Winter 2023

December 2023

The seemingly intractable conflicts that repeatedly bring tragedy and trauma to the lives of the innocent seem to be so very present as we approach the end of the year. We are flooded with images of human suffering, yet are also blithely expected to enter into the festive spirit.

But surely this time of year can also be one of reflection, when we gather ourselves up ready to face whatever the new year may bring with at least some hope that things can improve, that human beings can be kind, loving and capable of good will.

The theme of the quiet and contemplative resonates in the work of Rosie Farey, a basket maker living and working in North Wales. The meditative rhythm of weaving is the essence of her practice. Rosie works predominantly on a small scale using natural materials such as Bulrush and Common Juncus to create fine, decorative and functional items. She uses simple traditional weaving techniques adapted to suit her style and scale of working.

These decorations are made from hand-worked split willow which is soaked, then wrapped to mellow overnight. The rods are split with a knife, the centre shaved off and each one then cut to size, laid out and tied.

Charcoal candleholder

Continuing our theme, the collection of candle holders from Pottery West this year is in a range of new, textured glazes from Charcoal to Sand. They are available in two widths, just right for our hand-dipped British beeswax candles. To be lit at times of celebration, as well as reflection and remembrance.

These blankets, made in Pembrokeshire by Melin Tregwynt employ designs that are contemporary versions of traditional Welsh blanket patterns and are made in a mill that has been in the same family for over a hundred years This new ‘Forest’ design double weave Welsh blanket is made from 100% pure new wool and edged with a simple hem, making it fully reversible.

Eifion and Amanda, the current family owners decided in summer 2022 to mark the 110th anniversary of the family purchasing the mill by turning it into an employee-owned trust, with benefits shared equally between each of the 42 employees.

If you’re passing, do pop in to Frank to see more of the work of the creative and ethical individuals and communities we showcase.

Thanks to Andrew Hayes-Watkins for the photographs.