26 Sept 2017

What you should know about the Gaolhouse Craft fair in Carlow

Dolmen Pottery
     Gaolhouse Craft Fair at Carlow Shopping Centre take place every first Saturday of each month. Centre is located right in the town centre next to the Potato Market where Farmer's Market take place. Each one of us can have a different reasons why we like to visit craft fairs, for example, inspiration, atmosphere, to buy craft, engage with makers, commission a personalized piece, look out for gift ideas and the list could go on.
But probably the following three could be the most common reasons for most of us and that's what exactly Gaolhouse Craft fair has to offer.

Valg Studio

     In my opinion one of the best things about the Gaolhouse Craft Fair is a nice mix of different crafts on display. Usually there are about 20 stands including pottery, home baking, handmade jewellery, hand-woven textiles, pebble art, handmade cards, cosmetics, wood-turning, fairy houses, mosaic art, printmaking and art originals, knitted and crochet accessories and much more. Unique handmade designs and quality.

Sweet Creations

Ilona Jurgena & Nic's Preserves

Fairy Dwellings
Crafting Mammy

     Very important part of any craft fair is atmosphere. I must say the Gaolhouse Craft Fair is one of the loveliest fairs I have taken part and here is why. It's held in a beautiful historical building that once was a Jail House but nowadays is transformed into the shopping centre. It is not a huge multi-store shopping centre but lovely spacious building with glass roof that means plenty of good light (important for me when displaying small items like jewellery), great that none needs to worry if it's raining or windy. There is a nice cafe in the middle of the centre where you can have a lunch or coffee with friends.

     Another important reason in my opinion is that at least once in a month we all get to meet, talk, show our new products, gain feedback, simply have a good time and go home inspired. By 10am all crafters have set up their stands and ready to welcome customers, then at 5pm everyone is getting ready to pack up and looking forward to put their feet up. By coming to a craft fair you are helping local artists and craftspeople.

Thank you to my lovely customer Aileen for allowing me to share this lovely image of her wearing Valg Studio pendant.

Bubble Heaven

Woolly Goods

NicAngels Candles

The Turning Wizard & The Spiral Goddess

The regular stand holders at craft fair include: Dolmen Pottery, Sweet Creations, NicAngels Candles, Bubble Heaven, Ilona Jurgena, Valg Studio, Corina Fitzgibbon Art, Nic's Preserves, Crafting Mammy, Fairy Dwellings, Nicola's Embroidery, The Spiral Goddess, The Turning Wizard, Wooly Goods, Julie's Pebble Pictures and many more.

Corina Fitzgibbon Art

Julie's Pebble Pictures

I hope you found this article about my local craft fair valuable and will visit us at suitable day in near future.

Nicola O'Shea /Nicola's Embroidery/ and Miriam Pearson /Sweet Creations/ have put in huge amount of work establishing this lovely Craft Fair. If you would like to keep updated on the Gaolhouse Craft Fair monthly activities and Christmas dates stay in touch by following Gaolhouse Craft Fair Facebook Page.

Have a beautiful Autumn,
Liga x

Valg Studio calendar for the end of year shows.

31 Aug 2017

Kilkenny Arts Festival 2017

     August is inspiring and very busy time of the year. Over the past four years FORM Designmade in Carlow members have been part of Kilkenny Arts Festival Fringe Programme. This year we had a beautiful space to show our work and welcome everyone interested in craft and design at the Castle Yard gallery space.

Great team effort preparing for the show, planning and setting up display. It all came together really well.
It was wonderful show and we would like to say thank you to everyone for your continued love and support!

11 Jun 2017

Carlow Arts Festival

     Despite the fact that it has been quite wet, cool and windy lately to me Summer begins with Carlow Arts Festival in the town in early June. Arts Festival features a packed program bursting with fantastic events of visual art, music, spectacle, workshops, street food and much more.

There is great description on Ink Stains blog run by Emma Tobin:

''Carlow Arts Festival: the first big cultural event of the Irish Summer, runs from 7 to 13 June 2017.  The festival celebrates its 38th year with a host of events taking place in Festival HQ at Carlow College, St. Patrick’s and VISUAL, as well as at local landmarks. Visitors can immerse themselves in national and international artistic adventures and world festival premieres over the week-long festival, filled with spectacular free performances, live music, visual art and family friendly events.''

     FORM Designmade in Carlow Craft Exhibition is part of the exciting Carlow Arts Fringe Festival program. I'm a member of FORM creative collective since its formation in 2013 and it is our second year exhibiting during the Arts Festival in Carlow Town Library. If you would like to see a range of skilfully crafted new inspiring work by our members including textiles, ceramics, sculpture and jewellery then don't miss this opportunity.
Across the street form FORM exhibition you will find a wonderful exhibition by Carlow Photographic Society. Great solo exhibition by Rennie Buenting at Deighton Hall is also well worth a visit.

Valg Studio display at Carlow Town Library during the Arts Festival in June.

     I hope that you get chance to come and visit Carlow would it be during the Summer or other time of the year. Carlow definitely is a county worth discovering and exploring.
Stone Sculpture by Martin Lyttle

Beautiful hand dyed textiles by Nicola Brown

Emma Jane Champley Jewellery.

Thank you everyone for your continued support.

Take care,

7 May 2017

Art from Factory Floor Waste at Newbridge Silverware

     The Dross Evolution Exhibition at Newbridge Silverware has unique concept. The artwork by Martina Caffrey Shannon and 16 guest artists was created using factory floor waste. There are nearly 60 pieces of work on display and The Silver Restaurant at Newbridge Silverware Visitor Centre is hosting the show until June 3rd.

     Martina have been working on Dross Evolution concept for the past two years but I wasn't fully aware of it when last November I came across her beautiful wearable art pieces. Maybe things happen for a reason and when five month later Martina posted about the opportunity to take part in this project in the creative community group Bite the Biscuit on facebook I didn't think twice. Love exploring new ideas and give myself a new challenge.

     I was away when the parcel with the Newbridge Silverware factory floor waste arrived in the post. I am passionate about jewellery design but once I saw the metal pieces I very quickly visualized a bowl or a tray. I did some simple sketches, decided on colours and started to condition the clay. The most challenging part was to find a way to attach the large curved metal piece to the clay but I figured it out. I'm happy how it turned out but wish I had the time to create more pieces. 

     We had a wonderful time at the launch of The Dross Evolution Tour at the Newbridge Silverware! It felt amazing to be part of this creative group, see the most fascinating ideas turned into works of art and finally meet everyone!

     Thank you Martina for sharing your story and vision, all your hard work towards this amazing project! Please visit Dross Evolution website and contact Martina to learn more about it. Drop by if you are in Newbridge, nothing beats seeing art in person and while you are there you should also visit the Museum of Style Icons. Enjoy your visit!

Thanks for stopping by,
Liga x

2 Jan 2017

January Sale at Valg Studio

Happy New Year everyone! I hope your New Year is off to a good start!

I wanted to take a moment to THANK YOU for all the ongoing support and custom throughout the 2016. It really means alot to me!
I would like to offer 25% OFF coupon code on all purchases until January 5th at valgstudio.etsy.com. Simply use coupon code VALG25 at checkout to get 25% OFF any order! 

On the New Year's Eve I decided I should try to make a dreamcatcher and this is what I came up with. 
Happy New Year everyone! Don't be afraid to Dream Big!

Liga x