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Butterick and their contemporaries quickly realised there was a good market for a different style of pattern and not just for clothing; I distinctly remember making a handbag and some sandals. The household textiles DIY market was also thriving, as was DIY generally. People getting new homes after the War wanted the latest looks, but buying them from the shops was well beyond the budget of most. Women's magazines were getting in on the act too promoting DIY and patterns.


The 60s By the 60s, most of us were making enough of our own clothes to appreciate the work that went into it and therefore the value of buying off the peg. This meant that people making and selling in the new 'boutiques' found an appreciative market.


I was working at Hardy Amies in Savile Row in the late 60s and the contrast between the high quality, but slightly dated, clothes we were


90 | ukhandmade | Summer 2012


making and the 'churned out' high fashion available around the corner in Soho was marked! Regent Street was catching up, but still far behind the ball fashion-wise. I recall one skirt belonging to Princess Anne bouncing between us and the Palace to have the hem raised and lowered repeatedly, until one day the Cutter took his shears in hand and chopped it off! A courageous decision!


The Conrans were importing lots of foreign produced goods to Habitat, opening our eyes to the ideas of handmade and distinctive practical wares and people were starting to buy craft/handmade goods on their new holidays abroad.


The exposure to all these different influences brought about a radical shift in the way people looked at what they used and wore and a much greater desire to be different from both their parents' generation and their neighbours.


Handmade became as much a


status symbol as a TV or big fridge, especially if bought abroad.


Soon, business minded people


saw the potential for profit in handmade and lots of companies fed the market. My third partner is a potter and he cut his working teeth throwing mugs at Brigitte Appleby in Kent, in the mid 60s. She would probably be comparable to Emma Bridgewater today, although with a very different style! Laura Ashley began her business at her kitchen table in Mid Wales and was the Cath Kidston of the 60s – selling tea cloths and aprons, then moving into clothing.


The 70s All these businesses grew into factories in the 70s and the whole market became much more dissipated and craft became more of a hobby. The 'Hippy' movement promoted making things yourself and did a good job of reviving many skills that were in danger of being lost because they were regarded


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