OUR mission statement

MADE ON THE LEFT was founded in 2008 by independent designers to support Western Australian creative talent. We hold bi-annual handmade craft markets to showcase local designers.

Being on the left hand side of Australia no longer

means you'll be at a disadvantage.

Our aim is to support all creative designers and events showcasing independent labels. MOTL is a not-for-profit, non-partisan organisation. You may wonder why we promote other markets besides MOTL; it’s because it’s not about us, its about you; the buyers and sellers of indie wares. Here at the blog, you’ll discover up to date information about our latest market, the low-down on some of Perth’s emerging talents, other opportunities for artists and designers and a little bit of fun stuff too. It’s all right here… welcome!

Saturday, July 26

Heads up for wholesale site

Rhonda has contacted us to give Made on the Left a heads up about her brand new online showcase for designers.

Unique Boutiques is a place where new designers and wholesale suppliers can showcase their products directly to boutique owners around Australia. The website, which is currently under construction, will act as an online portal to help boutique owners get directly in contact with designers to make wholesale enquiries.

Unique Boutiques is already featuring selected designers from Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane and Rhonda is now looking for representatives of our vibrant left side scene to showcase their designs on the site.

While the site is getting up and running, free profiles are being offered to selected designers. Once a critical level of boutique owners have registered, subscription fees will apply but existing designers are under no obligation to sign up. Categories will include Children, Babies, Stationery, Adult Fashion, Spa & Beauty and Jewellery.

Check it out at http://www.uniqueboutiques.com.au/ - the Children’s section is currently the most finalised if you would like to view that as an example of what the rest of the site will look like when complete. You can get in contact with Rhonda through the website.
Disclaimer: by providing information Made on the Left does not endorse particular products or websites and users are encouraged to undertake their own research before signing up!

Sunday, July 13


Wow - 'oh what a night' (cue pub music).

Actually, it was more a case of 'oh what a day' with the Made on the Left market universally recevied as a big success by sellers and buyers alike.

Congratulations to all the stallholders on their fantastic goods and preparation, and thanks to all our wonderful customers for turning out in droves.

The inaugural Made on the Left market was such a great success that we feel it would be churlish not to get another one up and running,...so watch this space for exciting news in the coming weeks!

A HUGE THANK YOU to everyone from the organising committee for your support!

Friday, July 11

Faces behind Made on the Left - Part 5 - Rosanna Elizabeth

Rounding up our introductury series is our highly valued regional Made on the Left founding member, Rosanna Vinci. Rosanna has introduced you to all the other committee members as Made on the Left's 'Blog Queen' but went all shy when it was time to show herself, so I had the pleasure of interviewing her about her lovely jewellery, life at the doorway to WA's wine region, and her plans for the future - allow me to present Rosannna Elizabeth:

Tell us a bit about yourself & your craft.

Hi, I’m Rosanna and I create jewellery under the brand Rosanna Elizabeth.

I grew up on a farm in Donnybrook (the apple capital of Western Australia!) and now live in Bunbury, two hours south of Perth. I studied at Murdoch University and graduated in 2005 with a degree in Media Studies. After working in radio for a couple of years, I became a fundraising campaign coordinator for a not for profit organisation during the day, and a jewellery designer by night! I love creating jewellery that is a little bit different, like button necklaces and jewellery that incorporates vintage pieces. Something a little bit out of the square I guess that no one else will have. I have a driving need to keep learning new things and improving my craft.

What made you want to get involved with organising the Made on the Left craft fair?

I originally wanted to organise a market in the south west around the Bunbury area, but it was a little difficult by myself. So when Dara kick started the first event, I thought that I could learn a lot from it, and I have! I hope that we can extend our events to other regions of WA, including the south west, and also through to the northern regions of WA if there is a market for it.

What do you cherish most in your life?

I cherish life in general. You never know what can happen in the space of a day, or in 10 seconds for that matter. Life is too short. I also cherish my family, I wouldn’t be here without them, they are the best and I love them dearly.

What could you not live without?

My GHD hair straightener! I have really curly hair and if I let it dry, it’s a frizz ball! So I need to blow dry it straight after I wash it, which takes almost an hour (I have really thick hair), then spend another half an hour straightening it with my straightener…it works though and everyone thinks I have straight hair. If only they knew : ) If I’m being slack I just let it dry over night and then go over it with the straightener in the morning, but it doesn’t look as nice. My sister is a hairdresser - I blame her for me wanting to have nice hair all the time!

What inspires you?

Anything and everything! Colours, fashion, nature, people and personalities – I love it all! Colours are a huge thing for me though…it sets my mind off in all directions and I tend to mix different colours together, which makes for cool combinations!

Do you think being in Western Australia affects your craft in a negative way?

Not really. I think the internet makes it a lot easier these days to put your work out there. I have my jewellery in a boutique in the U.S. and without the internet, this probably would not have happened. I also think a lot of my creativity comes from the relaxed atmosphere here in Bunbury, so that’s certainly a positive!

What is the most important thing to you when you create your work?

I need to have some inspiration while I’m creating and be in a creative mood. If I don’t have that creativity in my mind, I just can’t seem to put anything together, or things just don’t work. I went though a creative drought not long ago, I didn’t make anything for about three weeks and I was starting to doubt myself. But thankfully the spell has been broken and I’ve found the motivation to get my groove back!

What are your plans for the future?

I hope to have my work in boutiques around the world and also making my mark locally with both my jewellery and bags.

I am learning to sew at the moment and I’d like to use this in the future to expand into making other crafty things. While doing this I’d also like to continue learning new jewellery making techniques. I am currently learning more about wire work, but I’d really love to get into Precious Metal Clay…I just need to remind myself to stick with one thing at a time!

In the long term, I hope to expand my jewellery range and launch a line of bags and possibly even clothing! My plan is to establish myself locally first and then go from there.

Thursday, July 10

Faces behind Made on the Left - Part 4 - Odd Girl Out

I've introduced you to Dara, Jacquie, Ali and now, it's my pleasure to introduce you to the talented Sarah Gazia - the face behind Odd Girl Out.

Tell us a bit about yourself & your craft.
  • I am a marketer by ‘real’ job and usually have a good way with words...except maybe when it comes to talking about myself.
  • I returned to Perth at the beginning of the year after a couple of years living within the shadow of Tower Bridge in London.
  • I’m a polymer clay queen at present...but I love to learn how to work in different media.
  • In my previous crafting life I did a lot of silk painting...examples of which may still crop up in my etsy store in the future...you just never know.
  • My partner and I started our own marketing and design business this year as well as getting Odd Girl Out off the ground – there’s no doing things by halves!

What is Made on the Left?Made on the Left is a celebration of Western Australian ingenuity and craftiness and a central source for information on local creative opportunties.

What made you want to get involved with organising a craft fair?I don’t really think of myself as an organiser (leaving that up to the more naturally organised members of the group!) but I do know a bit about marketing and promotion and thought I could lend a hand. I have a background in arts and tourism promotion so I guess I had a head start on promoting the arty attributes of WA and this plan seemed to fall naturally into place.

What can we expect to see there?A wonderful array of handmade goodies with a particular emphasis on fresh talent – we have a great proportion of stallholders for whom this is their first market, and I think that’s really exciting. It definitely won’t be same old, same old...About two thirds of the sellers are from Etsy, so although they may have had an online presence for a while, this is the first time you’ll see them all in a ‘brick and mortar’ room together.

What are your plans for the future?
Just looking ahead for the next year, I hope to really establish our marketing and design business and get more accustomed to the ins and outs of being a small business owner. With Odd Girl Out, I would like to raise the brand profile, achieve some exposure in fashion media and distribute/sell more widely through wholesaling or direct selling (like more markets!). I’m going to be seeking some advice from people who have a lot more experience than I do in jewellery retailing and setting some realistic goals.

What do you cherish most in your life?My partner Moz, who I am hoping to convince to have his own stall (as an illustrator) at the next market. At the moment his can be seen as my lovely assistant on the Odd Girl Out stalls.

What could you not live without?Gelato. Well, actually many foods. Mmmmmm. And travel.

What was the first thing you ever created?
With an art teacher for a mum, I think my creating dates back to before I could stand and probably involved poster paints and my fingers.

What inspires you?
I love visiting museums of modern art, galleries and funky shops (preferably in far off cities to get the travel angle in too!) and seeing what’s happening out there in the world. When I was travelling through Europe for three months last year I carried a small sketch book with me all the time and I have lots of inspiration to draw from now.

What do you think of Australian design?I think Australian design is definitely well regarded, but these days no one is going to get a gold star just for being Australian – there is a whole world of creative people out there and the bar is continually being raised, so there’s no room for complacency.
Do you think being in Perth affects your craft in a negative way?
I would say being based in Perth has both positives and negatives. Truly, with travel, the internet etc as developed as they are now, the ‘isolation’ issue is really not as significant as it once might have been and there is a strong, although not massive, pool of creative people to take inspiration form. The most frustrating thing is the cost of supplies and not being able to get things quickly

What is the most important thing to you when you create your work?
I’m pretty critical of my work so when I can look at something I made and think – I really like that – I’m pretty happy!

Where do you see yourself in a year’s time?Hopefully more well known, established and regarded in both of my businesses!

Press, Press and More Press

We are so excited to see so much press coverage about the Made On The Left Market which is THIS Saturday the 12th of July. That is right... only two sleeps to go!! :)

Here are a few recent articles -
(to keep up to date just check out the 'press' page on the website)

Oh - and here is the ad that was in Xpress Magazine thanks to the sponsorship grant we received from Etsy!

Monday, July 7

Craft fair etiquette for stall holders

Okay, so you’ve got everything packed and ready to go. You’ve worked really hard to make beautiful stock for the day and your stall looks a million bucks! Now, all you need to do is present your products and yourself to the public…*gasp*!

Putting yourself out there can be very daunting for many people – especially the first time. Follow these common rules of craft stall etiquette and you will be fine : )

Arrive early to ensure you are set up in time for the opening of the showThere’s nothing worse than having customers come through when you’re still setting up, you feel like you’re in their way and can’t give them your full attention because you’re still doing something that should have been finished half an hour ago. The best bet is to arrive at the earliest time that stall holders are permitted to make sure you have everything set up and ready to go. This will give you ample time if any glitches arise along the way. You will also be able to relax and take a breather before the real work begins!

Practice setting up at home
It takes many practice runs at setting up your display to get it down pat. The first few times, it may even take you an hour or so to set up. It’s usually best to have a test run at home with a space about the same size as the stall that you will have on the day. You can take your time, experiment and rearrange until your heart is content. Doing this will give you a fair idea of how you’d like to display your products and will also save you time setting up at the actual craft fair

Stay within you designated area
This may seem obvious, but it’s generally not a good idea to ask your neighbour to move over just a tad so you can have a side table that encroaches into their space. If you have a display that needs more space, it may be worth asking for a larger area (which sometimes costs more), otherwise you will need to modify your display to meet the requirements.

Get to know your fellow exhibitorsYou are going to be spending the whole day next to the stallholders around you, so why not introduce yourself during set up time or throughout the day? There might be a time that you may need them to cover your stall or vice versa for a quick break if you don’t have a helper. Plus, you never know – they may end up being your next customer : )

Be preparedWrite a list of the things you will need to bring along and check them off as you pack. It’s usually good to have a timeline of what needs to be done during the weeks leading up to an event. Make sure everything is packed and ready go the night before, as you will most likely need to be on the road early in the morning – you won’t want to forget anything because you’re rushing around at the last minute.

Dress appropriately
Decide what you are going to wear in advance. Make sure your outfit is clean, ironed and ready to go the day before. Dress appropriately/professionally and be well groomed. A smart casual dress code is the most common to follow. Being neat and tidy is the main thing to remember – and don’t forget to bring a jacket in case it’s cold!

Be hygienic
If you can, try to keep your stall clean and tidy. Have some wipes on standby in case of any spills that may need cleaning. Also, don’t forget to bring along some deodorant and breath mints to freshen yourself up throughout the day.

Bring plenty of changeArrange to have a float that includes coins and notes. Have more than you think you will need. It can go straight back into your bank account the next day if need be, just be prepared if someone hands you a $100 note for a $5 item – it does happen! Having one of those vendor aprons to store your change in is handy too, but a cash box is a great alternative.

Price everything
Make sure you either have all your items priced individually or group items of the same value together and have signs. Most customers don’t like to ask the price of something and would more likely walk off than ask – you may lose these customers.

Don’t forget business cardsThere will be people who love your stall but may not be able to buy something right now, or who just want to pass on your details to a friend or family member. Have your card (or flyer or whatever else you may have) ready to hand over! This is potentially more business for you – there is nothing better than word of mouth!

Bring a notebook and penYou will almost always need to write down something during the day. Whether it is details for a custom order, or to keep track of which items have sold, you will be much better prepared with a notebook and pen on standby!

Stay Positive
People generally want to be around positive people, not negative people. So try not to complain about how slow it is or how bad sales have been. People walking by will hear and keep walking right on by. Try to stay positive and look like you’re having fun! This will, in turn, result in you having a fabulous time as well as more sales! Isn’t that why you’re there? : )

Greet your customersDon’t hide away behind your table reading a book or talking on your mobile. Smile and say hello to all that come to your stall, you want to be seen as approachable. However, you don’t want to be pushy either. Greeting customers lets them know that you’re there if they need assistance without being over the top. You can generally tell by body language if people feel comfortable and by all means feel free to strike up a conversation with those who look like their up for one!

Bring a helperTry to have a friend helping you with your stall for the day. It’s great to have a helper when setting up to watch your stall while you unpack your car. You can also cover each others food and bathroom breaks and you can both be there for when it gets busy.

Stay the entire time the show is open
Its best not to start packing up before the craft fair actually finishes. So if it finishes at 5pm, don’t start packing up until at least 5pm. You are only doing yourself harm by leaving early and missing out on those extra sales. Many customers generally don’t attend shows until the last couple of hours and the majority of sales come at the end of the day – especially for those that had been eyeing off a particular piece and come back to check if it’s still there. If you’re not there – you miss out on all of these potential sales.

These are just a few of the things I’ve learnt along the way, most of them are common sense, which can easily get thrown out of the window when your nervous…now, remember, just relax….and breathe! Be yourself and have fun – that’s the most important thing : )

If you can think of any more please share them with us!

Thursday, July 3

The word on the street

The word on the street is a new community street festival with a craft market is planned later this year, courtesy of the good folk in the events department at the Town of Vincent. The event formerly known as the Leederville street festival has moved slightly up and to the right, and this year on November 30 will be appearing in hipster North Perth location Angove Street, home of fab cafe Milkd and other funky shops.
The Town of Vincent's community development officer Jill Symonds says "There will be an organic produce market, entertainment, performers, children’s activities and art/craft/jewellery and fashion stalls. We are looking for really interesting and different fashion, art/craft and jewellery designers as stall holders. Your products must be original and of a very high standard."
If you would like to be considered for a stall or need more information then please contact Jill at the Town of Vincent on 9252 1323
jill.symons@vincent.wa.gov.au or Tracee Blythe on 9273 6030 tracee.blythe@vincent.wa.gov.au - you may want to hurry as they are offering FREE stalls to successful applicants!

The other new market of note is the Perth Upmarket, which will be held at the fabulous location of the Perth Town Hall, right in the heart of the city. The market will return the Town Hall's medieval fashioned undercroft to its original use, as it was used as a market waaaaay back yonder in the early days of the Swan River Settlement. Taking advantage of passing crowds from Sunday trading, the Upmarket is planned for Sunday September 14 and December 14 and will run quarterly. The intent of Perth Upmarket is "to connect the makers of beautiful things to people who appreciate the unique, handmade and locally designed". Hear, hear. For market application or visitor information, visit http://www.perthupmarket.com.au/
More opportunties to support great stuff Made on the Left....

Milkd photo credit Jo Baker from www.yourrestaurants.com.au
Perth Town Hall image taken from

Faces behind Made on the Left - Part 3 - Aussiepatches

You've already met Dara and Jacquie, now it's time to meet Alicia Rosam - the face behind Aussiepatches.

Tell us a bit about yourself & your craft.I’m a total geek who loves to play computer games, read fashion magazines and watch Star Trek. I’m a total fitness junkie and live in a house surrounded by pets – including a dog, cat, rabbit, guinea pigs and fish. All are named after forms of money.

I don’t know if I would consider what I create as a craft. In reality I draw things, and make things that I think look right, then have the bonus of having people go ‘ooh’ and ‘aah’ when they see them. I’m obsessed with fashion, shopping, makeup and capturing emotions within the figures I draw. I have a tendency to focus on portraiture and really drawing the viewer into the work, and making them feel what the character feels. My creating tends to make its own path, and it really depends on the character that I draw to what they’d like to do next. Some of them want to become badges, others magnets, some address books and others fabric dolls. I guess I just love to give life to my wild and crazy imagination in any form that I can.

What is Made on the Left?Made on the Left revolves around the idea that we make things in Western Australia. So many people travel interstate to hit ‘celebrity’ status in the design world, but the reality is that Perth is the next big thing and just because we are on the ‘left’ of Australia doesn’t mean we have any less talent. We want to keep that talent here and focus on the thriving arts and crafts community beginning to rise.

What made you want to get involved with organising a craft fair?I learn very quickly and have a vast amount of knowledge that I want to put into action. I guess organising a craft fair was just another step towards the goals I want to achieve as an illustrator / designer. I love the ability to network, to face obstacles and overcome them as well as the pride in just being able to be part of something that will really help other designers trying to make their mark in Western Australia.

Is this your fulltime profession?Yep, everyday of the week! I get up at around 7am and work all the way through to 11pm. Sometimes my hours get knocked around when I’m working for international clients. Recently my commission from Sony/BMG meant that I was up at 3am to do conference calls or answer urgent e-mails, and then I’d go back to bed for an hour or so, then get up and do it again. Sometimes the work has to be done and sleep gets pushed aside for later. It can be tough.

What inspires you?Fashion, Celebrities and shopping – exactly in that order. I am also inspired the most when I am stressed, depressed and lonely. My best hours for working are 11pm – 5am. I guess that at these times I am the least critical about what I create and I allow the passion for what I do to flow through the work. Creating my work and being inspired to be able to create it is one of the most painful parts of the process for me.

Do you think being in Perth affects your craft in a negative way?

Yes I do. I always get asked why I’m not in Melbourne. That if I was in Melbourne or Sydney I’d be a superstar celebrity by now. That I don’t get the press attention I deserve because no-one knows enough about me over here.

I think it is more that I don’t get the opportunity to network with as many people as I would interstate. There aren’t a lot of opportunities to network here in Western Australia, and quite often you only get the chance by knowing someone and being brought along to the event by them.

What do you think of Australian design?
I think Australian design stands in the forefront within the international market. I see a lot of designers that impact the design world very strongly and turn it on its head. I see Australian design as a force that is to be reckoned with. Watch out world.

What are your plans for the future?
My plans for the future. World domination? Just kidding. In five years time I want to still be able to keep doing what I’m doing. I can’t really predict though what I want to happen, as I have no idea. A year ago when I started I would never have imagined that I would be where I am today. A year ago I didn’t even draw portraits. Now I have a fan club and my work not only lives all over the world but is also used to teach art students from Australia to America and even Spain. I’ve had university papers written about me and used as an example for research papers. It is a little freaky and kind of intimidating to suddenly be considered so ‘high’ in the illustration world. I’m just me. I live in a big house with a dining room that has bright canary yellow walls which I can’t stand. I don’t see myself in the way that others may perceive me. I just create when I feel I need to, and draw what I think is right. I guess in the future I’d just like to find my feet and keep having new avenues on where I can present my work. I’ll soon have illustrations on clothing in department stores across America as well as secondary school textbooks across Australia – and that is only the tip of the iceberg in what will be happening in the next few months. Tomorrow brings excitement, joy and a surprise. As long as I keep being surprised, I’m happy to have no plan at all.