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Crafting Comes to Life as Make it Harewood returns with Aardman Workshops, Local Food, a Market, Demonstrations and DJs!

· Andrew Emery · Culture

A summer craft festival with added fun and food? Oh yes!

Make it Harewood

Harewood House’s courtyard plays host to Make it Harewood this July, with workshops, demos, food, a craft market, live music and more promising fun for all the family. Make sure you don’t miss it.

Harewood House opens up its courtyard for a weekend-long carnival of crafting with a festival vibe.

Suns out? Funs out. Let’s be honest, even if the weather doesn’t play ball, the line-up at Harewood House’s Make it Harewood weekend will brighten up Saturday 2nd and Sunday 3rd July 2022. For two days, the courtyard will be transformed with a craft market, live music, DJs, workshops and demonstrations – and they’ve got some absolutely stonking, A-list stuff lined up. This is the one you don’t want to miss.

You can get hands-on at an array of workshops

Make it Harewood

Credit: Tom Arber/Harewood House Trust

The Courtyard at Harewood House is the hub for everything they’ve got planned. There are two days of demonstrations and workshops, including a Sunday model-making extravaganza by Aardman Animations, the people best known for Shaun the Sheep and Wallace and Gromit. You can have a go at making your own version of those iconic characters, helped by Aardman model-maker Jim Parkyn, who has worked on many of their films and shows.

That’s just one of many workshops that will make for an interactive, hands-on day out. Look out for the Do Nothing Machine workshops, where visitors can join in making a perpetual motion machine. There will also be pottery, crochet, stool-making, wire flowers and granny squares, ideal for beginners or the budding maker in your family. Meanwhile, the courtyard will come alive with demonstrations, such as glassblowing and blacksmiths manipulating hot metal – it’s a whirlwind of activity.

Meet the makers and shop for crafted gems at the market

Make it Harewood

Credit: Tom Arber/Harewood House Trust

Your day ticket to Make it Harewood also gets you into the house itself, where the Radical Acts: Why Craft Matters Biennial event is still running. Some of the makers from the exhibition will be there, with wood carver Robin Wood showing you how to carve spoons on both Saturday and Sunday. You can have a go yourself in a free taster session which is aimed at absolute beginners with zero experience.

Acclaimed textile artist Celia Pym will also be delivering a talk. She’s the woman behind the ‘mending desk’ at Harewood House, where she’s been fixing staff members clothes in exchange for a story. Want some souvenirs of the day to take home? As well as the stuff you make yourself, you can pick up handcrafted gems from the maker’s market – this is your chance to talk to the artisans, then buy unique items from them.

Make the most of food, drink and good times

Make it Harewood

Credit: Tom Arber/Harewood House Trust

All this crafting means you need to keep your energy up. Happily, Harewood Food & Drink Project will be on hand to keep you fed and watered. They draw on produce raised and grown on the Harewood Estate – that includes not just beef, venison and lamb but also vegetables and fruit grown in the walled garden – their BBQ promises to be sensational. If you’re not driving, why not wash it down with their own Harewood gin?

They’ll be joined by the Italian delights of Luigi’s Street Food and Canadian poutine kings Spuds & Bro’s. The whole weekend is soundtracked by DJs and live bands, with extended hours until 8pm on the Saturday, so you can relax and let your hair down after you’re done crafting. Shake your stuff to the music while grabbing a drink from the licensed bar. Hey, it’s a weekend dedicated to making, so make the most of it!

Make it Harewood takes over Harewood House from Saturday 2nd to Sunday 3rd July 2022. Day Tickets and Workshop Tickets must be bought separately.

Cover image credit: Tom Arber/Harewood House Trust