I woke up on Sunday morning to the smell of birthday candles. My boyfriend, who turned 21 on Sunday, sat on the edge of the bed and reminded me of something fantastic:
“That Etsy made local fair is today. It’s about 15 minutes away from the house.”
I toiled with keeping my response to an ‘oh, cool’ or a ‘can we go?’, the latter obviously oozing selfishness. What sort of 21-year-old man wants to spend his birthday at a homemade goods fair with his stationery-crazy girlfriend?
Apparently, my mine.
“I really fancy going, actually. We could make it if we leave now and get lunch after.”
He didn’t have to say it twice. Within minutes we were strolling through Glasgow Green, hand-in-hand – me talking his ear off about how happy I was he’d brought it up and how much I love Claire Barclay Draws products.
Before I share the details of my mini haul, I feel compelled to acknowledge how well attended the event was on Sunday 6th of December. My boyfriend and I arrived at the scene about an hour and a half before closing time, and by this point two or three stalls had already been emptied and were closed. It was difficult to see all of the products when we arrived because so many people were crowding the edges of the tables and reaching over to grab as many objects as they could to buy. It was a really nice image to see so many local Glaswegian businesses held in high regard by the buying public.
Thanks to the Etsy Made Local event, I was – finally – able to buy some Claire Barclay Draws products (you may have guessed, I’m a big fan.) What I’m not a big fan of, however, is buying things online before I’ve seen them in person.
I zoned in on Claire’s stall the moment we arrived at The Briggait – the location of the fair. The Briggait was spacious and very pretty inside, though, absolutely freezing (but so is the rest of Scotland). The cold afternoon frost complemented the sun outside, making Sunday the perfect winters day for guests to get a little Christmas shopping out the way.
Claire – who is a graphic designer and illustrator – offers some of the quirkiest Scottish-themed jewellery, cards and prints around. She favours bright colours and scratchy sketches in her designs, nearly all of which contain hilarious Scots slang typography that definitely resonates particularly strongly with Scottish buyers.
I treated myself to a Glasgow Girl tote bag, a Pure Braw necklace and two broaches: Cat Lady and Gees a Winch (that’s means a kiss for any non-Scottish readers :P). Claire was so lovely and genuinely kind and appreciative whilst her customers were browsing. She seems like an honest, hard-working young lady who is very grateful and humbled to receive positive responses in doing what she loves.
You can view all of Ms. Barclay’s work and find details about commissions on her website, facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
In the stall next door to Barclay, I was fortunate enough to stumble into illustrator Neil Slorance. I bagged myself a singed copy of each of his short comic books, The Amateur Astronomer’s Journal and How to Be a Ghost – both of which are available to buy on his website.
Slorance was very lovely, apologetically informing me that – by the time we had arrived – he had completely ran out of business cards to offer customers, which I was actually quite gutted about given how many I had already managed to scrounge on my first two jaunts around the fair. (I made a rule to look at everything bar Claire’s products before buying.) The Amateur Astronomer’s Journal caught my eye in the hands of many, many shoppers long before I worked out where they were actually being sourced from. The front cover is visually beautiful and altogether quite striking with its potent colours and white font. I fell in love immediately – even before opening the comic itself. I might try to colour mine in actually…
My final purchase of the day stemmed from a company known as Neon Magpie. Neon Magpie design and produce beautifully quirky illustrated stationery and mobile phone cases (and probably various other pretty items; we were just slightly too late to see everything before they sold out, likely.) I managed to bag myself a very cute 3-pack of unicorn inspired notebooks which I’m excited to use as stocking fillers this Christmas! The stall had beautiful alphabeticalized postcards, and I do love a postcard. However, it’s worth noting that the postcards were only available to purchase as a full set, which was actually quite disappointing for us and the couple in front who had to return theirs to the box as well.
I can honestly say Stewart and I had a lovely time at the Etsy Made Local event on Sunday. I really do hope they hold more events like these. Supporting our local businesses is important – a win-win really for all involved: you get beautiful products whilst promoting and sustaining local entrepreneurship and creativity. What’s not to love?!
Header image and all other images created by Rachael Procter