The Modern Makers Collective couldn’t have chosen a more seasonally appropriate venue to exhibit their annual winter market of British arts and crafts. The picture-perfect West Berkshire village of Yattendon – where forest green estate cottage doors serve as a colourful reminder to the acres of Christmas tree farming that lie on its doorstep – is the scene setter for this year’s winter market (19 and 20 November 2022, Village Hall, Yattendon, Berkshire, RG18 0UE, 10 to 4 pm). Yattendon village hall sits amongst centuries of architectural heritage that ooze period drama. Perhaps the only missing ingredient is a film crew from the new Shinfield Film Studios in Reading to cue… snow…
The Modern Makers Collective is a select artist-led group of around 20 artists and makers. After several years showing at each other’s studios, they decided to come together in a bigger setting to show the excellence of local creativity. With 70% of the members local to Yattendon and others from nearby counties, the organisers are sisters Aimee Alice Payton (upholsterer and lampshade maker) and Lorna McCurdy (bookbinder). Their mother Anne Payton (painting and print artist) is another member of the group.
I am looking forward to seeing this year’s mix of ceramics, textiles, glass making, woodwork, lighting, weaving and jewellery. So many makers and items caught my eye last year. One in particular being a theatre model design in watercolour with polo at Englefield Hall as a backdrop by Anne Payton.
Anne says, “The piece was inspired by a two-year project where I studied the wonderful trainers and riders and horses that every year come to Englefield from Argentina. It was such a pleasure to see the tender riding skills and gentle treatment of the horses.” Although Anne isn’t able to show this year, I am glad to hear that she has kept her theatrical treasure.
And what makes this kind of Christmas shopping additionally enjoyable is that you can squeeze in a ramble via the Public Footpath sign between the hall and the 15th Century Church of St Peter and St Paul (glorious stained-glass windows) to the fields beyond. And when you have finished your shopping and yomping, no visit to Yattendon is complete without a trip to The Pantry café and its beautifully planted tea garden or to The Royal Oak gastro pub.
Achillea in the beautiful planting of The Pantry café garden opposite Yattendon Village Hall. Photo: Charis White
Ceramics by Andrew Hazelden Potter who learned the technique of tin glaze earthenware and reduction fired lustre at the Aldermaston Pottery in Berkshire which he joined in 1984. Photo from 2021: Charis White
Beautifully vibrant 19th Century stained-glass windows of the 15th Century St Peters and St Paul church, Yattendon. Photo: Charis White
‘Shiplake’ hand block printed design on linen fabric by Albert Harvey.
Vintage handpainted lamps, furniture and art by Freya Barton Studio. Photo from 2021, Charis White
The Pantry café tea garden in springtime. Photo: Charis White
The Pantry café window, Yattendon. Photo: Charis White
Yattendon Village Stores. Photo: Charis White
Loved these foraging baskets with cross body strap by heritage craft maker Louise Arthur of Rough Around the Hedges. Photo from 2021, Charis White
Don’t forget to take the footpath marked between Yattendon village hall and the church for a ramble into the fields. Photo: Charis White
Elegant detachable bike basket design with wooden handle by heritage craft maker, Louise Arthur of Rough Around the Hedges. Photo from 2021, Charis White
Embroidery art by Yvette Phillips.
McCurdy and Co (co-sponsors of the Winter Market) are specialists in the repair and conservation of historic, timber-framed buildings and were also closely involved in the authentic reconstruction in 1997 of Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre in London.
There is going to be a raffle at the winter market to win a selection of handmade prices including these joyful Pajaki in aid of the mental health charity Charlie Waller UK and Yattendon village.
Theatre model by artist Anne Payton of Polo at Englefield Hall. Photo from 2021, Charis White
The gardens to the private residence of Englefield Hall are open (£5, with children going free) every Monday with the exception of Monday 26th December 2022. Photo in Spring 2022: Charis White
Parking is limited in Yattendon village but you can park at The Renegade Brewery (RG18 0XT) – previously West Berkshire Brewery, which is a 5 to 10-minute walk away to Yattendon village hall.
Thank you so much for reading! If you have enjoyed this and would like to receive email alerts for future posts then please press the large blue ‘subscribe’ button either at the beginning or end of a post. Also, don’t miss out on the wonderful December 2022 issue of Period Living magazine out now on the newsstands. It includes a 6-page feature I have written/picture researched on decorating with the colour red.
With best wishes,
Charis White, interior stylist/writer.
Photo by Fiona McLean Photography.