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!

Friday, October 25

Spotlight: Enid Twiglet

beautiful bird + creative soul
We got a chance to catch up with the ever so lovely crew over at Enid Twiglet, and asked a few bits and bobs about the work that goes on behind bird-filled doors. Enid Twiglet creates a lot of hand-embroided work, as well as some beautiful laser cut pieces! If you like all things quirky, botanical and possibly a feather or two in your tea then Enid Twiglet is for you!

Describe Enid Twiglet in three words

Handmade. Unique. Quirky.

You say you hand embroider a lot of your work. How long does it take for you to finish a piece?

The really small pieces take about 1 - 2 hours and the larger embroideries can take anywhere up to 40 hours.

What is your biggest inspiration?

I am a self confessed “bird lady” and am constantly inspired by anything to do with ornithology, (so much so I am thinking of studying it next year!).  We live with three very entertaining birds: Nigel the budgie and Colin and Barney who are cockatiels. We also have three rare breed chickens who are great fun to hang out with.

Colin is my constant companion, and spends most of his time perched on my shoulder and he enjoys unpicking my stitches as I embroider. I also love dusty old books and forgotten things found in other people’s trash and op-shops.  I am drawn to unusual subject matter such as human anatomy and most recently my hand embroidered insect collection.  I enjoy creating things that may not conventionally be seen as beautiful or appealing!

What kind of process does your work go through to become a tangible product?

I spend some time researching the subject matter then do up a quick pen drawing in my sketch book. From there I either trace or re-draw the outline onto fabric using a fabric pen.  My hand embroideries are free hand stitched. I normally have a pretty good idea of how I want something to look in my head and just take it from there. I have never used a pattern for my work and this makes every piece completely unique.  

Once the embroidery is finished I photograph it and then Mr Twiglet takes over to produce our laser engraved pieces. We have a laser cutting business as well as Enid Twiglet which means we have creative control over all of our creations and nothing has to be outsourced.

Is there a favourite product of yours?

Oh gosh this is hard! I get very attached to all of the larger hand embroideries purely because I spend so much time with them.  If I am stitching an animal or bird I create little personalities for them and the anatomical work I stitched last year for my exhibition was so personal and I definitely have some trouble letting those pieces go to new homes.  Right now I would have to say Mr Octopus. Purely because he challenged me right from the first stitch. Tentacles are hard! I am so attached to him I have decided to keep him for myself. 

If you had an infinite amount of money to put towards EnidTwiglet, how would you use it?

I would love a separate work space that isn't in our home. A solid brick and mortar studio space with a little retail outlet would be awesome. Oh, and I would love an assistant who would do my paper work for me! 

Mr Twiglet would love a huge studio where he could spend all his time designing, making and laser cutting.  We would both love to quit our day jobs and focus purely on working for ourselves. We are slowly making it happen!

What do you feel attracts customers to your products?

I think people enjoy the story of how our products are created. We make absolutely everything ourselves (including our labels) and I think our customers enjoy hearing about the processes involved. Plus the fact we are both ginger seems to make people laugh!

Have you ever thought of tackling a sewing machine and expanding your range?

I would like to learn how to use a sewing machine so I can make my own clothes but I am not interested in learning machine embroidery. I have seen some amazing embroidery work done on sewing machines but I get so much pleasure from working with just a needle, thread and my hands I don't think I would ever want to change that. 

What are your products made out of?

The embroideries are just sewing thread stitched onto cotton either presented in an embroidery hoop, laser cut pendant/brooch frames or glass bottles. We laser engrave my embroidered images onto glassware, wood, leather and acrylic.

If our readers mention this article can they receive 10% off at the upcoming MOTL market?

Yes of course!


Wednesday, October 23

Denmark Arts Markets

The Denmark Arts Markets were established in 1981 and are now a ‘must do’ event in the Great Southern that attracts over 12,000 visitors each year.

They have 100 stall spaces and a stage that provide an opportunity for craftspeople and creatives as well as performers to showcase their wares in a vibrant village atmosphere, on the banks of the Denmark River. There is also opportunity for stall holders who offer fresh produce, food and beverage.

This coming season there will be five markets - all dates fall on a Saturday 10am – 4pm:

  • Saturday 14th December 2013
  • Saturday 4th January 2014
  • Saturday 25th January 2014
  • Saturday 1st March 2014
  • Saturday 19th April (Easter) 2014

For stallholder information, please visit their website: http://www.denmarkarts.com.au/stallholderinfo
Please note that this is essentially a 'Craft Market' so imported jewellery, plastic novelties, retail clothing and goods that are mass produced are not permitted.

Wednesday, October 16

5 Things All Crafters Need On Their Website Home Page

Having your own website is a great way to tell your brand story in as much or as little detail as you like. It gives you the opportunity to showcase your products however you like and is also a great place for you to connect with buyers and direct them to whatever information they need. 

It’s also is a great place to sell, free from listing charges and competition. But what if you have your products for sale on your website but they’re not selling as well as you’d like? Here are 5 simple things to include on your home page to make sure you really are being found by customers and directing them to where they need to go to make a purchase.

1. A link to your shop 

Sounds obvious but is sometimes forgotten. Make sure the link is easy to see and completely obvious. If it’s not in your header then make sure you put it there asap. Also add another link somewhere else on the page such as a clickable image or in any text.

And if you have any images or text of a product make sure that links to the product in the shop so a customer can easily find it and buy it.

If you offer wholesale and sell to retail outlets don’t forget to include really easy-to-find links to both those sections on your homepage. Don’t make wholesale customers search for your wholesale page or expect shoppers to know you have products in shops if it’s not obvious to them.

Make it super obvious.

2. At least one paragraph of text on your page that includes several keywords.

This should be in text, not within an image or in Flash/PDF. The text is there for the benefit of Google so it can place you in search queries so make sure there are plenty of references to your keywords. Keywords are words customers use when searching for your products. They are sometimes very obvious (your name, what you sell) and sometimes a little less easy to think of (a description or feeling of your brand). Below is the text you can find on my website homepage. All keywords I used have been bolded to make them easy for you to see. 

Delight Society is an artisan soap company which stays very close to the simply natural while being a long walk and two bus trips from the frankly artificial. Using only natural ingredients Delight Society produces bath and body products which are free from Sodium Lauryl Sulphate, Synthetics, Parabens and Palm Oil. Hand crafted in Western Australia each product is carefully prepared to be gentle and nourishing on your skin such as handmade soaps, decadent body scrubs, skin loving body oils and kid friendly bubble baths. Delight Society also sells to wholesale clients; providing handmade products of high quality to companies who are looking for unique and luxurious items.

Delight Society products straight from the source or from these retailers. 

These aren’t my only keywords throughout the website but they the major ones for what I sell. The first step is to make a list of keywords that shoppers will use when searching for products that you sell. Then build a paragraph around those keywords and add it to your home page. Include inbound links when necessary.

3. Social media links 

This encourages customer interaction and by making it easy for customers to “Like” your Facebook page they will be more likely to do so. Put them in an easy-to-see spot, such as the header, footer, a side bar or wherever they will be easily seen.

4. Constant new content 

By constantly changing some information on your homepage you become increasingly attractive to search engines. Content is king when it comes to being found on the internet so make sure your changes are positive and contain your keywords. The easiest way to do this is to have a blog/Facebook/Twitter feed directly on your home page. Then every time you update your social media it immediately updates on your homepage. Wordpress and other open source platforms have widgets for this but if your website was made by a professional developer then it will not be difficult for them to add this feature in.

5. Amazing photography 

This can’t be emphasised enough. My photography skills are really not as good as I’d like them to be so I stick to simple product shots and am slowly building up a collection of “behind the scenes/lifestyle” shots that I can add in as I go.

If you don’t have a lot of great photographs, start with your very best images and put only them on your home page. Keep updating them as you go, this is also great for SEO. Don’t put any poor quality photos on your home page...ever.

Also name and tag your images correctly. This increases you being found in searches.

These five additions to your home page will help increase traffic and get sellers exactly where you want them...at your website. 

Jacquie Hughes is on the Made on the Left committee and is the founder of  delightsociety.com

Saturday, October 5

Christmas Gift Market @ Subi Farmers Market

Expressions of Interest are now open for this year's Fair Trade Christmas Gift Market at Subi Farmers Market. The market will take place on Saturday the 7th of December from 8.00am - 12.00pm.

There are very limited places available and expressions of interest close on Friday the 18th of October 2013. Successful applications will be informed via email by the 25th of October 2013.

To get an application form, contact