Thursday, 19 August 2010

Garlic Festival Finds...

Last weekend my sister Sue and I shared a stall in the Arts and Crafts marquee at the Isle of Wight Garlic Festival. It went very well and although it was hard work we enjoyed ourselves. It was so busy by Sunday afternoon people were still queueing to get into the showground! So I’m pleased we made the decision to go again this year. Yet again my photos of the event were pretty rubbish and out of focus: too preoccupied with manning our stall. So instead I thought I’d blog about my new purchases…

At the festival I found a fabulous stall selling lots of gorgeous vintage tools and garden equipment. I picked up a lovely enamel bowl for my studio, and since I don’t have a sink in there it's perfect for all manner of uses. I’ve already been using it to do a bit of mid-summer cleaning: washing all my work aprons and tea towels which were long overdue. I also bought a pair of tongs from the same stall. These were a bit rusty and dirty to start with, but after a few minutes soaking in WD40 have cleaned up a treat. I haven’t used these yet but I’m sure when it comes to raku firing again they’ll be useful for finding tiny buttons or pendants in all the sawdust. But at just £2 for the bowl and a quid for the tongs I could hardly resist!

Finally I bought this lovely old metal bin with lid and handles for just £8. Not sure what it was originally – maybe it was an old steam cooker or a copper. But I saw it and instantly thought I could make it into a small raku kiln. So I’m really quite excited about it! I’ll have to do some research and draw up some plans on how it might work – but in theory all it needs is some ceramic fibre on the inside and a hole in the back for the burner. But even if it turns out not to be suitable, it’ll still be perfect as a reduction chamber in raku firing (ie; the bin full of sawdust into which the raku pots go when they come straight out of the kiln).

So all in all it was a successful weekend!

(My sister Sue was also tempted to buy some lovely bowls and pots from the same stall for her natural dyeing process. You can see her blog here.)


  1. Sounds like you had a great weekend. The bin is super!

  2. Thanks Sugarplum Kawaii: we did! And buying new kit is always so much fun!

  3. Thanks for the link to my blog.
    can't wait to put our new pots to good use!
    love sue