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National Festival of Making

The National Festival of Making 'A new kind of festival for a new age of making’ took place in the town that the decline in British manufacturing forgot. The first ever National Festival of Making was deliberately set in the producing heartland of Blackburn, Lancashire, where 25% of the population still works in making and manufacturing.

The Festival of Making is a national event attracting makers and manufacturers from across the country to show visitors and audiences their skills and talents by providing workshops, demonstrations, commissions and exhibitions as well as food, music and entertainment across the town centre. This family friendly event inspires, creates and excites future generations of makers and demonstrates the real Northern Powerhouse.

A key event within the Festival of Making was a weekend Makers Market situated in Blackburn’s King George’s Hall. The Makers Market was a collaboration between Festival producers, Deco Publique and guest curators, Hopeful and Glorious to celebrate and spotlight art, craft and design from across the region.

 Hopeful and Glorious curated a showcase of over 35 artists, makers and designers who have been selected for the quality and originality of their work.The Makers Market provided a platform for creatives to exhibit and sell with the potential to offer workshops and have-a-go activities. An opportunity for makers to share and shout about their creativity and industry.

Over the weekend, the Makers Market was produced and managed by Deco Publique, transforming King Georges Hall into a vibrant and engaging weekend celebration of brilliant art, craft and design. Leading up to and across the Festival of Making, makers taking part could explore the many elements that go into being a maker today. The Crafts Council will be leading a series of professional practice support seminars available to all artists, makers & designers taking part.

At the Makers Market, the Crafts Council also supported a number of awards including Best Product and Best Stall Design which was an opportunity for makers to benefit from increased profile and national recognition. Each stand at the Festival of Making provided space for exhibiting, selling and the potential to demonstrate or offer paid for activities.

Watch the festival of Making on BBC Breakfast here, here, here and here!

BBC Festival of Making Red of Dead Reunion


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