Norfolk Makers’ Festival is the new name for the popular Makers’ Month event organised and run by The Forum since 2016. The new look festival celebrates the county’s local crafts people, artists and making heritage. Visitors can find inspiration, like-minded company and plenty of experienced makers, all of them keen to share top tips and techniques. Over 50 different organisations and charities, involving hundreds of individual arts and crafts enthusiasts, will be taking part.
The festival is FREE to enter and the exhibitions, demonstrations and hands-on activities are free of charge, with material and equipment provided. If you’ve ever wanted to learn a new skill this is the time; with opportunities for people of all abilities to learn to sew, embroider, crochet, knit, draw, paint, print, felt, spin, weave and much more.
As well as learning new skills the festival will show some fabulous exhibitions of works by makers in Norfolk. A treat for fans of extreme knitting, is a 14ft long knitted homage to Great Yarmouth’s historic seafront created by Margaret Seaman. Re-creating the resorts 1970s heyday, visitors will be able to recognise well known landmarks including both piers.
Crowd favourites Petal & Purl amazed visitors in 2018 with their life size model of the Queen on her coronation day. They return to the festival this year with an even more magnificent display of knitting – recreating a snapshot of 1950s village life, stitch by stitch.
The Festival also celebrates historical skills and Norfolk’s making heritage with the opportunity to see craftspeople demonstrating blacksmithing, willow weaving, whittling with the opportunity to book a workshop to try these yourself.
Visitors can also take part in local projects using arts & crafts to raise awareness of refugees, domestic abuse, disability, recycling, conservation, loneliness and mental health.
The festival wouldn’t be complete without a visit by the animals that provide the raw materials – alpacas from Burnt Fen and sheep from the Rare Breeds Survival Trust will be returning this year. Learn how the fleece from these wonderful animals is fashioned into a variety of cosy and stylish items.
And for the first time the Festival has linked up with Norfolk Libraries, community organisations and local makers to hold fringe events across the county. Events range from spinning and weaving with alpaca in Horning to puppets & pom pom making in King’s Lynn. Making is well known for its physical and mental wellbeing. So is yoga, and practitioners from Yogaclicks will be holding taster sessions throughout the festival.
Plus don’t miss the opportunity to crochet your very own ‘no fuss’ pet, and master the Japanese art of Amigurumi (knitting or crocheting small, stuffed yarn creatures).
“Organising the festival is an absolute delight as I’m chatting to people who are passionate about what they do and are committed to working with The Forum to inspire people to get creative. Come in and have a go and have a look at the eclectic range of displays and demonstrations. Every day is different so there’s something for everyone!” said Jayne Evans, Events & Partnerships Manager.
Norfolk Makers’ Festival runs from 9th to 24th February 2019. Each day features a different programme of events which can be found at norfolkmakersfestival.co.uk