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Craft Works – artisans on the rise during lockdown

Posted by Rachel Westall on 3 June 2020

According to the BBC (9th May, 2020) more than one in 10 people in the UK has learnt something new during the lockdown. This is further enforced by a Guardian article the same week, that suggests ‘Britain is in the thrall of a crafting revolution, the likes of which has not been seen since the Second World War.” With 88 per cent of UK craft businesses being sole traders, the last 10 weeks have given many artisans and hobbyists the opportunity to try something new.

Whether people are expanding their crafting skills as a way of exploring their creativity, to develop financial security or manage their mental wellbeing, it's clear that this is resulting in some interesting outcomes.

Natasha Kerimova, owner/leatherwork designer at Ten Cloudy and Abbey England scholarship winner, has recognised this desire among her customer base. She explains: "I have discovered many new customers during the extended lockdown. They are buying my DIY craft kits, such as my 'make your own' leather purse kit, and they are happy to send comments and share photos of the resulting products. I am finding this very inspiring and incredibly supportive!"

Abbey England is a market-leading wholesale supplier of premium British-made materials and tools. The company has been serving the equestrian and leather goods trades for almost 40 years. Commented Richard Brown, Abbey England CEO: "With many people still furloughed or self-isolating, some are finding this time of stillness an excellent opportunity to try new things, such as leathercraft. Abbey England and its customers are helping to facilitate this. Over recent weeks, we have definitely noticed a shift in demand for tooling leathers and items for small leather goods, as more people find themselves at home and wanting to be creative."

Abbey England carries a wide range of leathers and everything else required to complete small projects, including thread, needles, Fiebing leather dye and adhesives, along with webbings and fittings for dog leads and collars. For further information on Abbey England and its full product range, visit www.abbeyengland.com