Saturday, 5 December 2009

All I Want for Xmas at The Up Market

Check out tomorrow's Up Market on Brick Lane at the Truman Brewery for the All I want for Xmas Fair. I'll be selling on 4th, 6th, 18th and 20th December. Come buy all your Christmas Presents!

Wednesday, 2 December 2009

Tatty Devine Store Opening


New Events Dates!

4th December : All I want for Xmas, The Truman Brewery. 12-6pm
5th December : A Little Bazaar, Keston Lodge, Islington. 12-6pm
6th December : All I want for Xmas, The Truman Brewery. 10-6pm
13th December : A Little Bazaar, Keston Lodge, Islington. 12-6pm
18th December : All I want for Xmas, The Truman Brewery. 12-6pm
19th December : A Little Bazaar, Keston Lodge, Islington. 12-6pm
20th December : All I want for Xmas, The Truman Brewery. 10-6pm

Monday, 30 November 2009

Vogue Make Do and Mend

Vogue's More Dash than Cash issue (November 2009) had an amazing 'Make Do and Mend' theme throughout. Understandably I absolutely loved this angle. It explored 'Crafty Couture'. And what better solution to a financial crisis than DIY!

Tuesday, 24 November 2009

Wednesday, 11 November 2009

Monday, 9 November 2009

more crafty selling dates!

All Events are Free!

Sunday 15th November, Shoreditch. The Book Club, 1oo Leonard Street.
Saturday 21st November, Brixton. The Rest is Noise, 442 Brixton Road.
Sunday 29th November, Shoreditch. The Book Club, 1oo Leonard Street.
Saturday 5th December, Islington. Keston Lodge, 131 Upper Street.
Sunday 6th December, Shoreditch. The Book Club, 1oo Leonard Street.
Sunday 13th December, Islington. Keston Lodge, 131 Upper Street.
Saturday 19th December, Islington. Keston Lodge, 131 Upper Street.
Sunday 20th December, Shoreditch. The Book Club, 1oo Leonard Street.

Check out www.alittlebazaar.co.uk for more info.

Tuesday, 3 November 2009

Tokyo 2009 - A Crafter's Paradise

Since travelling to Tokyo this Summer I've been in a state of crafting bliss. I've discovered it's a crafters paradise!

Nippori', Tokyo's textile district is an amazing source of crafty goodies. The whole district has plenty to offer in the way of fabric, however for a complete crafty consumer experience visit Tomato. It’s three shops and a total of 9 floors of crafter’s heaven! Now heaven for this particular crafter means amazing, kitsch, unusual patterned fabric at really low prices, and for this Tomato delivers. I ended up buying so much fabric I had to get it shipped home to avoid baggage excess charges. Other places not to miss in Nippori are the Kumagai button shop and deco den, an amazing source of all things sparkly, selling adhesive gems for your phone, laptop, camera or anything else!

Another of Tokyo’s crafty gems is Okadaya in Shinjuku, a treasure trove for all things creative. I left with a bag of buttons, a decorative bird cage, some ribbons and some eyelashes! Shinjuku being one of the busiest districts of Tokyo hosts a variety of shops to suit a crafter, I found every other shop had something to offer.

Aside from Tokyo’s amazing source of crafty goodies it is a city full of inspiration. It’s a hub of all things fashionable, a trendspotters dream. Perhaps the most obvious evidence of this are the Harajuku princesses that flock to a small bridge (Jingubashi) just outside Harajuku station. Dressed in their Sunday best (yes, the best day to see them is a Sunday), these girls step into the tourist limelight for the day to celebrate all things Cosplay. Cosplay, or costume replay is a form of performance art, where the players are dressed in manga and anime themed attire. For some it’s merely a social gathering with like-minded, amazingly dressed people, for others it’s a performance, and Harajuku is a stage. Metres away from all the Harajuku action is the entrance to the Meiji shrine, built to honour the lives of Emperor Meiji and Empress Shóken in 1921. It’s a beautiful shrine with a lovely walk through a woodland area, the perfect opportunity for some peace and quiet after the Cosplay madness!

I wanted to convey Japan’s simplistic, clean, classic design ethos alongside Tokyo’s eccentric and electric personality, I mirrored this idea in my ‘how to’ guide. The Japanese simplistic cut with an eccentric material finish sums up Tokyo completely. The trip was an amazing experience and I’d recommend it to anyone, I’m just waiting for the day I can go back!

     * dreaming!
     * You can buy the weaving loom necklace im wearing at my Etsy shop!

Tuesday, 27 October 2009

upcoming selling dates!



Saturday 7th November, Brixton. The Rest is Noise, 442 Brixton Road.
Sunday 15th November, Shoreditch. The Book Club, 1oo Leonard Street.
Saturday 21st November, Brixton. The Rest is Noise, 442 Brixton Road.
Sunday 29th November, Shoreditch. The Book Club, 1oo Leonard Street.
Sunday 6th December, Shoreditch. The Book Club, 1oo Leonard Street.
Sunday 13th December, Islington. Keston Lodge, 131 Upper Street.
Sunday 20th December, Shoreditch. The Book Club, 1oo Leonard Street.

Check Out my Etsy Shop online...

Buy Buy Buy!!!


An E-mailed Response to my Reclaiming Craft article for Amelia's Magazine....

------Original Message------
From: MacDonald.Elizabeth
To: Queen Ester Kneen
Subject: Reclaiming Craft Project
Sent: 2 Oct 2009 16:51

Came across your Reclaiming Craft Project via Amelia's Magazine.  I found
it really inspiring.  I have been trying to bring my sewing into new
spaces, mostly business and office space.  I find people's reactions to
be very interesting to craft in these spaces.  There is the puzzlement,
the disgust (you are not being serious enough), and occassional

I am a senior policy analyst for the government and sew as I read,
attend meetings and participate in conferences.  I find it personally
fufilling to have something real at the end of a long meeting.  In part I
began to do this as it also helps with various learning disabilities and
the crafting helps me listen and absorb information better.  But it also
brings colour and creativity to work that is very creative conceptually,
but done in the drab colourless office cubicles of government. 

I loved your dress with the sewing supplies attached.  My children are
always taking my tools to use for their projects and having them
attached would be awsome.  I also enjoyed the "coming out" with the
sewing aspect of it.  I am sometimes challenged by fear of wearing my
sewing - that it will look homesewn and not it a good way, but that
dress puts the hand sewn out in the open.  Thanks for sharing your

Elizabeth MacDonald

Responses to “Reclaiming Craft”

3 Responses to “Reclaiming Craft”

Carrie Maclennan says:
June 25, 2009 at 3:42 pm

Here, here Ester! I enjoyed reading your article and I love the idea of having a crafty suit to keep all my bits and bobs handy should the moment strike me to get making when I’m out and about!

Crafty parties surely are a swell way to spend an afternoon ) For those in Glasgow, if you’re short of time to organise your own – come to ours! It’s called Country Crafting. Look us up. Swing my. Say hi.

The craft uprising was underway before all this nasty recession business, but my oh my, it’s so satisfying to know, that regardless of ecomomic climate, there are more and more fabulous, inspiring alternatives to high street consumption emerging. Seek ‘em out and get making )

Thanks for cheering me up Ester!

Tigz says:
June 25, 2009 at 3:48 pm

This is such a great idea!

CoLeT says:
July 3, 2009 at 4:21 pm

what a lovely pleasure to have seen this amazing project come alive.
If only people crafted more this world could be a better place! Well done!

Reclaiming Craft Article for Amelia's Magazine

Reclaiming Craft

The act of Making

Under, over, under, over… who would have thought a spot of weaving could help me feel better? These past few weeks have been some of the most stressful of my life as a designer living in London. Worries about my degree work, money and job hunting have caused huge amounts of stress and, as I’m sure many would agree, we all need a bit of escape once in while.

Perhaps unusually, I’ve turned to crafting. I’m using a weaving loom brooch I made, to relieve my current feelings of anguish. I’ve always been a crafter and I’ve always turned to creative expression as an antedote to life’s pressures. I chose my graduating year as a design student at Goldsmiths to explore my relationship with craft further. After all, craft’s recent resurgence in popularity can be identified as a reaction to current circumstances. The craft trend highlights the importance of homemaking in people’s lives.

During this time of recession it seems logical to ‘make’ more. If you’re strapped for cash but want a new outfit why not try and make one? For me, the perfect alternative to a days shopping with the girls is a crafty party. Offering situations for discussion, laughter, relaxation and production, the beauty of these parties is no one has to be an expert; everyone can learn off each other and inspire each other.

The parties celebrate our natural instinct to make with our hands, and we gain a sense of achievement from the production of a handmade object. There’s something hugely satisfying in wearing something you made and you’re proud of. Hosting crafty parties led me to the realisation that craft could be powerful. Now I just needed to convince more people!

I designed to encourage the crafter in everyone. I made a series of ‘craft in transit’ garments allowing the wearer to be creative whenever and wherever the mood takes them. The crafty dress holds a variety of tools, and when worn and used forms a space and opportunity for creation. These portable tools for creative expression allow the wearer to make use of times of unproductivity. Using a portable weaving loom whilst the bus you’re sitting on is stuck in traffic is a rewarding experience. Although there might be a few strange looks, the ability to be creative avoids the feelings of frustration usually given when using public transport. Equally, wearing your crafty ring to the pub to meet your mates makes crafting both recreational and fashionably different.

By reclaiming craft we leave behind its traditional past and we celebrate its contemporary relevance. Craft offers a cheap and creative alternative to our over-consumption, and I believe by turning to craft during these stressful times we can celebrate ourselves as creative individuals, as makers, as designers. So why not host a crafty party this weekend, go ahead, make stuff – I’ll soon be doing a how-to guide right here at Amelia’s Magazine if you need some ideas!

Check out my website for more information and to buy my crafty jewellery, www.esterkneen.com.

See the article on the Amelia's Website

Welcome to Reclaiming Craft!


Reclaiming Craft seeks to question the relevance of craft practice in contemporary society. Through exploration of ‘craft practice’ as a form of creative expression, Reclaiming Craft encourages users to explore their creativity.

Overexposure to technological influence has led to a loss of human connectivity. Craft’s interactive nature forms an antidote to technological alienation. Mass-consumerism has led to ‘passive’ users that fail to engage with creative practice. Reclaiming Craft explores the unbalanced relationship between production and consumption through the design of tools to help those who take to make.

By designing tools to enable creativity in times of unproductivity, through the appropriation of ‘crafty spaces’, the user is able to form a recreational relationship with ‘craft’. In enabling craft practice in various situations outside it’s original context, the user is empowered with the means to be creative. The benefits of this expression of creativity are extensive. Investigation into Craft’s associations with ‘homemaking’ and a recent ‘nesting’ trend (as a reaction to political, social and economic ‘unrest’) led to examination into the benefits of creative expression in times of turmoil. Craft’s therapeutic nature offers spaces for security. The project intends to demonstrate craft practice as an immersive and sensorial experience.

Sunday, 18 October 2009

a little bazaar

ill be selling at a little bazaar on sunday 25th October in shoreditch, come check it out!