Craft Focus - August/September 2023 (Issue 98)

WWW.CRAFTFOCUS.COM OFFICIAL MEDIA PARTNER FOR CRAFT HOBBY + STITCH INTERNATIONAL AND PROUD SPONSOR OF TRENDING NOW PLUS! HANDCRAFTED WITH LOVE Cardmaking inspiration Knitting & crochet Soft crafts Stamping & embossing SPOOKTACULAR CRAFTS Halloween special Christmas CHEER Festive crafts to keep you busy


3 CONTENTS In this issue... REGULARS 9 Brand spanking new Brand spanking new products 15 Industry news What’s happening within the craft and hobby market 86 Bookstand The latest book releases 82 Tried & tested Craft Focus account manager, Tracy Voice, talks us through her quilt creation for her first grandchild, Arthur August/ September 2023 45 57 52 FEATURES 29 Feeling festive Christmas crafts for all 39 Eco friendly crafts Time to craft consciously 45 Sealed with a kiss Cardmaking ideas 52 Make your mark Stamping and embossing 55 Festival fever Enjoy these festival themed crafts during these sun-soaked days 63 Yarn essentials Knitting and crochet 71 Super cozy Soft crafts 75 Fright night! Halloween makes 39

4 FOCUS ON 36 Crystal parade Launched in 2011, Crystal Parade caters for the growing need of rhinestones and crystals for crafters, nail artists, designers and stylists. Director Poppy Pennington tells us more... 42 Highlight crafts Stephanie Weightman, Creative Director of Highlight Crafts Ltd talks to Craft Focus about their ability to educate the masses about so many craft sectors 50 Barnett Lawson Trimmings Emily Langley, Marketing & Digital Content Creator at Barnett Lawson Trimmings talks to Craft Focus about moving from their Aladdin’s cave establishment in the heart of Soho to being fully digital 60 Studio pens Nikki Devine, director of Studio Pens Ltd, writing instruments specialist, talks to Craft Focus about their quality collection of pens 69 Uk hand knitting Founded in 1940, UK Hand Knitting is stronger than ever. Here we explore just what the organisation has to offer... BUSINESS 78 10 Questions about pop-up retail Charley Crocker, Founder and Lead Agent of The Pop Up Shop Agents answers the most common questions about pop-up retail. 80 Mission accomplished Bruce Penson, managing director of cyber security and IT support company Pro Drive IT, offers five ways small businesses can lower their carbon emissions by optimising technology 83 Target market UK Greetings looks at how garden centres can appeal to a younger consumer 84 Mental welfare in the gift sector Faith Capstick from ACID’s communications team shares some of her thoughts for better mental health SHOWS 21 Shows, news & events Stay up-to-date with what’s happening in your industry 26 Autumn Fair preview What to expect at The NEC 65 9 50

Foils-online is Metallic Elephants Ltd’s dedicated premium foil shop. We offer a hand-picked range of bold and spectacular colours in different grades. Add a splash of colour and elegance to your products! Discover more at Let us help you #makeitshiny! Order by 4pm to get your shiny new foil the next day. applicraft Used by both professionals & hobbyists Wholesale, retail & export. Own brand packaging Visit for inspiration and ideas Great results from quality water based products Our decorative effects products can transform anything from dolls house furniture to feature walls. Upcycle, Repurpose, Recreate Transferglaze Crackleglaze Decoupage Craquelure Use on: • glass • wood • ceramics • mdf • clay • card • tiles • picture frames • doors & walls Suppliers of: • Textile foils • Appliglue do you want uk made quality yarns with high profit margins? (accepting new tradeR accounts)

7 EDITOR’S LETTER On the cover Let your mind fill with thoughts of autumn whilst you needle felt these gorgeous pumpkins in a hoop. By following the clear photographic instructions and using the UK-sourced materials included in this needle felting kit, you can enjoy your creation no matter your skill level. Visit the website: Christmas is a-coming It’s that time of year again when the C word starts getting mentioned. Yes, we’re talking all things Christmas as we prep for the busiest retail time of the year. Autumn Fair is key for buyers who want to top up their stockrooms, so do register for this huge event at The NEC. As a prime tool for buyers, Craft Focus has collated part one of our two-part festive special full of the most creative crafts of the market for this super-sparkly season. But before we get too knee deep in tinsel, let’s not forget Halloween. Day of the Dead, trick or treating and pumpkins galore – it’s not just a huge market for the US anymore as the theme grows on UK soil year-on-year – we have three pages full of spooky crafts for all ages. This edition, I was lucky enough to catch up with Crystal Parade’s Poppy Pennington, who gives us all the goss on what’s happening in the world of rhinestones – and all the ventures she’s been a part of – from encrusting Sam Ryder’s boilersuits to adorning the stage of The Royal Opera House. Wow. If that’s not enough we have a spotlight on knitting and crochet, an eco-friendly section as well as our festival themed feature full of rainbows, dreamcatchers and hedonistic vibes for those eeking out the last of summer! And last but not least, we have all the current industry news and the latest crafting products on the market. Happy reading! Louise Prance Editor Rachel DESIGN +44 (0)1376 535 616 ACCOUNTS +44 (0)1376 535 616 MANAGING DIRECTOR Sarah Ellis +44 (0)1376 535 602 Craft Focus is solely owned, published and designed by KD Events & Publishing Ltd. Whilst every effort was made to ensure the information in this magazine was correct at the time of going to press, the publishers cannot accept legal responsibility for any errors or omissions, nor can they accept responsibility of the standing of advertisers nor by the editorial contributions. The views expressed do not necessarily reflect those of the publisher. Craft Focus is published six times a year. ISSN 1758-0900 @craftfocus @craftfocusmag @craftfocus Craft Focus is proud to be associated with and supporters of: ADVERTISING Account Manager Tracy Voice +44 (0)1376 538 555 EDITORIAL Editor Rachel Westall +44 (0)1376 514 000 The Esterbrook Estie from Studio Pens is utterly beautiful. Crystal Parade on stage at The Royal Opera House

Introducing a new collection of limited edition shopper tote bags from Storigraphic

9 BRAND SPANKING NEW  Brand spanking new Check out some new and exciting products in the current market HERITAGE CRAFTS John Clayton has really captured the essence of the flamenco dancer and the spirit of the music in this spectacular explosion of red and purple watercolours. Flamenco (JWFL1683) measures 28.5cm x 32.5cm. The RRP is £44.95. THE CRAFTY KIT COMPANY Here’s Peter Rabbit with his favourite pocket hanky, looking as dapper as usual. You can have great fun creating this 3D needle felting kit - one of the first of The Crafty Kit Company’s brand-new kits designed under license of Beatrix Potter™ ©. Or maybe you’d rather craft dear Mrs Tiggywinkle? You’ll follow clear photographic instructions using, where possible, UK sourced quality components. +44 (0)1620 860 907 STORIGRAPHIC LTD Storigraphic has taken a rhythmic direction with its latest design collection of products, the newly launched Sessions Series. Inspired by the transformative power of music, the company has translated melodic snippets into pattern form to create a design series of graphical beats. Radiating summer vibes with a bold colour palette, this cross-category collection features six prints and patterns across sustainably-produced homeware, stationery and accessories. TJHOKO PAINT Tjhoko Paint, a proudly South African company, manufactures a water-based, self-sealing acrylic chalk paint. With a focus on incomparable quality and family values, each carefully crafted Tjhoko Paint colour is named after one of its team members. The Tjhoko Paint holding company, Paint Master, has been manufacturing high quality decorative paint products for more than 21 years! The non-toxic properties and formulation of Tjhoko Paint means it can be used on virtually any surface and in virtually any environment, from children’s nurseries to interior and exterior spaces and everything in between – with no wax or sealant required. Tjhoko’s matt finish paint becomes UV and water resistant by simply applying the Clear Glaze.

10 SOLOCRAFTS Brand new from Leisure Arts is the new craft, Wood Stitchery, where wooden plaques have punched holes for stitching and some etched designs to create your own masterpiece. A large portion of the collection comes with a shadow box frame so you can display this as soon as the stitching is complete. Shown here is a picture plaque and a string art style framed design. Plaques retail for £22.99 and are 23cm in size, frames retail for £29.99 and are 27cm in size. Kits contain the wooden pieces plus cotton threads, needle and instructions. +44 (0)161 464 7310 STORIGRAPHIC LTD Storigraphic has just launched its first selection of limited-edition shopper tote bags (£20 RRP) utilising patterns and prints from their design collections: Boho Green, Grafico, Sessions and Seventies Series. The statement bags are sustainably produced in the UK, made from strong cotton and washable; perfect for shopping, travel or everyday use. POPPY TREFFRY LTD. Make this fun roll-up case to keep all your sewing essentials safe and sound. The packet contains everything to complete the project, you just need a sewing machine or a needle and thread. The design is printed on organic cotton and inspired by Cornish cottages at Christmas time. +44 (0)1736 369 247 CORINNE LAPIERRE Corinne Lapierre’s Printed Linen Embroidery Kit features her beloved birds perched on delicate blossom filled branches. This gorgeous linen mix printed fabric is cleverly designed so that it can be used in several ways. It can be kept in the hoop as a standalone picture frame and displayed on a wall or shelf. Alternatively, the whole piece can be embroidered and used as an appliqué on a cushion, quilt, wall hanging, table runner, tote bag and much more. It’s not only very versatile but also suitable for crafters of all abilities, even those just starting out. Full colour instructions for all the suggested stitches are provided but everyone can choose how much, or how little, of it they embroider. The result will always be stunning! +44 (0)1132 460 403

Perfect Product Partnership for Haberdashery & Craft Retailers Dannells manufacture the NeedCraft® range of craft kits that you can use with your fabrics, textiles and papers to make creative products around the home, and also Stick-IT® the most popular range of self-adhesive lampshade materials. We supply for retailers, wholesalers, distributors, workshops, manufacturers and educational establishments. Kit prices start from only £2.91+vat free delivery. Lampshades - Table Lamps - Floor Lamps Lanterns - Clocks - Bins WWW.DANNELLS.COM 01992 700311 @needcraft_ future architect future art teacher future artist future fashion designer help shape their futures shop our wide range of sketchbooks and pads stock up for school at scan here

12 SEARCH PRESS Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget Im-peck-able Crochet and Wallace & Gromit: Cracking Crochet are both new from Search Press. Take up your hook and with the expert guidance of crochet and amigurumi expert SarahJane Hicks, recreate the wonderful world of Aardman Animations’ beloved twosome, Wallace & Gromit! Or maybe you’d prefer to create one of the fabulous flock, including returning characters Ginger, Rocky, Babs, Bunty and the popular rats, Nick and Fetcher. POP-UP FRAMES Pop-Up Frames’ latest development is the printed Antique Pop-up Frames. These are currently skins that can be retro-fitted but they are soon to be a frame option. They look pretty convincing! The paper/board used for Pop-up Frames is FSC Mix Certified, which ensures that all virgin pulp is derived from well-managed forests. It’s Elemental Chlorine Free (ECF), pulp-dyed with light-fast colours and is manufactured by an ISO 14001 certified mill. The paper/board is also bio-degradable and recyclable. The suppliers are environmental management systems ISO 14001 accredited and Forest Steward Council (FSC) chain of custody certified. PENTEL Pentel has taken gel ink to a new level, with the launch of Mattehop, a range of eight different coloured gel pens which produce brilliant results not only on conventional paper, but also coated surfaces and even photos. Mattehop has highly opaque ink that looks like matte plastic when dry, giving an intense finish unsurpassed by conventional gel pens. The eight initial colours are black, red, blue, green, orange, yellow, pink and sky blue, and more shades are on their way. Great for cartoons, bubble lettering and comic book-style illustrations Mattehop is also perfect for journals and scrapbooks. Available to retailers in a maximum impact counter display, Pentel is offering point of sale to support the launch, as well as an exciting video hosted on its YouTube channel. The recommended retail price is £2.60 per pen, and Pentel representatives are offering a great promotional deal to launch the product. Wallet sets will be available later in the year. +44 (0)1793 823 333 Scan the QR code to watch our video More information from your Pentel representative NEW! Brilliant colours on light and dark coloured paper Highly opaque ink looks like matte plastic when dry Even writes on coated paper and photos Great for cartoons, bubble-lettering and comic book illustrations Eye-catching counter display plus PoS available Think you know gel ink? Think again!

15 INDUSTRY NEWS  Industry news Latest news from the craft industry CraftCover’s new insurance policy CraftCover insurance brokers have designed a policy created specifically for the UK Craft Industry. The company’s bespoke insurance product is made for independent crafters, by a small independent company. CraftCover has just launched a brand-new policy that has been highly requested by a lot of newer and/or part-time crafters, and that’s the one-off craft insurance policy’. Craft fairs in the UK are usually an all year round occasion, but if you only plan on going to two or three, you may not want to pay for a full year’s worth of cover. CraftCover has specifically designed a one-off, three-day craft fair insurance policy, only covering you for the days that you need it. This new, short-term cover provides crafters the necessary Public Liability cover to sell at fairs or exhibitions, and it will cover you for up to three days of trading. This policy is perfect for those who want to dip their toes into the world of craft fairs, but don’t want to commit to a craft fair policy for a full year. Take a look at the website and see which policy would suit you and your business best! Visit: Crafter’s Companion appoints new CEO Crafter’s Companion has appointed Mark Allsop as its new CEO to support its dynamic growth strategy. Prior to joining the global craft retailer, which was founded by businesswoman Sara Davies in 2005, Mark was COO and CDO at Currys plc. Here, he was responsible for developing and leading the business’ omnichannel, data and technology strategy across both physical and digital retail. In his new role, Mark will be responsible for overseeing the next phase of growth for Crafter’s Companion, which will focus on the combined multichannel strengths of its TV and e-commerce platforms, whilst showcasing its products to millions of customers across Europe, the US and beyond. Mark replaces former CEO Simon Davies, who is staying with the organisation as Executive Director, overseeing the company’s global wholesale teams and commercial partnerships. Mark said: “Crafter’s Companion is a fantastic business with an extremely passionate founder in Sara Davies. It’s rare to find a business that has such potential, ambition and capacity for growth as Crafter’s Companion. It was an unmissable opportunity to join as its new CEO. I’m excited to lead a team of passionate crafting and commercial experts to deliver a truly omnichannel business, underpinned with an impressive brand portfolio, whilst bolstering our product and service offerings for our millions of highly-engaged and loyal customers.” Sara Davies, founder and creative director of Crafter’s Companion, added: “The search for a new CEO was an extensive one. We needed somebody who completely understood our company and its values but also someone who has the tenacity and drive to support us in achieving our full potential. In Mark, I believe we’ve found the perfect fit.”

16 NSW exceeds all expectations with new direction This year’s National Stationery Week (NSW) saw over 150 retailers and suppliers take part in the biggest marketing campaign in the stationery industry calendar. Taking place between 15th to 21st May 2023, NSW was backed by world renowned brands such as Maped Helix, Pentel, Snopake, edding, Zebra Pens and Staedtler, as well as Esterbrook, Kaweko, Sinclairs and Jakar International,. Sarah Laker, the independent stationery champion of Stationery Supplies in Marple and Wilmslow, Cheshire, was blown away by the response National Stationery Week received on social media: “My phone started pinging with alerts from 6am on the Monday and didn’t stop all week. It was truly a delight to see so many suppliers, retailers and consumers joining in the weeklong stationery festivities. We even had stationery lovers in India, USA and the Caribbean celebrating with us.” Pentel sponsored National Stationery Week for the first time, and they were equally delighted with the results: “From the coverage achieved in trade and end-user press, to a well-planned and executed social media campaign, we experienced the benefit of being involved with this annual celebration of stationery at the highest level. The whole week brought together manufacturers, vendors and the stationeryloving public to share the stationery love, which is what it’s all about. We couldn’t be happier!” If you’d like to be one of the first to receive sponsorship information about National Stationery Week 2024, then please contact Sarah Laker: Exacompta enters into partnership with SumUp Exacompta, a leading European manufacturer of office supplies and thermal reels, is pleased to announce a licensing partnership with SumUp, the global fintech. A new Exacompta SumUp cobranded reel has been developed to be compatible with the SumUp printer and card reader bundles, but also to reinforce the sustainable development commitments of both companies. This Exacompta-SumUp reel, produced in France at the Exacompta plant in Breteuil, will have no core, no plastic packaging, no phenol, is FSC®-certified (FSC-C002321), and complies with all local and European regulations and is now available. With this new product, Exacompta is extending its already extensive reel offering for distributors, enabling them to better serve the vast customer base of SumUp merchants, mainly nano and micro businesses. “Being a leading technology player, we aim to have a positive impact both locally and globally and we believe that issues related to sustainability and environmental protection are the responsibility of everyone, including businesses like ours. We share the same ethical and ecological values as Exacompta and are delighted to have developed this co-branded reel with them to work together towards more environmentally friendly product innovations,” says Gabriele Bellezze, Global Head of Business Development Retail at SumUp.

2500+ Craft Products 40+ Categories Your One-Stop Back-to-School Supplier Find us at or call 01298 78447 Coming soon - tel: 0113 2460403 Embroidery kits to delight & inspire Creativity in a box ! Find us on Faire for 60-day payment terms: Visit us at Top Drawer London (10-12 Sept) stand J39

18 Hunter Price introduces its first Crayola® Collections to the UK Hunter Price International, the leading developer and supplier of innovative consumer products, has released the details of its first collections with Crayola, which launched in Tesco and Poundland in August. A capsule collection debuted in 200 Tesco stores for the brand-new range Crayola Kraft, which has been created by the team at Hunter Price in collaboration with the creativity icon. Crayola Kraft is a predominantly paper-based range that has the environment at heart and aims to inspire kids to craft with kindness. The first range is plastic free, recyclable, printed with vegetable-based inks, and FSC certified. Key lines include the Crayola Kraft Activity Case, which comes with 12 colouring pencils, sticker sheets, and a 30-page activity book containing colouring sheets, craft activities, and paper sheets. The Crayola Kraft Scrapbooking Kit includes a 40-page kraft paper scrapbook, sticker sheets, patterned and coloured paper sheets, tissue paper, decorative tape, and raffia paper ribbon. The two other products in the collection include a Card Making Kit, and a 3D Wooden Animal Kit, with five assorted animals which can be coloured and decorated. The second new collection concept is Crayola Everyday, a range of 19 products designed to encourage crafting and creativity everyday which will launch in more than 400 Poundland stores nationwide. The range combines Crayola quality product that features fun themes and characters, including monsters, unicorns and under the sea. With a target demographic of children aged three to 11, the Crayola Everyday range features a variety of create-your-own items from puzzles to metallic canvases to a map of the world, as well as scratch art and paper pads. Most lines also include Crayola crayons, which are ideal for craft sessions with kids and adults alike. In the coming months, Hunter Price will be unveiling more brand new product concepts in the UK and European markets. For all the latest updates, follow @HunterPriceInternational on Instagram, LinkedIn or visit Metallic Elephant’s sister website New for 2023, Metallic Elephant has launched its sister website Foils-online to help unleash your creativity! This e-commerce platform offers an incredible variety of foils, each with its own special qualities that will make your prints & designs pop. Whether you’re looking for metallics, holographic, pigment or matte foils, you can find it all. Start shopping today and see what possibilities await you with Foils-online. Hot foiling is a process that involves creating an impression on a surface using thin metal hot foil plates and special foil sheets (no, not that aluminium foil used for cooking!). The combination of heat and pressure helps create a beautiful, shiny, metallic design. If you’re familiar with the idea of creating a letterpress design, then you’re already halfway through understanding how this method works. It’s like a letterpress design but with a more luxurious shine and shimmer, thanks to the hot foil applied. You can’t make pretty hot foiled designs without these! Hot foil rolls are available in various sizes and colours, with gold being the most popular. These ink-resistant sheets can be metallic but are available in fluorescent, holographic, or iridescent versions. The ultimate destination for hot foil printing enthusiasts! Visit the website:

@curiousuniverseuk @CUL_UK @curiousuniverseuk Calling all curious crafters If we’ve sparked your curiosity, visit our website: 3-in-1 Landscape Single

New colouring books from Batsford is distributed by Abrams & Chronicle Books View our latest catalogue: Over 9 million Millie Marotta books sold Decorative letters from the popular Maggie Magoo design house The Wholesaler UK is open 24/7/365 for retailers looking for suppliers. 01608 662 298 Trade shows are back, but we never closed! Visit our website or contact us to find out how to book your “virtual” stand and take advantage of our trial listings. 1000s of product photos Detailed at-a-glance information on suppliers. Save your favourite suppliers for future visits The directory is still free to use - no registration. All listings are thoroughly vetted. We only list UK-based wholesalers What’s New? What’s Not New? Discus UK Made Pottery Wheels CRAFTSMAN Electric Potter's Wheel • Designed & made in UK • Lifetime support • Lightweight, portable & easy to store Pottery Products Ltd. E: • 5 year warranty • Powerful, 16kg of clay • Ideal for beginner and professional use Tel: 01730 300762

21 SHOWS & EVENTS  This season’s most unmissable events Shows, news & events h+h americas sets new records The second edition of h+h americas continued the positive trend that started last year and left many exhibitors and attendees in awe. The three-day trade show and conference took place from 21st to 23rd June, 2023 and set new record numbers. More than 2,500 professionals from 22 countries attended the sold-out event featuring 267 exhibitors (2022: 196 exhibitors), a 34 per cent increase underlining the fast-growing recognition for this event held at the Donald E. Stephens Convention & Conference Center in Rosemont/Chicago. Attendees consisted of major retailers such as Michaels, Joann Fabrics, Hobby Lobby and Blick Art Materials as well as store owners from all across North and South America, Europe and even buyers from Australia and Singapore. “We are grateful and humbled by the fastbuilding momentum and strong support for our show. It seems that our event has really closed the gap for a much needed and relevant handicraft tradeshow for the North American B2B community. Many domestic attendees really appreciated the increased number of quilting and fabric lines as well as the ability to touch and feel international products normally not seen in the US.” said Mette Petersen, President and Managing Director of Koelnmesse Inc. The 2024 edition will be held from May 1st to May 3rd (Wednesday through Friday) at the Rosemont location. The earlier dates will enable North American retailers to view international product introductions in Chicago just five weeks after the March event in Cologne. “With the early May date, we can bring our team together at h+h americas, unveil our new line, and invite our retailers to witness it firsthand. This move allows us to transform h+h americas into a show where we optimize our time with customers at the very start of the new season launch. It’s a fantastic opportunity for our sales representatives.” Jan Hurwitz, Vice President at Premier Needle Arts and General Manager of Berroco. Visit: Diary dates Scotland Trade Fair Autumn 20th-21st August 2023 SEC, Glasgow Autumn Fair 3rd-6th September, 2023 Birmingham NEC The Knit Show 10th -11th September, 2023 Great Yorkshire Showground Top Drawer London Olympia, London 10th -12th September, 2023 Harrogate Christmas & Gift 14th-17th January, 2024 Harrogate Convention Centre CHSI Stitches 25th-26th February, 2024 Birmingham NEC h+h cologne March 22nd -24th March, 2024 Cologne, Germany

22 The Knit Show Following a very successful launch in 2022, The Knit Show, organised by UK Hand Knitting, will take place on Sunday 10th and Monday 11th September at The Pavilions, Great Yorkshire Showground, Harrogate HG2 8NZ. This year’s exhibitors include UK Hand Knitting members Cygnet Yarns, Groves, James C Brett, King Cole, Rico Design, Stylecraft and West Yorkshire Spinners, together with specially invited suppliers including Emma Ball, Viridian, CRS Fur Fabrics, SC & PS Saunders Ltd, Artyarn, Littondale Craft Fabrics and Shepley Yarns. UK Hand Knitting is delighted to reveal the speakers for the event who have all developed new workshops that follow on from their subjects last year: Andrew Davis, Social Media Expert - Boosting Social Media Presence Through AI, Analytics and Storytelling - Part two. This talk builds on last year’s skills but is also suitable for newbies. Kate Heppell, Head of Content, Practical Publishing - working with magazines to promote your business. Sharon King, Ewe and Yarn - Making an Impact as an LYS: Working Collaboratively and New Window Dressing Ideas. Carl Milner, King Cole – Photography clinic. To sign up for tickets to the show visit: To secure a 10 per cent discount on orders placed with UK Hand Knitting members only at the show, become a premium listed shop by following this link: Top Drawer A/W returns From September 10th to 12th 2023, the iconic Olympia London will once again welcome visitors and exhibitors to an unmissable showcase of innovative and inspiring lifestyle brands. This September’s Top Drawer is set to impress with an extraordinary lineup of suppliers from both the UK and around the globe, with exhibitors hailing from as far afield as Australia, Chile and Japan! Buyers will have the opportunity to explore an extensive range of products and new season designs, with notable exhibitors including Abrams & Chronicle, Aery, Bookspeed, CHALK, Ginger Ray, Kikkerland, Lifeguard Press +, LIGA, Lisa Angel, Morgan Wright, My Doris, Ohh Deer, Roka London, Suck UK and Wrap, among many others. In addition to showcasing wellestablished brands, over 30 per cent of the exhibitor list at Top Drawer will be showing for the very first time, including the likes of Aarke, Caroline Svedbom, Chipolo, Elizabeth Scarlett, JT England, Live VIDA, Made Happy Gifts, Mantidy, Tiptree and West Design Products, so retailers are sure to discover a host of suppliers they’ve not seen before. Registration to attend Top Drawer is now open. Visit the website:

24 Plans for CHSI Stitches underway Experienced event organisers, ICHF Events, is planning further investment in high calibre speakers for the 2024 show following the success of the 2023 education programme which included entrepreneur and founder of a celebrated luxury fashion label, Barjis Chohan; Claire Harper, leading branding expert with Argos, Ocado, Sainsburys and Mamas & Papas and Safia Minney, award-winning social entrepreneur and founder of sustainable fashion brand, People Tree. Steve Mitchell, CHSI Stitches show director, says, “We had an amazing response to our fantastic speakers this year. We will continue to deliver high level, practical business insight to visitors in 2024 and are focusing on securing a speaker and demo programme to give visitors the knowledge and skills to drive their businesses forward.” Key exhibitors already booked for the Feb 2024 event are Lewis & Irene, Empee Silk Fabrics, Visage Textiles, Oddies Textiles, Hawthorne Handmade, Creative Solutions, King Cole, Chatham Glyn Fabrics and Viridian Distribution. To discuss exhibiting options in 2024, contact Steve Mitchell on +44 (0)1425 460 811 or email Visit: Scotland Trade Fair Spring dates announced Over three quarters of all stands are already secured for Scotland’s Trade Fair Spring which takes place from 21st to 23rd January 2024 at the SEC, Glasgow. With a healthy re-booking, on top of what hopes to be one of the busiest tourist seasons ever, the Show is looking to be a smasher! The show will feature the best of what Scotland has to offer in terms of gifts, homeware, fashion, textiles, jewellery and crafts. A clearer identification system for Scottish producers will also ensure easier navigation around the Show. Scottish suppliers are the backbone of the Show coming from the furthest Scottish islands to Central Belt producers. Complementing this creativity is also a wide range of innovative suppliers from the rest of the UK and abroad, all keen to secure a slice of the Scottish market. Among the 450 or so exhibitors, there will be the Launch Gallery for new, young companies, the Craft Gallery for creative, more niche suppliers, plus designated areas for homeware and gifts, jewellery and accessories and textiles. Visit:

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MAKING FUN AT AUTUMN FAIR Renowned for its eclectic mix of new and exclusive brands as well as its support for up-and-coming start-ups and designers, buyers visiting Autumn Fair are in for a treat this September Thousands of leading retailers including Card Factory, John Lewis, Coney’s, Robert Dyas, Walt Disney Co., Holland & Barrett, Marks & Spencer, Wilkies, Artistic Gift Boutique, Fortnum & Mason, and Moonpig have already signed up under the new Connect programme to attend from the 3rd to 6th September at NEC Birmingham and will discover a raft of new brands and collections available only at Autumn Fair including The Art File, Lesser & Pavey, Sass & Belle, Kikkerland, Bomb Cosmetics, Keel Toys, Suck UK and many more. An array of crafting brands will showcase their new creations with a focus on ethically and sustainably made crafts. Daniel Mayhew, Event Director, Autumn Fair says, “We have got a real treat in store for gift and crafting buyers. Crafting has been evolving for years and it is being embraced by all ages. It has the unique ability for unearthing hidden talent, passion, and enthusiasts and kits make the perfect, highly thoughtful gifts too. We are seeing a huge growth in exhibitors focusing on sustainability, using materials that have either been sourced ethically or are recycled and recyclable. And the range of kits now available just keeps building, from embroidery, jewellery and modelling kits, to baking, homewares, keep sakes, and new everyday products. Retailers are also diversifying, so you’ll now find crafting kits in garden centres, independent gift shops and book shops, as well as your destinational craft multiples. We’re excited to showcase some brilliant creative crafting brands at Autumn Fair.” ONES TO WATCH Felt So Good specialise in beautiful handmade felt hangings, decorations and gifts that encompass both the traditional and the quirky! From Christmas angels, Santa’s and snowmen to an octopus, bumble bee or festive dinosaur, each colourful character and beautiful decoration showcases gorgeous detail and quality. All products are lovingly and ethically crafted by hand from natural and biodegradeable materials in the Himalayas, so every character has its own little personality making them all unique. Amica Accessories have been specialists in felt since 2004, creating beautiful, handmade and Fair Trade products. A number of ranges - toys, gifts, Christmas, Easter and Halloween decorations – are designed in their Bristol studio, then made with skill and to the highest quality by a team of Fair Trade craftspeople in Nepal. All products are made from 100% sheep’s wool, plastic free and kind to the environment making them the obvious choice for retailers wanting to introduce environmentally friendly products. King Cole is a leading brand in yarn production, design support and haberdashery which has been operating in the knitting wool industry for over 80 years. With solar powered premised in Skiption, North Yorkshire, and the introduction of more and more recycled products, King Cole continues to develop multiple knitting wool colours and 26

DEADLINE: Registration closes on the 9th August 2023 weights, a wide range of different yarns, and both crochet and knitting patterns. Craft Buddy showcases Crystal Art, a universally popular craft suitable for children and adults alike. The Crystal Art brand follows the diamond painting practice of creating artistic designs using crystals and the range has expanded with over 100 new products including Crystal Art cards, notebooks, different sized canvas kits, keyrings, wreaths, and accessories for this autumn/winter season as well as collaborations with renowned artists like Thomas Kinkade, Anne Stokes, Claudia Hahn, as well as new licensing partner Disney. Willsow returns to Autumn Fair with its hugely popular range of plantable children’s books and a new range of greetings cards. Made with special handmade paper embedded with real vegetable and herb seeds, when the paper is planted in a pot of soil, vegetables and herbs will grow from the paper. Created to help teach children about the potential of our natural environment in a fun and relatable way (getting your hands dirty!), the books also highlight sustainability and the importance of recycling. There are now five titles available and a range of merchandising solutions to easily bring the stories to life. For those with a passion for seeds, The Seed Card Company continues to grow its recyclable, biodegradable collections of cards and stationery sets made entirely from post-consumer upcycled paper waste embedded with wildflower seeds. At Autumn Fair the company will launch a new bespoke point of sale design to house gift wrapping, gift tags and greeting cards in one place, as well as new gift wrap and gift tag designs and a new seed card option – the Carrot Seed Card. eatsleepdoodle creates fun, creative and educational textile gifts to colour in and personalise with included washout pens. Combining education, fun and reusability, every gift has a practical use too – pencil cases for school, placemats for meals out, pillowcases, and backpacks. Inspiring designs range from butterflies and dinosaurs to a world map and space exploration and each is backed up with additional learning material for children to research and discover. Sustainable, reusable and practical, everything is 100 per cent cotton, washes clean in the machine and each textile gift comes complete with a set of 10 super wash-out pens. Clockwork Soldier specialises in paper activities and craft kits aiming to provide fun and challenging projects as a welcome distraction from digital toys. Inspired by nostalgia, the gifts, games and curiosities keep children (and adults!) entertained with kits designed to encourage children to use their creativity, learn and have fun. Buyers are invited to apply for free entry now as registration this year closes on 9th of August 2023. All buyers registered to the show will have free access to Connect @ Autumn Fair, the new programme designed to make it easier than ever before for retailers to connect with relevant exhibitors and vice versa. 27 AUTUMN FAIR

 All I want for Christmas... Festive finds customers will love CROCREATE Amigurumi Christmas Lights crochet kit STORIGRAPHIC LTD ’80s inspired Christmas wrapping paper & greeting card designs LETISTITCH Christmas Retro Cars is a kit of five items. +44 (0)7780 122 430 +44 (0)7469 364 150 CRAFTER’S COMPANION Sew your own handmade Christmas decorations with Festive Cut ‘n’ Stitch dies +44 (0)1388 660 930 trade-partnerships 29 CHRISTMAS - PART ONE

HAWTHORN HANDMADE Christmas Car Needle Felting Kit RRP £12.95 STORIGRAPHIC LTD ’80s inspired Christmas wrapping paper & greeting card designs ZWEIGART Xmas Vibes booklet 106-40 POPPY TREFFRY LTD. Christmas cabin storage pot sewing project +44 (0)1736 369 247 30

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HAWTHORN HANDMADE Christmas Baubles Felt Craft Kit RRP £15.95 BOTHY THREADS Highland Christmas RRP: £35.49 CURIOUS UNIVERSE Colour and Carry Activity Kit, Christmas Fun +44 (0)1225 614 310 EXACLAIR The Christmas Houses Discovery Box features everything you need to create your very own hamlet of festive model houses. +44 (0)1553 696 600 32

Grow your business with the rhinestone brand that’s taking the craft world by storm. Now seen as the best alternative to Swarovski, Zodiac has received over 1500 5 star reviews, with 96% of customers saying they would highly recommend them. 01926 485038 | To see our full range of titles and special offers visit our website: Telephone: 01892 510 850 • Email: Stay in touch with us through social media © and ™ Aardman Animations Limited /Wallace & Gromit Limited (2023). All rights reserved. Wallace and Gromit (word mark) and the characters “Wallace” and “Gromit” © and ™ Aardman/Wallace & Gromit Limited. ™/© Aardman Animations Limited, 2023. Netflix™/© Netflix. Used with permission. RRP £14.99 RRP £14.99 ISBN: 9781800921535 ISBN: 9781800922037 CF_halfpage ad_Aug_Sept_2023.indd 1 20/07/2023 09:19:13

CORINNE LAPIERRE King of the Woods printed linen embroidery kit +44 (0)1132 460 403 CURIOUS UNIVERSE I Love Crystals, Christmas +44 (0)1225 614 310 COLOP UK LTD 10-in-1 stamps. Perfect for printing onto card and paper, creating your own cards, tags, gift wrap, decorative notes, and more! +44 (0)121 622 8900 PEAK DALE PRODUCTS Polystyrene balls, wreath frames, artificial wreaths, ribbons, and self-adhesive gems – everything to make your creativity sparkle! BARNETT LAWSON TRIMMINGS Barnett Lawson have a whole range of cute critters just waiting to adorn your wrapping! These motifs also have an iron-on backing, so the recipient can even add them to their favourite garment afterwards. 34

Alan Provisor ONLINE Fabulous range of braids tassels and cords in amazing colours. Check out the website or call me 01204 465233 | To see our full range of beginner craft kits visit: or email CRAFT KITS FOR beginners & Beyond! LETISTITCH LTD - is a new cross stitch brand company, established in the United Kingdom. This project is intended as a wholesale business, founded by the designer Anastasia LucaBrasoveanu in 2019. Our kits are manufactured in association with Luca-S Company. Our aim is to offer customers pleasant stitching experiences and establish new collaborations and partnerships. WWW.LETISTITCH.COM | +44 7780122430 | +44 7469364150

36 Blingtastic! Launched in 2011, Crystal Parade caters for the growing need of rhinestones and crystals for crafters, nail artists, designers and stylists. Here, Director Poppy Pennington tells us more... Poppy, the founder of Crystal Parade had five years previous experience within the embellishing world, many years’ experience within sales and customer service roles and at the age of 16 was running a couple of successful enterprises. So, with hardwork, the odd risk here and there, a great team by her side and the love and support of her family and friends she took the leap to start Crystal Parade. Tell us about launching Crystal Parade When I launched Crystal Parade there was only a few companies you could purchase crystal embellishments from, and they were mainly offering the highly priced brand of crystals which weren’t always suitable or affordable for some customers; or the other choice was poor quality rhinestones. I saw a gap in the marketplace for a crystal supplier offering not just one brand of crystal but two. A few years down the line, we offered three great brands with three price points, a myriad of colours, sizes and shapes available in wholesale or retail packs. Today Crystal Parade is a Silver Authorised Preciosa partner and has its own brand of Zodiac crystals. In 2016, we launched a great range of crystal mixes. Our crystal mixes are a big seller with the AB mixes being the number one seller. Our customers love to experiment with the different colour combinations which make the crystal mixes a fabulous and economical solution for getting creative and splashing the colour! What’s life like at Crystal Parade today? We’re in our 13th year and have been so lucky to work with very creative and well known indvidual’s and companies. From the stylists for Sam Ryder, P!NK, Take That, Leona Lewis, Little Mix, Robbie Williams, Spice Girls, The Vivienne, Ant and Dec and Sam Smith to name a few... and then there are all the theatrical productions we have worked with including Shrek, Thrillier, 42nd Street, Kinky Boots, Phantom, Frozen and most recently we’ve supplied Zodiac and Preciosa crystals to the Royal Opera House’s production of Cinderella. I went to see the performance it was amazing but made extra special by seeing the cast sparkling in our crystals. Over the years, we’ve been asked to crystallise many different items from Dorothy’s Ruby Slippers, a life-sized mannequin (we called her Goldie, she was crystallized in thousands of Zodiac Golden Shadow rhinestones), bikinis for F1, champagne bottles, wheelbarrows, cricket balls, a Rolls Royce and other ordinary and not so ordinary items. But it’s not just about the dizzy heights of stage and celebrities that has seen Crystal Parade stay solid and grow from strength to strength, we have thousands of customers who wish to place sparkling orders to add the extra special touch of sparkle to their greeting cards, journals, parchment craft, crochet projects, costumes, jewellery designs, shoes, hat and accessories. The craft and costume marketplace is key to Crystal Parade’s success and we work with wellknown artists to keep our finger on the pulse when it comes to embellishing special craft projects and showstopping costumes.

37 PROFILE What plans do you have moving forward? This year, we plan to launch more crystal mixes and craft kits and for sure will be expanding our own brand of Zodiac crystals. We’re currently carrying out our R & D for ceramic hotfix flatback pearls. When we sold Swarovski, they were a great seller, very popular with the couture costume and wedding dress designers along with wedding stationery designers too. We hope to have these launched within the next month or two. Our Zodiac range of crystals are a fantastic alternative to the top quality Austrian crystals. At the beginning of this year, we sent out a questionnaire to all our customers who had purchased from the Zodiac range, the feedback was amazing with 97 per cent of our customers saying they’d recommend Zodiac to their friends. The quality of the Zodiac range is excellent, you won’t find them being scratched easily, they don’t come away from the foil backs and they really do sparkle! Our most popular colour is the AB (Aurora Borealis). In the office we have our favourites personal faves…. Peacock Blue, Green Volcano, the new Purple Velvet, Light Pink AB and Moonlight. As the Zodiac is our own brand of crystal, we’re able to offer great discounts to retail customers, we also offer a fulfilment service whereby you supply us with your own branded bags and we will label and put your chosen amount of crystals in your bag. Hobby & crafts have boomed over the last two years! How has this affected Crystal Parade? We have many customers wanting to give their clothing an original look! For example, if they’re going to a festival and want plenty of blng; we’ve just put a thunder bolt on a pair of wellies for a pop concert! Harry Styles is all about the sparkle and we’ve had lots of customers wanting to recreate Harry’s look from the sparkly glasses to the love heart dungarees. How would you advise customers wanting to stock your product? We currently have a handful of retailers stocking our range of crystals and tools, they really do see the benefits of stocking the crystals as the audience for crystals is so diverse from a nail artist, make-up artist to a milliner and crafter - everyone loves a touch of sparkle and quite often crystals are an impulse purchase. It’s all about inspiring your customers, you just need an eye-catching item/craft project on display and it becomes a talking point. If you’re a fabric, craft or wool shop, crystals are an easy upsell. Prices for 100 Zodiac rhinestones starts at £2! You can offer crystal workshops, once shown how easy it is to embellish with the right tools your customers will be hooked and back for more - they’ll spread the word too. We’re happy to come along to your shop premises and can even hold a crystal workshop free of charge. What does the future hold for Crystal Parade? The future is looking exciting with new opportunities for us all to share the sparkle and bring something new and innovative to our customers. CRYSTAL PARADE +44 (0)1926 485 038

HAVE YOU SEEN OUR NEW COLLECTIONS? Founded in 1834, we are Manchester’s oldest textile company. With 180 successful years trading at the forefront of the textile industry, we’re a business that you can trust. We have been supplying into all areas of the wholesale and retail markets ever since the industrial revolution, never comprising integrity. As our customer, you gain access to an international sourcing and distribution network. This is supported by our market expertise, significant experience and sound technical knowledge. BOOK YOUR VIEWING SOON Call: 0161 872 1444 WWW.BEHRENS.CO.UK