A few weeks ago now, I went to visit my friend Emily in her delightful little shop The Spider and the Fly which recently moved location and is now in Bruntsfield, and area full of independent little shops and cafes, which is always worth a visit on any trip to Edinburgh. A perfect location!
Emily is a crafter and well connected in the UK esty seller world and her shop reflects that completely: she has got a veritable treasure trove of handcrafted gifts, accessories, jewellery, homewares, clothes and general trinkets from a variety of sellers!
Emily was kind enough to agree to be interviewed so you can find out a bit more! On with the interview:
How did the spider and the fly come about?
I guess it was a culmination of various factors…
– I’ve been running Magpie Markets (a craft & vintage fair) since December 2009 and really wanted to do more with this. It was impossible to find somewhere to host it during Edinburgh Festival as all venues are booked up well in advance and/or command a fee that I could never dream of affording!
– I’d been dreaming of a owning a shop pretty much forever…
– Boredom! I was working as a freelance arts administrator, but with budget cuts it meant there was less and less work around and my mind started to wander in a different direction.
How did you decide on the name?
The name came about over a beer (or 3!) with my sister. I was totally stuck on the name ‘The Parlour’ but given the location of the first shop amongst the strip bars and sex shops we decided it may give the wrong impression, so probably wasn’t the right name to go with! My sister then started going on about the poem The Spider and The Fly by Mary Howitt. In my beery haze I didn’t quite get what she was on about, but in the morning looked it up and it seemed to fit perfectly. I particularly like that it’s a little dark….
Will you walk into my parlour? said the Spider to the Fly,
‘Tis the prettiest little parlour that ever you did spy;
The way into my parlour is up a winding stair,
And I’ve a many curious things to shew when you are there.
You can read the full text of the poem here.
Tell me about three crafters whose stuff you stock!
Three!? That’s so unfair as I love them all!
Alice Gabb makes gorgeous screen printed stationery and we also have prints of her original artwork – think bears, royalty, tea drinking, stamps and old fashioned letter writing.
Cathy Cullis – creates amazingly detailed, tiny embroideries, made into wearable art pieces, or little pieces of art to hang in your house….they are simply beautiful and you really need to see them in person to see how fantastic they are.
Nicola Reed is a recent graduate from Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design. I totally fell in love with her work when I saw it. The shop is currently stocking her ‘Intrinsic Collection’ which is made from vintage suspenders and pearls.
So, if you ever find yourself in Edinburgh with some time to spare, I’d highly recommend a wee wander up the Meadows and the Links to Bruntsfield and the Spider and the Fly! The shop is located at 10 Barclay Terrace, just off Bruntsfield Place, overlooking Bruntsfield Links. And go say hello from me!