Artists Open Houses Top Picks

This bank holiday weekend (27th-28th May) is the last chance to explore this years Artists Open Houses! AOH is a festival that runs over four weekends in May each year exhibiting in more than 180 venues across Brighton, Hove and beyond. Artists from all different backgrounds open their doors to allow visitors the opportunity to meet and buy artwork directly from the makers. Grouped into local trails, the festival is free and open to all so why not make a day of it! 
With so much to see, we've put together our top picks from each of the trails.
Trail 1:  Beyond The Level 
The Stanley Road Store 
Twenty five artists under one roof, with a vintage shop upstairs and plant shop in the garden! 
Open 11.00-18.00
25 Stanley Road, Brighton, BN1 4NJ
Trail 2: Brunswick Town
21a Brunswick Square
A host of contemporary artwork and crafts by Alex Banford, Sally Evans and others, complete with a garden which will be open for refreshments.
Open 10.00-18.00
21a Brunswick Square, Hove BN3 1EJ
Trail 3: Central
Colour Laine
A vibrant townhouse showcasing Zoe Murphy's screen-printed textiles and Toby 'fotobes' Mason's Lomographic film photography. 
Open 11.00-18.00
19 Queen's Gardens, Brighton, BN1 4AR
Trail 4: Dyke Road
The GloohBaah House 
An Aladdin's Cave, back by popular demand, full of works by artists old and new including Rosalind Lymer, Sandy Walsh and Sarah Hughes to name a few.
Open 11.00-18.00
22a The Drove, Brighton BN1 5AF
Trail 5: Fiveways 
The BigForest Emporium
Expect paper dolls, felt vans and animal mobiles, TheBigForest artist/makers have turned their parlour into a seaside emporium of delights.
Open 11.00-17.00 
56 Chester Terrace, Brighton, BN1 6GB
Trail 6: Hanover
Rebel Yarns
A one-off chance to see the meaningful knitting and crochet collection by local art activist Dani Ahrens.
Open 11.00-17.00
50 Southampton Street, Brighton, BN2 9UT
Trail 7: Kemptown
Kate Jenkins 
This studio shop hosts a vibrant selection of knitted fashion accessories, homeware and crocheted art.
Open 11.00-18.00
Cardigan Ltd, Unit 5 Arundel Mews, 13-18 Arudel Place, Brighton, BN2 1GG
Trail 8: Seven Dials 
A beautiful home-ware shop showing a curation of local artists that compliment the stores Scandi aesthetic, including Hi Cacti and Peas & Needles.

Open Sat 10.00-18.00 & Sun 12.00-16.00
34a Bath Street, Brighton, BN1 3TB
Trail 9: Hove 
The Flamingo House 
A must see collection of prints, ceramics, jewellery, paintings, and textiles with an exotic garden cafe out the back! 
Open 11.00-18.00
14a Wilbury Road, Hove, BN3 3JN
Trail 10: Beyond 
'Maison de papier' at Danny House
Artist Stephanie Smart has created life-size historical fashion garments using only paper and thread.

Open 11.00-16.00
Danny House, New Way Lane, Hustpierpoint, West Sussex BN6 9BB

Happy Small Business Saturday!

This weekend is Small business Saturday, a non-commercial campaign running throughout the UK to celebrate small business success and encourage consumers to support independents by shopping locally! To celebrate we asked our Founder and Director Maria to answer a few questions on what being a small business means to her.

Q1. What is your favourite thing about owning your own business?
A: One of my favourite parts of running the business is developing new products. Over the last few years we have expanded into accessories, gifts and homeware as well as the jewellery that I started with. It is so exciting taking it from an idea that I have, to a physical product and I love seeing all of the personalisations that customers choose, which make it so special to them. I am also proud to have built a team around me in the studio over the last few years, they are brilliant - so supportive, hard working and really inspiring to work with each day! It is lovely working with my Mum Irina (in the photo below!) as well, and being able to see her at work daily. 

Q2. Why is Small Business Saturday important?
A: Small business Saturday is a great way to celebrate all the small businesses across the country. It highlights the success of these businesses and encourages consumers to buy locally and from smaller companies than they may usually. For us it's a great way to celebrate what we love doing! We love designing, personalising and making each of our customer orders, we love hearing the stories behind orders and knowing that our hard work makes others happy. For anyone considering shopping this weekend I encourage you to shop small, you will be amazed by the good-deed feeling you get from buying from a small business!

Q3. Lastly, what is your favourite Christmas gift of the collection this year? 
A: I love our new hexagon mirrors - especially the Polar Bear design - I have one in my house! I think they are a great way to make the house look festive (and are subtle enough to keep up all year round!)
Communities all over the UK are getting involved with local markets and celebrations and Brighton is no different. Here's how to get in on the #SmallBizSatUK action this weekend. 
1. Brighton Etsy Made Local Market
Saturday 3rd Dec at The Brighton Dome, 11am -5pm.
From November 26th - December 11th, local artists and makers open their doors to provide an alternative Christmas shopping experience. Take a break from the high street and visit their homes and studios, eat a mince pie, chat to the artists and pick up a unique gift for someone special. 

3. Brighton's Alt Open House
Pick up a map and follow the trail for an exciting shopping and exhibition experience. Open for four weekends including Dec 3rd/4th, 10th/11th and 17th/18th, the trail exhibits local artists work as well as events and workshops.
4. Head to the North Laines!
The North Laines are full of small business's, check out our list of favourite Brighton independents for inspiration.

Get involved and show your support for #SmallBizSatUK 
Looking for a unique Christmas gift? Shop our full range of products here