A few weeks ago I visited Not The Camden Market, at Barton’s in Chilwell. I hadn’t heard about it before then, despite living in Nottingham for almost a year and a half. I was so impressed by the laid back ambiance of the event and the mixture of quirky craft and retro stalls that I decided to break my vow of never taking a stall at a craft fair ever, ever, ever again, after the last time (long story – don’t ask!)
So a few weeks later, I’m climbing out of my bed at six O clock on a Sunday morning with incredible pain in my back, after doing the old age, twisty back, thing on the Saturday, wondering what the day might bring. Thankfully, after the previous day’s frost, Sunday was a lot milder, so it turned out that I didn’t really need the six layers of clothing, fleece, overcoat, two blankets and hot water bottle that I had planned on taking with me.
It took a lot longer than expected to set up my stall. You ought to see those experienced stall holders, putting their displays up like lightening – oh well, I’ll get there eventually – and customers were already arriving before I was completely finished setting up my stall. Mental note; next time label everything before setting off.
Anyway, the market got underway and as the day went on I was surprised at the amount of footfall coming through. There are always food vendors at the market and on this occasion we also got live music from several artistes and groups. (By the end of the afternoon we also had a rather drunk Santa singing Jingle Bells!)
I was happy that I managed to sell a few things and I got many lovely comments on my work from people. Mind you, don’t we always forget the positive things and dwell on the negative – the best two comments of the day (if best is the right word) were;
“Someone’s got a sense of humour.”
It was said with a smile though, and to me, not about me, so I’ll forgive that lady,
and, to just loud enough for me to hear, a woman walked by and said to her partner
“Well, I suppose some would call it art.”
And a very good day to you, too Madam!
All in all though, it was an enjoyable experience and I met some new friends and useful contacts.
The Sunday market is closed now during January and February, but when it starts up again I am definitely going to become a regular presence there. It’s quite different from the usual ‘craft fair’ type of thing, in that there’s more of an eclectic mix of stalls, from antiquarian books, to plants, as well as plenty of artists and craftspeople. You can also buy discount theatre tickets!
For anyone who has not heard of Barton’s, they are at Barton House, 61 High Road, Chilwell and not only do they host these Sunday markets, but loads of other fun, creative events, such as NOT The Nottingham Beer Festival, NOT The Cannes Film Festival and NOT The Montreux Jazz Festival.