Sweet, pretty and simple — perfect for a night out. I love Lisa’s work, and you should too. u handbag is mainly a site to buy specialty purse-making supplies but if you move fast you can be lucky enough to get one of her lovely sample bags like this one. Sweet.
This week I’m profiling Me&Yu, a small fashion label specialising in hand-made and hand-printed clothing for men and women.
I first encountered the label in offbeat shopping mecca Affleck’s Palace in Manchester, UK. There I had the fortune of meeting Angie, one of the label’s co-founders. Angie has wanted to be a fashion designer since she was a child and luckily she has turned that dream into a reality – albeit with a lot of hard graft along the way!
“We had the idea for creating clothes together back in 2003 whilst we were living in Sydney,” Angie explained. “We just wanted to create clothes that were a bit different, that had a bit more personality than what was available on the high street.”
Me&Yu’s designs are cool and unique, appealing to a wide audience. I particularly adore their quirky, hand-drawn prints and stylish handmade dresses! Unlike many smaller labels, Me&Yu offers both girl and guy garments and many of the designs are unisex, allowing the wearer to put their own slant on things.
Me&Yu started in 2003, with stalls at weekend markets and events in Sydney, Australia then in Manchester and Liverpool, UK during 2004-2006. The designers had to balance developing the label with working full-time – what a challenge! Finally in 2006, Me&Yu moved permanently to a shop in Affleck’s Palace, complemented by its online store and presence in a handful of boutiques in the UK.
“Affleck’s Palace is a great place to be as it houses lots of small independent businesses together – you have the support of other people around you, and that’s the best thing. When we first started we got loads of helpful advice from other small businesses, obviously every business is different but you can get some great tips!”
Designs are made up at the label’s studio in an old cotton mill in Manchester, and it is important to the company to keep the city’s heritage alive. The mill houses a number of other artists and fosters a creative and collaborative atmosphere.
Me&Yu is a great example of excellent self-promotion – the label blogs at www.wearemeandyu.blogspot.com, uses Facebook and Twitter, distributes flyers and has even secured features in magazines. In addition, Me&Yu gets involved in charity fashion shows and fundraisers – contributing to important causes as well as raising awareness of the brand.
“There is something special about selling something that you made yourself, its very personal,” finishes Angie. “However, it’s hard work. Handmade = labour intensive and not everybody understands quite how much work goes into each item.”
What’s your favourite Me&Yu design? Post your link below!
White dappled milk jug
Handmade from English stoneware clay it’s distinctive bulbed shape was created by working with my potters wheel. You can still feel the gentle texture of throwing rings where my hands have drawn the clay upwards. details »
Olive Linen Rose with Lavender/Eggplant and Olive Semi Precious Jade Nuggets/ Statement Necklace
An olive handmade linen rose with Czech eggplant/purple glass seed beads in its center. These beads were neatly hand sewn on top of a fabric covered button. I also used semi precious nugget stones which have been wired into a brass chain to form a cluster. details »
Mini Steamer Trunk
The inspiration for this little box comes from the old flat top steamer trunks.
Please join me in welcoming our newest columnist to Try Handmade, Cara Quinn! She’s going to be writing about frugal living and minimalism as it relates to buying handmade and making it yourself. Check out her first post, and let her know if you have suggestions or requests for future posts. Welcome Cara!
I’m not a fan of cranking up the thermostat in our home (well, truth be told we don’t even have a thermostat) and all throughout winter I was determined to whip up a draught excluder that would plug the huge gap under our front door – where a majority of the heat escapes from.
I’ve been determined to do this for two winters running. When I saw these sausage dog draught excluder’s on Ellie’s Crafts they looked like the perfect addition to our otherwise dog-free home.
On top of draught excluder’s, there are other ways to keep the heating bills down (and Planet Earth happy) and keep warm – after all, before we know it, we’ll be springing into spring. Until then, I plan on cuddling up close to my baby son (that boy has a freakish, almost superhuman, ability to keep me warm.)
This adorable onesie from Ink & Ivy is made from water-based ink and organic cotton so appeals to my eco-friendly nature. It’s also available in a light red – which I find is gender neutral and could work for two (or more) babies. I’m a huge fan of hand-me-down clothes for little people!
Other tips for staying warm:
Wrap up in a blanket. I have a little fleece blanket on my sofa that I love to be wrapped in. I have two thin blankets and one really thick one. The two thin blankets I can circulate when the weather is sorting itself out for a spring season and the thick blanket is for the hell that was last winter. Or as we called it in these parts: Snowmageddon. By the time summer rolls around, I don’t need blankets or my central heating to keep me warm.
Put on some socks. It’s true about losing body heat through your extremities and covering those tootsies up will keep you cosied up.
Put on a sweater. I know I sound like someone’s Granma when I say that, but the fact is that it remains true. More layers means more body heat is given out – don’t over do the layering when you go out, though, or you’ll be sweating like a turkey the night before Thanksgiving.
Got some sweaters that don’t quite fit any more or have reached their life span? That’s okay, up-cycle them into a nifty (and thrifty!) purse/handbag. Make and Love It tells you how.
If you love this idea, check out some of the other up-cycled ideas on that same blog; pillows and dresses made from sweaters and a cute little beanie hat and skirt, who were in a former life, scarves.
No need to donate (or throw away – but I seriously hope no one is throwing away clothes in this day and age!) winter clothes that have outrun their lifespan; they can come right into spring with you!
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1987 Comic book desk/table Frame Featuring Transformers Frame 9.5″ x 7.5″ picture 4 X 6 It is a used wooden frame that I p… [more]