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Edinburgh Retrospective and a look at the West End Craft Fair

As the Edinburgh Festival draws to a close, the performers pack up and the theatres go back to running one show a day (not ten) it almost feels like I wasn’t there at all. The whole world of theatre is such an illusion that you do sometimes wonder if the festival is some kind of mirage or mass hallucination. No doubt the organisers are already starting to think about 2011 and how to make it better and brighter than 2010.

Entrance to the West End Fair and St Johns Church

Another highlight of the Fringe is something else that isn’t technically theatre – but that I love nonetheless. It’s the West End Craft Fair that hugs the side of St Johns church on the western end of Princes Street and sprawls through the old Victorian graveyard. It seems to go from strength to strength each year with new sections being added forming a tempting maze of tents to venture through. Hung with colourful bunting it’s the perfect place to stroll on a sunny day:

Shopping at the West End Craft Fair

And (of course) it’s a brilliant spot to find some new makers:

Dazed by Dorothy

It’s always dangerous to take me near a  bag stall and these beauties were simply stunning. All individually handmade with gorgeous combinations of leather, suede, buttons and embroidery Dazed by Dorothy had a beautiful stand and, fortunately, has an equally lovely website.

Ring and Necklace from Genna Design

Also on show was Genna Delaney with her Geometric Colllections which are totally stunning and exhibit a lovely balance between metal and stone. The range gives you a tangible sense of that kind of harsh, organic landscape you find in Northern Scotland and Wales and makes me long for misty mornings in Cardigan Bay.

Copper and Silver Leaf Earrings from Ali Bali

After having a good look ’round I brought home a pair of these lovelies, made by Ali Bali Jewellery – just to prove that the whole thing did happen after all.

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