Made By Mrs M

Textiles

National Centre For Craft & Design - February 2019

Craft, Events, Exhibition, Inspiration, TextilesKate Marsden

During the half term break, which already feels like a long time ago, I dragged my parents and the small boy on our annual pilgramage to Sleaford and the National Centre for Craft & Design. The place is wonderful - almost (but not quite) enough to make me wish I lived back in Lincolnshire. The current crop of exhibitions are patricularly good. Here are a few of my highlights:

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Lucy Grainge’s mural (from Lucy Grainge and Majeda Clarke: One Year In) and this is the not so small boy’s debut photo on my blog!

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Jilly Edwards: Glimpses and Memories - lots of weaving inspiration for my students’ next project (including a very good film of Jilly’s process).

And the main exhibition Ctrl/Shift: New Directions in Textile Art - my favourite piece being Caren Garfen’s Room For Improvement, which was particularly poignant for me as one of my friends was hospitalised with anorexia last year.

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There was also a fun weaving workshop for kids taking place (which of course we joined in with) - NCCD have such a fantastic array of workshops but I’ve never been up there when a grown up one is on - might make it one day!

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The First Patchwork Workshop and Dates for the Autumn...

Craft, Events, London, Sewing, Textiles, WorkshopsKate Marsden

Last week I hosted my first English Paper Piecing patchwork workshop at Creative Happy London and it went really well. Here are some photos of the session...

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As EPP is a slow, hand stitching technique, the aim was for each of the attendees to get started on their first piece of patchwork and go away with all the skills they need to continue with it on their own at home. People planned a range of items with their patchwork including cushions, pin cushions and of course quilts!

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I will be running this workshop again on Saturday 29 September and Saturday 10 November. Bookings for both sessions are open now.

In the afternoon I taught my popular lampshade making workshop...

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My next lampshade making workshops are on Saturday 15 September (in Tooting), Saturday 29 September and Saturday 20 October. Again, all open for bookings now.

Orla Kiely - A Life in Pattern

Exhibition, Fashion, Inspiration, London, Pattern Design, Review, TextilesKate Marsden

Like many people I ADORE Orla Kiely... I'd been excited about the exhibition at London's Fashion & Textile Museum ever since I found out about it last year and I booked my ticket months ago!

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And I'm pleased to say it didn't dissappoint - the only alarming thing being the realisaton that I've owned rather more Orla Kiely things over the past 20 years than I'd realised (my poor bank balance!).

The exhibition is something of a visual feast and anyone with an interest in fashion, or pattern will just love it - I even had a turning a corner and gasping moment, which was nice (I won't spoil that one for you!).

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The designer's whole career is covered in the stylish, colourful and exuberant manner you would expect - I didn't know which way to look. If anything I came away having fallen for her work even more.

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Upon leaving the exhibition the shop is almost impossible to resist, as I'm sure you can imagine!

Orla Kiely: A Life In Pattern is at the Fashion & Textile Museum in London until 23 September 2018.

This is not a sponsored post.

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Workshops this weekend!

Craft, Events, London, Sewing, Textiles, WorkshopsKate Marsden

This coming Saturday (9 June) I will be running two workshops at Creative Happy London in Camberwell. There are still a handful of spaces, but don't delay your bookings.

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In the morning I will be teaching a session on the English Paper Piecing patchwork technique (you can read more about this new workshop here) and you'll be able to get started on your very own heirloom quilt similar to mine below. You can use the fabrics provided or bring along your own... Book here.

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In the afternoon I'll be teaching my ever popular lampshade making workshop (and there's nothing stopping you doing both and making a day of it!). Bookings for the afternoon workshop are open here. Hope to see you on Saturday!

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If this Saturday doesn't work for you, you can find all of my upcoming workshops listed here.

Fabric Manipulation and New Ideas

Fashion, Inspiration, Products, Sewing, TextilesKate Marsden

As I said at the start of the year, I'm keen to go with the flow more in 2018 (and I've certainly been doing that for the last five months!). One thing I've been doing quite a lot of is playing with ideas that may be rather different to my usual style and approach, and just seeing where it takes me...

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A couple of weeks ago I attended an interview (which I'm pleased to say was successful), and as part of this interview process I had to devise and deliver a "micro teach" workshop to a group of 12 students (and the whole thing had to be completed in 20 minutes!). It was to be around the topic of fabric manipulation, and I sought out the fashion designers I most associate with sculptural and interesting work to see what I could come up with to base the session on.

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I settled upon this Spring 2018 collaboration between Viktor & Rold and Zalando and prepared handouts together with a couple of samples which you can see in the first image above.

During the session I encouraged the students to play with the materials provided then go with their gut instinct and run something up quickly. Now this was partly out of necessity due to the time contstraints, but also because this is one of my favourite ways to generate ideas. My preparations for the session led me on to play more with felt and look at how I could combine this with my fabrics once I got back into the studio.

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As you probably know, I'm not really doing products this year, but Open Studios are around the corner and I do need a few items! I ran up this cushion, inspured by my micro teach session to accompany some of the other new work I'll be showing at the end of next month.

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So I'll be bringing this baby along together with the quilted cushion I made to showcase my Spring fabrics, and the rather fetching sewing machine cushion which is a favourite of mine!

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Watch this space for previews of more of the new work I'll be sharing at Carshalton Artists Open Studios this summer!

English Paper Piecing Workshop

Craft, Events, London, Sewing, Textiles, WorkshopsKate Marsden

I'm excited to annouce that I have a new workshop coming up at Creative Happy London in Camberwell on Saturday 9 June. I'll be teaching the English Paper Piecing patchwork technique which is a really enjoyable hand stitching practice, suitable for complete beginners.

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It's all about slow stitching and long term projects, but you'll come away with a little piece of finished patchwork, which you can either continue to add to and make a quilt from (mine took me two years though!) or turn into a smaller project for a quicker win. I'll also show you some other project ideas if it is a quicker result you're after!

Bookings are already coming in so do head over here to book your space.

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This is a good time to mention that I also have a workshop coming up next weekend (Sunday 22 April) at Love Art in Tooting. We'll be painting and making our own lampshades. This one will be really fun - no artistic skills are needed, just a willingness to have fun with fabric paint! You can book your space on this workshop here.

March Meet the Maker

Art, Business, Drawing, Inspiration, Painting, Paper, Pattern Design, Photography, Textiles, SketchbookKate Marsden

I had so much fun taking part in #marchmeetthemaker over on Instagram again this year. In case you haven't heard of it, it's an annual challenge organised by Joanne Hawker (who even won a Mollie Makes Award for it last year) where you post an image every day following prompts set by Joanne. It's a great way to meet new people and to share your work too. I've popped some of my photos from the month below, you can see them all (and the full captions) over on my Instagram.

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A Portfolio Boost...

Books, Pattern Design, Paper, Sewing, Studios, TextilesKate Marsden

I've not just been working on some interesting (and quite different) industry led briefs in the Winter School this month, I've been woring on some of my own ideas too (and entering some competitions - more on those another time).

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For serveral months, I've been noting down any ideas for little things I could work on to enable me to add some more varied work, and I've started going through that list. The first, which I completed last week, is a cover for one of my favourite books. I went so far as to make an actual mock up of the completed jacket! I give you To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf...

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It's just printed onto bog standard paper so the colour representation isn't perfect. Here's the pattern I produced, which is a reworked and recoloured version of one I worked on about 3 years ago...

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I've added some more images of the mock up at the end of this post.

Back in October at the Knitting & Stitching Show I took part in a Gelli printing workshop which was great fun (and messy - I rarely get messy nowadays and that needs remedying!). I asked for a Gelli plate for Christmas and I finally cracked that out for a play a couple of weeks ago and did lots of lovely, messy printing!

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I'm keen to play with more texture in my pattern designs, but I'm also thinking of producing a short run of monoprints for my Etsy shop. Let's see...

A couple of weeks ago I made some dolls, inspured by the ladies I used to draw when I was studying fashion. This was also really good fun - even if I did make a few mistakes in the planning stages - I'm going to get some more printed up and I'll be making them soon.

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So at the moment I seem to have gone from complete drought to ideas overload (and I think this is a good thing!). For once I'm allowing myself to go off on a bit of a tangent, before I get all sensible again and start to reign it in! I'll no doubt be sharing yet more new things soon, so watch this space.

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Come and see me in December!

Events, London, TextilesKate Marsden

As I mentioned in my post the other week (where I announced that I plan to stop making products and selling at markets - you can read more about my decision here) I mentioned that I have a couple of events lined up so I plan to go out with a bang!

Just two markets in December and as only seems fitting they're both from my favourites, Crafty Fox! The night market at the Geffrye Museum was one of my most successful single day events last year (and it's only a few hours long!) so I'll be back there on Thursday 14 December...

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Then two days later I'll be at a new venue in Elephant & Castle - Mercato Metropolitano...

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This one might be your last chance to get hold of my notebooks, cushions and other products, depending on stock levels - I will let you know if they're running low beforehand so you know what to expect!

In the New Year I'll be at Farnham Maltings again on Sunday 14 January at their Quilting Fabric Sale - here I'll have discounted fabrics (all kinds not just my own) and anything I have left in the way of products after Christmas. So a date for your diary if you're after fabric!

Work in Progress...

Craft, Sewing, TextilesKate Marsden

I tend to really struggle to find the time to work on personal projects. But when I do, I like to have a go at something a little different (for me at least) and it always tends to turn in to something epic! I used to provide regular updates here on these projects of mine, but it's been a while! Here's what I'm working on at the moment/have recently finished...

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The quilt! I've been working on this for just over 3 years on and off. I've now finished piecing it and I'm nearly ready to start the quilting - so call back in another 3 years!!

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Now this next one's finished... Two years ago I got a needlepoint cushion kit from Pompom Design - I finished stitching it last Christmas but only got around to turning it into a cushion in the summer (which took all of 15 minutes...). Here it is after a couple of months of being kicked around the sofa/living room by a 7 year old...

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Holding up pretty well so far! As this took me so long to make I am quite precious about it, much to the annoyance of everyone else in the house! 

So, as I'd finished this one (but not the quilt), I bought another kit at the Knitting & Stitching Show last month, and here's work in progress on the next one (this kit is called Kumo)...

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Now my dressmaking wips could take up a whole other post (or two) - and I'm feeling pretty meh about them at the moment, so maybe watch this space for an update there!

What long term projects are you working on? Anything interesting you think I'd like to try (once I've finished these of course...!)?

Coming Up in November!

Craft, Events, Inspiration, Sewing, Textiles, WorkshopsKate Marsden

The run down to Christmas is approaching fast! Lots of things coming up to get you in the festive mood this month...

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My first market of the season will be on Sunday 12 November at the Village Haberdashery in West Hampstead - they're showcasing two makers each Sunday up until Christmas. Come along, start your shopping and take a look at this beautiful shop if you haven't been before!

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Workshop wise, I have two lampshade workshops lined up - the first is THIS SATURDAY (and bookings close tomorrow so quick!!) - this is my popular 20cm diameter drum shade workshop as seen above and below and will be running once again in Camberwell at Creative Happy London.

Then if you'd like something a little different we'll be making BIG lampshades at Dotty's Teahouse in Carshalton on Tuesday 28 November - also booking now.

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Then on Saturday 11 November come along and start making your own Christmas presents with me at Creative Happy London - we'll be making lavender bags or masks using a range of fabrics - suitable for all levels.

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Snazzy Peg Bag Tutorial

Craft, Inspiration, Sewing, Textiles, TutorialsKate Marsden

I'm back on the tutorial bandwagon!!!! Well for this week at least.... It's been an absolute age and I thought it was about time. I recently bought a new peg bag as my old one was disintigrating after 15 years of use. Someone told me I should've made my own but I pleaded lack of time. However as my old bag had a rather lovely wooden hanger inside I thought I'd make one anyway and put that to use!

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So here it is. Made with my Dining Chairs fabric, I think it looks rather good. Here's what you'll need to make your own.

Wooden coathanger (preferably shaped like the one shown below)

1 x Fat Quarter of my Dining Chairs fabric - if you choose to use a different fabric make sure it measures at least 50cm deep by 75cm wide.

Thread, pins, scissors, sewing machine, iron and ironing board.

Pattern - available to download here.

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1. Print your downloaded pattern pieces out onto A4 paper at full size - tape together and then cut out along the dotted line.

2. Fold your fabric and pin the pattern to it on the fold (I cut my fabric into two pieces first - each measuring 50cm high by 37.5cm wide. Then cut out.

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3. Once you've cut your fabric out, remove the pattern and cut it across the middle on either one of the dotted lines as shown.

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4. Cut this piece on the fold.

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5. Remove the pattern from the fabric, sellotape the two patten pieces together and then cut along the other dotted line. Cut this piece out on the fold as well.

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6. You should now have three pieces which look like this...

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7. Press all three pieces and then fold in the edges of the front opening by approximatly 3/4mm. Fold again to hide the raw edge and press. Do the same with the centre top of both sides as shown below (this is where the neck of the coathanger will sit).

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8. Topstitch all of these folds in place as close to the edge as you can.

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9. Trim your threads then place the pieces right side together. Pin and stitch from neck opening to neck opening, ensuring you leave plenty of space to insert the coat hanger.

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10. Trim the corners then turn the bag out to the right side.

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11. Give it a good press, insert the coathanger and you're done!

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The pattern pieces look like those below - ensure you print them at full size. They can be downloaded here.

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Getting Inky at the Knitting & Stitching Show

Craft, Events, Inspiration, TextilesKate Marsden

I had a fab time at the Knitting & Stitching Show last week, and for the first time ever I arrived before the doors opened! By the way I'd recommend you do this as it was nice and quiet at 10am... Anyway, I didn't arrive early because I'm a morning person; I'd booked myself on a workshop!

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So by 10.30am I was up to my elbows in black acryclic paint! I joined a workshop led by Nicole Line who taught us monoprinting and stamping with Gelli Plates. A new technique for me and a lot messier than I'm used to (which was a good thing!) - I'm now off to get my hands on a Gelli Plate as it was really good fun and I'd like to experiment more.

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The best of the prints have made it onto my studio wall

The best of the prints have made it onto my studio wall

After a clean up it was time to shop... You may recall that a couple of years ago I started work on a needlepoint cushion from Pompom Designs (which I've finished and I plan to blog about - promise!), well after a few months without needlepoint I felt the urge to do another - the first one only took a year after all... So I bought the Kumo Cushion Kit and started it as soon as I got home!

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I had my usual sweep around the textile galleries - I have to say that my planning was poor this year and I wandered around in a very ad hoc manner - not recommended - I'm sure I missed things, but a couple of highlights were Rachael Howard, Diana Harrison and the winning quilts from the Festival of Quilts.

Rachael Howard

Rachael Howard

Diana Harrison

Diana Harrison

Quilt by Mary Palmer and Anne Kiely

Quilt by Mary Palmer and Anne Kiely

I didn't do a lot more shopping - just a few bits and bobs for upcoming workshops, and I treated myself to a pair of mittens from Prilly Lewis - I think you'll be seeing a lot of photos of them on my instagram over the coming months!

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Prilly Lewis

Now off to finish my work as quickly as possible so I can sneak in a little more needlepoint before the school run...

Coming up!

Craft, Events, London, Sewing, Shopping, Textiles, WorkshopsKate Marsden

I have lots of exciting events coming up over the next few months (see my events page for the full list) but I thought I'd share those which are in the next few weeks. First up, this weekend - my fourth annual trip to Thread Festival of Textiles!

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Thread is wonderful - like a more relaxed, smaller version of the Knitting & Stitching Show. I'll be setting up stall in the Great Hall - do come along, say hello and take a look at my new collection.

Then next Saturday 7 October I will be running not one but two workshops at Creative Happy London in Camberwell...

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Lampshade Making in the morning and Tote Bags in the afternoon.

Finally I'll be back at Love Art in Tooting on Saturday 14th for more lamphade related fun!

All workshops are booking now - I hope to see you soon!

All the Fun of Open Studios!

Art, Drawing, Events, Exhibition, Painting, Pattern Design, Studios, TextilesKate Marsden

A slightly belated end of open studios post for you! We had a brilliant second weekend (you can read about the first one here) and a lovely celebratory get together afterwards. A few more images from our stop on the trail are below. The dates for 2018 have now been set so get them in your diaries - 23/24 June and 30 June/1 July 2018 - see you there!

Claire Chandler's Studio

Claire Chandler's Studio

My gazebo

My gazebo

Marie Ratnam's paintings

Marie Ratnam's paintings

The view from the road!

The view from the road!

Claire's much admired mosaic paving slabs

Claire's much admired mosaic paving slabs

The after party! Image (c) Stuart James

The after party! Image (c) Stuart James

2 Minutes with... Zeena Shah

Art, Drawing, Inspiration, Studios, TextilesKate Marsden

Someone else who has long been an inspiration to me this week… I think I first met Zeena at a craft fair when my son was a baby (so many years ago!), and since then she’s written books and has even been on the telly a few times. Here’s a quick glimpse into the world of Zeena Shah

Hello Zeena! Who are you and what do you do? 

Hello Kate! 

My name is Zeena Shah and I am a printed Textile Designer, Illustrator, Author and Workshop tutor. I live and work in East London. 

Why do you love what you do?

Drawing, designing, teaching and being creative all day long make me so happy. I fell so lucky to be able to say that I love going to work everyday and even luckier to be able to do what I do on a daily basis.

What element of your work do you enjoy the most? Writing books or getting your hands messy and printing?

It's definitely the messy bit. I absolutely love printing and making things. No matter what I'm doing there always has to be an element of mark making whether it be with a lino roller or a potato.

If you could collaborate with anyone (dead or alive!) who would it be?

Ooh it would have to be Vera Neumann, she's an inspiration. Her portfolio of print designs and colour palette are timeless and she was so prolific in her career it would have been a dream to meet her.

What exciting plans do you have for the next year?

I have lots of exciting plans for next year. I'll be continuing designing print for fashion and interiors brands. There will definitely be plenty of print making workshops and a couple of new ones too. I'd love to run some more larger scale events after the success of last year's make wrap mingle. Alongside some new goodies in the shop too... it's going to be a busy one!

Thank you so much Zeena! You can find more of Zeena's work on her website and follow her on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.

 

Carshalton Artists Open Studios - Week 1

Art, Ceramics, Drawing, Events, Exhibition, Inspiration, London, Painting, Pattern Design, Photography, Shopping, Studios, TextilesKate Marsden

What an amazing time we had last weekend! We were overwhelmed by the wonderful response to our first open studios event (and I'm mainlining coffee as I type!!) - so many people came to see us and the reaction to my work actually left me feeling a little tearful (in a good way!). Here are a few images (and a little film) from the weekend - Come back and see us when we do it all again tomorrow and Sunday from 11-5 - find all the details here. I'm at stop 11 on the trail - 133a Stanley Park Road.

Camberwell Arts Open Studios

Art, Craft, Events, Exhibition, London, Sewing, Studios, Textiles, WorkshopsKate Marsden

Camberwell Festival started last weekend, and culminates at the end of this week with Camberwell Arts Open Studios.  I will be popping up at Gabriela Szulman's studio this Saturday (17th) as part of the launch of Creative Happy London...

I will be running my new stitched jewellery workshop at 10 am, 12 noon and 2 pm on Saturday - booking is advised (especially if you want to make use of the whopping 50% discount - use code CAMBERWELLFEST) - booking is open here - but there should be some drop in spaces available too.

There will be lots more workshops from the Creative Happy London team over the course of the festival - you can see them all here.

Gabriela's gorgeous studio will also be open so you can pop along and see her work and chat to her as well. Find out more about Camberwell Festival here. I hope to see you on Saturday!