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Homes: Locally made ceramics and candles to love




This month, we're meeting local makers. Here are the home accessories you'll want to buy now. . .

Light Touch

Crowned the south of England’s Candlemaker of the Year last month, Jo Kendrick is the founder of Lavenham’s The White Candle Co. She produces two top-selling ranges from her home studio: Traditional, made from a blend of soy and coming in 30 classic fragrances, all chosen for their ability to conjure “familiarity and comfort”; and Pure, a 100% natural mix of soy and beeswax featuring “exciting blends of essential oils to suit every mood”. All her candles are free from phthalates, parabens, dyes and synthetic additives.

Jo also runs rave-reviewed workshops, teaching people how to make candles and even start their own home businesses, something which impressed Corporate LiveWire Prestige Awards judges when giving her the Candlemaker of the Year title.

Having to evolve the business in the wake of Covid-19 - previously, she sold largely at markets face to face - Jo has just launched a new webshop. Among the best-sellers is the new ‘1 Box, 3 Candles’ package.

“Operating in a similar way to Interflora, the idea is that the purchaser can choose three tin candles from the huge selection, include a personalised note, and ask for it to be sent direct to the chosen recipient for a certain date – all beautifully packaged of course,” explains Jo.

“These have proved popular during lockdown, where people have wanted to send thoughtful gifts to family and friends, just to let them know they’re thinking of them.”

To find out more and order go to thewhitecandlecompany.co.uk

Stormy Weather

Rainy days have never looked so good. Cambridge ceramicist Natalia Nowak is fast becoming known for her cute-meets-Scandi-cool weather-inspired wall hangings, from garlands of stormy blue and grey clouds to raindrop and lightning strike pendants. Handmade from stoneware clay and glazed and fired at Kiln Cambridge, the city’s communal pottery space, prices vary from £35 for a three-shape hanging to £55 for a five-shape; the cloud garland is £45.

See and shop on Instagram @natalianowakceramics

Monkey Business

On a mission to create homewares which are, to paraphrase father of Arts & Crafts William Morris, as beautiful as they are useful, Upwell couple Louise and Simon Taggart are best known to shoppers on Ely’s Saturday market as the creatives behind Blended Monkey. Louise a ceramicist and Simon a woodturner, they often combine skills - producing the blended products which inspired the company’s name, such as a ceramic pot with a wooden lid or a bowl with a carved base.

As well as showing and selling their wares, which also include a range of silk scarves, on their weekly market stall, the Taggarts host workshops at their Upwell studio: choose from ceramics with Louise, woodturning with Simon or a mix of the two. All sessions include lunch and bookings are now being taken for August onwards with gift vouchers also available; in these uncertain times, both are valid for a full year.

For details of courses and to shop online with free delivery visit blendedmonkey.co.uk

READ MORE: Real Life: How creating a garden helped Cambridge author Beth Lynch feel at home



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