‘Make it short & snappy’
C for Corner shop with a difference.
It’s not often an art gallery melds craftwork and a can of beans! I visited Lucy Sparrow’s one woman magical mammoth mission to recreate a whole corner shop completely (well other than the structural building and shelves!) out of felt and craft materials. Being impressed by her attention to detail doesn’t quite cover it!
‘Just the facts please’
- Corner shop where all items were made out of felt and crafting materials created by one lady
- Lucy Sparrow
- 8 months
- 4000 felt pieces
- Up to 800 visitors per day!
- Initial London shop, where I saw it on its last day, then Brighton, and she told me that now she’s taking it Stateside and creating little Hershey bars and other American ‘candy bars’ and treats for a future date. They’ll love it!
‘I’ve got a cup of tea, tell me all about it…’
It takes a special mind to think that it would be a good idea to take a dilapidated shell of a building and spruce it up into a completely hand-made fabric art installation!
That mind belongs to Lucy Sparrow, a determined lady with a lot of nous.
Sadly as I went on the final day, Lucy was run off her feet handing out orders and smiling at the queue of visitors to answer any real interview. Luckily Folksy did a great job with their interview, where they found out it took 8 months of 14 hour days, kilometres of thread and millions of pin pricks to hand make each of her 4000 products; Marmite being the hardest, and biscuits the most popular, ranging from £3 to £800 for the till.
Why she did it? According to her Folksy interview
“I hoped that this project would remind people just how much the cornershop cemented life in local communities. So far it’s done just that.”
Her project received some really great publicity including the Daily Mail, BBC, The Guardian and she visited local Stokey WI – great as the WI campaign for 2013 was drawing attention to saving our high streets, and obviously there is an inherent love of crafts in the group!
I loved the experience; a real childish joy surrounded discovering each item, whether it was a pack of paracetamol, single fruit, frozen fish fingers or the newspapers with different articles on each page! You could hear others exclaiming too with delight as they discovered strawberry angel delight, a cheese sandwich, bird’s custard, even pick n mix sweets in jars! Lucy had thought of everything including medicines, newspapers and chewing gum. All the corner shop essentials she was highlighting would be lost were they to disappear from our streets. I, for one, know how important it is to be able to nip out for a pint of milk and discounted just-after-its-best-before-date-but-still-ok chocolate bar for those cravings! Oh and a pot of set natural Onken that they all seem to have strangely.