What a great start...
I've enjoyed the beginning of this year, despite some of the challenges that it's brought so far. Our first event on the farm this year has been my highlight so far, but there are many more exciting events to come.
Kev's Spring Fest
We had a ball at Kev's Spring Fest ... despite the fact that Noah came to build a boat on the Saturday! We really did catch the most torrential showers all day. Sunday made up for it though - the blazing sunshine gave the whole event a fantastic festival vibe. To see all pics from the event, visit our gallery.
With the Nags Shed bringing their horsebox bar and the most
incredible vocals from Jess Withers over the weekend, people were laying on the grass and just taking everything in.
We're really pleased for Jess at the number of people that loved listening to her amazing voice - thanks to all of you that donated to her 'hat' - Jess loved the weekend and we're really pleased that you did too!
We're delighted that, despite the weather, 450 of you still visited us and supported our incredible stallholders on the Saturday. In total, over the weekend, we had over 1500 visitors - that beats our Christmas fair so our events are just getting more and more popular - that's fantastic for us because it's all about supporting small businesses and ensuring that our band of artisan makers and independent traders have a great outlet for their wares.
With two more events to come this year, we're now looking at planning the next one in August.
If you've got any feedback for us (good or bad ... we can take it!), please do let us know as we learn from every event we put on.
Also, if you're an artisan maker or independent trader (no mass-produced products or franchises, and no crafters please), in Suffolk, Norfolk or Essex, get in touch with firstname.lastname@example.org and she'll send you information and booking forms.
For more information about our events, visit our dedicated page. Also, follow @kevsfestivals on Instagram and Facebook for the latest news.
I've got lots of other events coming up this year and I'm excitedly making stock as well as special items to take with me around the country:
First up is the Helmingham Hall Plant Fair with Artisan Market the Sunday after next. Reverting back to a single day this year, it does get booked up so, if you do fancy coming along, don't delay in getting your tickets.
Next up is RHS Hampton Court Palace - I had such a great time there last year and met so many amazing people, I can't wait to do this again from 4th-9th July. If you can get there, it's an incredible day out - get your tickets here.
My second RHS flower show is Tatton Park from 20th-24th July. Again, first time last year and it was great to be able to bring my work to another part of the country. Enjoyed it so much, I'm going back again! Tickets available here.
Here's a new one for me: I've been asked to submit work to the Sculpture in the Walled Garden event at Markshall Estate in Essex. I'll be submitting 100 hornets and one of my sculptural canopies. They'll be on display from 23rd July to 4th September.
This year, as you'll have seen if you follow me on social media, I've made three unique garden structures - all designed to be striking pieces in their new homes; all having different purposes. Two of them you may have seen finished, the third has only had the final embellishments added recently:
Boudicca is a magnificent canopy with the underside finished in a gold lacquer - a great garden shade with its own throne also finished with gold balls!
Raedwald is a fluid-shaped structure with a hole to the curved return ready for planting with beautiful, tall flowers or plants.
Fram is a leaf-shaped sculpture finished with a blue lacquer - imagine this in a garden with foliage growing through its organic apertures.
To see these garden sculptures, they'll be travelling round with me to each of the above events. Fram and Boudicca will also be displayed at the art exhibition inside the Suffolk Show
I've redesigned my obelisks and arches this year - they've all got more embellishments - more organic metalwork .
It was about time for an update - they're each available in the shop and can be delivered all over the country (free locally).
Here's a first for me - it's a piece of wall art which will also be used as a coat rack. The sketch is a guide but hopefully I've captured the essence of my original drawing. Drawings are an essential part of any commission that I undertake. I always sketch my idea and have it signed off before I begin to play with metal... If you fancy chatting about something bespoke, you're always welcome to get in touch and chat ideas. I love a good challenge and I really enjoy listening to what you'd like and coming up with a design. Don't forget, it's Fathers' Day in four weeks time and, whether your dad's a gardener or not, we can create practical, or fun: something that helps with the gardening like plant ladders or obelisks, or something purely decorative like orbs, hornets or bulrushes.
I fitted this gate, on the left, in Gillingham, Kent for a lovely lady who has bought from me before. As you can see, it's a very narrow opening - just enough, in fact, to get a wheelie bin through! On the right is a little something that I've got on the bench right now -12 metres of something a little different... more info soon! Guesses always welcome...
The time I almost became a TV star...
Here's a thing - I could've been a TV star - no, really! I had a call several Mondays back: "Hello is that Kev Colbear ?"
"Yes hello I'm Kev, how can I help you?"
"My name is ###### and I'm phoning from Ricochet, a television production company. You may know us for The Repair Shop. We found you on the internet, love your work and would like you to audition for a series we are looking to make."
Well goodness. Me on telly? Several casting videos later and I finally get the email to say I wasn't successful this time but who would have thought? I never really imagined myself on TV but I had come to like the idea!
Here's a sneaky peek into a project I'm working on for Hammersmith and Fulham Council in London. More information to follow soon...
So, I hope to see you out and about somewhere - if you fancy nipping over to the workshops - or should I say... ahem... 'showroom' to see what I've currently got in stock, or to discuss a commission for some bespoke creative metalwork, you'd be most welcome. Just give me a bell before you come over in case I'm out and about. We've got the great Fields Farm Shop and Cafe as neighbours - it's always worth a visit there too.
For now, take care everyone - I look forward to seeing you all somewhere sometime soon