I hadn't planned to visit Kirstie Allsopp's Handmade Fair (last year it clashed with another event I was doing, and this year I was just grateful for a free weekend ahead of the busy autumn kicking off properly) but the lovely Gemma of Ginger Doodles (check out her shop here) had some tickets going spare - the weather forecast was good, so I thought why not?
The 2015 fair was the second time the event had been run, and it seemed pretty well organised. The fair took over a park opposite Hampton Court Palace and there was a (cleaner, less sweary) festival atmosphere about the place. My ticket was for entry to the fair only (there were masses of workshops and talks for people to attend if they had a full price entry ticket) so I ambled about looking at stalls and chatting to people. The dressmaking scissors above are from Ernest Wright & Sons and are sitting right at the top of my Christmas list (thinking the pale blue or pink, but they did mention that they're looking into doing them in yellow!).
I stopped and chatted to Genevieve of Floss & Mischief (may have shopped a little here but it's a present so shhh!).
And I finally bought the Tilly & the Buttons book (only a year after it came out - my procrastination can be extreme at times!). It was lovely to see Tilly again and to meet Matt Chapple, winner of this year's Sewing Bee and his wife Gemma (who I have a feeling I met at Blogtacular, but I did manage to stare at her rather blankly with "mmm yes, I think I recognise you" - I was tired, what can I say!).
The shopping tents were very very busy so I didn't buy as much as I may have done. The Acorn & Will stand really caught my eye though - so colourful and kitsch and gorgeous.
The weather really was beautiful after a rubbish few days the previous week - I almost felt as if I needed sunblock. I enjoyed wandering around, looking at the artisan food stalls and admiring peoples' (often handmade) outfits.
I was quite tired on the day and not really in the mood for dragging myself back around the busy tents - I think I would've got more from my visit if I'd attended some workshops, but by the time I arrived there wasn't really anything available that appealed to me. I'm pretty sure if you go for the full experience ticket, and arrive nice and early you can have a really full, enjoyable day. Everyone was lovely and it was great to chat to so many familiar faces and catch up with people.
Thanks again to Gem for the ticket! Maybe next year I'll invest and make more of a day of it!