Southern crafters show their wares
Vendors from far and wide converged on Southland this weekend to show their wares at the Southern Crafters Market at ILT Stadium Southland.
Event organisers estimated about 20,000 people visited the 180 stalls at the market on Saturday and Sunday.
Southern Crafters Market secretary Jan Nicholson said it was ‘‘wall-to-wall’’ people at the stadium on Saturday.
‘‘There’s quite a good spread of people from Christchurch, Dunedin, Central Otago and everything in between.
‘‘We’ve got quite a group of regulars, although we’ve got a lot away with school holidays, with people away with their families.
‘‘So we’ve got a lot of new stalls, and they’re all totally different than what we had before.’’
One of the new stalls this year was Steve and Rachel Williams’ Muscogen Woods.
Based in Fairlie, the couple’s stall proved proved to be a hit with their wooden garden mushroom sculptures, selling about 60 during the weekend.
Steve Williams said he had first come up with the idea 15 years ago, but had only started making them in earnest during the past eight months.
‘‘It’s all done by chainsaw. We use macrocarpa, larch, elm, basically any wood but pine and eucalyptus.’’
Closer to home, another firsttimer was Diane Horton from Gore.
Horton is the owner of From the Scrap Heap, making works of art from junk and everyday items.
‘‘I get most of it from my husband’s scrap heap.
‘‘He’s a mechanic, so he has an abundance of bits and pieces to choose from.’’
Stallholder Kaye Keane said the Invercargill event was important for artisans looking for a place to sell during the winter months.
A regular at the market, Dunedin-based Keane handcrafts dolls for her Rich Little Rag Dolls business.
‘‘A place like this is great because you’ve got an outlet in the winter, and you don’t have to worry about the weather.
‘‘As a craftsperson, you need somewhere to sell your goods.
‘‘We’ve had two good days. It’s full of good people here and the crowd are lovely.’’
Muscogen Woods stall owners Steve and Rachel Williams won second prize for best presented stall at the market during the weekend.