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The national celebration of independent retailers is the perfect time to discover MerseyMade, one of the city’s finest hidden gems, which combines a charming shop that is brimming with artworks and creations from over 100 local businesses with a delightful café, eight artists’ studios and events space.
Visitors are being invited to explore a treasure trove of delights at the creative destination, ranging from original paintings, prints and jewellery to homeware, organic skincare, craft gins, gifts and cards. Guests can also soak up the atmosphere over a laid-back lunch or a slice of homemade cake, whilst artists and makers work on bespoke pieces in the open studios.
To coincide with the national Independents’ Day campaign, MerseyMade is also launching a new summer residency programme, which will give emerging local artists and creators an opportunity to access free studio space at the vibrant venue during July and August.
Arts graduates and creative start-ups in the Liverpool City Region are being invited to apply for the summer residency initiative, which will give six local creators a chance to work alongside established local names in the artists’ studios at MerseyMade, each for a week-long pop-up.
Among the artists currently based at MerseyMade are mixed media illustrator, Jenny Dunlop; abstract artist, Jessica Slack; graphic designer, Sophie Green; nail artist, Kristen Dunlop; and textile artists Alistair Mc Cready and Gladys and Gertie.
As well as having the chance to showcase their talent in the open studio, emerging local artists and artisans on the summer residency programme will also see their creations go on sale in the shop at MerseyMade. The initiative is open to all talented creatives who have been trading for less than two years and arts graduates looking to start selling their work.
Speaking ahead of Independents’ Day Weekend, MerseyMade Founder, Vicky Gawith, said: “Choosing to shop local is a great way to show support for the incredible independent businesses we have across our region. Skilled artists and artisans really do enrich our community and we’re extremely proud to work with over 100 small businesses to help make their unique pieces of artwork and handcrafted products available for shoppers to find in one central location.
“As well as working with established independents, we’re also committed to supporting emerging local talent, which is why we’re introducing a summer residency to give start-ups and graduates a space to create, showcase their talent and sell their work to an engaged audience.
“MerseyMade aims to provide an alternative to the high street and what makes us unique is that visitors can actually meet the incredibly talented people behind the artworks and handcrafted pieces on display. Having the chance to see creators at work in an open studio also brings a personal touch to the whole experience and of course, every MerseyMade purchase goes towards supporting local creative businesses. Independents’ Day weekend is the perfect time for anyone who is yet to discover MerseyMade to pay us a visit and to experience the unique buzz and energy that makes the place so special.”
MerseyMade, which celebrates its third anniversary at the end of this year, is located in the historic Chancery Building on the corner of Paradise Street, steps away from Liverpool ONE. A vibrant venue at the heart of the city’s thriving creative scene, MerseyMade has an event room that can be hired for business meetings and is also used regularly to host workshops designed to inspire creativity. These include art classes, candle making, calligraphy and weaving classes, as well as popular masterclasses with renowned furniture upcycler, Gemma Longworth, best known for her appearances on Channel 4’s ‘Find It, Fix It, Flog It’.
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