Articles by ishbeljohnson
At the end of the month I was very proud to say I completed my level 2 saddle exam and working straight onto my level 3! The level 2 saddle is a pony saddle which I completed in 2020, but unfortunately due to COVID the exam was later than planned. I had to work hard remembering the process and points within making a saddle from scratch.
Well, May disappeared didn’t it! As I mentioned in my last blog post, at the end of April I was lucky enough to visit the Abbey England warehouse in Knutsford where I took away some stunning leather from the Sedgwick 1900 Collection. With this being possibly the nicest leather I have ever handled, I am approaching it with caution. Whenever I acquire a new leather, my first piece is always a small card holder.
Since my last blog I have been my usual busy self, still trying to find the work, life and horse balance, which so far has been successful. April started with some downtime on Easter holiday away from work which I spent with my daughter, Chloe and plenty of horse activities. I then returned to work for the week, knuckling down with my apprenticeship. Ceremonial rehearsals do not take place whilst everyone is away on holiday, so this is a perfect opportunity to work on my apprenticeship.
Since my last blog I have been able to visit the Abbey England warehouse in Knutsford, Cheshire. I spent some time researching and thinking about the tools and leather I wanted to purchase with my leather scholarship fund and was excited to visit the warehouse and explore everything.
I am a leather crafter, so generally the leather I have chosen to go for in the past has easily fit that bill – thin, maybe not too expensive so I could experiment, but still have a beautiful colouring and texture.
Hey everyone, Where to start! This is my first blog with Abbey England since winning the Scholarship for Leatherwork. March has come and gone in the blink of an eye but I have managed to be quite productive in spite of all the current coronavirus madness! A big win for this month was getting my YouTube channel up and running...
Abbey England will be closed for the Easter holiday from Friday 2nd April 2021 – Monday 5th April 2021.
Our website will continue to accept orders during the holiday but orders will not be processed until Tuesday 6th April.
We wish all our customers and suppliers a very happy and safe Easter.
At work we have had the green light for some form of ceremonial duties to go ahead for the year. We have begun training for Royal Windsor Horse show at which we perform The Musical Drive. I have been asked to ride Number One position for B sub section.
In episode 6, we celebrate International Women's Day with Helen Reader. A female saddler at the top of her game. In 2018 Helen became the only SMS member to hold the titles of Master Saddler, Master Harness Maker, Master Bridle Maker and Master Saddler Fitter. This year, Helen has also been named one of the UK’s 100 inspirational entrepreneurs by Small Business Britain’s f:Entrepreneur #ialso100 campaign as well as being named as the next President of the Society of Master Saddlers.
In episode 5, we meet and greet our 2021 Scholarship Winners Christie Farren, a British Army saddlers apprentice to The Kings Troop RHA and Ross Miller, a website designer turned leatherworker. We discuss their drive for saddlery and leatherwork and their future plans.
Don't sell, tell! Marketing is not about selling your products to an individual but showing that individual that you'll look after them if they choose to become a customer. Read what Phil Neave from Neave Creative has to say on the matter.