Made in Britain Blossoming: Local Crafts and Afternoon Tea at the V&A

Written by Katherine Pickles and edited by Alison Jane Reid. 

Walking through the magnificent gallery of sculptures in London’s most exquisitely decorative museum on Tuesday afternoon, the V&A welcomed a fantastic opportunity for local crafts enthusiasts, press and influential bloggers to experience the ethical yet charming art of paper cutting. Kirstie Allsopp, location queen, organised a luxury workshop for around fifty female craft fanatics to gain inspiring ideas from artist Poppy Chancellor and participate in a hands-on paper cutting activity. The end result: A room immersed in colourful rows of handmade bunting, the perfect setting for a summer tea party or street fair.


Beautiful colourful bunting: the result of creative crafting

Beautiful colourful bunting: the result of creative crafting


A passionate advocate of reusing and recycling, Kirstie Allsopp is the perfect ambassador for promoting beautiful handmade crafts to an ever-growing ethical Britain. After a captivating explanation from Poppy Chancellor, the paper cutting princess whose meticulous, whimsical figures are full of movement, a spellbinding silence fell over a room of attentive women when presented with a therapeutic, yet charmingly authentic craft exercise. The event involved using a craft scalpel to cut around some of Poppy’s intricate designs on colourful paper in order to create an original piece of bunting. With everyone cutting different designs, the finished product was truly striking and the act itself a model of simplicity!


Creative cutting: One of Poppy's beautiful designs to cut round.

Creative cutting: One of Poppy’s beautiful designs to cut round.


The V&A museum in South Kensington was completely stunning and was paired with beautiful bunting and delightfully decorated Hummingbird cupcakes, from luxurious red velvets to mini vanilla delights. An afternoon of creative crafting and delicate afternoon tea is a perfect personification of Made in Britain. Together we embraced colour and creativity whilst also promoting sustainability and authenticity.

The Handmade Fair was the star of the day, a new and exciting event for the craft calendar that takes place this September in the majestic Hampton Court Palace. Here, Kirstie creates a platform for new and unique talent: from Pompom panache with Juliet Carr to lampshade upcycling with ‘Out of the Dark’, and recreates that hypnotic feeling one finds from ‘taking something from the earth such as paper and remoulding it into something beautiful and contemporary.’ On the subject of sustainability, Kirstie is a huge supporter of upcycling and sees a growing power behind vintage, although she does believe that ethical upcycling needs to be rebranded into a luxury concept. She declares ‘we just haven’t found the right word yet.’ Let’s transform upcycling into Ethical Hedonist’s ingenious creation of ‘luxecycling’ and use our creative abilities to revolutionise pre-loved into loved now.


Katherine Pickles with the fabulous Kirstie Allsopp, host of The Handmade Fair

Katherine Pickles with the fabulous Kirstie Allsopp, host of The Handmade Fair

The Handmade Fair is a chance to recreate that joyful ‘bringing home from school’ experience that adults rarely experience. Such a creative and exquisite handmade concept really is the essence of Ethical Hedonist.

Buy your tickets for The Handmade Fair now at:

Follow Poppy’s exquisite cuts here: