Saturday the 11th of December (2021) we will be at the Hexham Christmas Fair. There will be stalls around the Abbey and we will be at the first floor in the Abbey.
Already for months we see this lovely bird on our natural & recycled slate window feeder. Only recently we discovered it is a very rare Leucistic female Chaffinch (she simply missed the paint booth!). Every morning, after I filled all our window feeders, she comes to enjoy our (robin) bird food. As a ‘non-plastic’ feeder it is designed that you see the full body of the visiting bird, the seed floor is under an angle with an opening in end that water with automatically drained, meaning that your food will be fully eaten (doesn’t become mouldy and no remains attracting vermin). Made from natural slate, you’ll never have to clean the feeder; only twice yearly to check that the water drainage is still working. Easy installed (pushing the bone dry/clean sucker) against the glass and shortly after you can enjoy your feathered friends. Our first one made, roughly 10 years ago, has never come off, despite all weathers & seasons. Today there are close to 5000 other places where this feeder is enjoyed, from Northumberland, the whole of UK, and all other continents from, EU, America, Australia & New Zealand to even Japan.
Our first fair for this year will be: Friday 8, Saturday 9 & Sunday 10th March at the Living North Spring Fair, Newcastle Racecourse Gosforth Park.
Slate & Nature had an excellent Fair at Stonor Park this year. A friendly atmosphere and organized like clockwork, made this event to a memorable one. Yes, a few showers but that didn’t stop the enjoyment of being outdoors; all stall holders and visitors were in a happy mood. Even our neighboring birds were having fun, entertaining young and old; real flying acrobats. Not a static display, but a very engaging trainer, Paul, created a top attraction. After showing their flying techniques, also the audience was ‘involved’. Practicing the ‘under the bridge’ act, meant accurate flying, finding their pray, by diving through the legs of volunteering (not to exclude nice female) visitors. Or lined up in queue, our small friends were ‘combing our hairs’ by ‘just’ flying over our heads. The falcons enjoyed using the S&N marquee as an observatory point and for a short period of time S&N had a tenant to check out one of our special bird houses; the Barn owl box. Being inside, he (or she) seemed to like it; Paul had to call several times before it came out again. If you are looking for a special & entertaining event; these feathery acrobats and their trainer Paul you can book via: http://www.skybirdsofprey.co.uk; highly recommended by S&N!
Another nice attraction was the ‘bronze’ casting workshop of Graeme, Bronzeheart (http://www.bronzeheart.co.uk). With patience and enthusiasm he helped me and each other pupil (of all ages), in making his/her own casting. Experience how our ancistors made castings in a cuttlefish bone, thousands of years ago.
Talking about natural materials, another stand, worth mentioning is Wood’n’things, Paul and Renate, and their beautiful natural wood and felted products (www.woodnthings-uk.com); from very special mirror’s (in Burr) to highly decorative handbags. A lovely couple who we met on our first (very rainy) fair in Penshurst; especially supporting our business in saying ‘don’t question your products, it is the weather that is letting us all down, believe me, we’re doing this already over 20 years!’
It is impossible to mention all other nice stall holders, but, Ingrid’s (Wagner) Big Knit stand we can’t skip. It is impossible to not see her brilliant and bright colours and her lovely and gregarious personality! You can enjoy her work at http://ingridwagner.com.
Finally to close off; have a look at Linden Craven Jewellery, making beautiful and special enamel, pearl & silver jewellery. It was Linden who advised us to also go South of the UK, meeting lots of very nice people. Something we don’t regret! Thanks Linden, see you at the next event (Mary Ann Rogers Christmas Exhibition in West Woodburn – last weekend Nov & 1st in December). Slate & Nature Studio is also OPEN at these weekends; please come and enjoy a secret ‘chocolate treat’ whilst looking at our latest designs.
Thanks to the ICHF organisation; all in all it was a very enjoyable event; we’ll be back next year!
Jeanette & I would like to welcome all our S&N enthusiasts & friends to this very first edition of the Slate & Nature Blog/News page!!!!
In future we would like to inform you all on several issues; from where you can meet us at Fairs to new products (plus product improvements etc.) and all other News.
At the moment it will be in clear, simple text; we hope to make it more flashy over the coming weeks.
Coming Saturday 22nd of September the Slate & Nature Marquee will be present at the ‘Eating Festival’ in the park of Hexham (next to the Abbey).
The festival starts at 9.00 am and closes around 4.00 pm. We hope to see you there.
Jeanette & Gerard.