Maker of the Month:
This month instead of focusing on a single maker we are shining a light on some new products in the shop by Bothy Stores, and the various makers behind each piece. Bothy Stores is the trading arm of the Bothy Project - a network of small scale, off-grid residency spaces in distinct and diverse locations around Scotland. Each product is specific to its given Bothy with designers undertaking research residencies to devise products that respond to the bothy’s environment and purpose.
The first collection of objects in the project -commissioned by curator Katy West- and named ‘The Pioneers’ brings together the work of artists and designers in a diverse array of designed objects. The products are made in Scotland’s studios, workshops, and factories, using traditional skills and innovative techniques, highlighting Scotland’s pioneering legacy of craft traditions and innovations in materials, production and manufacture.
Aldridge (who spent her residency in the Pig Rock Bothy) has explored eco-dying, a technique that prints and colours fabric from nature, also using more unorthodox materials such as nails and kirby grips in the process. Her handmade fabrics have been transformed through digital reproduction into an apron and tablecloth. Pig Rock Bothy is often used for activities and workshops with the public – these useful products reflect the making process through their production and construction, and everyday function. Aldridge designed the original interior for Pig Rock, which included brightly coloured ceramic vessels, reinterpreted here as a handy apron-pocket.
Virginia Hutchison & James Rigler
Rigler and Hutchison have designed a one-pot cooking pot with a lid that cooks a second layer of food. The external surface is inspired by a rock they found at Tràigh a’ Bhìgeil (The Singing Sands) on the western coast of Eigg not far from Sweeney’s Bothy. The pot is being produced at a foundry in central Scotland that historically made the Falkirk Pot; a three-legged vessel for use over an open fire. Many such pots may have found their way to the Isle of Eigg, at a time when living conditions called for such basic comforts.
Lipscombe has explored the role of the cagoule in situations of protest and activity. Its quiet appeal highlighting the duality of feminism and femininity. This cagoule is lightweight and rainproof. It protects you against the elements, strengthening any wearer’s resolve against the wilds of nature or the conflicts of man. The cagoule also plays on the designer’s name, Lipscombe, and comes with a folding mirror and comb toolkit to keep the wearer’s appearance in check.
Trakke (Alec Farmer)
Trakke have developed a Camp Shower made from scout green canvas, a colour synonymous with Black’s of Greenock who used to produce the brigade’s official tents. This design presents a lightweight product allowing it to be easily transportable. In situ, a pulley system enables it to be lowered for filling with hot water from the kettle then raised again to above head height for use. Its 20 litre capacity allowing for a 5 minute hot shower. Alec Farmer is Creative Director of Trakke, a Glasgow based manufacturer of ‘Bags for Adventurers’. Made using materials sourced from the UK, and shipped worldwide, they recognise Scotland’s legacy as an industrial powerhouse. They are interested in Glasgow as a centre for industry, its connections to more rural areas of Scotland, and more broadly the use of Scottish textiles in outdoor pursuits and sporting traditions.
McDougall has collaborated with Bute Fabrics to produce a lambswool blanket reflecting the colours of Eigg’s most prominent landmark An Sgurr (The Nose). Its function is ubiquitous in a rural setting, repelling water, offering protection and comfort. The innovative addition of reflective yarn woven into this plaid catches light in the dark, making its wearer highly visible in moonlight, or to a lone car’s beam on a dusk walk.
Images by Katie Rose Johnston.