A pop-up scrap store and workspace has opened at Preston Bus Station offering free and low-cost creative workshops to the public. The Creative Principle has been commissioned by the Lancashire Encounter Festival, to encourage people to explore the creative possibilities of repurposing waste materials, whilst having fun and creating something new. We went along to find out more.Advertisement
“A lady came along to one of our print workshops and had a lovely day, she chatted with her friend she came with, had a really nice productive day and enjoyed making. She went off and enjoyed shopping in Preston and popped back in and she’d actually gone out to buy the materials that we used in the class so that she could continue this project at home myself. She was absolutely enthralled by the process and really wanted to continue it and that’s what we want to do here,” says Norma Foulds, from The Creative Principle. “We want to encourage people, to think about how they use materials and what materials they use but also to enjoy, making and creating their own artwork and just enjoy doing creative things.”
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The Creative Principle is comprised of three artists and creatives, Norma Foulds, Elizabeth Emmens-Wilson and Sarah Aspden. Their pop-up scrap store and workspace was launched by the Mayor of Preston, Councillor Yakub Patel, last week and is offering a range of free workshops, including gift bag making, creating concertina sketchbooks, making a quilted cushion cover from an old t-shirt and many more. A range of low-cost workshops are also available to be booked, including upcycling ceramics with lustres, Gelli printing, exploring die cutting and foiling and more.
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One of the key principles is where possible the workshops use recycled materials or scraps.
“It’s important for us and it’s important for the whole world that we think carefully about the materials that we’re using and how we use them,” says Norma. “We need to think about how we use new materials and use them carefully, but also think about how we can reuse things that have had a life before.”
As well as running workshops the space is also being used to sell products made by other local creatives using recycled materials.
“So, we’ve got a crochet creative who makes things using old t-shirts. They cut up old t-shirts to make yarn and that yarn is then crocheted into useful objects. It’s thinking about how we can repurpose and reuse things so that we’re not using new materials all the time.
“We have a lady that makes cards, she gets her pieces of paper from a lady that does bigger projects. We can use any of the card maker’s offcuts and we make small embellishments that can still be used in the creative process. So, almost all that paper is being rather than going to landfill, which isn’t acceptable.
“As well as artwork, we are selling materials that we could be used in craft projects and we’re also selling a couple of other things, one is soap and one is hand cream. They’re not recycled, they’re new products, the lady who makes the soap is really careful about where she buys her ingredients from. She doesn’t use mica in her soaps, because she can’t guarantee where that’s come from, and there’s another lady that makes hand creams, who grows her own herbs, and flowers, to make her hand creams.”
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As we talk a workshop is taking place, everyone looks like they are having a great time, using the space to have fun and explore their creativity, with some people returning to try out other workshops.
“All we ask is that people book onto the workshops via Eventbrite prior to coming along,” says Norma. “Even if the workshop being offered is free, we would like people to book online.”
The workshops are running Thursday – Sunday, until Thursday 17th September, with two sessions running per day. After this, The Creative Principle would like to secure a base in the centre of Preston, where they could run workshops from.
“There isn’t a permanent scrap store and workspace in Preston and we’d really like to set one up. We’re looking for somewhere affordable, in the city centre so that it’s accessible to everyone,” says Norma. “Something similar to what we have here, but perhaps a little bit bigger so that local creatives who use recycled materials could sell their products. Where people could come and find information about recycling. Where people could come and find scrap that people could use in their projects.”
“We would love a city centre location; it would be a destination. People could come and bring their materials for recycling, do workshops, to be able to offer a café, so people could come and have lunch and spend the day with us,” says Elizabeth. “We would like to offer studio space, so local artists could offer workshops to the community of Preston.”
Many of the events are free while others have a charge for the workshop, the full events list can be downloaded here. Book the workshops here.
Further information regarding The Lancashire Encounter Festival can be found here.
Follow The Creative Principle on Instagram
If you would like to donate any materials or if you have a city centre space that could be used by the organisation, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
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