Getting Crafty on Green Days

A wide range of locally based crafts people will be exhibiting this weekend

A new Chiswick company that makes craft products and party bags for children will be exhibiting at this weekend's Green Days and Craft Fair as part of the Bedford Park Festival. Anne-France Kennedy and Karine Etienne, who are both French, set up Petit Artisan last year to offer parents, child carers and teachers innovative craft activities based on natural materials. They are based in Bath Road, Chiswick, close to where the Craft Fair is taking place, on Acton Green, opposite Turnham Green tube station.

Anne-France moved to Chiswick five years ago with her husband, Chris, who is the finance director of EMI Records. "Petit Artisan's products are designed to help parents spend quality time with their children" she says. "Children learn best through play and learning is most effective when it is fun."

They offer a range of activity bags and party bags, containing wood, felt and papier mache items to make and paint. One enables children to make a wooden mechanical toy - a dragon or a footballer. Prices range from £3 to £15, and 30p from every bag is donated to a charity called Hope and Homes for Children, which finds foster homes for children who are victims of war and disease.

Petit Artisan can be reached on 07810 893029. They're one of more than a dozen exhibitors at this year's Craft Fair, which forms part of the Green Days fete, this weekend. The event will be opened at 11am on Saturday by John Humphrys of Radio 4’s Today programme.

There’s a wide range of crafts on display and the stalls will be open in the Craft Tent on the Green from 11am-6pm on Saturday 7th and 11.30-5pm on Sunday 8th.

Barbara McDowell of Twinkle produces children's painted furniture and accessories and also undertakes commissions for children's nurseries and bedrooms. (a photo of one of the bedrooms is attached). Cathy Day, who will also be on the Twinkle stand, makes children's cushions and has just won the textiles prize in a competition organised by the Victoria & Albert Museum, called "Inspired by the V&A".

New exhibitors this year include Dianne Lindner & Lauren Carew, of Naturally for You, who make handmade soaps and bath products; Victoria McKenzie of Bella Plata (handmade silver jewellery from Mexico); Katheryne Semlekan, of Wotwu Childrens Clothing; Sasha Dee, who makes handmade textile bags; Liz Riley of Love Unlimited", who creates hand painted ceramics; and Jo Merriman - traditional willow baskets.

Susan Derbyshire will back this year with her Artful Glass stall, demonstrating her stained glass work and taking commissions - as well as showing her glass panels, sculpture and jewellery. Jeremy Cuss - another regular, who lives in Chiswick - will be giving a demonstration of caning and also showing his rush seating and french polishing. And woodturner Sam Cook from Cambridge will also be back, showing his work in sustainable and temperate hardwoods, along with three other Bedford Park Festival regulars - Helen Reid from Haywards Heath, with her display of handmade beeswax candles; Anne-Marie Bruce of Bruce Upholstery; and restorer Roger Lloyd of Furniture Rescue.

The money raised from this year's Bedford Park Festival is going to St Mary's Convent & Nursing Home Appeal.

For more details and a full Festival programme, contact the parish office of St Michael & All Angels Church on 020 8994 1380, or visit the Festival Website

June 3, 2003

The Bedford Park Festival

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Hope and Homes for Children

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Radio 3 man makes Bach to Back performances

Hogwarts in Turnham Green Terrace

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