Cockpit’s alumni community numbers nearly 600 makers and we could not be prouder of making an impact on so many creative businesses. Having a place at our studios, then and now, makes us a strong family and when there’s opportunities, we love to have our alumni back with us.
This year’s Winter Open Studios – Cockpit Makers’ Market – has 6 talented makers returning for our event. Weavers Beatrice Larkin and Laura Woodhouse, textile designer Clarissa Hulse, jeweller Laura Ngyou and leather worker Charles Laurie will be exhibiting in Holborn from 26 – 28 November, while resident alumna, weaver Eleanor Pritchard, will be opening her studio doors in Deptford from 3 – 5 December.
In the first of two articles, we asked Beatrice Larkin, Charles Laurie and Laura Ngyou what Cockpit means to them.
“Cockpit was crucial to starting up my business. I was part of the Clothworkers award which meant I could access looms that I might not have been able to otherwise. Most of all, it gave me an understanding of the business of craft. It was also a brilliant community and network to be part of.”
“Without Cockpit, I wouldn’t be in the place I am today. It was a huge help having the business support but also having the bursary from the Leathersellers for 3 years in a row. It enabled me to launch my first collection, build the website and get the business going. It allowed me to grow into a business that was able to employ my first member of staff. Having regular one-to-one sessions helped push my business forward.”
“Cockpit has benefited me and my business in so many ways, giving me the tools to help me craft it into the sustainable and unique practice it is today. With the one-to-one mentoring and workshops I was able to receive focused support on areas in everything from ways in which to present my business and communicating with galleries to pricing and SEO. With the wealth of this knowledge and support at my fingertips I was given confidence and my eyes were opened to what my business could be in the future and how to help carve out a niche for my practice in the present day. Leaving Cockpit Arts was truly one of the hardest decisions I have had to make, and I realise what a privilege it was to be a part of such a vibrant, talented and supportive community.”
And what can we expect to see from these three talented makers at Cockpit Makers’ Market in Holborn?
“I design from my studio and work with a mill in Lancashire to weave jacquard fabrics” Beatrice Larkin tells us; “I’ll have my core monochrome range of throws and cushions, but also new accessories such as scarves, hot water bottles and wash bags.”
High end leather gifts are the norm from Charles Laurie: “I’ll bring a new collection made from Nubuck including an overnight bag, briefcase, tote bag, laptop slip” he says, “and some of my wallets and gifts such as personalised ice buckets and wine coolers.”
“I’ll be offering pieces from my most recent collection, ‘Wunderkammer’” jeweller Laura Ngyou tell us. “Similar to Victorian Curiosity cabinets, the vessel-like forms behave like imagined landscapes – home to my own curated collections of fantasy specimens which are crafted from silver, gold and unusual or rare gemstones.” Such riches!
Meet Beatrice, Charles, Laura and all Cockpit’s makers in Holborn from 26 – 28 November and in Deptford, 3 – 5 December.
All tickets and visiting information here.