Local Lovin’: Claire Barclay Draws

Claire Barclay Draws

My Local Lovin’ series is a spotlight on designers / stores / creators of marvellous things (and anything else that catches my eye) – all based in Scotland. I believe that we should be supporting amazing home-grown talent, so I decided to keep Local Lovin’ as a permanent feature. If you have an awesome project, or create something that you think I might love, please let me know! See my Contact page for details of how to get in touch.

Have you ever come across someone whose work just makes you grin from ear to ear? Claire Barclay is one of those people. Not only do her playful designs make me chuckle every time, but I’ve seen them first-hand brighten up the day of whoever comes across them!

Claire Barclay Draws

I first became aware of this adorable Glasgow gal a couple of years back when she very kindly sent me some of her amazing Claire Barclay Draws pieces for the new (at the time!) flat. I later found out that we had a mutual love for Prince, so you know that automatically places her on my list of Good People, right? A few of you might even remember that Claire did a live portrait of Gary, Bosley and I earlier this year – it’s now one of my favourite pieces of art that we have on display!

I therefore couldn’t help but feel it was high time that Claire Barclay Draws joined the Local Lovin’ gang – and couldn’t wait to blether with her about her inspiration, her travels and much more…

Claire Barclay Draws

Hey Claire! I’d love to know about the beginning of Claire Barclay Draws – have you always loved drawing? At what point did you decide to develop it into a business?

Yes, I have always loved drawing from a very young age! I went to art school in Edinburgh and used to get bewildered looks or a wee laugh when I’d come out with certain Glasgow slang or Scots sayings (most folk at my uni were not Scottish!), so I decided to create some illustrations that totally embraced the brilliance of these sayings. I had my first solo exhibition in a wee pub in Leith and that is where my boozy illustrations were born (Beautiful Buckfast, Terrific Tennents etc) and I sold so many prints of them over those two months I decided to get them onto Etsy and the rest is history!

You are clearly a Glasgow Girl at heart, but are there any other cities that have left you feeling inspired?

Well, I think Edinburgh actually does have a big part to play in the inspiration behind my business in that living there gave me such a strong sense of being a west coaster and a ‘Glasgow Girl’ away from home. That being said I absolutely love it there, it’s so beautiful and I spent a wonderful 5 years there…but I knew that when it was time to start my business properly I wanted to do it at home in Glasgow! I also love to travel and one of the best perks of being self employed is that I can take time to go explore different cities around the world. In the past year I’ve been to Barcelona, Antwerp, London, Berlin, Madrid and I’m going to Amsterdam in a few weeks time before Christmas madness is in full swing at CBD HQ!

Claire Barclay Draws

OK, you’re giving me major wanderlust over here! What was the very first piece you designed and sold? Do you still make it today?

Yes it was the ‘Beautiful Buckfast’ illustration which I sold during my exhibition in Boda Bar in Leith, which I still sell to this day and is still one of my best sellers actually!

Important question time: during a long day of designing, what’s your snack of choice?

Mmmmm I would have to say peanut butter on anything…?

Ah, a gal after my own heart! What’s been your proudest moment so far?

Going fully self employed and not having to juggle a part time job as well was a pretty proud moment! I also hit 2000 sales on Etsy recently and that felt nice.

Congratulations! That’s so cool! So, as you might know, I am all about sharing the love – tell me about an indie maker/ designer that you can’t get enough of right now?

I absolutely love the work of East End Press and Doris Does Doodles who are both fellow Glasgow based designers who make screen printed and digital illustrated work. East End Press’ work is just so colourful and fun and I adore the retro vibe Doris captures in her products.

Claire Barclay Draws

I love Doris Loves Doodles too, and I’ll need to check out East End Press – they sound right up my street! Finally, do you have anything exciting coming up that we should keep our eyes peeled for? Spill!

Yes indeed! I have my new Christmas collection launching ASAP as well as Pop Up Portraits events in Sunshine No.1 and Paisley Abbey in November and December! I’ll also be taking part in lots of festive markets including Etsy Made Local on the 2nd December and Tea Green Market in the Kibble Palace on the 9th and 10th of December. Oh, and I’m the guest artist at BLOW Finneston all of October where I shall be selling prints as well as drawing portraits on Sat 14th with 50% of all proceeds going to Glasgow Women’s Aid.

Phew! What a busy bee – I’m tired just thinking about all that! Thank you so much to the awesome Claire Barclay Draws for sharing a peek into her world!

You guys know what to do – hop on over to Claire’s website to keep up with her cheerful work and be sure to head to one of her pop-up appearances over the next few months. Ear to ear smiles and rad designs guaranteed…

 

 

 

All images by Claire Barclay Draws 

Recipe: Lazy Pumpkin Spiced Loaf Cake

pumpkin spiced loaf cake

It’s officially the start of October! Not only does that mean that I can start wearing extra spooky accessories on the regular (I MAY have treated myself to some ridiculous fabulous golden skeleton earrings already, ghoulfriends!), but it also means pumpkin spiced everything is in abundance – and I am totally OK with that.

Yes, that sweet n’ spicy cliche might be done to death by 2017, but it’s a cliche that I’m more than happy to indulge in!  To me (and about a million others I am sure!), pumpkin spiced scents and flavours signify the start of Autumn. And besides, it tastes amazing!

October also means that some pretty nasty weather is likely to kick in and there are going to be some days when you just can’t bear to put on real clothes and go outside. But your local coffee shop does a mean pumpkin spiced loaf cake – wah! What’s a gal to do?

pumpkin spiced loaf cake

Well, over the weekend I found myself in a similar position! My big plans to go out for the day had been totally thwarted by the weather, so I decided to stay home and bake something pumpkin-y and spicy #becauseoctober. A few of you have been sliding into my DM’s asking for the recipe (if you can really call it that!), so I thought I’d share it today!

If you’ve seen any of my other recipes, you’ll know by now that I am extremely lazy in the kitchen and this post is no exception! Here’s my quick and easy take on a pumpkin spiced loaf cake…

pumpkin spiced loaf cake

You will need:

  • 1 can of pumpkin filling (I used a brand called Baking Buddy, from Tesco)
  • 3 medium eggs
  • 1 box of cake mix (I used Devil’s Food by Betty Crocker)
  • 8 tablespoons of oil (I used coconut oil)
  • 230ml water
  • White chocolate chunks
  • DIY spice mix (below – ground nutmeg, cinnamon, ginger and allspice)
  • Frosting (I used the pre-made kind, also Betty Crocker!)

Preheat the oven to 180 (or whatever your cake mix dictates!). While that’s heating up, combine the eggs, oil, water and cake mix in a big bowl. Add the pumpkin filling and chocolate chunks and mix well. Sidenote: I couldn’t see the chocolate chunks after I baked the loaf, so it’s up to you if you want to bother with them! 

Spice up your life! Make your own spice mix using 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon, 1 teaspoon of ground nutmeg, half a teaspoon of ground ginger and half a teaspoon of ground allspice (the kind with clove listed in the ingredients). Mix together then add into your batter.

Pour your mixture into a loaf tin and bake in the oven for about half an hour. Enjoy the smell of warm pumpkin spiced sponge as it fills your home. Mmmm.

pumpkin spiced loaf cake

Once your cake is baked, let it cool. I personally think the loaf is nice on its own, BUT this time around I added a cinnamon frosted topping. This sounds fancy, but it was actually a tub of vanilla frosting mixed with a teaspoon of cinnamon – bada bing, bada boom!

You’re good to go – slice your loaf cake and cosy up with your favourite hot drink.

And that’s how I made this PSL: Pumpkin Spiced Loaf cake! I hope you give this seasonal treat a try – I have a feeling that this batch won’t be around for very long and I’ll be making it again soon…

Glasgow Southside Coffee Shops You Must Visit

glasgow Southside coffee

According to the little note in my planner, today is National Coffee Day – and yeah, I know, EVERY DAY IS COFFEE DAY around here! But I’m never one to turn away a bit of novelty, or an excuse to get in the spirit of things, so I thought it would be a brilliant opportunity to share some more fabulous local cafes with you guys!

If you’ve been hanging around here a while, you may remember this guide to my favourite places to grab a cup of the hot, dark stuff that I posted a while back. Since that post, there have been some new arrivals – and a couple in particular that I would love to talk about today.

So, in honour of National Coffee Day, here are two Glasgow Southside coffee shops to add to your must-visit list…

It All Started Here  |  75 Deanston Drive 

This speciality coffee shop opened in May this year, after previously popping up at different events, cafes and markets around town and getting tongues a-wagging. Their secret opening (or at least, I think it started as a secret…) was so popular that in just a few short months, It All Started Here has become a firm favourite with locals.

With an ever-changing line up of awesome guest roasts, home baking and light bites, there’s a lot to love about this cosy cafe. It’s only open on the weekends, but trust me when I say it’s worth waiting for all week!

glasgow Southside coffee

Southside Roasters  |  742 Pollokshaws Road 

Want to know how to catch my attention? Writing COFFEE in huge letters above your shop oughta do the trick! I couldn’t help but get excited about this place as I watched Southside Roasters get ready to open back in March. At the time, I didn’t know much, but I knew it involved coffee so I was already on board!

Along with some damn fine (and damn Instagrammable!) coffee, you’ll also find chocolate, sweet treats and a brunch-y type menu. This sunny, stylish coffee shop is just round the corner from Pot Luck, so you could hit up both in one day pretty easily and have a helluva time while doing so.

Having more Glasgow Southside coffee spots to choose from makes me very happy indeed – the more the merrier, I say! It All Started Here and Southside Roasters are two of my current favourites – any others I should add to my list?