On Saturday (incidentally, Small Business Saturday!) I popped round the corner to check my friend Beth’s new venture, The Bzzaar Christmas Maker’s Market – a treasure trove of carefully curated makers, artists and designers. The wares on sale include, amongst other things, handmade ceramics, screen prints, original artwork, graphics, zines, textiles, jewellery and floral wreaths… there were 54 different sellers at the last count!
Check out mine and Beth’s top Christmas gift ideas from the selection of local independents and keep reading for an interview with Beth about how Bzzaar came about…
My top 5 Christmas gift ideas
(Santa are you reading?)
01 Marbleous Roo earrings : I treated myself to some of these when I popped in, they are so beautiful Handmade and marbled in the most gorgeous colours.
02 Absolute Bristol Legends tea towel : A charitable collab between Turbo Island and Crack Magazine, it’s like one of those tea towels you get in primary school made up of dodgy self portraits of you and your classmates… but this time illustrated beautifully and strictly featuring Absolute Bristol Legends such as Big Jeff & DJ Derek. All the proceeds go towards helping the homeless so buy one here now!
03 Anna Higgie print : Bristol babe Anna has got a selection of prints of her lovely illustrations to buy (p.s check out her brand new mural on the side of the Love Inn next time you pass!).
04 Lizzy Stone originals : Lizzy’s gorgeous original abstract enamel paint artwork are beautiful and such a steal for an original piece. I bought one recently and my friend Lucie ended up using Lizzy to illustrate the artwork for her latest single!
05 Jasmine Hortop prints : Of course shout out my studio buddy and designer of my logo – Jaz has just dropped a selection of gorgeous prints of her illustrations down! My favourite are her Bristol at night prints.
Beth’s top 5 Christmas Gift ideas
01 John Molesworth : His range of ceramics are absolutely amazing and his illustrative style prints are so bright and bring such joy!
02 Rose Nisbet : Her ceramic plates are such good gifts and the choice of designs and colours are super stylish.
03 Kokomo Design laser cutting : Who doesn’t love a good cake topper? Whether it says ‘Blow Me’ or ‘Santa Baby’ there’s definitely one to suit everybody. You can also catch her classic ‘Good Morning Bristol/Bitches’ art work in here, Kokomo’s designs always bring a smile to my face.
04 Dylan Ceramics : Handmade ceramic jewellery in bright colour pop designs, 10000% my vibe.
05 Ed Eldridge prints : I absolutely love Ed’s illustrative prints, the rough lines and bright colours are so beautiful work so well together. I’ve just bought one of my own!
Beth Izzard – the brains behind Bzzaar
You might remember Beth from when I helped her put on the festijumble back in May – since then she hasn’t stopped jumbling! I asked her a few questions about what it took to put on her most ambitious market yet…
Why did you start Bzzaar?
It started out as just jumble sales, I was moaning at the pub, about a year ago actually, that I missed doing car boots and wished there were more bargain hunting kinda things in Bristol. My friend suggested why didn’t I just do my own, we then squished my name together with the word Bazaar and Bzzaar was born! I then realised that I wanted to do more than just jumble sales and create environments for all the lovely Bristol folk to share their passions, so developed into my vinyl market and fashion collaborations, and now the all December long Makers Market.
What have been the biggest challenges putting on an event of this scale?
So this event was only supposed to be on for a weekend in the centre of town, but our venue unexpectedly fell through meaning we had to find somewhere new, with such a large number of creatives involved it was definitely a huge challenge. Luckily I got in touch with an old acquaintance who currently has 47 Picton Street, he works with charity Aid Box (a refugee charity) and agreed for me to use the space in collaboration with them selling their “refutrees” where all proceeds of the sales go towards helping refugees in need. So if you need a tree get in touch with them, they even deliver!
It’s so beautifully curated in here… how did you go about getting the makers involved?
I had a very strong idea of exactly the kind of vibe I wanted so sourced a majority of the makers myself. I wanted to find people that had a bit of an alternative style or were new to the scene and give them a chance to exhibit with likeminded creatives. Everyone’s work is very different but it all bounces off each other really well, I feel very proud of all of them!
I contacted them directly basically saying I absolutely loved their work and would love to get them on board!
Which other independent Bristol businesses would you recommend for Christmas shopping?
Idle Hands for all the vinyl fiends, Blaze for local creatives, Wild Leaf or Emmeline for plants, Lily Violet May Florist at Temple Meads station for anything floral, That Thing and The Fashion Front Bzzaar (this weekend) for local designers, shameless plug of my own event…