It's Time to go looking for New Work
It's that time of year. Time to look for new work. By that I mean I am not after a new job (although all offers will be enthusiastically considered). In mid January there is the first of the year's trade shows, called Top Drawer, which takes place in Olympia London. Here many hundreds of large and small companies, and individual makers, pay to take a stand and hope to interest retail outlets in placing orders. Of course it is the individual makers that are of interest to us. They are braver than I ever was in my 20 years of selling ceramics to galleries. To take a stand at a big trade show costs thousands of pounds before you factor in your travel and accommodation costs. But I am glad they do, because each year we find a handful of creative souls whose work we buy for the Bluestone. Often it is handmade jewellery or ceramics, but we are always hoping for the unexpected, for quality and inspiration. We spend the day tramping miles around the huge venues, but they have to tough it out for several days, keeping a smile on their face the whole time. In February there is an even bigger show called the Spring Fair, which takes place at the NEC in Birmingham. This is a huge event and it takes a lot of determination to seek out the sort of work that is right for us. But it is worth it, and enjoyable in a slightly masochistic way. Because we find great British craft, and then we can show it to you. Happy New Year.