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 

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?

 

3 Alternative Ways to Shop This Christmas

 alternative ways to shop

It’s the last day of November so, if you haven’t started to at least plan your Christmas shopping yet, now’s the time!

Monday’s post was all about the best beauty gift sets that our favourite department store makeup counters have to offer, but today I’d like to focus more on HOW we shop, rather than what we’re buying. Over the next month, there are some exciting shopping events and new shop arrivals in Glasgow that are well worth checking out!

 alternative ways to shop

Not only will these stores and markets leave you spoiled for choice, but they’re also a chance to discover something a little bit different while picking up a few festive treats. I can’t wait to share them with you, so let’s get started!

Here are 3 alternative ways to shop this Christmas…

1. Etsy Made Local AKA The Christmas Market You Must Visit 

Returning to Glasgow after last year’s successful event, the Etsy Team are organising an even bigger Christmas fair this year to celebrate local makers and creative talent. Showcasing the work of 132 designers and small businesses over a lively two-day stint at The Briggait, you can expect to browse the work of such clever cookies as Bonnie Bling, Nikki McWilliams, Claire Barclay Draws, Neil Slorance Art and many more.

At Etsy Made Local you’ll find oodles of homeware, art, illustrations, jewellery and accessories – perfect for anyone looking for Christmas gift inspiration. AND you might just discover your new favourite indie designer while you’re browsing! It all kicks off this Saturday at 11:30 and entry to the fair is free – see you there?

 alternative ways to shop

 alternative ways to shop

2. Boutique by Shelter Scotland AKA The Thrift Store for the Style Savvy

Shopping in second-hand stores is something that I talk about a LOT, as not only does it help support charities and the work that they do, but it is also a way to help contribute to sustainability (and avoid clothes going to landfill!). So when I heard about Boutique, the newest project from Shelter Scotland, I was excited to see what the charity had up their sleeve. Teaming up with Wayne Hemingway, Shelter have created a charity shop with a stylish, design-conscious feel (the interior design has been created by Wayne Hemingway himself…need I say more?) and are opening their very first Scottish store tomorrow at 177 Byres Road.

 alternative ways to shop

Having had a sneaky peek inside the store for myself, I really love the curated feel of the shop floor and even spied a few pre-loved gems ready to be snapped up (a beautiful oversized Chloe bag that would be perfect for a few gals I know…).  Shopping second-hand this Christmas will help to support those struggling with poor housing conditions and homelessness, but don’t forget how valuable your donations are too! If you’re planning a pre-Christmas clear out, the team at Boutique by Shelter would love to hear from you – you can pop in store from Thursday or drop them an email at ByresRoadShop@shelter.org.uk

 alternative ways to shop

3. Wear Eponymous x Leiper Gallery AKA The Pop-up Concept Store

Just a hop, skip and a jump from the hustle and bustle of Buchanan Street you’ll find the stunning Leiper Fine Art Gallery, where Wear Eponymous are hosting their latest pop-up shop. Within this traditional space there’s an explosion of contemporary designer brands and more award-winning talent than you can shake a Christmas tree at; including luxury fashion, accessories, interiors, jewellery, lifestyle pieces and art.

 alternative ways to shop

This is Wear Eponymous’ 4th pop-up event, the latest in the team’s quest to introduce key independent designers to a wider audience. After all, some discoveries are too good to keep to yourself! Expect to find pieces from the likes of Helen Ruth, Rebecca Torres and Edge Only (LOVE!) as well as lots of others – all artistically presented in this classic building at 117 West George Street until 31st December.

 alternative ways to shop

With a mega market, a chic charity shop and a powerful pop-up to choose from (OR why not visit all three?) it just goes to show that there are lots of alternative ways to shop over the festive period.

Glasgow is always bursting with fresh ideas and ways to support others, whether it’s charities, small businesses or local design talent and these three retail events are just a small selection of ways to get involved this Christmas! Let me know if you visit any of them – and if you have any other alternative or local shopping destinations for me to check out.

Love,

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