Monday, 10 September 2012

My sojourns in the highlands and islands!

Back in the swing of things
Hi again. I've now done two markets since returning home and my business head is beginning to sit more comfortably on my shoulders! North London Vintage Market was great as always. There is always a lovely atmosphere, almost village-y. It's great to see old faces who come regularly and also to welcome new people. Keep you diary free on 6th October for the next market there.
I was back at Spitalfields yesterday and it was great to be back among all my stallholder friends. It really does feel like a family there with all the usual experiences of family life - sharing thoughts, moaning, sympathising, disagreeing and the whole gammet of what life throws at us. It was a good day and I brought along some of my new finds which is always refreshing for me and hopefully interesting for the customers. I tried really hard not to go off buying more stock which is what I'm infamous for. I can't help going off for a wander and always come back with something new. I often think I should be handcuffed to my stall and be forced to repeat a mantra of 'I'm here to sell, not to buy'. This week I decided I had enough new stock so I stayed by my stall which is a small miracle for me but what happened then was that people kept coming to me with goodies that I just couldn't refuse!
Look out also for a new venture called 'Before 1980', the first fair will be on 22nd September in Central Library, Holloway Road from 11am until 5pm. It promises to be a really different fair with an emphasis on interiors; stalls include furniture, lighting, homeware, fabrics and kitchenalia. More info on:

Tales from Scotland
Back to my visit to Scotland. I promised that I'd write a bit more about my time there and especially about the Artmap which happens every August in the Argyll area. It is an opportunity for local artists to advertise their work and allows people to see their studio and talk about what inspires them etc. It really  is an interesting concept and we have met many interesting people through it. One such person is Fraser MacIver, a Canadian artist with Scottish connections, now living by the Crinan Canal in a beautiful wagon with an adjacent studio. He really is a most delightful character. He swims in the canal and heats up water for his bath in an outside tub using canal water, heated by burning a fire underneath the bathtub!

Fraser's Wagon home

His subjects are a mixture of landscape and mythology, influenced by his dramatic historical surroundings.He works in a variety of media and his use of colour is inspiring.
We received a very warm welcome. The day we visited, it was pretty miserable and we were ushered into his 'guest room', a cosy wooden construction with a wonderful hearth and little wood burning stove, a great high soft bed like in the fairy tale of the Princess and the pea; it was covered in sheepskin rugs tucked into the corner and surrounded by his wonderful art work. The fire was so welcome that day and to top it all, we were lauded with 'Moscow Mule' cocktails!! His enthusiasm was infectious as he talked about his home and his work. Find him on:  Here are some photos from his studio. I hope that they convey the atmosphere of this unique personal space which he has created in his woodland wonderland! 

The lovely squishy guest bed!
 I'll have more tales of my time in Scotland soon. 


  1. Wonderful Marie! I'm dead jealous. X

    1. Ha ha Jo! I can just imagine you sitting singing in the outdoor bathtub after wild swimming in the freezing cold canal!!!