There is still something for me about a Saturday night….I struggle to stay in (not a Saturday night TV fan) and yet, the call of Saturday nightclubs are long gone! But I still crave to get out and about on a Saturday night! I love going to different things on a Saturday night that still have an evening vibe and a bit different. This Saturday night I’m hitting up Thought Foundation in Birtley Gateshead for The Thoughtful Night Market Winter 18 edition!
If you’ve been along before – you’ll know how magical and lush this event is (this one’s even bigger and better!) – but if you haven’t, then it’s a must for this Saturday evening! Go along, go as a troop and I’ll be lurking there.
I thought I’d take some time out from what has been an insane week of Culture Vulture work so far to catch up with my faves The Crafthood who present this event with Thought Foundation!
Well hello lovelies…right so tell my fellow Culture Vultures who you are and what you do?
We are The Crafthood; a North East based modern craft company. We are a female duo; Kay & Sharon and we deliver contemporary craft workshops and events as well as designing and producing a range of products.
(Visit their website to see all their lushness in all it’s glory and their Instagram game is pretty good too! http://www.thecrafthood.co.uk)
Now onto what we are here to hear about….tell everyone about the Thoughtful Night Market!
The Thoughtful Night Market is a collaborative project with the wonderful Thought Foundation. First held in November 2017, we set out to create a ‘market’ that was experiential and engaging with a focus on the provenance, ethics and ethos of the businesses that were selling.
We wanted attendees to come along and have a great night out… for it to be a pleasure away from the hustle of the high street with a great atmosphere; music, great food and a programme of workshops on offer. We also wanted to support and showcase amazing local small creative businesses – at an event they enjoy and are also happy to be part of. We really wanted to champion the #shopindie movement and encourage guests to see the lovely range of unique goodies and talent that is out there. This is the third event and each time round we learn and build something new into it.
So tomorrow evening; what can people expect when they visit the Thoughtful Night Market?
There are 2 goody bag drops – for the first 25 through the door at both 5pm or 7:30pm so if you are lucky you may receive one of these bags of treasure made up of a selection of goodies from our stall holders.
Once through the door they can beat the winter chill with some amazing food and drink from the super tasty brain food kitchen at Thought Foundation. There are a selection of creative workshops going on through the night from festive watercolour to chunky knitting to terrarium baubles (more on that later). There will be live music throughout the evening from a singer that Leanne (Thought Foundation) found, the artist was busking on Northumberland Street at the time!
However, the main feature is of course, the beautiful stalls made up of 25 of the regions’ finest makers and creators alongside the Thought Foundation Shop, which is in constant residence. This is a chance to chat with and meet the makers and find out the story behind the items you choose. If you are a selfie fan then make sure you find the balloon backdrop from our event stylist Imaginarium Balloons – it’s the stuff of Instagram dreams. We hope you feel it is cosy and thoughtfully put together. Entry into the Thoughtful Night Market is £3.50 which includes a donation to our chosen charity Help Refugees – a double whammy of the feel-good factor.
You’ve mentioned workshops….what is available to take part in across the evening?
We have three workshops running across the night. Firstly, Festive Watercolour Gift tags with Katie Burns from Katie Burns Design House. Katie will guide you through some simple contemporary watercolour mark making to create some unique festive gift tags.
Next up, we have Woolly Nana leading a chunky knit hand-woven scarf workshop. In this workshop you will be provided with everything you need to start your very own chunky hand-woven scarf so no need for needles at all – revelation! Expert tuition will be provided by Woolly Nana and you will leave with your own cosy winter scarf and the skills to make more.
Finally, we have a workshop that is now sold out – Terrarium Bauble making – a little birdie tells us that this proved so popular Hoe’s & Ditches are running another at Thought Foundation on December 2nd.
All of these workshops are available to book onto in advance via Event Brite (all include cost of entry into the event).
I’m passionate about purchasing all my Christmas gifts from independents this year…. So tell me more about the traders?
We have over 25 very varied traders with us on the night and have recently written a blog which details them all (along with a few of our other favourite North East indies) and have really tried to cover all bases so you’ll get something for everyone.
(Culture Vultures you can read the blog post here! )
What about the live music? Can’t have a Saturday night without some music….
Along with the chance to participate in a creative workshop, we have live music from Megan Davidson. You can check her out before the event on spotify – we cannot wait to hear her on the night and Megan may even provide a little entertainment outside to people waiting to get in! It’s the third market of its kind and have found that people come along and help contribute to the atmosphere and banter so whether you come with friends, partners or family; it’s a great chance to get Christmas ready in a chilled out way.
How did this collaboration with Thought Foundation come about?
We connected with Thought Foundation as soon as we heard about them. They appealed to us so much because of the ethos behind their brand; Thoughtfulness, Kindness and Creativity – so much positivity!! In the very first meeting we had with Leanne (Thought Foundation co-founder) we discussed having a market in their space and around six months later the first Thoughtful Night Market was actually happening! We were so worried that nobody would turn up but had almost 300 people through the door and a queue to get in!!
Thought Foundation are a dream team to work with and having similar values means that the event has a strong identity that we are continuing to build. We love working with them! They are so pro-active and have so many ideas, that they are both a joy and inspiration to be around.
Leanne and Gareth – Team Thought Foundation!
This is a silly question – because Thought Foundation is just a lush unique space – but I’m going to ask it anyway! Why did you pick Thought Foundation as a venue?
For anyone who hasn’t been to Thought Foundation then we always urge people to check it out. It is in Birtley, Gateshead and we LOVE the fact that a creative arts space and is thriving in this area. The space is an ideal market venue as all traders are in the same area allowing for a unique atmosphere. Thought Foundation already has a beautiful and eclectic shop (which is like having another beautiful stall in the place). It is easy to get to being on a major bus route from both Durham and Newcastle and there is parking around the venue. Thought Foundation epitomises everything the market stands for and is a unique blend of creativity, energy, warmth and thoughtfulness so it’s how could we not?!
You’ve piqued my interest when you mention goody bags…. Tell us more!
The goody bags are EPIC. We ask every trader to provide a small number of items that are then distributed across the bags. Traders are unbelievably generous and so the goody bags are not just full of flyers/business cards but host a range of beautiful bespoke goodies. We have already made up the goody bags this year and yet again have been blown away by what we have been able to put in them! Think gin, jewellery, greetings cards, baubles – we are not surprised that people queue round the block to get their hands on them. Each bag is hand lettered by us too.
You had me a gin….Now this is a good question and something we all collectively champion….Why is it important to buy from independents at Christmas/In general?
Shopping from local independents feels good; not only will the individual maker be truly grateful that you have chosen them (and do a happy dance with each sale!!), you are also supporting the local economy and creative sector. When you buy independent, like at the Thoughtful Night Market, you will get the unique opportunity of being able to chat to the maker and ask questions that they can easily and happily answer. They will often go the extra mile; for example by offering a beautifully packaged purchased or arranging to make something to your requirements. In buying independent, you are investing in the maker and contributing to developing a local talent helping to secure vibrant and diverse gift options. You are also securing a unique item that cannot be purchased widely on the high street – perfect for anyone wanting the wow factor.
We are passionate supporters of the movement towards ‘consciously consuming’ – shopping thoughtfully, investing in great quality items that are well crafted using quality resources by makers who know their supply chain. We have consistently found that small creative businesses often have ethical making and creating at their core.
Shopping indie is just all round more colourful and joyful than the alternative! Please do support what independents you can even if it is #just a card.
Couldn’t agree with you more ladies! Right….Culture Vultures The Thoughtful Nightmare is just a lush and different way to spend a Saturday night. I’m itching to see what’s on offer and will be doing some live social media during the event as The Culture Vulture. I will share my haul of goodies purchased from all the lush stall holders too…..
And of course – look up The Crafthood for all their lush work! http://www.thecrafthood.co.uk