitors were spoilt for choice with a wide variety of pottery, jewellery and other crafts to purchase unique Christmas presents.

The venue worked well with both the workshops and café located very close to all the stalls.  The workshops were in well-equipped rooms.

The workshops seemed very popular with visitors  as many had sold out before the event started. Another highlight were stars from the The Great Pottery Throw Down doing challenges as well as opening up their turning wheels for members of the public to have a go. 

There were several awards handed out to participating stalls, These included Best Stall for Janine Partington and High Commended Best Stand for Grace & Favour.  Best New Business and Highly Commended Best were won by Fern Robinson and Takahasi McGil respectively, both of which were in the start-up section.

The Best Maker in Wales awards went to the outstanding Jin Eui Kim, a Cardiff-based potter.  Internationally renown and industry recognized, Jin’s work is an exploration with tonal effects. Spatial illusions by using gradient in tone, width of bands and interval between bands are Jin Eui’s passion, resulting in works that are both visually and intellectually challenging.

Finally, the Llantarnam Grange Arts Centre Showcase Award was won by Vinegar & Brown Paper an innovative glass etching designer with stylish designs and quirky sayings. My favourite being “I hereby swear that I will never, ever, drink again…”  and inside the glass continuing,  “…until the next time.”  Full of fun glassware, with lots of flair in the deign of the stall this was definitely one of my favourite stalls in the whole show.  

One thing I did notice was a distinct lack of paper crafting in the range of exhibitors. There were a few stalls selling prints of their work but only 1 stall that actually hand-crafted paper books and patterned paper.  

Overall Made By Hand was a resounding success and I eagerly look forward to seeing who will be exhibiting at next years show.