Friday, 20 March 2009

Thoughts on the Country Living selling experience

It's the people you meet when selling at Country Living that make the experience so special. Women (you rarely see a male visitor!) look forward to the event, put on their favourite clothes and have great conversations with stall holders.

I notice the arty necklaces they wear, the Kaffe Fassett pattern knitwear or soft tones of heather handknits. Then there are the layered looks, looped up jersey skirts over trousers and Mary Janes with toning tunics and vests - maybe Gudrun
Sjoden clothes.
The White Stuff cotton pattern pinafores over long sleeve t-shirts. And, to me best of all, the vintage look - dresses with net underskirts, cinched waists and little coloured cardigans sometimes worn with coloured tights and socks over the top. It's inspirational!

Many women would not miss the Country Living shows for the world. It's their treat and with all the doom and gloom on the news a chance to forget all that and enter a world of pretty things and get ideas for how to improve their homes and wardrobe. The Vanessa Arbuthnott stand with its greys and yellows -freshly designed fabric and wallpaper; the Bay Design hand painted lampshades - always an attractive stand; and Janet Bolton's exquisitely wrought sewn hangings and pictures. I love those stands.

Some of the stall holders are very special too. Sisters Lizza and Jenna live on the island of Westray off the north coast of Scotland and their beautiful knitwear is the colours of the beaches and sea and heather that they see and absorb every day. It translates so well into their designs that looking at almost makes you feel you've visited Westray. They design and knit and then make the long journey to London to sell their beautiful creations.
I want to talk about other people I met. People with ideas on what I should make in the future - but that's for another time...

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