CRAFT FOCUS M AG A Z I N E Honesty really is

Issue 37 June/July 2013
Summer product churn
Stock your shelves with the right products children’s crafting, paints and craft tools
Honesty really is
the best policy
A retailer’s quest for
trusty business
rich issue
New features and
even more articles
than ever!
• The right insurance for your company
• Workplace pensions and how it affects you
• PPC for speciality retailers and how to compete
Official media partner for
Craft, Hobby + Stitch
International and
proud sponsor of the
New Product Showcase
June/July 2013 Issue 37
Managing Editor
Georgina Cassels
+44 (0)1376 535 611
Julie Bonnar
+44 (0)1376 514 000
[email protected]
Sales Manager
Mark White
+44 (0)1376 535 606
[email protected]
Sales Executive
Tracy Voice
+44 (0)1376 535 618
[email protected]
Production Manager
Scott Brothwell
Deputy Production Manager
Sarah Barnes
Senior Graphic Designer
Vicky O’Connor
Graphic Designers
Samantha Lock, Rebecca Clarke
+44 (0)1376 535 616
[email protected]
Production Assistant
Charlotte Brown
Web Development Manager
Stuart Weatherley
Matilda Bourne, Tammy Watt
+44 (0)1376 514 000
KD Media Publishing Limited
Pantile House, Newlands Drive
Witham, Essex, CM8 2AP, UK
Front cover image:
Martha Stewart from Plaid Enterprises
West Design
editor’s letter
An overview of what to expect in this issue
news round up
What’s happening within the craft industry
brand spanking new
A look at the latest product launches
project - conversational cardi
Make a window-dressing to coax customers in!
Newest craft-related book releases
Win a selection of the latest vintage cross-stitch
kits with Bothy Threads
your questions answered
We’ve teamed up with industry experts from
CHA-UK to give you answers
project – awesome foam pets
Mask project for a children’s ‘make and take’ day
for retailers
ISSN 1758-0900
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next issue
Fast forward to the June/July issue
show news
Keep up with what’s happening in your industry
Create ‘n’ Connect, Las Vegas
What you can expect to see at the newly named
Summer CHA show
London Stationery Show review 35
We visited the show at the stylish Business Design
Centre venue in Islington
h+h Cologne
Why this show remains one of the leading trade
events in Europe
the right tools for the job
Stock up on the most innovative and task easy tools
thread fest
What’s new from the major manufacturers
for the love of beads
The latest offerings for bead and
beading accessories
make a splash
Paints, a staple product for crafters and a stock
kids and summer crafting
Kids crafting has a lion’s share of the market, make
sure you are stocked up for summer
decorative illuminations
Contemporary candle-making supplies
craftfocus 3
Vintage Patch
Coats Crafts UK
focus on
retail inspiration
Is honesty really the best policy. We find out from The Honesty Shop
hand-knitting under one roof
Find out what plans Bergere de France has for the UK market
product review
Craft Focus put Vintage Patch through it’s paces
a long history of manufacturing
We talk to Coats Crafts UK about its past
consumer trends
Hook up with those in the know at Future Publishing
haberdashery haven
From small mail order business to wholesale haberdasher.
We catch up with EQS UK
Up & coming
Introducing buttons with attitude from Tuliptree Buttons
business advice
which insurance?
Fiona Pullen from The Sewing Directory looks at the types of insurance
that you should be considering
are you ready for workplace pensions?
ActSmart help talk you through the new legislation
are you David or Goliath?
Metakinetic show how to beat the odds with pay per click
word on the web
Words of wisdom from Enterprise Nation about building your
brand online
4 craftfocus
Suppliers of Card Making, Scrapbooking, Craft and Bridal Supplies
Kaisercraft papers
celebrate summer trading
Suppliers of
Craft and Bridal Supplies
Card Making
Card Embellishments
Floral Products
[email protected] | 01384 230000
At last some warmer weather is here that will
hopefully entice customers to stock up and
get crafting whilst the evenings are lighter. In
keeping with this, we’ve put together a bounty
of new product features to encourage children
to craft over the summer break, splash out on
specialised paints and investigate new crafting
tools; all to help you fill your shelves with the
right supplies for cashing in on the summer.
We also take a look at the traditional craft of
candle-making bringing it up to date, plus we’ve the latest information
on threads and beading materials.
This issue is full of many firsts with new features and fresh ideas
starting with projects to help you attract customers in for ‘make and
take’ days or simply to give you ideas for your shop window to catch
their attention. From this issue, we’ll be reviewing a product every
month so you can consider the benefits of stocking it; this time we look
at an innovative product from Vintage-Patch.
We also have an inspirational article where we put you in touch with
what other retailers are doing to go that that extra mile. This time, we
talk to David Waterhouse from The Honesty Shop who has bought a
red London double-decker bus to promote his business!
Of course, we have a plethora of business articles with advice on the
new pension legislation, craft insurance and competing with the bigger
companies on the web plus a round up of what’s happening at the
shows from around the globe.
The Kunin Group
A most innovative collection
of environmentally friendly
craft felt.
Just launched - exciting
new Fanci felt range for
use in many projects.
Enjoy what’s inside!
Julie Bonnar
Available in cut rectangles
and bolts.
For further information about Kunin Craft Felt
please contact
Fashion Futures Ltd, Units 1 and 2 Mace Industrial
Estate, Ashford, Kent TN24 8EP.
[email protected]
Tel +44 (0) 1233 625227. Fax +44 (0) 1233 612352
MIC Crafts
craftfocus 5
Scotland & NI Sales Agent
Bothy Threads…
DMC Creative World is a leading global
manufacturer of benchmark quality threads, craft
and needlecraft product with its history dating
back over 260 years. We are an innovative business
animating the market with creative, fashionable and
enjoyable products for all. Our brand is renowned
for its quality worldwide.
The Northern Europe Region is seeking a skilled
and experienced Sales Agent to join the successful
UK sales team covering the Scotland
and Northern Ireland region.
Sunny Stitching Days
ahead! We are always here
with new designs to keep
your customers happy...
Essential Skills & Experience
• Previous experience in field sales
• Exceptional sales skills with demonstrable results
• Target driven
• Experience of FMCG sales environment
Please send CV and enquiries to Tricia Thorpe,
HR Manager DMC Creative World.
Unit 21 Warren Park Way,
Warrens Park Enderby. LE19 4SA or
email [email protected]
Bothy Threads, Unit 9,
Swan Lane Business Park
0844 8000221
[email protected]
…the home of Happy Stitching!
- 1(;7:25.,1*'$<'(/,9(5<$667$1'$5'-
news roundup
industry news
We round up and report on the news from the crafting industry
Cricut has announced that it has extended its e-commerce site for
European customers, who can now purchase the latest cutting machines
and cartridges direct from In addition, there is also
access to the complete range of digital images for creating projects with
a Cricut digital die-cutting machine, ranging from personalised cards, gift
bags and bunting, to picture frames, decorations and home décor.
The company offers a range of products that make crafting easier,
as well as helping users make the most of their crafting potential. The
extensive selection of machines and cartridges includes the Cricut
Expression 2 and the Cricut mini digital die cutter. Customers in Europe
have been able to purchase single digital images from the Cricut craft
room for some time, but now have access to thousands more images
and projects that are available for immediate download.
T: +44(0)779 1113047
E: [email protected]
Cricut digital library can be found at
Crafter’s Companion has recruited a high profile trade team as the
company looks to further expand its retail presence and support
independent stores. It has taken on six new industry experts from
the Creative Hobbies Group (formally known as Kars) to form its
own dedicated distribution division, which will be spearheaded by
well-respected industry executive, Simon Duncan.
Simon has been appointed to the position of European
Commercial Manager at Crafter’s Companion and brings years
of experience with him. The retail team includes Janice Epsworth,
Malcolm Langley, Jeanette Hallsworth, Mark Sharman and Lorna
Horrocks, who are all well known by craft retailers across the UK.
Sara Davies, Managing Director at Crafter’s Companion, welcomed
the team and said: “Attracting Simon to the business is a real coup
considering his background, experience and contacts. Furthermore, his
team has always been highly regarded in our sector so will no doubt
add a great deal of value to our company and to our customers.”
“The team and I are delighted to be joining Crafter’s Companion at such
an exciting time. My approach has always been to listen to and look after
retail customers as the number one priority, which will no doubt fit well
with Crafter’s Companion as the company is well known for its trustworthy
customer service and its family-run feel.
“We are really looking forward to hitting the road, meeting new and
existing contacts and working in partnership with retailers by introducing
many exciting new products and commercial opportunities,” said Simon
Duncan, the newly appointed European Commercial Manager.
Simon Duncan and Sara Davies (front) and the new trade team
celebrating their first day at Crafter’s Companion
Crafter’s Companion, which designs and manufactures craft-related
products for enthusiasts across the world, now employs around 60
people across its County Durham headquarters and its US operation
in California. Its products are sold through retail outlets, online and TV
shopping channels around the world.
The main focus of the business is on the crafting tools it
manufactures along with its own brand products such as Spectrum
Noir and Embosalicious. The company also distributes an array
of third party brands such as Craftwell and Core’dinations and
develops products with licensing partners such as Beatrix Potter and
The Snowman.
Crafter’s Companion
T: +44(0)1388 663251
E: [email protected]
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industry news
Creative Beadcraft is an approved supplier of Swarovski Elements and
has been supplying Swarovski crystals for over 50 years. It has now
launched a new dedicated online facility for wholesale customers
enabling them to order from a huge range of Swarovski factory packs.
Swarovski is very popular across a range of crafts, not just beading.
Customers can now order out of stock as well as stock factory packs
online at hard-to beat prices. Up to 10 per cent additional discount
is given on factory pack purchases over £200 and five per cent on
purchases over £75. Postage is free on UK orders over £50 with delivery
normally within five working days.
The facility is easy to use – just select the item/s and then choose the
colour and size that you require. Discount will be automatically calculated
as you shop. The facility is fully integrated with the Creative Beadcraft
website so it’s easy to order other items at the same time. Creative
Beadcraft also stocks a wide range of Swarovski Elements in
smaller quantities.
Creative Beadcraft
T: +44 (0)1494 786924
E: [email protected]
Nancy Nicholson sewing kits have new packaging and now the attractive
canvas bag kits come in a cardboard wrap sleeve which means there is less
waste. The canvas bags can not
only be used as storage for
embroidery projects, but can be
stitched for more practice too!
Nancy Nicholson
T: +44(0)1580 243388
E: [email protected]
8 craftfocus
Fantastic Ribbons has
continued to grow
in challenging trading
conditions by offering
inventive, in-house
ribbon designs and
colours coupled with
wholesale prices
that generate good
margins. To enhance the service it offers, the company has recently
launched a new fresh approach to trade buying as all orders can
now be paid for online thus keeping prices low.
Minimum order values are low with carriage paid at just £125
ex VAT. New seasonal lines are on offer including trendy vintage
style and home spun designs. is set up
for retailers to place low order minimums more frequently, thus
saving high inventory stocks. Finally with the upsurge in all things
sewing, Fantastic Ribbons’ trade department has branched out into
buttons. The company is offering ready to hang packets of value
craft buttons, followed up by a wonderful new range of ready to
hang liberty style fabric covered buttons which will be available
in August.
Fantastic Ribbons
T: +44 (0)1392 366762
E: [email protected]
According to World Wide
Magazine Distribution (WWMD),
the UK’s leading supplier of
magazine products into niche and
specialist retailers, most crafting
enthusiasts would still prefer to get
their ideas and inspiration from
magazines rather than the internet.
When you think about it, it
makes perfect sense. Magazines are
usually considered a luxury, but to enthusiasts, specialist titles
are almost a necessity. Research has shown that 73 per cent of
magazine buyers always purchase the same title, and readers
with a specific interest are much more likely to buy regular
issues. This is great news for craft retailers across the country
who are stocking specialist magazines and have seen a 25 per
cent increase in footfall and up-selling opportunities!
WWMD supply titles to over 4,000 niche and specialist
T: +44 (0)121 7883112
E: [email protected]
industry news
Sales are soaring as a new generation of
sewers, seek out Fiskars iconic orange
handled scissors. The sewing bug has well
and truly spread across the country thanks
to BBC2’s Great British Sewing Bee.
Fiskars orange-handled scissors have been
the scissors of choice for dressmakers
for over 45 years. Many people have
memories of their mother or grandmother
guarding her precious Fiskars from the
grip of a youngster, “they’re not for paper,
they’re my sewing scissors” a common
phrase in many homes.
Fiskars’ range of sewing scissors includes:
• Dressmaking scissors, their 24cm blade
glides through fabric thick and thin.
£21.99 RRP
• Pinking Shears give a zigzag edge that
helps prevent fabric fraying. £35.99 RRP
• The small and sharp Needlework
Scissors, perfect for snipping stray cotton
and neatening edges. £12.49 RRP
• Fiskars best sellers, General Purpose
scissors are a great all rounder pair of
scissors. £14.99 RRP
Since its launch in Finland in 1967, Fiskars
has manufactured over 900 million pairs of
scissors. Known for their quality, comfort
and reliability, the new generation of
Fiskars fans are investing in a heritage
brand that knows and understands sewers
and sewing.
The popular digital crafting company
has become one of the first in the
industry to offer a commercial license at
no extra cost for its digikits. DaisyTrail,
the online social crafting network, has
announced that customers now have
commercial rights when using content
from any DaisyTrail or CraftArtist
branded digikit. The revised End User
License Agreement (EULA) will give
customers more flexibility when making
and selling handmade crafts, design
work or marketing materials.
“The commercial use of graphics is often a hot topic for anyone in the design and craft industries,”
says Ashley Hewson, Managing Director at DaisyTrail. “Over the years at DaisyTrail, we’ve tried
to keep up with industry trends to make sure we are offering our customers what they want. As
a result, I’m pleased to say that we have now decided to offer extended commercial rights to
crafters using our digikits. As one of the first companies in this industry to offer this for no extra
cost, we are hoping to pave the way for others.”
This is great news for design professionals or people who want to turn their hobby
into a business. For example, customers can use graphics included in DaisyTrail digikits to
create items such as wedding stationery, T-shirts, greeting cards, or party crafts for resale.
It’s also great for crafters who wish to sell an unlimited number of their projects at craft
fairs or similar events. Plus businesses and self-employed professionals can create their own
promotional materials, such as leaflets, web banners and brochures. The new terms mean
that customers may incorporate any of the digikit content into original work to publish,
display, distribute and commercially use in any media. It also allows customers to get their
designs professionally printed and mass produced if they wish to.
As with all license agreements, DaisyTrail’s EULA contains other terms so it’s advisable
to read the full agreement before using the kits in a commercial capacity. Alternatively,
customers can check out the DaisyTrail blog for FAQs or contact the DaisyTrail support
team for advice on anything they are not clear about.
DMC is proud to announce the arrival of Woolly, which is a Merino
wool that is recognised as the best in the world. Coming from Australia,
it is 100 per cent natural and renewable and its unusual quality comes
from its long, thin fibres that give superior softness to touch and a
feeling of comfort when against the skin.
Woolly is a superwash wool, easy to care for and extremely pleasant
to work with. Its main properties are that it is strong, flexible and has an
even appearance. It’s also an active fibre, which responds to the changes
in body temperature and retains heat when the weather is cold, and
cooling when it’s hot. It enjoys the distinction Woolmark guaranteeing
10 craftfocus
unparalleled quality.
DMC offers 36
mouthwatering colours of
Woolly with patterns and
inspiration to match.
DMC Creative World
T: +44 (0)116 275 4000
E: [email protected]
industry news
New Clay Limited is currently looking for a distributor in North
America. This company is a British manufacturer of the following
crafting clay products:
• Newclay – A superior clay which can be air dried or kiln
fired. Used by amateurs, schools and professional sculptors.
• Newplast – A high-quality modelling material used by
Aardman Animations for Wallace & Gromit and other animators
in business and education.
• Uro – A great value polymer clay for jewellery and modelling.
• Air Dough – Excellent modelling material, which is clean
and light.
If any company is interested, please contact:
New Clay Products
T: +44 (0)1626 835700
E: [email protected]
In March this year, Board Envelopes (Nottingham) Ltd merged with Madison
Commercial Ltd to form Envelopes Ltd, as a result of massive growth by
the two companies, expediting the need to come together to form a bigger,
stronger and more streamlined organisation.
The newly moulded Envelopes Ltd will be equipped to offer enhanced
services to its customers whilst also having the resources to expand
further into European and global markets. The merger came just in time for
Madison’s 15th birthday celebrations in April and heralds the start of a whole
new and exciting era for the business.
As part of the change, Steve Hatchett, Board Envelopes’ Managing
Director, will become Commercial Director of Envelopes Ltd and will
continue to play an active and important role in the further development of
the business, especially within the trade sector. Steve will continue to manage
operations at the Newark facility. Simon Gerson will also join the board as
Operations Director.
The product range for the newly merged company will include Board
Envelopes’ heavier weight envelopes and popular ‘Please-do-not-bend’ style
board-back envelopes. Envelopes Ltd will also benefit from being able to
offer Board’s bespoke envelope manufacturing and printing expertise, a
service used by many prestigious clients to create customised packaging.
Madison Commercial brings size and scale to the new merger. Its extensive
range encompasses over 5,000 different styles, sizes and colours. Envelopes
Ltd will continue to operate its sales offices, warehouses and distribution
centres across two locations at Loudwater and Newark, Nottinghamshire.
All staff and contacts that customers and suppliers are familiar with will
be retained.
T: +44 (0)1628 810000
E: [email protected]
A brand new online marketplace has launched in June callled OnBuy,, which will debut onto a scene that is dominated by
two of the world’s most well known companies, Amazon and eBay.
Managing Director, Cas Paton came up with the idea after years of
seeing shoppers’ frustrations with eBay and sellers being fed up with
Amazon. He decided that an easy to use online marketplace, which
takes the most successful aspects from both market leaders, and
combines them within a one-off navigation framework, would attract a
high level of attention.
Developed by a team of leading web experts, OnBuy has been
perfected into a distinctly simple marketplace, due to its navigation
structure. Shoppers are able to search for a product, and then add a
bespoke range of filters, while an exclusive discounting structure will
enable shoppers to find the best deals around on a range of different
products; from hand-crafted items to the latest technology releases.
OnBuy will offer sellers a individual management service; all they have
to do is send over product images and numbers and OnBuy will do all
the rest; including uploading and managing their inventories.
“Basically, we want to offer a better service than others in the
marketplace, for both buyers and sellers” Paton said.
12 craftfocus
Investors, OnBuy
Cas Paton
OnBuy has secured major investment
from one of the UK’s leading IT providers, Centerprise International.
The Hampshire based company was founded in 1983 and has grown
to become the UK’s number one distributor for Sony, Panasonic,
Toshiba and ATI.
“The value and experience, product reach and support services
that Centerprise International offer are going to be fundamental to
the success of OnBuy,” said Paton. “They’ve been trading for 30 years,
working closely with some of the largest IT companies in the world.”
brand spanking new
We check out the latest arts and crafts products to hit the shelves
Heritage Crafts
Trade Price:
Retailer Benefits:
Other information:
Baby Sitting (PFBS1126)
T: +44 (0)1889 575256, E: [email protected], W:
£5.98 each
Baby Sitting by Peter Underhill is the first design in Peter’s new range, Peter’s
Farm. The design measures 11.5cm x 13cm and is available as a full kit on
14ct Aida or 27ct evenweave.
A full colour brochure is available and staff are always on hand to offer help,
advice and a first class service.
Kits include DMC stranded cottons, fabric, needle, stitching charts/instructions.
Retailer Benefits:
Other information:
Memory Craft 9900
T: +44 (0)161 666 6011, E: [email protected], W:
£1,999 RRP
The latest combined sewing and embroidery machine comes packed with all the features
customers love about other Janome models, plus the choice of front colour. This model sews
precise stitches at up to 1,000 stitches per minute in sewing mode and 800spm in
embroidery mode plus has 200 built in stitches, including 9mm width stitches, hand look quilting
and embroidery stitches.
The embroidery unit is slim and will sit at the back of the machine, minimising the space needed
and making demonstrations easy.
Also includes Janome’s latest easy set bobbin system and auto bobbin.
Retailer benefits:
Other information:
Kroma Crackle
T: +44 (0)1777 701980, E: [email protected],
£8.99 (150ml tube) RRP
Kroma Crackle is a versatile, artist quality material suitable for all kinds of
art and craft applications. It's a semi-opaque gel that develops
fine cracking patterns as it dries and can be applied to both rigid and flexible surfaces. Once dry and sealed, is both
durable and highly flexible.
Kroma comes in a one-tube solution to crackleglaze and comes in one colour (white).
With every 20 tubes purchased, a free display and selection of swatches will be supplied.
Denise Interchangeable
Retailer Benefits:
Other information:
14 craftfocus
Interchangeable travel crochet knitting needle set
UK Distributor Hantex
T: +44 (0)844 879 4719, E: [email protected], W:
£35 RRP
The newest set of interchangeable knitting tools from Denise is Denise2Go. It’s
portable, pretty and petite. The stylish case is hand-sewn from designer cottons.
The crochet version has six grey crochet hooks and teal cords to coordinate with its
vibrant case.
High quality presentation makes it perfect for gifts and also comes in a knitting set.
Fully interchangeable with all other Denise products, though these little sets may be
all you ever need. Hand sewn and entirely made in the US.
Knitting Boards
and Looms
new products
Retailer benefits:
Other information:
Photopolymer formulation clear stamps
T: +44 (0)1733 349937, E: [email protected],
Photocentric has launched photopolymer formulation for sparkling, shiny, tough
but flexible clear stamps capable of holding the finest detail.
As a specialist photopolymer producer and the world’s largest manufacturer of
clear stamps, research and development has ensured that these are the company’s best ever stamps.
Available in sizes from A4 sheets down to individual stamps and specialising in large runs but with a minimum order
of just 20 x A4 or equivalent (40 x A5, 80 x A6 etc).
Other information:
Paper collections – Porcelain Rose and Summer Breeze
Distributed in the UK by Jones Crafts, T: +44 (0)115 9738 720,
From 82p RRP (per scrapbook paper)
Porcelain Rose is a bright and feminine collection that has the potential to
brighten up any project. These adorable florals and birds found throughout the
papers are matched expertly with colour and pattern.
This range is very pretty and would be a lovely addition to any scrapping space.
Summer Breeze is also available and is a happy and fun collection. The colours
and flowers that are featured have the ability to lift any mood, no matter
what you are creating.
Retailer benefits:
Other information:
Keepsake Box - red flower book boxes and capital book, sets
of two
T: +44 (0)1707 269999 E: [email protected],
From £11.00 per set – RRP £26.99
Set of two wooden book boxes, with magnetic invisible catch
to securely keep the box closed when vertical.
A beautiful and high quality product ideal for any occasion.
Matching products available.
Rowan Fine Art
Retailer benefits:
Premium Hand Painted Sock Yarn
T: +44 (0)1484 681881, E: [email protected],
£15.95 RRP
Rowan has launched this exciting new premium sock yarn in eight stunning shades. This yarn has be manufactured
using the hand painting method and is sourced from Cape
Mohair spinners in South Africa. Ines Khoury’s hand painting
department takes pride in employing individuals from some
of the poorest and most marginalised sections of
the community.
Each 100g hank is a blend of 45 per cent wool, 20 per cent
mohair, 25 per cent polyamide for added durability and a
luxurious 10 per cent silk.
craftfocus 17
brand spanking new
Ellison Europe
Retailer benefits:
Retailer benefits:
Other information:
Sizzix® new Big Shot
T: +44 (0)845 345 2277, E: [email protected],
£84.99 RRP
Sizzix® has introduced a stylish new look Big Shot™ machine with all of the same
capabilities as the previous black and pink version. The exciting new design in
powder blue and teal features beautiful flower and swirl decorative elements
and now comes with a new extended multipurpose platform giving crafters more
creative possibilities than ever before.
The Big Shot™ starter kit has the Framelits™ that work with the other
embossing folders. For inspirational projects, be sure to check out the
blog at
Definition Sock Yarn
T: +44 (0)118 9503350, E: [email protected],
£11.99 per 100 gram hank
75 per cent merino wool, 25 per cent polyamide.
Definition Sock Yarn is a blend of machine washable
Merino wool (for softness) and polyamide (for strength). The yarn comes in
100gm hanks (packs of five) which are each 400m long,. Definition is perfect for
all projects as it is machine washable to 40 degrees.
Definition yarn is fully supported by a pattern booklet including shawls, tank
tops, waistcoats, and socks.
Heritage Crafts
Retailer benefits:
Other information:
Crafty Creations
Retailer benefits:
Other information:
18 craftfocus
Victoria (JLVI1127)
T: +44 (0)1889 575256, E: [email protected],
£13.77 each (TRADE)
Victoria is the latest cross-stitch design Elegance Lady by John Clayton and
she is quite stunning with her bright red hat and pretty dress. The design size
is 23.5cm x 22cm. Available as a full kit on14ct aida or 27ct evenweave.
A full colour brochure is available and staff are always on hand to offer help,
advice and a first class service.
The kits include DMC stranded cottons on a pre-sorted thread card, fabric,
needle, clear stitching charts and instructions.
Creative Papercrafts – tartans and vintage birds
T: +44 (0)1992 781909, E: [email protected],
39p (paper), 49p (card), 99p (die-cut sheets) RRP
The new tartan designs come in a choice of six colourways with
matching textured sheets, available on 12in x 12in paper (120gsm)
and A4 (240gsm) card. The vintage bird range from Craft Creations
includes a selection of beautiful Victorian bird images, interesting texts,
poems and more, also available on 12in x 12in paper and a selection
of die-cut panel sheets.
Offering a range of complementary products encourages customers
to buy more items together.
All products are made in Britain by Craft Creations.
Learn new textile techniques
Buy online our
creative textile art dvds
Block Printing Specialists
block printing supplies for fabric & paper craft design
visit our website today
to see our ethnic range of
wooden printing blocks
British Manufacturers of:
Newclay – superior clay which can be air dried or kiln fired.
Used by amateurs, schools and professional sculptors.
Newplast – high-quality modelling material used by Aardman
Animations and animators in business and education.
Uro – great value polymer clay for jewellery and modelling.
Air Dough – excellent modelling material which is clean and light.
We are looking for a distributor in North America.
If you are interested contact:
[email protected] or tel. 01626 835700
Tel: 01483 281313
Fax: 01483 281636
Email: [email protected]
Hougie crafts Ltd, Unit 6, Pipewell Industrial Estate,
Desborough, Northamptonshire NN14 2SW, United Kingdom
Office 044 01536 762434 | [email protected]
new products
Groves + Banks
Retailers benefits:
4in1 crafters magnifying lamp
T: +44 (0)1844 258080, E: [email protected],
£36.65 (trade) £79.99 RRP
Purelite’s new 4in1 crafters magnifying lamp is the most flexible and versatile
model yet. With innovations such as an adjustable dimmer switch and removable
crafting attachments, this new lamp is great for use anywhere. It offers the option
of both mains and battery power. Its cleverly constructed contents enable it to be
converted easily from useful table lamp to attractive floor lamp, and back again.
The flexible neck on the lamp can be precisely positioned for comfort, and
powerful daylight effect illumination is provided by the 21 power-saving LEDs.
Woodware Craft Collection
Retailer benefits:
Stampendous Stamps
T: +44 (0)1756 700024, E: [email protected],
£5.35 - £13.20 depending on the size of the stamp, and around £13.50 for the Perfectly
Clear sets RRP
The rubber stamps are high quality cling-mount stamps that are manufactured from
deeply etched, precision trimmed, premium grey rubber. With 3.15mm (1/8in) thick grey
foam for a smooth impression on uneven or textured surfaces, they are backed with a full
sized, index of the images.
With the release of the new Oz film that pays tribute to the 1939 film Wizard Of Oz,
these stamps should prove popular with filmgoers.
DMC Creative World
Retailer benefits:
Other information:
Sentiments Design Booklet
T: +44 (0)116 275 4000, E:[email protected],
£1.99 per book
The new Sentiments design booklet contains eight mini cross-stitch designs
presented with inspirational finishing ideas. The booklet includes step-bystep instructions and full colour charts for ease of stitching. Each design
includes finishing ideas perfect for decorating your home or for giving as gifts.
There is a limited promotional offer giving consumers two skeins of DMC
stranded cotton free when they buy 10. There is also a compact point of sale
unit with posters.
The booklet recommends DMC Mouline thread with vibrant colours and
renowned quality worldwide providing perfect stitching results.
Katy Sue Designs
Other information:
Fabulous Shoes Papercraft CD
T: +44 (0)191 4274571, E: [email protected],
£16.99 RRP
Marilyn Monroe once said: “Give a girl the right shoes, and she can conquer the
world!” The latest stunning range of stamps and a papercrafting CD Rom from
Katy Sue Designs was designed by Sandra Wright from The House of Zandra
who also runs her own craft store. Katy Sue is thrilled to have been entrusted to
bring her work to retailers in the format crafters love best.
Not just an image CD but also contains card templates and shoe templates.
craftfocus 21
brand spanking new
Bothy Threads
Retailer Benefits:
I love my cat, dog and new jumpers
T: +44 (0)844 8000221, E: [email protected],
£24.99 RRP
New Bothy artist, Susan Wheeler designs include: I love my cat, I love
my dog and new jumpers. All cross-stitch designs contain 14 hpi white
aida, needle, pre-sorted Madeira stranded cotton, clear instructions and
stitch diagrams with and without back stitch.
These three fabulous kits are so simple and quick to stitch. The bold designs are full of fun and colour.
Retailer benefits:
Urban mod Art Gallery Fabrics
T: +44 (0)844 879 4719, E: [email protected],
RRP £12.95 per metre
100 per cent high thread count Pima cotton.
Explore the downtown art scene where style and
modern crafts inspire. An expressionistic collection
where aqua and mauve invite you to create your own
quilted gallery.
Quantity discounts available, loan of finished samples
(shops), free sample sets, colour catalogue.
Kuretake ZIG®
Other information:
Wink of Stella Brush
T: +44 (0)1527 592 952 E: [email protected],
£4.96 per piece, £14.89 x 3 pack, £193.45 x39 display RRP (ex VAT)
With 13 sparkly colours to choose from, the new ZIG® Wink of Stella Brush is a
fantastic new addition to the popular ZIG® Memory System range. The brush really is
a unique product, and with a real brush tip the user can create both narrow and wide
strokes providing much more freedom than a normal nib.
Available in dark pink, pink, orange, yellow, light green, green, blue, violet, brown, gold,
silver, black and clear. Unlike other glitter pens on the market, the Wink of Stella brush
is alcohol free and is the first water-based pigment glitter ink.
Crafty Stamps
Retailer benefits:
22 craftfocus
New Scottish cling rubber stamps
T: +44(0)131 221 9440, E: [email protected],
£4.35 - £5.05 RRP
All three designs – dancer, teddy and westie rubber stamps are mounted on
to kling-on and adhere to a laminated index sheet for storage. The stamps are
ready to use with an acrylic block.
Each rubber stamp has a euroslot for ease of display. Great image
reproduction, lightweight and priced attractively.
PanPastels are swiftly
becoming the chosen
colouring medium of UK
Crafters. It’s not difficult to see
why, with 80 fabulous colours
that have instant blend ability
and produce superb results in
minutes. They can be used in
card making, scrapbooking,
journaling and even Home
The latest Innovation in Alcohol Markers
158 colours chosen by the top Fashion & Design schools
Cutting edge ergonomic design
First ever Blending Palette to create unique colours
One totally irresistible price
79 New Stamp Designs & 4 New Ranges:
Domestic Goddess, Fantasy, Animals and Celebration
We have a great new range
of quality Masks that have
been laser cut to provide
a collection of intricate
designs that you will love.
They come in eye catching
retail packaging and are
available in 4 sizes: 6 x 6
inches, A5, A4 and 12
x 12 inches. Retail prices
range from just £3.99 to
£6.50 for the largest. The
larger masks have been
designed so that they can
used as a single design, or
you can pick out different
elements to create some
amazing effects.
Crafters are always looking for products
that will take their work to a higher level.
Give us a call to learn more about how
we can help you do this.
We are a family run, Edinburgh based rubber stamp company.
We manufacture in-house, a fine selection of Cling rubber stamps.
We offer FREE delivery on orders over £75 (net of VAT). | Tel/Fax: 0131 221 9440
[email protected]
Crafty Stamps, 92 Grove Street, Edinburgh, EH3 8AP
Premium Art Brands Ltd, Warwick, CV34 5XH
Tel: +44 (0) 1926 492213 Fax: 0800 014 8270
Email: [email protected]
brand spanking new
Scatter Crystals
Retailer benefits:
Swarovski Flat Back Non-Hotfix Heart Shaped Crystals.
T: +44 (0)161 9720088, E: [email protected],
Various prices depending on size/colour.
Finally Swarovski has released a long awaited heart shaped flat back crystal.
Swarovski Style 2808 is available in three sizes (6mm, 10mm & 14mm) and
eleven colours.
As with all other Swarovski flat back crystals, they are easy to apply to a variety
of carrier materials. Suitable for a multitude of uses from fashion to card making.
Fantastic Ribbons
Retailer benefits:
Other information:
Connie Brown Lace
T: +44 (0)844 800 9120, E: [email protected],
85p a roll
38mm lace in chocolate brown (2.7metres) and sold in packs
of three
Minimum order is three rolls of any product on the site.
Chocolate Brown lace has been added to complement the
company’s home spun and vintage products.
Wizard Toys
Retailer benefits:
Other information:
Shrinkles® Printable Paper
T: +44 (0)208 943 0121, E: [email protected], W:
£3.99 - £13.99 RRP
Wizard Toys has launched Shrinkjet™, the sheet that you can run through your ink jet printer
to shrink photos to make into special, personalised items. Draw on these sheets, colour in,
cut to shape and then shrink it seven times smaller and seven times thicker in the oven to
make badges, key fobs, jewellery and magnets etc. What’s more, they are double sided!
Wizard Ltd is the British manufacturers of Shrinkles®
Available in size A4, packs of six sheets or 20 sheets or A6 (perfect for standard 6in x 4in
photos) packs of six sheets or 50 sheets. If you can print it, you can shrink it®
The Nutmeg Company
Retailer benefits:
Other information:
24 craftfocus
The Old Rectory
T: +44(0)1748 884926, E: [email protected],
£26.95 RRP
This cross-stitch kit contains all the materials and instructions
needed to make a 3D miniature model of an old rectory,
complete with conservatory and summerhouse.
An eye catching kit which can get cross stitchers back into
cross-stitch, and lead on to sales for the other 8 miniatures in
this range.
We can supply materials to make up one cross-stitch miniature
for display for any retailer wanting to stock our miniature
cross-stitch range.
Europe’s No1
Creative Craft
Trade Show
for the Art, Craft,
Fabric, Needlecraft
& Hobby Industries
16-18 February 2014
NEC Birmingham UK
• Network directly with over 250
companies and their representatives
• Meet the industry’s newcomers in the
Bright Sparks Pavilion
• FREE Product Presentation and
Demonstration Area
• Excellent Business Seminar Programme
• Exclusive Show Offers!
• Over 100 national and international
media attendees
• Immediate Media’s Annual
Champagne Awards
• Over 100 hours of Workshop Education
• Itch to Stitch Demonstration Area
sponsored by Madeira Threads
• Catwalk Fashion Show
Supported by
For more information about visiting, or exhibiting at the show, see:
or call us now on 01425 272711
retail inspiration
is honesty the best
policy in retail?
For David Waterhouse and the Honesty Bus, honesty really has always been the
best policy. We went to visit him to see how his ‘trust to pay’ scheme works
old-fashioned wooden toys and puppets,
naturally scented cosmetics and handmade
soaps, tea towels and cup and tea cosies, cards
and old postcards. Some products come from
companies that are trying to make a difference
such as Fyne Dezynes Ltd who help young
offenders, and others that are caring for the
environment such as Filberts Bees, Orange
Tree Toys and Apples to Pears. Most purchases
have a price tag under £20.
Following the riots of last summer in London,
many retailers increased their security
measures, but not David Waterhouse. Instead,
David launched an unattended ‘honesty shop’
on a 50-year old red London double decker
bus named Trusty. Sounds like madness?
“People told me that I must be crazy and that
all our stock would be gone in days,”
said David.
The idea behind the retail bus
is that customers are ‘trusted’
to pay for their purchases
using an honesty box (which
happens to be a red postal
box) without the aid of a
shop assistant. The bus is not
entirely unattended and there
is a conductor who spends
his time upstairs and is on
hand to answer questions
and give change.
David is no stranger to the double decker
bus, and at one time in his career drove one
around Europe. This may well have been his
inspiration when he saw the bus for sale
in Birmingham.
Perhaps David Waterhouse
is right and people do just
underestimate how honest they
can be and so far, his faith in
human nature seems to have
paid off.
All products for sale are seasonal, handmade
and predominantly made by British
craftspeople. Products focus on practicality for
the home, garden, children and pets. There are
woollen socks, hats and iPad covers as well
as garden trading products, pet accessories,
Shopping experience
It’s simple! Just climb on the bus, browse,
choose your purchase, slip your money into an
honesty envelope and post into the honesty
box! 10 per cent of the cost of your purchase
will be given to a charity, which is currently
Compassion In World Farming.
So far the bus has been based at Marble Quay,
St Katherine’s Dock, however it’s also visited
Merton Abbey Mills, near Colliers Wood. David
told us he hopes to get permission to take the
bus to Covent Garden and Trafalgar Square.
The bigger picture
“The stock on the bus is just a small fraction
of the types of goods we sell online,” David
said. The bus has been a brilliant promotional
tool for the Honesty shop’s online store, which
has a wider selection of products available.
Customers purchasing online can choose from
10 different charities. C
David has had encouragement
and received an email from
Mayor of London, Boris Johnson
congratulating him and wishing the
Honesty Bus well for the future.
He has also received support from
retail guru, Mary Portas.
For more information and where the bus
stops next visit:
The Honesty Shop
craftfocus 27
news and reviews from the shows, we update you on
what’s happening this summer and beyond
Embroidered cushion,
DMC Creative
1st September 4th September 2013
NEC, Birmingham
T: +44 (0)20 3033 2142
E: [email protected]
Hobby, Arts and Crafts will return
to Hall 4 of the Autumn Fair
International 2013 after a successful
show last year, which saw a 300
per cent increase in floor space for
this booming sector and provides
a one-of-a kind cross-over selling
Thomas B Ramsden
potential to a diverse range of
buyers that wouldn’t be found at more niche craft events. This year’s show
will welcome more British brands, as well as playing host to major suppliers
from Germany, Spain, Slovenia, Sweden, India, Hong Kong and the USA.
Handmade brooches, Felt
So Good
Les bicyclettes decorative
wrap, Cavallini Papers &
Co Inc
Jane Means – animal
print ribbon
14th - 17th July 2013
Harrogate International Centre, King’s Road,
Harrogate, North Yorkshire
Home & Gift is the seasonal round up of design-led
and everyday gifts, homewares, jewellery and fashion
accessories, greetings and stationery. Following the extremely
successful show in 2012, the organiser Clarion Events has
announced the launch of Spotlight, a new area focusing on fresh
and original talent from the UK. Formerly known as Intro North,
Spotlight has been re-branded to better reflect the exciting
new companies on show. In Spotlight you will discover neverseen-before, original and quality gifts that could set your store
apart on the high street this Christmas, from a showcase of 125
exclusive exhibitors.
“The Catwalk is the perfect opportunity to show our
fashion garments to everyone attending the show. Our stand
obviously highlights our collections but designs on actual
models gives them more depth and brings the designs to life.
By being part of the Catwalk this year, it allows retailers to see
the detail of the designs more clearly - the fashion element is
an important one as we appeal to all age groups. We believe
the Catwalk highlights and attracts and is an important part of
the overall impression of the show,” commented 2013 Catwalk
sponsors, Thomas Ramsden
Spanish import and exporter, Comer Sevimex SL, a specialist in sewing
notions, handicraft accessories, threads and knitting yarns, is one of the
new international exhibitors that visitors can look forward to seeing at
the show. There’ll also be a raft of the world’s biggest yarn and fabric
suppliers including Thomas B. Ramsden, Sirdar Spinning, King Cole, DMC
Creative World, Coats Crafts and Grundl Wool, some of which return to
the exhibition after a brilliant debut last year. Buyers will be able to review
the latest trends in yarns, fabrics, threads and patterns for the forthcoming
autumn/winter season as well as seeing knitwear fashions come to life. Yarn
sets for gift shops will be available in abundance, along with a huge variety of
ancillary products for specialist craft retail outlets. Thomas B. Ramsden, DMC
Creative World and Sirdar Spinning are also sponsoring the stunning central
feature of Hobby, Arts & Crafts at Autumn Fair - the Craft Catwalk - where
runway shows will take place three times a day, interspersed with a packed
schedule of seminars from industry experts.
craftfocus 29
show news and events
shows, news and events
8th & 9th September 2013
Dewars Centre, Perth, Scotland
Demonstrations throughout the day.
For show details please contact Yvonne on 07770 870093
This is a Trade only show - proof of trading will be required by new visitors for entry
show news and events
shows, news and reviews
Photos taken by David Pauley - The Studio
8th- 9th September 2013
Dewar’s Centre, Perth, Scotland
T: +44 (0)7770 870 093 E: [email protected]
‘Willow Stag Sculpture’ by Bob Johnston
‘Eye Candy - Dark Purple & Yellow,
Striped’ by Catherine Keenan
New Perspective on Northern Irish Craft
Craft NI, the lead body for design-led craft in Northern Ireland, organised the
exhibition ‘Perspective: Inspiration, Unveiled’ which was supported by the Creative
Industries Innovation Fund. The exhibition ran in London until the 15th of March
where it returned to be shown at the Craft NI Gallery in Belfast for April. This
was a showcase of 13 of Northern Ireland’s finest designer-makers launched at
Craft Central in London’s Clerkenwell District on the 11th March.
This was part of Craft Northern Ireland’s general move toward encouraging
makers to look outside Northern Ireland and to take their work to a wider
audience. Craft NI’s Chief Executive, Alan Kane explained in his launch address
to the crowded venue, also highlighting the high level of both skill and distinctive
individual signature of the makers within the pieces.
Some highlights were large wall pieces of sculptured willow by basketmaker
Bob Johnston, hand-crafted porcelain vessels by Adam Frew, and the distinctive
work of glass artists Catherine Keenan and Alison Lowry. Curated by textile
artist and Ulster University Professor Karen Fleming, the exhibition included an
incredible range of design from individual furniture design to exquisite jewellery,
but each piece was selected for its combination of a contemporary sensibility with
its maker’s high regard for materials and quality craftsmanship.
Peter Taylor, Director of the Goldsmiths’ Design Centre, opened the exhibition.
Welcoming the exhibition to London, he remarked that the Clerkenwell area has
always been associated with fine craft and that he was very pleased to be giving
his support to this particular initiative. Feedback from the exhibition has been
extremely positive, giving the designer-makers involved the chance to make key
contacts and bringing Northern Irish craft to a wider audience.
Craft Northern Ireland
T: +44 (0)28 9032 3059
E: [email protected]
The Perth Show is the only trade show in Scotland for
the hobby and crafts sector but also attracts visitors from
the North and South of England. The show is packed full
of new products, latest trends and ideas plus a series of
hands-on workshops so retailers can try out some of
the products and expert demonstrations. The laid back
atmosphere of this show allows customers and exhibitors
to do business in more relaxing circumstances. The show
has been running for a considerable number of years but
is just getting the publicity that it deserves. Organised by
Yvonne Jackson, this show is picking up momentum with
exhibitors like Habico, Hantex and Creative Products
attending last year.
Want to get your products to more customers?
We list the best consumer craft shows in the UK in the
forthcoming months:
Dates and venues for 2013:
ICHF shows:
Stonor Park, Henley-on-Thames, 23rd- 26th August, Chiltern
Crafts Show
Penshurst Place, Tonbridge, 6th- 8th September, Weald of Kent
Craft Show
EventCity, Manchester, 12th-14th September, Creative Stitches
& Hobbycrafts
Trident Exhibitions Creative Crafts shows:
Clive Emson Exhibition Hall, Kent,
12th-14th July – NEW DATE
Sandown Park, Esher, Surrey, 5th- 7th September
Upper Street Events
NEC, Birmingham, 8th-11th August, Festival of Quilts
Sincerely Yours, Papercraft shows:
Bracknell Leisure Centre, 2nd June
Wellsprings Leisure Centre, Taunton, 16th June
Mountbatten Centre, Alexandra Park, Portsmouth,
30th June - NEW DATE
craftfocus 31
show review
create’n connect
Create ‘n’ Connect is the new name for the Summer CHA exhibition,
here’s what you can expect to see
The conference programme gives attendees
the opportunity to learn new skills, gain
knowledge on business trends and network
with other members and international
attendees through workshops, seminars,
demo-nars® and special events.
Designer Showcase
This showcases creative artwork and designs
and has a dedicated, centrally located section
at the show for artists, designers, studios,
agents and licensing firms interested in selling
or licensing art, project designs and creative
services to the craft industry. Past art work
and designs have been purchased by a
multitude of end-uses for scrapbooking paper,
rubber stamps, packaging, publishing and
product development. C
CHA’s Create ‘n’ Connect conference and
trade show (formerly CHA Summer) will
continue the traditional buying opportunities
and workshops but adds several new offerings
to help attendees stay successful in business..
These changes are based on feedback
from CHA members and the association’s
knowledge of changing industry needs.
Organisers CHA see this year’s show
as more than just an event, “It’s an annual
gathering of a close-knit community of creative
professionals who come together to buy,
learn, network and collaborate,” said Andrej
Suskavcevic, President and CEO, at Craft &
Hobby Association.
In just four days, the show brings together
thousands of buyers and craft professionals
from across the country and around the world
ready to buy and source from exhibitors
carrying products that span over 100
categories. Visitors to the show will be able to
explore the season’s largest selection of craft
products under one roof and talk to hundreds
of exhibiting companies. The show is perfectly
timed to take advantage of profitable holiday
sales opportunities too.
Some of these new and exciting
activities include:
• A product preview programme. This has
been highly publicised and will showcase the
latest and greatest offerings to media as well as
thousands of prospective buyers and millions
of consumers. The programme also has the
potential to reach 9.5 million viewers through
promotional airing on American shows
including The Today Show, The View, Rachel Ray
Show and Good Morning America. This event
will keep you in the know about products that
your customers will enjoy.
• Create-n-Connect Community Centre to
share or discover tips to help you and your
customers stay creatively engaged.
• Buyer power hours where the floor opens
early to qualified retailers.
• A conference schedule with limited overlap
of show hours to maximize purchasing time
• Hands-on labs with step-by-step instructor
education that helps you enhance your
knowledge of social media.
• Business boot camps to help improve your
business knowledge.
Create ‘n’ Connect Conference and
Trade Show
Las Vegas, Nevada
22nd-25th July 2013
T: +1 201 8351200
E: [email protected]
craftfocus 33
show review
fashion meets function
This was the motto of this year’s London Stationery Show. We visited the show at the stylish
Business Design Centre in Islington
Five products we liked:
Brother UK
Brother gave us a sneak preview of an exciting
prototype office technology, which Craft Focus
will be telling you about in a forthcoming
issue…. so watch this space. For retailers, it
also showcased its wide range of labellers
including P-touch hand held labellers, as well as
the QL range of desktop labellers designed for
the office.
Brother UK
T: +44 (0)161 931 2234
E: [email protected]
If you stock creative writing materials
and stationery then this show is a perfect
opportunity to meet both the established
brands and to see new products (95 per cent
of exhibitors this year were showing new
products). The London Stationery Show is
currently the only UK trade exhibition solely
dedicated to stationery products, and this year
saw a huge range of products on display with
more than150 different brands, 109 stands
and over 50 new exhibitors to the show; a
30 per cent increase than last year. There was
also a strong contingent of UK exhibitors but
a growing number of exhibitors from over 20
other countries from Canada, Latvia, South
Africa, Hong Kong and Vietnam.
Coinciding with this show was National
Stationery Week, which was a major sales
opportunity for retailers, designed to
encourage more people to put pen to paper
and buy stationery and the Get Britain Writing
campaign. If you were in the capital during
April, you may well have seen the National
Stationery Week branded taxis that took the
Get Britain Writing message to Londoners all
over the capital and parked outside for the
duration of the show.
Stationery has become fashionable
and not just a functional necessity, and
has become the latest retail ‘fix’ for
cash-strapped consumers and even
covetable product with design licenses
from well known brands wanting to
get in on the act.
Who was there?
Major brands included Letts Filofax, Parker,
Peter Pauper Press, Lamy, Knock Knock,
Sheaffer, Moleskine, Faber-Castell, Piccadilly,
Caran d’Ache, Leuchtturm1917 and Stabilo.
The Krazy Glue range is the latest addition
- this super-strong, fast-drying adhesive will
bond anything from china to model trains.
Also on display was the new X-Acto range
of crafting knives from general craft knives to
ones from paper cutting and knives. Artcoe is
also sole UK distributors for Speedball, Elmer’s
craftfocus 35
fashion meets function
Adhesives, Frisk Film and Pads plus the
Ghiant Sprays.
T: +44(0)845 300 7750
E: [email protected]
Sheaffer celebrates 100 years
Stone Marketing
On the Stone Marketing stand, we saw the
latest from the Faber-Castell playing and
learning range and joined in the 100 year
celebration of the luxury writing brand,
Sheaffer. We were excited to see the Japanese
brand Kokuyo’s Harinac staple-free stapler,
which is not only eco-friendly but also has
crafting possibilities and comes in two sizes
and an array of quirky bright colours. Unlike
standard staples, it punches a slit into the paper,
binding a number of paper layers together.
Stone Marketing
T: +44(0)1732 771 771
E: [email protected]
Swanneck launched the swan neck logic pen
that brings a logical solution and whatever
language you write in: left to right (English),
right to left (Arabic), top to bottom (Chinese).
This revolutionary ballpoint pen is designed
to not only be ergonomic, but it looks great
too with all models feature a one-of-a-kind
S-bend neck and grip area. The writer can hold
the pen comfortably at a balanced angle and
avoids smudges and wrist pain. Left-handed
or right-handed, they are ideal for children
learning to write too.
T: +44(0)7840 300509
E: [email protected]
36 craftfocus
Life Canvas
Parragon Books debuted a new stationery
range focusing on design, organisation and
preservation called Life Canvas. This range was
this year’s winner in the Stationery Awards taking three of the seven awards and winning
the notebooks and paper products category
with its range of colour notebooks and the
children’s stationery category with the mini
tins range.
Parragon Books
T: +44(0)1225 478888
E: [email protected]
The Stationery Show
1st – 2nd April 2014 (during National
Stationery Week)
Business Design Centre
T: +44(0) 20 8462 0721
E: [email protected]
Yarns Limited
Tel + 44 (0)1274 743374
E: [email protected]
crafting in cologne
The international trade fair for creative handicraft and hobby took place in March in Cologne.
We reveal why it remains one of the leading trade events
Katharina C. Hamma
Facts and Figures
h+h cologne 2013 came to a close and record
results were revealed:
• 12,000 visitors from 67 countries.
This equates to a total rise in visitor numbers
by more than 10 per cent
• Exhibitor numbers increase by 16 per cent
• 321 exhibitors from 37 nations presented
the largest range of craft offerings around
Crafts continue to be very much the ‘in
thing’ and the show organisers are confident
that this trend will continue. Younger target
groups are playing an important role in the
sector’s growth and according to the survey
carried out by the GFK (Germany’s largest
market research institute) on behalf of the
Intiative Handarbeit, a quarter of craftswomen
are below the age of 40.
“h+h cologne 2013 has
impressively confirmed its role as
the most important international
trading platform with these
excellent results. The mood among
the exhibitors and trade visitors
was exceptional. The trade fair
had once again proven itself to be
the essential force powering the
sector’s growth,” said Koelnmesse
Chief Operating Officer, Katharina
C. Hamma
Paul Alger, Director of International Business
Development for the UK Fashion and Textiles
Association, commented on behalf of the
British yarns and crafts sector: “For the
British, h+h cologne is the most important
international stage from which we can reach
markets way beyond our European borders. It
plays a large role in the export strategies
of established and new exporters in the
United Kingdom.”
The fair’s offerings were rounded off by an
array of attractive workshops, special shows
and fashion shows, which presented visitors
with the latest trends and creations. This
was enhanced by an attractive supporting
programme that adds up-to-date information
on new marketing ideas, products and
techniques. One of the absolute highlights
of 2013 was undoubtedly the trend fashion
38 craftfocus
show executed by member companies of the
Initiative Handarbeit. The show made clear
how stylish and important homemade fashion
is today.
The workshops and seminars were organised
by HobbyArt (bit-Verlag) and as the most
varied programme ever run by the show,
were extremely popular with visitors. The top
favourites included: Hip Crochet Hats, City
Bags - Macramé Rediscovered, Quilting Made
Easy and The Secret of the Tomato Heel Sock.
Other attractions
The supporting programmes were
enthusiastically received, such as the large
knitted tepee and the Patchwork Guild’s
presentation. Trade visitors also enjoyed
watching the hand spinning guild show,
demonstrating how fibres are turned into
finished items of clothing. In addition, the artist
Silke Bosbach presented the Textile Outdoor
Awards for the second time. C
Cute Felt
h+h cologne
International Trade Fair for Creative
Handicraft + Hobby Supplies
21st- 23rd March, 2014
hand knitting
under one roof
We caught up with Colin Chawner, Business Consultant
for Bergere de France to find out more about the
company and the exciting plans BDF has for the UK
How and when did Bergere de France
start trading?
Bergere de France was established in 1946 by
Robert Petit and today, the company remains
family owned and now managed by his son
Jean-Louis and grandson Geoffroy. Originally,
the company was set up as a direct mail order
business but throughout its 66-year history,
has diversified many times, and in particular
supplying the retail trade directly from 1971
onwards. Direct trading with retailers remains
a very important part of the business with
hundreds of retail partners globally.
Based in Bar le Duc, in the heart of the
Lorraine region, our mill is the last industrial
woollen mill in France and one of the
only remaining in Western Europe that
manufactures hand-knitting yarns. Covering an
40 craftfocus
area of 14 acres and employing in excess of
400 people, it is one of the largest and most
advanced mills of its kind anywhere on
the continent.
With years of focus on the French market,
a significant investment plan and strategy has
been organised for selected markets outside
of France, which includes the UK and Ireland
markets and in last year in 2012, Bergere
de France launched its first English language
website with a
new fresh identity and branding style which
is more in line with today’s imagery and
contemporary trends.
BDF’s yarn manufacturing and all of
its production is kept under one roof –
why is this so beneficial?
Without doubt the most distinct feature of
the business and what sets it apart from its
competitors is the fact that it still manufactures
all products on site in France. As a result,
it can control new product development,
quality control, reaction to trends, and most
importantly respond instantly to peaks and
demands on particular yarns. A positive aspect
of this is that the service and fulfillment of
orders which is probably second to none in
the UK, and gives the retailer and therefore,
the end consumer confidence that they
will receive what they order in good time,
maximising sales opportunities.
The BDF range has expanded over
the years and it’s not only about
the yarns. Can you tell us about the
different ranges?
The main business and focus is, of course,
hand-knitting yarns and supporting design
magazines, but probably as a result of the mail
order beginnings and culture, BDF feels it is
important to offer a complete package for the
discerning consumer that will enable them to
purchase all aspects of the designs through our
retail partners. This includes tools required to
create the garments but also the accessories
like buttons, ribbons, buckles etc and a range of
other related accessory items and kits including
Knitpro, Lantern Moon and Sajou.
What is your best selling product?
The business is very much design driven, the
top selling yarns can vary from season to
season depending on which designs feature
company profile
certain yarns. However, there are five long
established yarns that always feature highly
as best sellers– these are Ideal, Magic, Caline,
Coton Fifty and Alaska. These are refreshed
every season with new fashion shades. From a
retail and consumer perspective, BDF’s yarns
have become standard and respected yarns
that don’t create a need to sell them off at a
later date as the fashion trend has passed.
What is the latest product you
have available?
There is a major launch for this upcoming
autumn/winter season and we will be
introducing for the first time, the English
version of the full French catalogue, resulting in
with a 217-page booklet featuring 168 designs
and a large selection of related accessories
and actual yarn shade fringes. Retailers will
also be able to make this available to the
end consumer, which will be a very powerful
presentation tool that will drive sales of the
brand through our retail partners. As part
of this launch, a new premium range is featured
incorporating luxury fibres such as Cashmere,
Silk, Super Kid Mohair, Alpaca and Pure Merino
plus four new yarns within the standard
main collection.
BDF has a range of annual catalogues
and magazine books. When will these
be available to retailers?
In addition to the main catalogue for the
upcoming season, there are annually six to
seven new magazine launches covering adults,
children, baby and home designs, each with
over 40 designs with an RSP of £7. From the
extensive design library and new magazine
launches, a number of single leaflets are also
designed and launched each season to include
seasonal trends.
Earlier this year, BDF introduced the
Knit & Stitch series, how successful has
it been?
This project (and launch) with a specialised
publishing partner has had an amazing impact,
way above our initial expectations. The
increased awareness of the Bergere de France
brand, and the craft of knitting as a whole
resulting from an extensive online, print and
TV advertising campaign, has resulted in a large
increase in demand for the brand both at retail
and consumer levels. We’ve seen an increase
in new stockists, as a result of their customers
coming into store and asking about the brand.
What are the benefits for retailers who
stock BDF yarns?
As well as an excellent fulfillment percentage
on orders and efficient direct shipments from
France, BDF understands the need to support
retailers in a competitive environment and
these are some of the current key benefits of
trading with us:
Healthy retail mark up on both yarns
and magazines
Competitive credit and settlement terms
Competitive carriage paid order values
Annual rebate scheme
Split pack service
Promotional support and PO.S materials
Yarn fringed shade cards for all of the
yarn qualities
Branded accessory ranges
Dedicated support for the UK from
personnel in France
What are BDF’s main aims over the
next five years?
This year, BDF has signed off a five year
business and investment plan for the UK
market and we realise the importance of
working together with retail partners and
inspiring the end consumer as crucial elements
in achieving the business objective, enabling
sustainable and profitable growth for both
sides in the longer term. C
For more information on becoming a
Bergere de France stockist:
T: +33 (3)29797645
E: [email protected]
craftfocus 41
the right tools for the job
The right tools will help make any
task so much easier and they are a
key purchase for any crafter. Make
sure you stock the most innovative
and up-to-date tools for the ultimate
crafting experience
Creative Products Distribution is delighted to bring the
Bowdabra to the UK marketplace. Bowdabra is a modern
day tool that turns any crafter into a professional bow
maker. This tool allows anyone to create sophisticated
and professional bows for any occasion from birthdays,
weddings, designer swags, and holiday decorations, to party
favours and corsages.
Bowdabra’s patented design makes it simple to create
medium to large bows. The process begins by inserting a
piece of ribbon wire into the Bowdabra. The material can
then be either scrunched or folded on top of the wire to
achieve the desired bow size and fullness. This tool comes
with a 30-minute DVD which offers helpful step by
step instructions.
This all-in-one set provides four different blocks to achieve
textured pattern designs such as Mokume Gane, Bargello
and Mica Shift. This tool is perfect for anyone who wants to
undertake advanced techniques without the need for lots of
separate tools and will give crafters four different blocks to
achieve a variety of textured finishes.
The dots design block will impress a series of dots of
different widths into clay that are perfect for Mica Shift,
Mokume Gane, and general texturing whilst the linear
design block will create a variety of lines, dashes, and grids.
The geometric design block will stamp different shapes of
different widths into clay whilst the dragging design block
creates evenly spaced lines and rows. Priced at £14.99 RRP.
Distibuted by ColArt
T: +44 (0)1562 744 522
E: [email protected]
42 craftfocus
The Mini Bowdabra version is the ideal tool for scrapbooking, card making, hair
bows, wedding décor, and creating party favours in just a few easy steps! Since
1998, millions of Bowdabras have been sold worldwide.
Distibuted and sold in the UK by Creative Products Distribution
T: +44 (0)20 8953 2143
E: [email protected]
craft tools
Crafters who do a lot of pressing will love this
spray as the scent of Lavender has long been
known to help relax mind and body. It will of
course, also make ironing easier, especially
when trying to iron out a stubborn crease in
new fabric.
Best Press is not a starch but a revolutionary
new ironing product that does not flake, clog
the nozzle or gum up your sewing machine or
iron. And in fact, it leaves behind no residue at
all when used, resulting in wrinkle-free fabric. It
comes in a 177ml pump bottle and is available
in Lavender, Linen Fresh and for those who
prefer something more natural, there’s a scent
free version too. RRP is around £5.00.
T: +44 (0)116 271 0033
E: [email protected]
The Oliso® TG1600 Pro features Oliso’s patented iTouch®
technology. It’s simple to use, just touch the handle and the iron
lowers, ready to work. Take your hand off and the patented
scorchguard lifts the iron off the board preventing scorches, burns,
and tipping. Less strain and a 30 per cent time saving are just some
of the added benefits to this Smart Iron’s 1,800W of power and
horizontal or vertical bursts of steam. This iron also features a 30
minute extended auto-shut off for sewers and quilters, a 12.7oz side
fill tank, a bead-blast stainless steel soleplate, flat pressing surface,
detailer tip, and a 12ft cord for full range of motion.
ImpressArt is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of unusual
stamping tools and exhibited for the first time at CHSI back in
February. Personalisation continues to be big news in crafting and
the company has introduced a new line of design stamp packs
perfect for themed projects. These stamps can be used to stamp
brass, copper, aluminum, silver, gold, nickel, pewter and other soft
metals so are perfect for jewellery making but also for creating
impressions in common crafting supplies like cardboard, clay, leather
and matt board. The collections includes themes from weddings,
family, and sports through to shabby chic, and each pack comes
with four to seven categorised stamps. Crafters can start by using
a common household hammer and then move on to a metal
stamping hammer. Also available is the alphabet packs of stamps.
Impress Art
T: +1 631 940 9530
E: [email protected]
T: +1 (8)00 899 5157
E: [email protected]
craftfocus 43
the right tools for the job
BijouxByMe is a Craft Buddy brand and has just launched a range
of jewellery tool wrap clutch bag kits which are not only practical,
but stylish too! The collection also comes in a range of wraps in five
pretty snakeskin finishes: textured pink, copper/coffee, white, black
glitter and black PVC.
The wrap contains all the necessary tools a jewellery maker
needs and is made from hardwearing stainless steel. The tools also
have handles to match! The set includes round nose, bent nose and
flat nosed pliers, a cutter, bead reamer, bead scoop and ruler and
comes with a full instruction manual and retails for £24.99.
Craft Buddy Ltd
T: +44 (0)203 417 6565
E: [email protected]
The LUX range is the latest product innovation from Mighty Bright, a
company specialising in well designed, high quality LED task lighting which
is perfect for crafters. Now with the addition of three new models - The
Architect, Bungalow and Spotlight, these lights are functional, eco-friendly
and stylish.
In particular, the LUX Spotlight LED Task Light is designed for just
about any small space in need of a little extra light. With a petite profile,
the LUX Spotlight can squeeze onto any crowded end of table or desk.
Shining brightly with 275 lumens, the LUX Spotlight delivers warm white,
3,200K light, perfect for the fashion savvy crafter. This light is classically
designed to accentuate any room’s aesthetic, and its durable steel
components and high-quality LEDs ensure it will remain a part of your
living and work spaces for years to come. Retail price is £37.50.
Trinity Xtras
T: +44 (0)2476 344276
E: [email protected]
Reliable crafting tools will always make all
projects straightforward.
Korbond Craft needle pack is a
great buy, providing the most suitable
high quality hand sewing needles for a
multitude of crafts. It includes a selection
of tapestry, crewel and quilting needles in
various sizes, and is an ideal starter pack.
The Pom Pom maker is another clever
little gadget that is simple to use and
produces perfect Pom Poms quickly
every time. The device can be adjusted
to create three different sized Pom Poms so
that crafters can experiment with different
yarns for unique creations.
The Korbond 6" Embroidery Hoop is ideal
for holding fabric securely whilst working
on embroidery and cross-stitch projects
and embellishing sewing projects. By using an embroidery hoop, a
project will become less tricky to work on and the finished product
will look a lot neater.
Korbond Industries
T: +44 (0)1476 573 227
E: [email protected]
44 craftfocus
The UK’s leading magazine
for the craft industry
To advertise here
telephone Tracy Voice
on +44 (0)1376 535 618
thread fest
Keep up-to-date with the latest quality
threads for hand, machine embroidery,
sewing, quilting and cross-stitching from the
major manufacturers
DMC thread is world renowned for its vividness of colour and
exceptional quality. The right threads enable designs to be brought
to life with subtle effects, colours and textures.
DMC stranded
cotton is the
quality thread
and has been
for over 100
years. It’s made
from the very
finest Egyptian
Giza cotton,
which has long
staple fibres making it strong and tangle free. Its many qualities
include being fade resistant and it’s appreciated by millions of
stitchers throughout the world.
Other cross-stitch threads include: Light Effects adding light and
sparkle to designs, Color Variations where each skein consists of a
multitude of colour changes all working in harmony with each other
to give beautiful results and Satin which has a wonderful silky finish
and gives a glamorous
feel to designs.
Diamant is the
latest thread for
projects with its high
quality and appealing
shades that will add
a luxurious feel and
high definition to any
design. Viscose fibres are wrapped in a metallised polyester
coating followed by a silicone treatment; this expert treatment
helps the thread glide through fabrics without damaging it.
DMC Creative World
T: +44 (0)116 275 4000
E: [email protected]
GS UK has been providing embroidery products for over 25 years
and has recently introduced two new threads to its range. Glitter is
a sparkly foil thread ideal for creating shiny and metallic stitching. It
produces fascinating glittery effects resulting in stunning embroideries
and like a hologram, the
cut, untwisted yarn surface
refracts the light adding
brilliance to any embroidery
design. The range includes
five plain shades plus
one multi-coloured and
is available in mini-king
cones (1,000m). When
embroidering on woollens
and knits, vintage style
patterns for traditional costumes, or colourful clothes, Filaine is the
ideal thread. Filaine is made of 100 percent acrylic, but with a higher
degree of tear and rub resistance
than wool embroidery threads.
In addition to its full range of
Sulky (100 per cent rayon) and
Poly (100 per cent polyester)
threads, GS UK now has selection
boxes available. The Sulky 40 and
Poly 40 selection boxes each
contain 27 of the most popular
plain colours supplied on mini-king
cones (1,000m).
T: +44 (0)115 844 8000
E: [email protected]
craftfocus 47
thread fest
Since its debut now at four international events, this
multi-tasking stand is fast becoming Wonderfils most
popular accessory. The Thread TamerTM is an innovative
new product that immediately attracts every sewing
enthusiast. It comes with an extension, allowing it to
work with domestic sewing machines of all sizes and
holds up to three large spools of thread tangle-free.
The vertical thread draw eliminates tension changes
while taming even the most slippery thread. The Thread
Tamer comes with an attachment specially designed for
using with cop sizes spools by perpendicular drawing.
T: +44 (0)7768 141609
E: offi[email protected]
Amann Mettler, the worldwide renowned floss
manufacturer, has launched two seasonal packs
for spring and summer. The Summer Collection
includes a fresh summer-themed box to celebrate
the season with eight sewing and quilting thread
spools (200m Poly Sheen) in bright and brilliant
colour shades of summer from sky blue to
flowery fuschia. These are perfect gift packs for
those who love quality threads. £16 RRP per
eights pool pack.
Gütermann’s new collection of promotional thread packs from Groves
offers retailers and crafters excellent value, and will create colourful
displays in-store. Here’s a real opportunity to breathe new life into an
essential area important to every retailer.
Available in a wide variety of threads, the packs contain coordinated
selections of popular colours at attractive discounts from standard
prices, making them ideal for the dedicated and serious stitcher,
or perfect as affordable gifts for birthdays and Christmas. With 30
different packs to choose from – some with attractive and useful
accessories included – as well as four very useful counter displays of
essential threads, there is bound to be a pack for everyone.
Gütermann's range of threads is distributed by the Groves
Distribution Centre
T: +44 (0)1844 258080
E: [email protected]
48 craftfocus
Now offering a comprehensive range of
overlocking threads with three different range
options available, Seracor, Seralene and Seraflock.
In addition, the company is offering products such
as invisible thread (Transfil), along with Bobbinfil,
for varying sewing applications. Thread selection
packs are also available in 8,18 and 28 spool sets,
polyester and cotton.
Distributed by W Williams & Sons
T: +44 (0)207 281 4760
E: [email protected]
business advice
Many crafters and retailers often don’t know what type
of insurance they should be looking for even if they do
realise that they should be insured. Fiona Pullen from
The Sewing Directory takes us through the types of
insurance that you should be considering
When setting up an exciting new business,
the last thing you want to think about is
things going wrong and it may seem tempting
to keep costs down by not being insured,
especially when you are only making a very
small profit at the beginning. However, no
matter how small your crafts business, there
will be a situation when you definitely need
insurance, for instance if someone gets injured
by one of your products, or trips on your
craft stall at a market, you could be looking at
thousands in damages.
There are five main types of insurance that
people running a craft related business need
to consider:
1. Product liability
If you supply products, legally they must be
fit for purpose and you are responsible for
any injury to a person, or damage to their
property that may occur as a result of the use
of your product. Product liability insurance can
meet the cost of any claims that arise.
2. Public liability
This covers any injury or property damage
that occurs to a member of the public in
connection to your business. If for instance
you teach sewing and someone in your class
sustains an injury, or trips over some goods
you laid out at a craft market, this is the
insurance you need. It can also be used to
defend any claim made against you as well as
for compensating any injured party.
Tip: Many craft fairs won’t let you have a stall
unless you can show them your public liability
insurance certificate.
3.Tradesman insurance
You can often find that if you don’t have
traditional retail premises, that tradesman’s
insurance may be a better fit for your business.
This can provide cover for your tools, your
premises and any potential liability that may
arise. You can find tradesman insurance, which
is specific such as for dressmakers.
a limited company you may be exempt from
this requirement. For more information please
look at the Employers’ Liability (Compulsory
Insurance) Act 1969, it can be viewed online
on the UK Legislation website at
Other insurance you may also want
to consider:
Accident & sickness
This type of insurance will help you pay the
mortgage and other bills if you find you are
unable to work.
4. Professional indemnity
If you give advice as part of your business
(if you are a business consultant or a craft
teacher) or offer a service such as social media
management, you need professional indemnity
insurance to protect you from any claims of
professional negligence.
Vehicle insurance is useful for when you have
business vehicles.
If you plan to do lots of shows and exhibitions,
this insurance offers cover for any cancellations
and ensures you don’t end up out of pocket.
5. Employer’s liability
Trade credit
If you employ anyone to help you with your
business then you need to have employer’s
liability insurance. This protects you from any
claim from employees who say they were
injured or became ill as a result of their work
whilst in your employment. This insurance is
compulsory in the UK and you must have a
minimum coverage of five million pounds.
If, however, you are a family business, and not
In the current economic climate, it might be
wise to consider having this sort of insurance,
so if you have stock placed with others on a
sale or return (credit) basis then you will be
covered for losses if they go out of business.
Choosing the right insurer for you?
Make sure you have time to get at least
three quotes from insurers to make sure you
craftfocus 49
which insurance?
are getting a good deal, but make sure the
quotes are like for like for easy comparison.
Three key factors to consider: price and
affordability, stability (how long has the insurer
been in business) and customer service (how
approachable they are after sales).
Tip: Always keep your coverage up to date
and set aside time once a year to consider
whether you need to increase your coverage.
Read the small print
All insurance policies have exclusions so
make sure you have a good look through to
understand what you are and aren’t covered
for. For instance, most policies won’t cover
claims that arise as a result of your negligence,
or your failure to comply with health and
safety or product safety laws. Also, some of
the policies may only cover selling at events
and shows and not online or trading from
commercial premises not from home so
double check the small print. When in doubt,
ask before you buy!
If you don’t have time, employ an insurance
professional (broker) to intermediate for you.
To find an insurance broker locally or online
visit the BIBA website
Craft Insurance Specialists
Artist’s Insurance covers artwork, studio
insurance, business interruption, public and
product liability and employer’s liability.
Combined Market Traders Insurance
Association for craft stalls and exhibitions.
Premierline Direct, an e-commerce insurer
for people that sell online, includes goods in
transit cover. C
Craft Insurance for crafts people and craft clubs.
Direct Line for people who work from
home plus tradesman insurance suitable for
Event Insurance for exhibitors and stall holders,
includes cancellation cover.
Peacock Insurance Services is broker who will
compare craft insurance policies for you.
Freelance Insure for craft teachers or tutors.
Simply Business, is another broker who
compare quotes for many different types of
business insurance.
Graham Sykes Limited for event organisers,
people attending exhibitions/craft shows and
for craft groups.
50 craftfocus
GM Imber & Sons, insurers for exhibitions, craft
shows and teachers.
Many thanks to Fiona Pullen from The Sewing
Directory for putting together this feature.
The Sewing Directory,
T: +44 (0)29 2025 2237
E: [email protected]
* Please note, this list has been put together by Fiona
Pullen from The Sewing Directory and is by no means
comprehensive and is an illustration of craft insurance
that is available.
advertising feature
delightful decoupage by Hunkydory!
Hobbies and Pastimes is Hunkydory’s latest
decoupage collection, featuring a wonderful
array of everybody’s favourite activities from
gardening and fishing, to sewing and baking.
Decoupage is definitely making a comeback and with such an interesting and long
history, it is not at all surprising that decoupage
is still evolving with so many different styles
and techniques. In its most modern form,
this technique has become one of the most
popular for crafters, where sections of an
image are layered up to create depth and
When Hunkydory attended CHSI in
February 2013, they were inundated with
requests from trade customers for more
decoupage products. Adam Newhouse,
Director at Hunkydory Crafts attended the
CHSI show, “Many customers, both old and
new were asking about decoupage. It wasn’t
until all the requests began to flood in that
we realised there was a real shortage of new
decoupage product in the papercraft industry,
and we just couldn’t let that happen!”
“The art of decoupage gives you an
opportunity for endless hours of creativity,
as well as enjoyment. We understand our
end users, and we know how much time
and effort is spent on making cards for loved
ones or special friends, which is why we have
released Hobbies and Pastimes as a decoupage
Hunkydory have created this new
decoupage kit with their guaranteed quality at
the forefront of their
minds. The beautiful
decoupage is printed
onto top-quality
300gsm stock and
comes highlighted with
stunning foiled accents and frames. The pretty
printed cardstock uses 350gsm Adorable
Scorable cardstock for cards that stand
straight and true and have the unmistakable
Hunkydory finish.
Hobbies and Pastimes features much loved
activities such as music and dancing, country
fete and caravan club and there are also some
great male card designs in the collection from
vintage cars and trains to the classic wine cellar
– this collection really does have something
for everyone.
For more information
Hunkydory Crafts
T: 01772 272575
E: [email protected]
craftfocus 51
for the love
of beads
We’ve the latest offerings
for lovers of beads and
beading accessories
Bead Looms from Peak Dale Products now come in four different
sizes for a variety of tasks:
1. The basic bead loom is designed for smaller pieces like bracelets.
2. The long bead loom is for long pieces such as belts.
3. The giant bead loom is for wider pieces up to 6in wide.
4. The ultimate bead loom has been designed to be a table standing
loom and allows
the work to
face you instead
of you having
to bend over.
This allows the
user to work for
longer periods
without causing
any back or neck
problems and
will enable the
user to work
designs up to
15cm (6in) wide.
Peak Dale Products
T: +44 (0)1298 78447
E: [email protected]
Beadwork has a long history in the Native American culture and
the first bead designs were worked using natural polished shells,
but after the arrival of the European settlers, glass beads were
incorporated into the work. The original thread came from sinew
but when cotton threads became commercially available they
gained popularity and have recently been joined by stronger
nylon materials.
Originally the needles for beadwork were fashioned from bone,
these days a beading needle that has been specially designed for the
purpose is used. This is a long slender instrument that will slip easily
through the tiny holes in the beads.
Provided by Peak Dale Products
Jesse James has been a leader in the arts and crafts industry for
over 26 years and is known and respected worldwide
for innovative product design. Jesse James is certainly not
your typical bead company and specialises in the most
individual beads.
The company’s eclectic fashion-designer inspired mixed
strands are based on the trendiest colour combinations in
the fashion industry. These exciting mixes of beads contain
components that are truly original and the in-house artists and
designers have worked closely with many factories to create a
special, vibrant, fun, and sometimes whimsical line and combine
beads from all of the bead families including glass, rondelles,
semi-precious stones, lampwork, bohemian and replica vintage.
Jesse James Beads
T: +1 (6)10 419 9880
E: [email protected]
craftfocus 53
for the love of beads
Beadalon can now offer a flat version of its memory wire. Memory
wire is corrosion and tarnish resistant and, like a spring, it snaps back
to its original form when expanded and released. The new flat version
is smooth and shines like a mirror and can help to illuminate designs
strung with transparent large-holed beads.
Wire wrap beads to the flat surface for an original floating design or
use the flat surface to glue other materials for more creative designs.
This new flat wire is available in ring, large bracelet and necklace sizes in
both silver-plated and gold.
The memory wire finishing pliers make quick work out of finishing the
three ends of flat or round memory wire. Just place the wire in between
"Efco’s new range of anodised aluminium
wires and ribbons were certainly one of the
highlights for us at the CHSI show” said William
Weil, Managing Director of Sinotex, Efco’s UK
This new wire can be used to make funky jewellery and being
aluminium, it's soft enough to easily twist and shape, either on
its own or threaded with beads. The strip and wires can be
woven using basket-weaving techniques and the possibilities
are endless. It's light enough to knit with too. Efco aluminium
wire is available in over 20 colours and comes as a 5mm strip,
or 1mm or 2mm wire, with two coloured finishes. The wire is
presented for retail display in two-metre hanging packs.
As well as the wire, the range is completed with all
necessary tools, such as cutters, ring mandrels and gauges,
enabling the stockist to offer customers everything needed for
the craft.
Contact Efco’s UK representative:
Sinotex UK
T: +44 (0)1737 245450
E: [email protected]
54 craftfocus
the 4mm and 2mm ends of the pliers, then bend in either direction,
depending on what size loop you want to create and make consistent
loops on memory wire every time.
TIP: Always cut using memory wire
shears and use the new memory
wire-bending tool for easy finishing.
T: +1 866 423 2325
E: [email protected]
Viking Loom
The Viking Loom Ltd ł 01904 620587 ł 22 High Petergate, York YO1 7EH
Gorgeous range of shaped glass beads from Preciosa in Czech Republic.
Available individually or as part of themed colour mixes. Backed by ranges
of smaller beads including twin beads. These are going really well - why
wouldn’t they at £1 retail price to your customers plus free charts!
Tramme tapestries,embroidery threads,books,kits,needlework frames,
felt in plenty for your customers.
[email protected]
01904 620587
Please apply for our trade website
Stitching words and stories brings a sense of personality to any
project and it’s a lovely way of engaging with people. Use this
eye-catching cardigan as a project for a window display to coax
potential shoppers in!
making the
Iron a piece of stitch and tear stabiliser
onto the back of a chosen piece of fabric.
Follow the stabiliser instructions and cut
out the template to fit the button. Using
a water erasable marker, draw a circle
template onto the right side of the fabric.
Set up a sewing machine for free motion
stitching by dropping the dog feed and
changing to the darning foot.
Step 2
Practice stitching words first to get into the
rhythm and scale. You may prefer to write out the
words. Buttons will fit about 3 or 4 letters. My
favourites words include: love, home, make, sun
and sea.
Cut the circles
out and remove
the stitch and
tear from the
back. Remove any
markings with a
damp cloth. Stitch
around the edge of
the fabric using a
running stitch and a
double thread. Pop
the button in the
centre and gently draw up the thread and secure with a knot. Put
on the back piece and push down into place. Stitch the buttons
ionto the cardigan in place of where the old buttons.
56 craftfocus
Step 4
• Button through cardigan (remove the
original buttons).
• Self cover buttons to fit button holes
• Lightweight fabric to cover buttons
• Stitch and tear stabiliser
• Water erasable marker
• Contrast fabric for pockets
• T-shirt transfer paper for adding images
• Trims, name tapes and a few other
buttons for decoration
making personalised
patch pockets:
Make a pattern for an appropriate pocket size
and add a 1cm seam allowance and 3cm at the
top. Using this template, cut out a pocket from
the chosen fabric. Press edges under making
a double turn at the top and stitch across the
top edge.
I chose to add a family picture using a T-shirt
transfer paper which has been secured in place
as a patch before applying the pocket. Add any
further trim like this daisy trim, ric-rac trim and
name label). Pin and tack pocket in place and
machine stitch onto cardigan.
Thanks to Louise Presley from Hope and Elvis. Louise provides
vintage feel workshops.
T: +44 (0)7833 743886
E: [email protected]
Improve your “blinging” skills!
Do you use regular beeswax, but find it’s too
soft, leaves residue? Tweezers cramp your hands
and fling crystals across the room? Then the
Crystal Katana is the tool for you...
Visit our website for more details and to see a
video of the tool in use.
Tel: 0161 9720088
Tuliptree Buttons & Beads
make a splash in colour!
Paints are a staple product of every crafter - they’re so
versatile and are a must-have to stock
Those crafters who like to customise furniture can rest assured that
Little Greene’s paints are child safe. Widely acknowledged to be
among the most environmentally friendly paints available, three of Little
Greene’s finishes have been identified as the best choice for children’s
rooms, furniture and toys. The evolutionary and highly durable Intelligent
Matt emulsion, its supremely resilient sister, Intelligent Eggshell and the
deliciously subtle Absolute Matt emulsion have all been certified under
British Standard Toy Paint Regulations, BS EN 71-3: 1995.
This standard certifies that the paints are free from toxic ingredients
and are safe for use in children’s rooms. Little Greene’s ‘Intelligent’ paints
make a lot of practical sense too and are designed to withstand the
T-shirt project by
Allee Marderosian,
boots by Pattie
Wilkinson, Cushion
by Theresa Cifali for
rigorous demands of everyday living and the extra wear and tear of
family life. They are effortless to apply, quick to dry and marks can be
washed off with soapy water.
There’s no need to compromise on appearance as all paints have the
same signature flatness and depth of colour and are available in a wide
palette of mouthwatering shades from bold primaries and statement
brights to enchanting soft shades and beguiling neutrals.
Little Greene
T: +44 (0)161 2300880
E: [email protected]
The Tulip® range has a number of specialist paint products for crafting:
The Dimensional Fabric paint is a non-toxic paint formulated for lasting adhesion to fabric
so designs stay dimensional and intact after many washes. The paint comes in a selection
of colours and finishes and can be used alone or paired with other Tulip paints, markers
and dyes.
The Fabric Spray paint can be spritzed, splattered or sprayed into place and dries to a
vibrant colour and is soft, flexible and does not disappear after repeated washes. It now
comes in a glow-in-the dark colour too.
Beads in a Bottle™ is an innovative self-rounding paint for faux beadwork and once again
does not need to be heat fixed. It’s also machine washable.
Soft® Fabric Paint is highly opaque, developed specifically for fabric. It dries softly and with
flexibility so it moves with your fabrics and won’t crack or crumble. This product can be
brushed, sponged, stenciled and stamped onto fabric and doesn’t require heat setting. It can
be washed time and time again.
That’s Original is the exclusive partners of iLoveToCreate in Europe
for Tulip®, Scribbles® and Aleenes® brands
T: +44 (0)2381 159093
E: [email protected]
craftfocus 61
make a splash in colour!
Colour is King at Design Master®, a company that has studied its intricacies and trends to offer extraordinary
colour sprays and accessory products for creative professionals and imaginative individuals.
The ultra-fine mist provides colour coverage without a thick coat of paint and offers versatility on surface
and technique. It will colour the most delicate of surfaces including silk and fresh flowers, fabric, ribbon and
tulle as well as paper, foam board and Styrofoam™ brand foam. It’ll even cover hard surfaces like wood,
metal, masonry, terracotta, ceramics and plaster. Choose a straight-from-the-can finish or a unsual finish using
super simple spray techniques.
“Our products are the quickest colour around and dry faster than any other. That’s
an attribute that any busy crafter can appreciate! Visit the Design Master website to view products, and to pick up tips and techniques,” says
Gretchen Sell of Design Master. “
Design Master in Europe can be found under the Oasis® Spray Colour label from
Smithers-Oasis UK
T: +44 (0)191 417 5595
E: [email protected]
This spring Efco launched Efcostone, an acrylic based and easy to apply paint that is
brushed on in two coats. Once dry, it forms a tough, water resistant finish with
multi-flecked colours that resembles granite or a textured cement-like finish.
Efcostone is perfect for application to most semi-absorbent surfaces and is
particularly effective on papier maché (see Efco’s Papp Art range of shapes and
letters) and gives the retailer a new angle on these lines in addition to the decoupage
techniques that have proved so popular over the past couple of years.
As well as being a decorative product for crafters, Efcostone is a great product
for model makers to use where a textured stone or masonry look is required. The
Efcostone stone is manufactured in Germany and comes in 50ml jars and is available
in a range of 16 colours. There is also a compact counter-top display available (four
each x 14 colours).
Efco’s UK representative is Sinotex UK
T: +44 (0)1737 245450
E: [email protected]
62 craftfocus
- 1(;7:25.,1*'$<'(/,9(5<$667$1'$5'-
DecoArt Ink Effects is a new fabric-painting product. The paints can be
used on normal printer paper, colouring book sheets or even printed
images and text that can be painted over or coloured in. Once dry, the
painted image can be transferred onto textiles using a household iron.
For the parent or child, this is a great product for reproducing a child’s
artwork onto fabric aprons, shapes, cushions, bags, tights, pillowcases,
scarves etc. The artwork can be perfected on paper first and then once
happy, the design can be transferred – no more mistakes!
Ink Effects can be painted, sponged or stencilled. Painted sheets can
be re-used and designs can be overlaid. There are 12 intermixable
colours in the range. Ink Effects work best
on synthetic fabrics.
Country Love Crafts recommend the Ink
Effect fabric spray to basecoat materials
containing more than 40 per cent cotton.
DecoArt products are available
from Country Love Crafts
T: +44 (0)1235 861700
E: [email protected]
Martha Stewart Crafts paints are an industry first: a
patented Martha Stewart Crafts multi-surface acrylic
craft paint formulated to work on surfaces, indoors
and out. The paint is even dishwasher-safe!
Manufactured in the US by Plaid Enterprises, Inc.,
the paint palette includes 160 colours, hand-selected
by Martha and available in five versatile, non-toxic
finishes: pearl, metallic, glitter, satin and high gloss.
These are perfect for all craft and hobby painting
techniques, including brush painting and detailing,
sponging, stenciling, stamping, and printing. UV and
weather resistant for indoor and outdoor use, the
paint has a self-priming function for use on porous
and non-porous surfaces and extra adhesion on
glass; top-shelf dishwasher safe.
Also available in the UK are adhesive silkscreens
to create beautiful, highly detailed painted designs on any surface, and stencil sets in a variety of
themes and sizes make it easy to add painted designs to a variety of projects.
Distributed by Personal Impressions
T: +44 (0)1787 375241
64 craftfocus
The Art of Embroidered Butterflies
Stocking books alongside the products
you have to offer is a great way to make
additional sales. We review the latest editions
to hit the bookstands
By Jane E Hall
Price: £19.99 RRP (hardback)
ISBN: 978-1844485307
Publisher: Search Press
On first inspection, you
might think you have opened
up a nature book as these
embroidered butterflies are
so lifelike! Author Jane E Hall
has combined her love of
butterflies with her textile
talents to produce
three-dimensional versions
of some of the most
beautiful butterflies. Using
the finest silk threads,
needles and silk fabric, she
has created the butterflies’
wings using the tiniest of stitches. They are then
carefully cut away, the edges strengthened with hair-fine wire before
being attached to the carefully crafted air-drying modeling clay bodies.
The butterflies are then placed within a setting of silk leaves and flowers,
all made with the same painstaking detail. The book contains 12 projects,
each based on a different butterfly including the Painted Lady, Small
Tortoiseshell and the Brimstone.
We say: “This book provides a fascinating introduction to butterflies
in nature and contains some of the most striking colour photography
that any artist, embroiderer, textile artist or lover of beautiful books will
ever read.”
Tilda’s Fairy Tale Wonderland
By Tone Finnanger
Price: £15.99 RRP (paperback with flaps)
ISBN: 978-1446303313
Publisher: F W Media International
With over 25 beautiful sewing and papercraft projects, Tilda fans will love this book featuring seasonal
designs in Tone Finnager’s quirky style. Each chapter has been devoted to a theme on a classic children’s
story such as Pinocchio, Bambi, The Nutcracker and The Princess and the Pea.
Projects include new doll designs as well as gifts and decorations using the latest range of Tilda fabrics
and products. Tone Finnager is a talented designer and well known for her cute, whimsical animal and doll
characters as well as being the author of more than 10 craft books. This title will transport the reader in
to a magical world of princesses, ballerinas, soldiers and adorable animals, and in the back of the book
there are all the pattern pieces required for the makes.
We say: “This book is filled with some traditional style makes but with a twist and thinking outside the
box. Makes include a Christmas stocking based on a ballerina’s slipper, mushroom pincushions and more
quirky designs like the teaspoon lady.”
66 craftfocus
book reviews
The Essential A-Line
Gertie’s New Book of Better
Sewing - A modern guide to
Couture-style Sewing
By Gretchen Hirsch
Priced: £21.99 RRP
ISBN: 978-1584799917
Publisher: Stewart Tabori & Chang
Distributed by Abrams & Chronicle Books
Many sewers will know Gretchen Hirsch as prolific blogger ‘Gertie’ from
Gertie’s new blog for better sewing. This book is an extension of her blog. The
book is packed with sewing techniques that are brought to life by step-bystep photography and illustrated tutorials. The book features 14 customisable
patterns for wardrobe essentials, which have been inspired by Vogue’s New
Book of Better Sewing. Patterns range from pencil skirts, a portrait blouse to a
wiggle dress and suit jacket. All of the projects are modelled by Gertie herself,
who has the proportions and curves of a typical woman and not a stick insect!
By Jona Giammalva
Priced: £23.99 RRP
ISBN: 978-1607056690
Publisher: Stash Books
and distributed by the
Roundhouse Group
This title will help anyone find infinite creativity and inspiration
in one simple A-line skirt pattern in sizes 0 - 20 but with 17
fashionable variations that are just a stitch away! There are
few garments more flattering than a chic A-line skirt and this
how-to book shows how to whip one up in no time. This easyto-sew pattern includes detailed step-by-step instructions and
includes a variety of essential dressmaking techniques from
inserting a zipper to mastering the perfect pleat.
We say: “A brilliantly informative book with colour
photographs that will inspire any crafter of any skill level to
have a go.”
We say: “A fabulous book for those who love dressmaking and sewing and
anything vintage, but also for real women with real curves! Book comes with a
spiral bound section for easy use when sewing.”
The Home-Sewn Home
By Vanessa Arbuthnott with Gail Abbott
Priced: £16.99 RRP
ISBN: 978-19081701
Publisher: CICO Books
With 50 inspiring projects for creating home furnishings, this book with step-bystep artwork and clear instructions is perfect for home sewers. There is a range of easy projects, from cushions to
curtains and bed to table linen plus a comprehensive basic technique chapter. Author Vanessa Arbuthnott has been
passionate about fabric printing for over 20 years and has 10 fabric collections under her belt. The book contains
a section of inspirational themes from nature, the seaside and chickens, plus five sections on curtain making, blinds,
cushions, covers and accessories.
We say: “A lovely book full of every home furnishing item that you can imagine with every project having its own
illustration to help the maker along the way.”
Book Contacts
A & C Black,
Abrams & Chronicle,
Anova Books, T:+44(0)207 605 1466,
Cico Books, T:+44 (0)1256 302699,
Dorling Kindersley, T:+44 (0)207 010 3709,
F&W Media International (David & Charles), T:+44 (0)1476 541080,
Fil Rouge Press, T:+44 (0)207 628 2092, E: [email protected]
GMC Publications, T:+44 (0)1273 488 005,
How2crafts, T:+44 (0)121 212 9857,
Jacqui Small, T:+44 (0)20 7284 7181,
Quirk Books,
New Holland,
Niyogi Books,
Octopus Publishing, T:+44 (0)207 632 5488
Publishers Group UK (PGUK), T:+44 (0)207 405 1105,
Quarto Group (incorporating Creative Publishing International),
T:+44 (0)20 7284 7197
Search Press, T:+44 (0)1892 510 850,
The Roundhouse Group,
The Useful Booklet Company, T:+44 (0)176 143 9825,
Voyageur Press, T:+44 (0) 202 7284 7160,
Wiley & Sons,
craftfocus 67
a patch on style
Vintage fabrics and customising are big business and also seems recession proof.
Barbara Gadd from Vintage-Patch has brought together reclaimed and vintage
fabrics with contemporary ideas, she sent us a selection to review
Vintage-Patch’s fabric products have been
designed to repurpose fabrics into elbow,
knee or repair patches but also can be used
creatively for appliqués for customising clothing
such as T-shirts, leggings, bags and other
accessories and come in a wide range
of fabrics and sizes.
Current products available:
Appliqué motifs
Check and stripe elbow patches (set of 2)
Check and stripe knee patches (set of 2)
Denim elbow patches (set of 2)
Denim knee patches (set of 2)
Faux pocket patches
Floral and nature elbow patches (set of 2)
Floral and nature knee patches (set of 2)
Plain elbow patches (set of 2)
Plain knee patches (set of 2)
Reverse repair patch kits (designed to repair a
hole in fabric from underneath)
Shapes currently available are: oval, heart,
square, rectangle, flower and circle. Interest in
these products has been so great that VintagePatch will also be introducing new shapes and
fabrics to their range.
68 craftfocus
“It’s a great way to achieve a whole
new look in a quick, easy and
budget friendly way,” says business
owner, Barbara Gadd, adding “a
simple refashion of an existing
garment using our patches can take
as little as an hour or so. Just iron
on to secure, then over stitch by
hand or machine for a
permanent fix.”
These patches are easy to apply and each set
comes with a full instruction sheet and a test
sample for a trial run, which we recommend
that you use to get a feel for the product with
heat. They are perfect for crafters who like
to customise their projects and have a very
reasonable retail price very reasonably priced
starting at £3.50 RRP for elbow and knee
patches and repair patches at £4.50 RRP.
With a little imagination, crafters can mix
and match the shapes, colours and prints and
even add their own coordinating thread and
embellishment. It’s simple to iron and secure,
then stitch over around the edge by hand or
machine to permanently fix.
Patch fabrics are suitable for machine or hand
washing at 40 degrees.
• Ensure the garment that you want to apply
patches to can be ironed at medium to
maximum heat as this is necessary to bond the
lightweight cotton patches.
• Press and hold iron for 6 - 10 seconds on
each section making sure that the edges are
bonded too
• Allow to cool for about 20 minutes.
• It’s best to secure with stitching, as after
2 to 3 washes, the adhesive bond can weaken
on some fabrics. A simple running straight
stitch is sufficient.
• On thicker fabrics such as our denim or
corduroy, a pressing cloth and a steam iron
plus a longer time for pressing patches
is essential.
Vintage-Patch products are available online at and owner Barbara
Gadd is currently seeking a retail partner in
the UK and abroad. For more information
email [email protected]
designs on
available fr
New Mini Dot
Red Coming soon
New Navy Sheep
Arriving in July
New Mini Dot
Black Coming soon
New Purple Sheep
Arriving in July
New Wonky Star
Coming soon
New Print Polar
Coming soon
New Plain Cuddle Charcoal
Arriving July
New Print Ripstop Designs. Arriving in July!
Fairy Dust
Candy Hearts
Enchanted Forest
Purple Haze
To order or for further information:
Email: [email protected] ‡ Order Online:
its, Coast Road, Mostyn, Flintshire, CH8 9DX ‡ Tel: +44 (0) 1745 562 120
a long history of
craft manufacturing
Coats Crafts UK is part of the family of contemporary Coats companies based in 100
countries around the world. We speak to Emma Irving of the company, to find out a little
more about its history
Ferguslie Thread Works in Paisley, Scotland
Coats Crafts was founded nearly 250
years ago and has ties to the industrial
revolution. Can you tell us a little
about this?
In the 1750s, James and Patrick Clark moved
to the thriving town of Paisley, Scotland, and
began to work in the weaving industry. After
a short time, they set up a business in Cotton
Street making threads for needles. James
Coats was born in 1774 to a family of Paisley
weavers and spent the early part of his life
serving in the British army before returning to
Paisley to marry and set himself up in business.
70 craftfocus
In Victorian times, the Clarks and
Coats families were pioneers in the
manufacture of sewing and embroidery
threads. Are threads still an important
part of the business today?
Yes, sewing threads are a huge part of the
business today, both at a crafts level and at
an industrial level. We have unrivalled access
to global markets and customers, and are
recognised as the market leader across
many areas of operation. Almost one in five
garments on the planet are held together
with Coats’ thread and our products are sold
in more than 100 countries. Our Industrial
Division is three times the size of its nearest
competitor, and our Crafts Division is the
company profile
Rowan fine sock yarns
that our customers can be confident in finding
the very best products through one point
of contact.
You also work closely with designers
such as Amy Butler.Tell us more about
this collaboration?
We are privileged to work with artists and
designers such as Amy Butler, Nel Whatmore
and Kaffe Fassett to create the most up-todate designer fabric ranges on the market.
Interpreting trends and colour tendencies,
we work extremely hard to offer a premium
product in our lifestyle fabrics.
number one global player in the textile crafts
market. Our specialist range of craft threads
includes Coats Cotton, Coats Duet, Seta Reale
and Nylbond.
What brands and products do
you manufacture?
We are the largest supplier of needlecraft
products in the UK, offering a wide range
of household brands: Coats for sewing thread;
Anchor for embroidery and tapestry threads
and kits; Rowan and Patons for hand-knitting;
Opti for zips; Milward for haberdashery, and
many more!
Your products fall into four main
categories: knitting, crochet, sewing and
stitching, but what are the key
products today?
Key products for us today include our Rowan
and Patons hand-knitting ranges, celebrating
the trusted heritage of Patons and the designer
influences of Rowan. Also important for us
is our stunning range of designer lifestyle
fabrics that are available across the Rowan and
Freespirit brands.
Why should retailers do business with
Coats Crafts?
Our comprehensive product offerings mean
Have you any brand new products on
the horizon?
Brand new and extremely exciting for us is
the new Fine Art sock yarn from the Rowan
team. Hand-painted and sourced as part
of a community growth and development
programme in South Africa, the yarn is a
stunning blend of Merino Wool, Kid Mohair
and Mulberry Silk. C
Coats Crafts UK
T: +44 (0)1484 681881
E: [email protected]
craftfocus 71
what’s hot in the
craft sector
Julie Bonnar chats with those in
the know at Future Publishing
- a company with a portfolio
that contains over six crafting
specialist magazines about
what crafters want, and what’s
popular in the various sectors
What’s hot in
“At CrossStitcher
magazine, we’ve seen
it’s all about bright,
bold colours and
graphics this year.
Stitchers are getting
braver, using strong
Jenny Fox Proverbs,
colourways to great
Managing Editor of
effect. Animals and
Cross Stitch Collection insects are given a
contemporary graphic spin, and we’re seeing
a demand for high street led looks such as
chevrons, feathers and ikat. Stitchable products
are having a resurgence and jewellery in
particular is perfect for cross-stitch - just a few
well placed stitches create a ring or pendant
with dramatic, edgy results.”
Laura Watson, Editor
of Mollie Makes
72 craftfocus
What’s hot to make?
“The Great British
Sewing Bee effect
is in full swing!
We’re seeing lots
of readers picking
up a needle and
thread or dusting
off their sewing
machines for the
first time in months
to learn techniques such as putting in zips
and perfecting their seams. Fabric-wise, it’s
flamingoes, tropical prints and edgier
insect-inspired motifs and cross-stitching from
designer makers like Floss & Mischief. We’re
loving all things Great Gatsby too, salvaging
sequins, beads and feathers from our thrifted
finds to create headpieces and embellished
What’s hot in
yarn craft?
“Yarn crafts continue
to enjoy a revival in
popularity. According
to the latest wave
of craft intelligence
research (Future/
BMRB, February,
Kerry Lawrence,
2013), knitting
Publisher of Simply
remains the biggest
soft craft in the UK,
whilst crochet is definitely on the rise.
Google’s analysis of the top UK search
trends in 2012 placed ‘how to crochet’ an
impressive fourth behind ‘how to draw’, ‘kiss’
and ‘make’.
The portability of knitting and crochet,
combined with the wide range of gorgeous
yarns and accessories available, continues
to fuel the appeal of these crafts. We have
recently added Simply Crochet to our existing
portfolio of knitting titles
to reach yarn crafters
What’s hot in
“Card making as a hobby
is becoming increasingly
popular worldwide, and
Lucy Evans,
the UK market often
Operations Editor takes its lead from what’s
of PaperCraft
on-trend in the US. Key
papercraft themes and
patterns emerging for 2013 include geometric
shapes (particularly hexagons), carnival/circus
designs, botanical prints and illustrations and
sewing-inspired vintage patterns such as
patchwork. Technique wise, die-cutting is the
most popular choice for our readers and
digi crafting (the use of printable toppers,
embellishments and papers) is rapidly
becoming more popular as an easy and
economical way to make quick cards.” C
Many thanks to Gemma Combellack
at Future Publishing for her continued
support in putting this article together. If
you are interested in stocking any of the
Future titles, contact Donna Sweetman at
WWMD, E: [email protected]
Bothy Threads is constantly developing new
designs to excite your customers and also
recognise that the ever-changing trends on
the high street need to be quickly reflected in
what you’ve got to offer. With hundreds of top
quality counted cross-stitch kits, designs from
talented artists and licenses for Paddington
Bear, Cotton ZooTM, Mr Men, Little Miss and
GorjussTM – Bothy Threads will always be able
to offer a fantastic and varied choice.
Win one of the two sets that we’ve put
together to reflect all things vintage. Sets
include the truly beautiful Gorjuss™ art
brand featuring sweet stripy-socked female
characters, camper vans illustrated by
Amanda Loverseed, beach huts by painter
Win one of two collections of the latest kits from
Bothy Threads and keep up to date with the latest
cross-stitch trends
Janet Bell, four
owls, rainbow
cupcakes and
vintage signage
by illustrator
Helen Smith
and finally, a
love heart by
artist Kim
and Woof the
puppy from
Cotton ZooTM.
To enter the
competition, visit,
fill in your details
and answer the
following question:
Q. What is the theme of this collection?
Closing date is 31st July, 2013
Love Heart (£24.99)
Beach Huts (27.49)
Four Owls (£27.49)
Vintage (£27.49)
Cotton Zoo TM Woof the Puppy (£27.49)
Gorjuss TM On Top Of The World (19.99)
Cut Thru’ Camper Van (£31.99)
Rainbow Cup Cakes (£27.49)
Each prize is worth over £250 RRP and
every cross-stitch kit contains quality Madeira
stranded cottons and Zweigart Aida for
everything your customer needs to make their
own work of art.
Terms and Conditions
1. Competitions are not open to employees of
KD Media Publishing Ltd
(including immediate families too)
2. Entrants must be a member of the trade and
over 18 years old
3. The competition closing date is subject to
change without prior notice
4. The winner will be notified in writing
5. The editor’s decision is final and no
correspondence will be entered in to
6. The prize is not transferable and has no
monetary value
7. No purchase necessary, and no charge to
enter via the website at C
SantoroTM and GorjussTM are trademarks of Santoro
74 craftfocus
are you ready for
workplace pensions?
A big shake up of workplace pensions was launched in October 2012 meaning that
every employer will be legally obliged to enrol their staff in a workplace pension scheme
within the next five years, making saving for retirement the default position for millions
of people. With the help of ActSmart, we focus on what you need to do to be ready
ActSmart, the business support organisation
for specialist retailers, their supply partners and
trade associations, outline what an employer
needs to do, when, and how much they will
need to contribute.
What is a workplace pension?
A workplace pension is a way of saving for
retirement arranged through an employer.
State pensions are becoming unsustainable and
this situation will only worsen as people live
longer. Employers and employees will share the
responsibility and cost of retirement.
It’s important for employers to be aware of
the deadline when automatic enrolment will
impact them. This is known as the staging date.
The requirements are staged over time, the
largest corporations started auto enrolment
in October 2012 and the very smallest
employers will all become subject to these
changes by June 2015.
Businesses should plan well ahead of their
staging date, amendments in areas like payroll,
human resources and IT will need to
be considered.
It’s important for employers to be aware of
the deadline when automatic enrolment will
impact them. The average time to prepare for
implementation of a qualifying pension scheme
is 18 months and therefore all businesses are
recommended to start preparations during
this year.
Employers must inform The Pension Regulator
of their qualifying workplace pensions scheme
within four months of the employers staging
date. Registration must be completed within
four months of the employer’s staging date
and will have to be updated every three
years thereafter.
76 craftfocus
An employer is required to enrol an employee
into a workplace pension if the employee:
• Is not already in a qualifying pension at work
• Is aged 22 or over
• Is under State Pension age
• Earns more than £9,440 a year (subject
to change)
• Works in the UK
This criteria applies even for those business
owners that employ their spouse. Those
workers who aren’t eligible to be automatically
enrolled may be able to opt-in and equally,
some staff will elect to opt-out of saving for
retirement in this way. If an employee does opt
out it's the employer’s responsibility to ensure
that they are automatically enrolled back into
the scheme every three years.
What if you don’t?
The Pension Regulator will have the ability to
impose penalty notices if an employer does
not comply with their new duties under the
auto enrolment programme.
• Fixed penalty of £400 where an employer
fails to respond to a warning notice from The
Pension Regulator
• An escalating penalty of £50 - £10,000 per
day (depending on the size of the employer)
• Fixed penalty of £1,000 - £5,000 for
prohibited recruitment conduct or encouraging
non-participation, for example where an
employer screens job applicants for their
intention to join the pension scheme
The Pension Regulator will have the ability to
impose penalty notices up to £10,000 per day
if an employer does not comply
How much do I need to contribute?
Employer and employee contributions will be
tiered and will increase gradually over a fouryear period.
Minimum employer and employee
contributions are calculated based on the
employee's banded earnings - £5,668 pa £41,450 pa (2013/2014).
See below the minimum contributions
business advice
applicable to all gross earnings including wages,
salary bonus, overtime, commission, statutory
sick and maternity pay and when they come
into effect. Employees benefit from tax relief
upon their contributions.
October 2012- Sep 2017
October 2017 - Sept 2018
From October 2018
Minimum Employer
Minimum Employee
Tax Relief
Remember, employer contributions are part of
an employee’s benefits package. They needn’t
be an additional burden upon your business
and early implementation as part of annual
reviews can help your business accommodate
these gradual cost increases.
What other costs will you incur?
You needn’t incur any additional costs in setting
up a pension scheme for your employees.
ActSmart will be launching a suitable pension
service with a leading provider in June 2013
providing the advice and assistance to put the
scheme in place.
The service will be available to any ActSmart
subscriber and you can join ActSmart free
of charge.
ActSmart is also working closely with the
Department of Work and Pensions (DWP)
to help employers comply with their new
duties. There is more information and links to
interactive online tools tailored to the needs of
SME’s on the ActSmart website which can be
found at C
The main things you need to
do are:
• Know your staging date – when do you
need to act?
• Allow 18 months before your staging date
for implementation
• Provide a qualifying scheme for workers
• Determine which jobholders will be eligible
• Pay employer contribution for eligible
jobholders to the scheme
• Tell all eligible jobholders that they have
been automatically enrolled and they have
the right to opt out if they want to do so
• Register with the Pensions Regulator and
give them details of your qualifying scheme
and the number of people that you have
automatically enrolled.
T: +44 (0)845 618 7256
E: [email protected]
Join the ActSmart community for free visit
craftfocus 77
cha-uk q&a column
your questions
We’ve teamed up with industry experts from CHA-UK to
answer yours questions about commerce
This issue, Stephanie Burnham from The Bead
Scene and CHA-UK board member answers
your questions.
If you would like some answers then please
send an email to: [email protected]
with your question
As a retailer, how should I go about looking
for new products to sell?
CHA-UK has many suppliers and distributers
amongst its members with a wealth of
knowledge and expertise to impart. The
annual trade show Craft, Hobby + Stitch held
at the NEC in Birmingham, is also a great place
to start, all the top craft suppliers exhibit there,
it’s a great place to buy and network, plus it’s
worth attending even if you are just setting
up and your budget is limited - and make
sure you take a note pad, pen and plenty of
business cards! Use search engines to track
down products and of course, this magazine
has been written specifically for retailers in the
craft industry.
Do you have any tips on how to merchandise
the products that are on the shelves in
your shop?
The first rule is, don’t cram too much stock
onto the shelves, the last thing you need is
everything to fall on top of a customer just
because you have over stocked. If you are
featuring a new range of products, make
sure you have all the associated sells placed
alongside the main product. For example, if
you have a new range of paper - place glue,
sticky dots and embellishments next to it, and
nothing sells a product more than a completed
work model of the products, you simply
cannot afford not to do it.
I struggle to put together a good window
display, do you have any tips on making it
look presentable?
A theme is a great place to start, so really
make the most of occasions such as Valentine’s,
Easter, Halloween and Christmas - even if you
only use the colour as the binding factor, it
will still make an impressive statement. A red
window for Valentines works well, I pulled
together all my red and pink beads, ribbons,
cords and papers. Pop the new window onto
your Facebook wall to entice your customers.
Do you have any advice for approaching
customers and potential buyers who enter
the shop without seeming too pushy?
When customers enter my store I simply say
good morning or afternoon and tell them if
they need any help, just to let me know, then
I leave them to wander as nobody likes being
followed around. Then, as they pick items up,
I make a short comment like “I never know
which of those ribbons to choose.” If the
customer starts to engage that’s fine, but if it’s
only a short answer I leave them to shop, it’s a
very fine line.
I am thinking about starting up a craft
business in my area. Do you think there is
room for more bricks and mortar businesses
alongside the vast number of online
businesses nowadays?
Craft is a very touchy feely business, people
like to match colours and look at sizes of
products. Crafters are also very sociable,
and like to meet with like-minded people.
The heart of my business is workshops and
I like to think of my studio as a community;
a place where people come to craft, relax
and socialise. The threat of on line is there
but if you watch the web and stay away from
products with prices you can’t compete with,
you can succeed, but then I am bias! C
Visit CHA-UK’s website:
“As a member and
board member of
the Craft and Hobby
Association UK, I
believe that I get a lot
of encouragement and support from the
Association, which in turn helps make my
business a success,” Stephanie Burnham,
The Bead Scene,
craftfocus 79
kids and summer crafting
crafting for children has always had a lion’s share of the crafting market. Make sure you are
stocked and prepared for the summer!
DKL is excited to unveil My Pocket Hama. This new product is a
welcome addition to the already successful collection of Hama beads
sets, gift boxes and blister packs and is tipped to be a bestseller for
2013. My Pocket Hama is versatile and different from the other smaller
sized blister packs. It comes fully packaged and can be hung or displayed
in a CDU. This new pocket range is a great gift idea, starter pack or
collectable and is available in two fun creative designs.
T: +44 (0)1604 678786 or 678780
E: [email protected]
Seedling has come up with new collections
that won’t disappoint. Just when you thought
there couldn’t possibly be any more creative
ideas, the new craft kits encourage children
to explore, discover, grow and create, and are
a perfect fit for Asobi, the UK distributor of
this range.
Seedling’s craft kits provide children with
the creative tools they need to stimulate and
inspire the mind, plus they are eco-friendly
and sustainable toys that promote
traditional play. Each kit is assembled
by hand in New Zealand. The Butterfly
Mask and design your own Wizard
Wand are just two of the kits available
from this extensive range.
Seedling brand distributed by Asobi
T: +44 (0)1628 200 077
E: [email protected]
80 craftfocus
Stegosaurus sewing kit is the latest addition to Buttonbag’s First
Sewing Kit series. Specially designed to appeal to boys as well as
girls, this kit has pre-cut shapes with holes punched around the
edges. Select one of six colours and thread the plastic safety needle
and start sewing around the edges! This is a great kit for learning the
basic principles of sewing and teaching dexterity. It’s recommended
for children aged four and above with some adult supervision.
Priced at £12 RRP.
T: +44 (0)208 525 1640
E: [email protected]
children’s crafting
eeBoo’s Waste-Not animal recycle kits are the perfect gift for the eco-minded
family to play together and perfect for keeping kids entertained during
the summer. The simple but brilliant idea behind Waste-Not is to
repurpose discarded materials and transform them in toys. Each kit comes
with die-cut felt, and a plastic needle and thread. Simple instructions show
how to turn items such as a water bottle or yoghurt container into an
adorable cloth friend such as a fox, hedgehog or chamaeleon. Not only do
the kits raise environmental consciousness but they teach simple sewing skills
and encourage the valuable artistic ability to see an object in a fresh way. Kits
are marked with the level of difficulty and are for ages eight and above.
eeBoo takes another classic craft item, the pipe cleaner, and has transformed
it into quirky creative and irresistible animals for children aged eight and
above to make. Each packet comes with 36 pipe cleaners that are soft and
plusher than the usual pipe cleaner and come in four thicknesses: 3mm, 6mm,
9mm plus a wavy 10mm.
Each packet has three vibrantly matched colour shades to create a plant
or animal like the blue toned dart frog and pink flamingo shown here. Each
animal only uses a few pipe cleaners leaving many more for creative play. A
display packet is available which will hold 18 colours or they can be ordered
individually. These kits are ideal as party favours, school holiday treats, stocking
stuffers at Christmas and gifts.
T: +1 212 222 0823
E: [email protected]
Quirky felting
and crafts brand
Gilliangladrag offers
a range of cute kits
and unusual creative
projects to keep
children entertained.
New to the
brand’s range this
year is ‘Bow Delicious’ Felt Bow Clips Kits, (RRP 13.95 or
£19.95 with mat and net) and suitable for small children
(aged five+). This kit embraces the technique of wet
felting and requires little more than soap and water to
make four little bow clips. It comes with all the materials
and equipment needed to create it, including simple,
illustrated step-by-step instructions.
To request a trade catalogue or place a trade order
E: [email protected]
The Gilliangladrag Fluff-a-torium
T: +44 (0)1306 898144 and ask to speak to Kerry
or Debbie
Love aliens, space or just looking for the perfect boys collection? Well Blast Off! is
a must-have! This range of coloured and printed papers is bright and cheerful with
loads of cut out elements making it ideal for any crafting project.
Kaisercraft is distributed by Jones Crafts
T: +44(0)115 9738 720
E: [email protected]
craftfocus 81
kids and summer crafting
Faber-Castell’s boxed kits are perfect
shelf fillers as they contain everything
an inquisitive kid requires. Awesome
Origami shows them that it’s more
than just folding paper, it’s really about
transforming traditional origami designs
into amazing works of art. The kit
includes paper, jewels, feathers, wiggly
eyes and other fun embellishments.
There are easy-to-follow instructions
that include step-by-step photographs.
Ages eight+.
Girls will love the mosaic trinket
box kit, which transforms a boring box
into a sparkling mosaic masterpiece
that can be used as a jewellery box!
This complete set includes everything
you need including a velvet-lined heart
shaped box, glue, acrylic mosaics, glitter
grout, adhesive tape and a pretty fabric
ruffle. Ages five+.
Faber-Castell products are distributed
by West Design Products
T: +44 (0)1303 297888
E: [email protected]
Fabric fashion art is very popular this summer and
what better way to get teenagers involved in craft
than fashion? The Tulip® One-Step™ Tie-Dye kit is
the perfect product to make vibrant designs come
alive effectively and
easily as there is none of
the complicated mixing,
dunking and setting that
is usually involved in the
tie dyeing process. This
kit has everything you
need including elastic
bands, gloves as well
as training guides for
great tie-dye techniques
- just find a T-shirt, bag
or accessory, add cold
water, shake and dye.
For additional tips and
techniques, visit
Tulip® products are distributed by That’s Original
T: +44 (0)2381 159093
E: [email protected]
82 craftfocus
Perfect for the long summer holidays, My Friendship
Bracelet Maker™ is a tool designed to simplify the
craft of making friendship bracelets and is a creative,
entertaining and safe pastime for both adults and
children. This tool is great for making friendship bracelets
on the go and with its convenient size, take it with you
whilst on holiday, waiting at the airport, on a train and
coach trips. This fun and friendly, go-anywhere travel
board features a thread storage compartment with a
slide-out drawer that includes 20 pre-cut Prism® threads
in 10 different colours. RRP £16.99.
DMC has introduced a range of prism value thread
packs for all types of art and craft projects. The craft
threads can be used in many ways including friendship
wear, card making, scrapbooking, hair braiding, cord
making, wrapping, decorative finishings and simple sewing
projects. Prism value craft thread packs and priced at
between £9.99 - £17.99 RRP.
DMC Creative World
T: +44 (0)116 275 4000
E: [email protected]
From the Easy Peasy range stitched on 6 count Binca with tapestry threads.
Twit Twoo, stitched on 14 count white Aida.
From the Sew Simple range stitched on 11 count Aida with embroidery threads.
See our website for information on our wide range of kits for children
and adults or contact us on 01568 780 183 / [email protected]
C&T Publishing has created Fun Stitch Studio, a children’s book
imprint for eight -14 year olds that strives to instill a love of
handmade in the next generation. This imprint will nurture new
sewists, embroiderers, and quilters with accurate, inspirational,
educational, and easy-to-use ideas and projects.
Wizard is a London based manufacturer and distributor that has its own
range of arts and crafts. Shrinkles products have become very popular in
the UK and abroad. Shrinkles consist of a plastic sheet paper that shrinks
in the oven to become seven times smaller but seven times thicker
than before. Use it to create badges, key fobs, finger rings, phone tags
and jewellery pieces. Children will have hours of fun colouring, cutting,
shrinking and choosing from a wide variety of pre-printed themed sets.
Additionally, retailers can stock the blank Shrinkles material, which is
available in several great colours. Visit the Wizard’s website to view the
video demonstration.
Wizard Toys,
T: +44 (0)208 943 0121
E: [email protected]
Following the launch of Clara’s Acorn Crescent range at CHSI, the
company has added four adorable Poppet Bag making kits to its
range of colourful characters. Now available in vibrant, natural fibre
felts, these bag kits are fully lined with cotton spot fabric. Designed
and made in Cornwall, each neatly packaged kit contains all that’s
needed to sew-your-own.
Clara Create
T: +44 (0)8454 900 901
E: [email protected]
Sewing: Know your machine, common terms, tools that make
it easier, fabric 411, basics about seam allowances, pressing
versus ironing.
Quilting: Know your machine, common terms, tools that make it
easier, the quilt sandwich, tying it together - different ways to make
your quilt your own.
Embroidery: Common terms, tools that make it easier, pearl
cotton, floss, supplies; to hoop or not to hoop; basic stitches;
tying knots
The first five titles will be available in the UK in June 2013 and there
will be six new titles every year.
Enchanting Fairies & Felt Friends from
Simple Supplies
Lenka Vodicka-Paredes & Asia Curte
This book contains 28 enchanting projects
from flower fairies and zombie sprites to
treasure keepers, showing young readers how
to design their own fairies and accessories while learning valuable
sewing skills. £17.99 RRP
WE LOVE TO SEW: 30 Pretty Things
to Make
Annabel Wrigley
Thirty brilliant projects for young sewists each explained with step-by-step instructions,
engaging photographs and helpful tips. These
super-cool projects range from jewellery and
bags to home decor and will quickly teach the
aspiring seamstress a variety of sewing skills
and provide DIY confidence.
£19.99 RRP
These books provide hours of
imaginative colouring fun and a
love of quilting featuring designs by
top quilt artists. The books offer an
introduction to quilting basics like working
with the colour wheel, appliqué, free-motion
quilting. Inspirational books for children (but think
the adults will like them too).
£6.99 RRP
Distributed by The Roundhouse Group
T: +44(0)1273 603 717
E: [email protected]
craftfocus 85
children’s crafting
Reading corner
Enjoyed reading this copy of Craft Focus?
Then log on to the Craft Focus website at to find out how we
can help you with your craft business
Missed an issue?
Make sure you register to receive the latest
issue free of charge to qualified registered
readers. If you’ve missed a back issue then we
can help – all back issues are archived so you
can download at anytime convenient to you.
Want to advertise?
Download a copy of our comprehensive
online media pack for everything you need
to know about advertising with us or if you
prefer, give us a call on +44 (0)1376 535 618
where we’ll be happy to talk to you.
The Craft Focus website contains
up to the minute news, events
and special offers that happen
inbetween each of our
bi-monthly issues, plus current
interesting articles to read.
The suppliers
directory is
simple to use
and available
24 hours a day
to suit you
Need a supplier?
Check out the Craft Focus supplier’s directory
– this is a comprehensive listing of crafting
wholesale companies that can help you to
stock the right products for your business.
The Craft Focus website
is updated regularly with
information to help you
advance your craft business
Log onto to find out more
86 craftfocus
haberdashery haven
Starting up as a small mail order business for quilters, EQS UK has evolved into a major
wholesale haberdashery supplier. Julie Bonnar talks to Marion Bauer of EQS UK about the
business now
How did EQS UK come about?
In 1996, Graeme Wright and Elizabeth West
were advisers in a detailed study on the
opportunities for patchwork and quilting in
Europe. The products and packaging had been
identified along with a rollout programme
covering several years but at the last minute,
the whole project was abandoned. It seemed
a shame to waste all that work and knowledge
and so the two partners formed what was
originally known as Quilt Direct, servicing
both consumers and retailers. Five years on,
the owners decided to form EQS (European
Quilting Supplies) and since then, the company
has focused solely on supplying retailers with
the most comprehensive range of quilting
products available anywhere in Europe.
EQS is now one of Europe’s leading
distributors of patchwork, quilting and
home sewing products. What brands
does it supply?
We now offer products in three separate
areas: fabrics, waddings and notions. In fabrics,
we offer Michael Miller, Riley Blake, Sew Simple,
Kona Bay, Red Rooster and P&B amongst
others. Our waddings are all produced
exclusively for us under the Sew Simple brand.
It includes everything from 100 per cent
needle-punched cottons, wools and polyesters
to bamboo blends and fusible wadding and in
fact, our Sew Simple Super Soft range is the
widest selection anywhere in Europe.
88 craftfocus
also extremely popular. Our sales of waddings
continue to grow and we are adding new
types and formats all the time. Best of all for
retailers, like fabrics, waddings are consumable
and need to be constantly replenished.
On the thread side, we have an extensive
range from high quality brands such as Madeira
and YLI.
What is your best selling product?
We offer so many products that a single
best-seller is hard to define. The Sewline
marking system with products for marking
fabrics including Aqua erasers, liquids
and pencils do very well, plus we have a
very extensive range of Accuquilt fabric
cutting system products. The Dafa range of
competitively priced cutting tools and mats are
Tell us about some of the latest
products you have to offer?
We have just brought a new universal Quilt
Hanger into the UK market that is perfect for
displaying quilts professionally on the wall. It
levels itself out and comes in two different
extendible lengths. We also have a new ironing
spray called Best Press, it doesn’t flake or
discolour fabrics and is excellent for getting rid
of stubborn creases and comes in lovely scents,
Fresh Linen and Lavender plus scent free.
In the last few years, you’ve started
supplying fabrics – tell us a bit about
the different types?
90 per cent of our customers cater to
patchworkers and quilters, so we specialise in
100 per cent cotton for quilting. Like wearable
company profile
some of whom have now been with us for
more than 15 years.
As we have grown as a business, we’ve
continued to be passionate about maintaining
the personal approach, and to foster the
same relationship that we look for from our
own suppliers.
Chevrons are the new dots, Rily Blake fabric
I understand that the products you
stock are tested against strict criteria?
Yes, that’s correct. All products need to be
of good quality and fit for purpose. We tend
to concentrate on products that are useful
and are not just some sort of gimmick. It’s
amazing how often a very successful product
in America doesn’t meet this criterion. The
product offerings also need to be great value
for money. We know that cheap is not always
good and in most cases, it’s a case of you get
what you pay for!
If a product doesn’t satisfy our criteria, we
won’t stock it! New products that we look at
are tested by a small group of trusted experts
and if they don’t like them, we pass!
fashions, these fabric companies have new
collections at least twice a year, so there’s
always something new and exciting that we
can show retailers. We also keep a watchful
eye for fabric designers who are newcomers
to the industry as it’s a very fast moving
market but fascinating to work in.
Why should retailers choose to buy
from EQS?
We believe that by offering a wide range of
products, we can almost become a one-stop
shop for retailers. This means less orders, less
invoices, less payments etc which in turn leaves
more time for retailers to concentrate on their
businesses. We have a passion for supplying
only quality products and as a result, we now
have an extremely loyal customer base.
In addition, we are always praised for our
customer focus. We have a dedicated team
that makes this possible (both in-house and on
the road). The team works hard to establish
personal relationships with our customers,
Can you tell us about any new products
in the pipeline?
We have a new catalogue out in June which
has been designed to be not just a useful
ordering tool but also a fun and informative
publication that our customers will want to
keep going back to, along with our website,
which is also constantly being updated with
new products, videos etc.
We’re also looking to extend the range
of our own label fabrics and as a result,
reinforcing the strength of our Sew Simple
brand. There are also some innovations in
thread that we are working on for later in the
year, but you wouldn’t expect us to reveal too
many secrets! You can rest assured that we will
not rest on our laurels. C
T: +44 (0)116 271 0099
E: [email protected]
craftfocus 89
are you a
David or Goliath?
For speciality retailers, choosing to advertise using Pay Per Click can seem like the odds
are stacked against you, however ecommerce agency Metakinetic provide and arm us
with the right weapons to take on the online Goliaths
The most common misconception about Pay
Per Click (PPC) is that it’s an expensive way to
acquire sales. The truth is, it can be, especially
if you are competing against the likes of online
giants such as Amazon. The average cost
per click in 2012 rose by 30 per cent when
compared with the previous year. The Kenshoo
2012 Global Online Shopping Report said
it was predominantly due to the increase in
the number of businesses using PPC and the
growing budgets being spent by larger
online retailers.
Choosing to advertise using PPC can
seem really very difficult, but like the odds
are stacked against you but then again, would
David and Goliath be such a great story if the
giant wasn’t as challenging? Beating the giant
wasn’t easy but dedication, knowledge and
the right choice of weapons went a long way.
The same can be applied to niche retailers in
PPC advertising; drive to succeed coupled with
knowledge and the right tools can make PPC
90 craftfocus
landscape very lucrative.
Top PPC weapons
Keyword targeting
A successful PPC campaign is not about
appearing alongside larger retailers for every
search term or trying to match their budgets,
it’s about choosing your battles and playing
to your strengths. For speciality retailers this
means choosing your keywords carefully,
based on your knowledge of products and
customer base. Big brands typically dominate
the landscape using generic terms and broad
keyword matching, which ultimately results in
more visitors, but those visitors have a lower
propensity to convert and thus the cost per
sale is unsustainable for smaller retailers. For
niche retailers, long tail keywords can represent
a better investment if budget is limited.
Quality score
Quality score is where you will gain your
competitive advantage; it’s the backbone of
PPC and is basically a measurement of how
relevant search engines decide you are,
against your proposed keywords. Quality score
is a major factor in determining how much
each click costs you. For example, an advertiser
with a low quality score bidding on the same
keyword as an advertiser with a high quality
score will be required to bid and pay more
in order to appear in the same position
within the search results. It’s the way that
search engines ensure their results are as
relevant as possible, as well as ensuring that
they make a nice healthy profit.
Many retailers, especially those with larger
scale campaigns, ignore this vital metric
and as a result spend more than they need to
in order to acquire sales, thus pushing up the
average cost per click. By focusing on setting
up a super granular account structure that
includes using negative keywords to reduce
irrelevant searches ensures your ads
business advice
are pertinent to the searches that are
triggering them.
Knowledge is power, so they say, and
knowledge of how your customers interact
with you will allow you to capture as many
sales as possible. One of the most common
optimisation mistakes is to make changes to
your account based on a simple data set
when in actual fact, customer behaviour is a lot
more complex.
Using free analytics software such as Google
Analytics alongside insight gained through your
CRM solution will prove invaluable.
• Do your customers make repeat purchases?
Ensure you know the lifetime value of a
customer and don’t base your budgetary
decisions solely on their initial order value.
• Do your customers always purchase
immediately or do they come back to your
website via multiple sources to make a
purchase? Attribution is the most common
reason that poor optimisation judgements
are made.
If a customer finds you through your paid
search ad but navigates away, revisiting by
directly typing in your website URL, by default
the sale is attributed to the direct source yet
without that paid ad, would that customer
have found you?
Do your customers prefer to visit you in store?
Driving online sales is not the sole purpose of
PPC advertising, for some speciality retailers,
you may find that your customer base prefers
to interact with your brand in person and,
therefore, driving new customers to your
store may be your biggest objective. How
many people set aside time for a specific
craft project only to realise they don’t have
everything they need? They may search online
for what they need, but they’re going to want
it right away.
Geo-Targeting allows you to appear in
the results for searches performed within
targeted areas. For example, if you retail craft
products in Southampton, you can choose to
only appear when users search your chosen
keywords from an IP address located within
Southampton, thus conserving budget and
ensuring you get the most return for your
ad spend.
In summary, PPC advertising is as expensive
as you want it to be, but one thing is for sure,
if the PPC landscape is not a space that you
play in, you are missing out. Be mindful of your
strategy, focus on a tight keyword selection and
optimise based on complete data sets. C
Day parting
Have you noticed a surge of visitors who are
using your shop to pass the time on a Saturday
afternoon who never seem to buy anything?
Day parting allows you to control when your
ads appear, if visits during a particular day of
the week or time of day never result in sales switch off your campaigns during that time.
Metakinetic is a full
service ecommerce
agency founded
in 2005. Based
in Wokingham,
Berkshire, with
a team of 18
specialists, it provides
creative, technical
and marketing
services to a wide
range of online retailers. Focusing on quality,
support and delivering results, Metakinetic
helps its clients increase ecommerce sales and
reduce operational costs.
Metakinetics has won an ECMOD
Ecommerce Supplier of the Year Award,
appears on the Recommended Agencies
Register (RAR) for achieving a high level of
client satisfaction, is a RAR Awards finalist,
was ranked 25th largest digital agency in
the Wirehive100, and was shortlisted for a
fast growth award It has staff members that
write for a variety of industry publications.
Metakinetic is a Microsoft Gold Certified
Partner, Google Adwords Certified Partner
and a Znode Gold Implementation Partner.
T: +44 (0)118 324 9000
E: [email protected]
Darren Bull, one
of the founder
craftfocus 91
Candle-making is an age-old skill and continues to be one of the most popular
crafts, whether you are a traditional cottage industry or selling candle making
supplies in your shop. Here's the latest contemporary supplies
These creamy smooth wax-painting colour liners
are brilliant for decorating candles and can be
used in conjunction with a variety of techniques to
decorate candles such as freehand painting, stencils
and paint. Use with a brush or to write directly
onto the candle and once dry, the liquid wax
colour sticks to the candle.
West Design Products
T: +44 (0)1303 297877
E: [email protected]
Peak Dale Products stock two candle-making kits. The basic kit contains all the
necessary materials to start a candle-making newbie off and the ultimate kit
contains more wax and moulds for experienced makers. This company also
stocks wax in different weights, a variety of
wick sizes, moulds in unusual shapes plus
colours and perfumes for that individual
touch and alternatively, it stocks Soy wax
especially for making container candles.
Peak Dale Products
T: +44 (0)1298 78447
E: [email protected]
Luminaria decorative lantern bags from Efco
Creative Emotions create a glowing atmosphere,
which candle makers will love as a complementary
project. Decorate the outside of the decorative
lantern bag for parties and special occasions!
Simply unfold the Luminaria decorative lantern
bags completely and insert a homemade candle
or tealight in a glass. The Luminaria bags are made
from paper that is flame resistant according
to DIN 53438-2:K1and can be used indoors
and outdoors.
Efco Creative Emotions is distributed
by Sinotex
T: +44 (0)1737 245450
E: [email protected]
Ideas for customers using the Candle Liner
from West Design Products
Stencil technique
Create lovely patterns on candles, using Marabu’s
self-adhesive stencils and a small sponge.
Window colour method
Place a chosen design under film and trace over it using
the Candle-Liner. Allow the outlines to dry before painting
in. After about five hours drying time, the motif can be
lifted off the film and glued onto the candle, using CandleLiner glue.
Wax wrappers using stencils
Choose any stencil and lay it on a clear film, ideally fixed
with masking tape or Marabu stencil fixing spray. Spread
Candle-Liner over the stencil, using a spatula. Remove the
stencil and allow the motif to dry. Once dry, completely
cover the motif with a second colour to create a coloured
background. After further drying, the sheet can be cut to
size and glued to the candle; the side stuck to the film
becomes the front when finished.
These Cling Rubber stamps pictured here
from Woodware are made with a deeply
etched premium photopolymer grey rubber
stamp, precision trimmed to create smooth
impression even on textured surfaces such
as candles and will give a fine detail and
good print quality to candle crafters.
Woodware Craft Collection
T: +44(0)1756 700024
E: [email protected]
craftfocus 93
candle making
decorative illuminations
foam pets
Bring customers into your shop by holding a ‘make and take’ day with quick and easy projects
for children over the summer break
Cat ear center
For dog mask
• Art Foam (9in x 12in sheets): 1 x tan
for basic mask, 1 x brown for dog’s ears,
1 x ivory for dog’s muzzle and 1 x black
for dog’s nose
• 20in of ¼in purple gingham ribbon
• 2 ¾in square piece of cardboard
• 2 ½in piece of floral wire
• 1 wooden tongue depressor/lolly stick
• Acrylic paints: black and white
Dog nose
Dog muzzle
Cut out
Cut out
Dog ear
Cat ear
For cat mask
• Art Foam (9in x 12in sheets): 1 x grey
for basic mask and cat’s ears, 1 x pink for
tongue and ear centres and 1 x black for
cat’s nose
• 6 x black chenille stems (pipe cleaners)
• 8in of 3/8in pink grosgrain ribbon
• 1 wooden tongue depressor/lolly stick
• Acrylic paints: black and white
Cut out
Cut out
Cat nose
Dog eyes
Cat mask
Step 2
Make an oval template and cut out from foam
for the dog’s and cat’s head (using the tan foam
for dog and the grey foam for cat).
Step 4
Paint details for the mouth, eyebrows or
whiskers, using the black paint and highlight
nose with white paint.
Cut out round the eye openings for the dog and
oval openings for the cat in the basic mask.
Step 5
Wrap ribbon around the cardboard, carefully
slide it off and secure tightly in centre with
floral wire to make a bow. Poke wire into the
top of the mask. Bend it flat against the head.
Glue on a small piece of the tan foam to cover
the wire.
Glue ears and muzzle to mask and glue nose to
muzzle for the dog. Glue pink centres to grey
ears and glue to the top of the mask and the
tongue into the mouth centre for the cat.
Thanks to GMC Distribution and Design Originals for the permission
to reproduce this quick and easy project for children. It was taken
from Awesome Foam Craft, a book written by Margaret Riley that
contains fun crafts for children to make from sheets of foam with
clear photos and instructions. The plethora of projects includes a seathemed hanging mobile, refrigerator magnet scene that doubles as a
sports schedule holder, fun masks, jewellery and purses.
94 craftfocus
Step 6
Glue tongue depressor to bottom of mask leaving
3in showing.
Awesome Foam Crafts
ISBN: 9781574213522, £6.99
Publisher: Design Originals
Distributed by The GMC Distribution
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Craft Focus magazine is the leading trade
publication for the craft industry and is available
FREE of charge to our registered readers.
Published six times a year, Craft Focus
contains all the latest news, recent product
launches and details about all the craft events.
Visit our website,, or fill
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craftfocus 95
next issue…
Don’t miss the August/September 2013
edition of Craft Focus
DMC Creative
A new season for knitting and crochet
The current news from
the yarn manufacturers
Club Green
What’s hot to stock
this yuletide
All the trimmings
A latest look at
ribbons, ruffles,
buttons and braids
Support your customers’
artistic merit with the
newest art materials
Issue 38
August/September 2013
Editorial deadline:1st July, 2013
Advertising deadline:12th July, 2013
Published: 29th July, 2013
96 craftfocus
Not to be missed...
Plus the latest industry news and business
advice from leading experts in the fields of
retail, ecommerce and business management
word on the web
building your brand
Selling product and craft becomes more straightforward when you’re known on the web.
Build a brand and become an expert in your field by following these four steps from Emma
Jones, small business expert and founder of Enterprise Nation
websites. Approach the sites that are popular
with your customers and offer to guest blog
for them, being sure to include a link back to
your site in the post. Link out to other sites
and request others to link back to you. Join
online groups and forums, contribute to the
conversation and this will encourage more
people to click on the link to visit your site and
find out more.
Start with blogging
Blogging is a free and easy way to get
started. Choose from blogging platforms such
as Blogger and Wordpress and start writing
about what interests you, events you have
attended and/or hosted, inspirations for your
craft, and new product releases. Have this as
your website, or part of your site, and turn
browsers into buyers through adding a PayPal
button or e-commerce plug-in.
A blog offers you an opportunity to share your
passions and your product, and by building an
audience you’re creating a crowd of potential
customers. Blog, if you can, a couple of times
each week and consider inviting guest bloggers
on too.
Embrace social media
Promoting yourself in the UK and overseas
– this has never been so easy with the use of
social media. So make sure you embrace it!
Building a brand on the web can
take time but dedicating a little
attention each day will pay off!
Be on Twitter and have a business page on
Facebook, pin to Pinterest and upload video
footage to your own YouTube channel. These
are powerful platforms that attract large
numbers of people yet are free and easy for
you to use. It also helps with your Search
Engine Optimisation if you have a strong social
media presence and help you appear higher
in search results when people are looking for
what you have to offer. With all this taken into
account, there’s no reason not to make the
most of social media in promoting you and
your business.
Be well connected
By now, you’ll be blogging and tweeting, getting
known and being followed. Build on this by
spreading your message to other blogs and
Keep it fresh!
Keep content on your site fresh and tweet/
pin/update to Facebook on a daily basis if
possible. Tools such as Hootsuite mean you
can schedule tweets and manage your social
media profiles from one account, to save time.
Measure the results using Google Analytics,
which will show if traffic to your site is
increasing and Sprout Social offers an overview
of the impact you’re having across the social
media scene.
Blogger (
Facebook (
Google Analytics (
Hootsuite (
Pinterest (
Sprout Social (
Twitter (
Wordpress (
YouTube channel (, C
Emma Jones is founder of Enterprise
Nation, and
author of books including Working 5 to 9,
Go Global and Turn your Talent into
a business.
Follow Emma on Twitter @emmajones
craftfocus 97
buttons with attitude
We met Tricia and Karen from Tuliptree Buttons earlier
this year at Craft, Hobby + Stitch. In awe of the beautiful
handmade polymer buttons that they had to offer, we spoke to
Tricia to find out more
We use other techniques too such as
Mokume Gane, a Japanese term for ‘wood
grained metal’. In clay terms, it’s a method of
stacking different colours of polymer clay, then
pushing implements into the clay to distort it
before carefully slicing off slithers to create a
myriad of interesting and beautiful designs.
How did Tuliptree buttons come into
existence and where are you based?
Tuliptree Buttons is based on the Norfolk
Broads in Wroxham. The business started
when I attended a polymer clay class and
couldn’t make a perfect round bead, in my
frustration I flattened it, and the button was
born! Karen has an art background while I have
worked in textiles, and together we’ve used
our knowledge to create works of art in
our buttons.
What makes your buttons special?
All our buttons are ‘one offs’, even if we make
a set of 10, each one will be different. We
approach the construction of our buttons
as a piece of artwork, designing them to
complement current trends in fabric, wool etc.
Because polymer clay allows you to mix any
colour combination you desire, buttons can
be made to match fabric, garments, bags or
whatever is being made. Also the clay is very
lightweight, so even the largest button can be
sewn onto delicate fabrics like silk, chiffon and
wool without the garment becoming distorted.
What is your best-selling button design
in the range?
This is very hard to define as people have
different tastes. However, we have recently
made a Klimpt collection in a variety of colour
ways and it has proven very popular.
Your buttons are all made by hand what are they made from and what
processes are involved?
All of our buttons are one-of-a-kind handmade and are made from a selection of
polymer clays. There are a variety of processes
involved in their creation. Some are made from
canes, and can take days to construct so think
of them as a three dimensional puzzle or a
stick of rock with a series of detailed designs.
After construction, the cane is reduced and cut
into slices.
98 craftfocus
What new products do you have in
the pipeline?
We are venturing into new territories and
designing our own appliqué patterns, which
will have some polymer included. We’ve also
been asked to create a design that can be
reproduced for fabric. This is very exciting and
we’re working on several projects for this at
the moment.
You were at Craft, Hobby + Stitch in
February in the Bright Sparks Pavilion.
How did that go and how were your
products received?
We didn’t know what to expect as this was
our first trade show, however, the response
was fabulous and our buttons have been selling
all over the country, and Europe. We covered
a huge canvas in buttons to look like a tree,
it was quite the showstopper. At the end of
the event, we were asked to sell it. It was an
amazing show for us!
Why should retailers buy from
Tuliptree Buttons?
Each retailer that we work with will have their
own individual identity; so we can produce
buttons to enhance their brand and what they
do. For example, we are working with a client
called Tilly Rose, who only works with vintage
fabrics and trimmings, so we are producing
a range of buttons solely to complement
her brand.
What plans to do you have for the
business in the future?
We are designing new ranges of buttons and
putting together a catalogue so potential
buyers can pick a technique in any colour
range and size. C
Further information
Tuliptree Buttons & Beads
T: +44 (0)1603 782740 or
+44 (0)7791983595
E: [email protected]