Browse content similar to Episode 3. Check below for episodes and series from the same categories and more!
This country's handicraft tradition
is something we should all be proud of.
I want to celebrate those skills and help today's craftsmen
and women pass them on.
But I need your help, so come on, join me, Paul Martin,
and my Handmade Revolution.
We've searched the country for Britain's best amateur makers.
I didn't know I could do wood carving until I started doing it.
I just like making beautiful, pretty things. I'm a bit of a magpie.
But only one will be considered talented enough
to be presented with the opportunity of a lifetime,
to see their work on display in a world-renowned museum.
And that person is...
In the 19th century, Bromsgrove was home to one of the most influential
and successful craft guilds of the late Victorian era.
In fact, craft members made the gate and railings for Buckingham Palace.
Today we're at the nearby Jinney Ring Craft Centre.
The craftsmen and women who ply their trade here
are keepers of that proud tradition.
Five lucky makers will have the chance to present their finest work
to our trio of craft connoisseurs,
and believe me, there are some really talented makers out there.
But it's going to take a great deal to impress these judges.
So let's meet them.
Mary Jane Baxter is a milliner, who teaches and writes all about craft.
I just know there's real talent out there.
I can't wait to see what we discover.
Entrepreneur Piyush Suri is the force behind an organisation
that champions up-and-coming designer makers.
I know there's so much talent out there. I see it every day.
It's going to be brilliant, seeing all this wonderful creativity
and skilled workmanship Britain has on offer.
I'm very excited.
And our chief judge, Glenn Adamson,
is head of research at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.
This country has such a rich tradition of craft.
I'm hoping to meet people who are carrying that on into the 21st century.
But the stakes could not be higher, because one of today's hopefuls
will be given the chance to see their piece on display, alongside
the world's finest collection at the Victoria and Albert Museum.
60-year-old Pam Kirk, from West Yorkshire, has always loved making.
Her passion for a particular flower is helping her help others,
as Mary Jane is finding out.
I'm wearing a beautiful yellow poppy.
Pam, you've got a lovely white one,
then we've this lovely array of poppies in front of us.
I gather, Pam, you make them and sell them for charity, is that right?
That's right, yes.
In just over two years, I've managed to give £13,500 to charity.
These are poppies that you make out of glass beads, aren't they?
I design them all and make them from tiny little glass beads.
How many beads in each one?
There's 2,500 approximately in each poppy.
2,500 beads in each poppy?!
And each poppy takes 20 hours to make.
Wow! You're committed.
I like making them.
It's a lot of work.
You've got all these lovely different shades of colour.
The red poppy, which people will recognise,
and then the other lovely summery colours.
What gave you the idea?
I think it was 2010.
I saw a programme which moved me to do something to help the charity,
and it took actually six months to come up with this one.
That's the first one I ever made that I was happy with.
There were probably a dozen prototypes before I was happy.
If I make anything, it's got to be right for me,
before it's right for anybody else.
Yes, I hear your nickname is Pernickety Pam!
Looking at this,
with 2,000-odd beads going into something like that,
you'd have to be pernickety to get it as perfect as you've got it.
It's a lovely design that you've come up with.
-You have here the various stages...
-Step by step.
..so people can either choose to buy a completed poppy,
and that's £25, which in no way reflects the hours of work,
but as you say, you're doing it for charity.
-Or they can send less.
-Buy the pattern.
-£10 to buy the pattern.
-And then make it themselves.
-They're very desirable in themselves,
and they're doing something good.
One thing I really want to ask, does your eyesight not go,
threading these tiny beads?
How do you do it, is it done on a loom?
No, with a needle and thread. You stitch one bead to the next.
Have you any designs or ideas about turning it into more of a business?
The amount of time it takes, I don't know whether you could ever,
certainly to make these, what you would charge really.
-Well, given the hours of work...
-20 hours to make one.
-..it would be very expensive to buy.
-Finished article, yes.
And it's difficult.
I guess in a high-end gallery,
you would get somebody perhaps spending a lot more money,
but then it would be a difficult thing to sell at a high price point.
You're absolutely right.
Pam, thank you very much for bringing your poppies along.
You may be known as Pernickety Pam, but it's a pleasure to meet you.
-Long may the charity work continue.
It's clear that Pam has talent and commitment,
and it's great she's using her skills for a good cause.
I just love making them, making something beautiful.
Pleasure of giving it to somebody else,
and them receiving it and being happy.
And continuing a wonderful craft.
I just like making beautiful, pretty things. I'm a bit of a magpie.
Beading is a skilled and ancient craft.
I'm not sure poppies are particularly original,
but they may have a modern, high fashion appeal.
It'll be interesting to see what the judges think.
Our next finalist lives in south Wales.
51-year-old Vin Elphick wasn't allowed to go to art school
as a teenager, so he took up hairdressing instead.
He's now back in touch with his artistic leanings,
and enjoys sculpting in stone.
I think it's very difficult to put a commercial angle on this product,
because for me, it's more of an art form,
rather than just a craft item.
Because it has much more going on behind the scenes as well.
There's a lot of your emotions involved in that.
-Wouldn't you agree with that?
-I would do, yeah.
I do put a lot of myself into my work
and it's more than just a craft to me.
It's my life. I don't know what I'd do without it. I get two days away from carving something
and I get withdrawal symptoms. I was diagnosed four years ago
as having bipolar disorder. Apparently, I've had it all my life.
But having the diagnosis made a lot of sense
of my life previous to the diagnosis, if you like.
It's brought home how important things are to me.
So all your pieces are based on the same kind of emotions,
or do you have different emotions?
I have different emotions all the time
and, with them, they bring new questions, new concepts,
new problems to overcome and it helps me to get things out myself.
It's therapeutic and cathartic and I just love it.
This is very calm and serene,
so I can see very good emotions falling through it.
But what happens when the ugly emotions are running,
do you show it in the form of textures, in the form of colour, the stone?
If I'm feeling uptight and I feel like knocking seven bells out of something,
then I'll use a harder stone.
If I want to sit down, I want to have what's in here and in here
coming through these and easing it into something nice and soft
and moulding that, almost. Like I did with these, because it's a fantastic stone.
That is brilliant. But when the ugly things turn up then...
..I become very graphic.
You can see your temper in work, as well,
-either very calm emotions or suddenly a rage?
So what's the concept, why these three pieces?
It's quite intriguing.
I spent two days with an American-Canadian Inuit,
who told me stories and philosophies about the Inuit way of life.
I call these spirit catchers and this is a family.
You've the child, the mother and the father.
But what is the idea behind the base, the platform?
Because don't you think if we kept here as...
Do you think there's a use of this platform?
I think having a solid slate foundation is a nice heavy solid foundation
that a family should have. My family are very important to me.
-They've looked after me. Over recent years, I've not been well.
I can clearly see there is a lot of emotion and passion behind what you do.
How do you want to promote it?
I get what I get from what I do whilst I'm doing it.
Once a piece is finished,
I don't have any emotional attachment to it.
Although you are completely passionate about when you're doing it,
but you take that criticism - you're a self-critic.
Then you just move on to make a better piece.
I think it's very important, from a commercial point of view,
to detach yourself and see it from a different perspective,
which, clearly, you can do.
-I would love to see more of your work. It's beautiful.
-Thank you very much.
Vincent is an example of many people who get hands-on
to help positive changes to their life
and improve their sense of wellbeing.
I was really... Yeah, to hear somebody like that great man
just be so complimentary about my work was nice.
He said it was more of an art form.
And the word artist is something I've never really felt comfortable with.
But just hearing him say that has given me a boost in confidence.
So, yeah, wonderful.
It's difficult to put a price on such personal work
but Vin is certainly tapping in to an ancient tradition.
Stone carving is thought to go back over 800,000 years.
Now, I wonder if any of our amateur makers here today have what it takes
for their work to become sought-after antiques of the future.
Regularly, high-end auction rooms all over the world handle
the work of celebrated master craftsmen of the past.
Stone carving is associated with ancient civilisations,
but it had a renaissance in Victorian times.
When the Industrial Revolution was in full flow
and the Empire at the height of its influence,
Britain was growing richer
and treasures from around the world made their way here.
The bust is an Italian bust, of about 1908,
in carved alabaster
and stained alabaster, so we call it two-tone alabaster.
It is hand carved and by a particular person, Professor Bessi.
The subject is called Mignon, which is quite a popular subject
in Florence and Rome at this time.
It is nicely carved.
It's nicely observed with the curling of the hair
and the detail around the eyes and the bodice work there.
And alabaster is a little bit softer than marble,
so a little bit easier to carve.
Italian busts of this period are quite plentiful.
We see quite a few similar to this.
Not exactly the same because they are hand done,
but fairly similar.
And they were made really to cater for the growing middle-class market,
with more people with money to spend.
And...not exactly tourist pieces, better than tourist pieces,
just nice bits of sculpture, but at a more affordable level.
We're estimating this at £1,000 - £1,500, which I think is sensible.
They haven't gone up a lot in the last 20 years.
I would think, in the 1980s, the price would have been roughly the same,
maybe a little bit less, but, certainly after inflation, about the same.
It'll be interesting to see whether anything designed
and created by our own artists and makers
will be discovered in auction rooms in the future.
Diane, what's going on here, it looks like a hive of activity?
It's been a really busy day. We have been making material flowers.
There have been more people around this little marquee
than anywhere else on the site.
It's just been an amazing response. It really has.
I didn't expect it to be as busy as it is, but it's been brilliant, it really has.
You're making these. What do you call them?
Corsages, brooches, flower brooches,
just made out of vintage fabrics. That's an old curtain.
-So just recycling a lot of the fabrics.
We're going to do a few gathering stitches all the way along.
How long have you been doing this?
I've been sewing ever since I can hold a needle.
Did your mum teach you?
My nan taught me.
I can see it happening, but this is not like sewing with a sewing machine,
this is just thread and needle.
This is really simple.
It's something I've chosen to do today, because it is so easy
and anybody can have a go.
How do you get the different layers and build it up?
What would happen is, we would get to the very end
and then, as it's gathered, you then start wrapping it around.
And you stitch as you go, so you're catching in all the ends
and, effectively, you're ending up with a corsage.
-You get these multi-layers.
-It is just like petals.
It's a great summer thing.
Lots of fun, good for weddings, good for christenings, anything over the top.
I could see that with a big hat, you could put one in the hat, as well.
-You're obviously very arty.
Basically, if you can't sew, get on a course,
because you could be doing something like this. It's so simple.
If you want to join my Handmade Revolution,
you can find out more by going on to our website at...
Our next handmade revolutionary, Nicola Crabb from Devon,
works part-time as a chef.
But when this 28-year-old isn't preparing tasty treats in the kitchen,
she's cooking up some unique, flamed-grilled creations in a hot fire.
Nicola, I've seen a lot of glass products
and glass is not in trend at the moment at all.
Why are you so passionate about glass?
I started off in ceramics, when I first started studying
and the difference between glass and ceramics is, with glass, you've got massive transparency.
Like I've done here, I've used small pieces of colour,
so you can see all the way through the piece and it sets it off.
Sometimes, with glass, you just need a little bit of colour and it can set a whole piece off.
If you feel the back, it's got loads of texture on the back,
so you can put texture into glass
-and get reflections and transparency through that.
-You like the transparency?
I think... Look at this.
-It's just creating amazing patterns.
-Yeah. Loads of reflections.
You've said that you studied ceramics and switched to glass.
When I do ceramics, I throw on the wheel and it's a circular movement,
circular motion, and I found when I started learning to do glass-blowing,
it's also circular, so you've got... If I pass you that.
You are sitting there
and you're turning it
and, with a paper pad,
you're really close to the glass and it's burning, it's really exciting.
It's a circular motion, I just love it, I'm fascinated by it.
With glass, is it also about the temperature? Is it temperature-controlled
and then a lot of accidents can happen?
I'm also a chef and the way I explain it to people is
when you are cooking, you have to make sure your timings are right
and exactly the same with glass.
Because if your timings are not right, if a piece of glass is being
brought to another piece of glass and it's too cold or too hot,
the whole thing just falls on the floor.
How much is the wastage that goes on in making this piece?
-When I first started making it, I was having about 75% wastage.
It depends what you are trying to do.
Because if you're trying to do something really difficult,
you know it is not going to work, but you push the glass to its limits.
It's that pushing to its limits you learn about glass and you learn a different way.
Sometimes, you have to alter your design.
Where do you see yourself going after this piece?
I would like to do a lot bigger pieces.
I've got larger pieces which are very long.
With your background, with the ceramics,
you can always combine the materials and challenge the notions.
-It's something that can be done. It's sort of an exciting thing, but...
I think he liked it.
He liked the reflections and he said it went with his jeans.
So, maybe he might like it for his jeans or something!
Give it to his jeans as a present!
I think Nicola's work is beautiful
and I'm amazed at the talent on display.
I think £150 is the right price.
But is it impressive enough to win over the other judges?
Now to another skill that relies on fire to create some amazing objects.
Hayley Powell is a modern blacksmith,
eager to shrug off any preconceptions about it being a man's job.
I must say, the work she produces is brilliant.
Hayley, come and have a chat to me, if you can, can you leave that alone?
-Yes, that's all right, Paul.
-I love what you're wearing.
-I think that's great.
-It's really cool and really funky.
And so is your work. How long have you been a blacksmith?
It's only been about two years since I set up my business.
What inspired you to do something like this?
-Because it is, in all respects, a man's world.
-This is true.
I had quite an early introduction to the craft.
I was only 16 and, for a school project,
I was able to make a piece of public art as a sculpture
and just fell in love with it and found it was a dying-out craft.
I was passionate about trying to revive it.
Most blacksmiths found they knew they needed to get young blood coming through
and passing on those skills, so everyone I've met has been eager to teach me.
I've been running the business for two years and it's gone from strength to strength.
Some commissions. More public art sculptures coming up.
Little things. I'm trying to bring it to a new audience.
And, hopefully soon, you'll be teaching the next generation coming through.
Absolutely. That's what I'm really passionate about.
I've had all these skills passed on to me
and I need to pass the skills back on and to make blacksmithing not die out.
I won't stop you any longer. I know that's nearly at the right temperature,
-so do you want to have a go and we'll watch?
As you can see, Hayley is incredibly gifted.
What I find astonishing is she knew she wanted to do this
from a very young age and I know there are lots of other youngsters out there
that want to do something like this.
We mustn't put them off.
The idea of the Handmade Revolution is to encourage it,
because there is a lot of raw talent, as we're seeing here.
There's certainly an army of talented revolutionaries assembled here today
and the next one to go before the judges is 71-year-old Thomasina Freeman.
Thomasina, you're a very glamorous great-granny
and you're certainly doing a degree, still.
-What's your success? What are you on?
What inspires you to do these felt hats?
It started many years ago. I was interested in knitting.
That led on to spinning and then I found, about 30 years ago,
Being an unstructured fabric, you haven't got to knit it,
you haven't got to weave it.
With fibres, you can make it straight away.
Tell me more about your colours, because I always find a lot of
felt makers, they use very bright colours
and they are very clashing all the time, so I don't find them very contemporary.
But this colour combination, it's very subtle.
Although there is colour in there, it is subtle.
The idea, the inspiration for that, was mainly to do with the Diamond Jubilee.
Celebration - red, white and blue - but not done, maybe, in such a bold, brash way.
-I don't know. It does seem to have worked.
-Why don't you model this for me?
-Right. I'll try.
I can't say it really suits me, but you can be the judge.
Not bad. THEY LAUGH
Tell me, how much time does it take you to make this hat?
Um, from beginning to end, maybe a good half-day, maybe even a day.
-For making one complete finished product?
And dried and blocked. Particularly the hats.
If you saw this kind of hat in the market,
how much would you pay for it?
-I would say £60 to £70.
-That's a good price.
You'll have to spread the word!
How much of your personality is in this work?
Er, yeah, I think the fun side of myself is expressed in the work
and also I do enjoy using colour and I think that's expressed in there.
From what you've said, it sounds as though I'm using it the right way.
I think he enjoyed it. Being a textiler, which I didn't realise.
Yeah, I think, maybe, he might actually be involved in some felt making.
Thomasina obviously enjoys what she does.
She puts a lot of her own personality into her work.
I think she has pitched her beautiful product at about the right price.
The art of creating fabric using yarn and a hook has been with us for hundreds of years.
We've certainly been inundated with people with a passion for textiles.
Our head judge, Glenn, has been meeting some of them.
Maggie, you've brought this explosion of colour to look at,
a real riot of things, all made with crochet.
Crochet is a love that I've had for a long time,
along with all my other textile activities.
-It's an ideal craft for exploring colour.
Can you tell us more about this bag?
Maybe turn it around so we see the full range of colours.
These are the cooler colours and these are the warmer colours.
And this was just devised to use up the scraps.
It's really my scrap bag.
-Little odd bits from other projects.
-So it's recycling?
It's absolutely recycling, yes.
-Do you work intuitively?
-Yes, yes. A ball of wool and a crochet hook.
Crochet is done with a hook, instead of needles, which you'd use for knitting, of course.
I've tried so many crafts in my lifetime.
I've done so many different things and each one has been a challenge.
It's when it comes together that that sense of achievement is at its greatest.
You can stand back and have some pride in what you've done.
Thanks so much for coming in, talking to us today, and this
beautiful explosion of colour that you've brought has really brightened up the day.
Many amateurs only find real time for handicrafts later in life
and that's certainly true of retired stockbroker Andy Ritchie,
who's inspired by nature.
-This is a beautiful hummingbird, Andy.
Supping honey from a fantasy flower, or is it a flower of particular type?
It's probably a fantasy flower,
because trying to carve a specific flower,
you get the horticulturalists who tell you you got it wrong somewhere.
So better to do something imaginative?
-I think a fantasy flower is a better idea.
-A safer option. Absolutely.
Now, I think I'm right in saying that you've carved this entire piece by hand, is that right?
Yes, no mechanical means other than files, rasps and knives.
-How did you get into wood carving?
-Well, sort of by accident.
I was bought a lathe when I retired.
I got bored with making things that were round.
We went to an art show
and somebody had done a model of a red kite in bronze
and I went one of the, "I wonder if I could do that in wood?"
I went home and tried and, after a couple of months,
I found I could do that in wood.
I like to do the things that if somebody says, "You can't do that,"
-I'm jolly well going to have a go at it.
-So you like a challenge?
I tend to like a challenge.
What I like about it, too, is if I look at the bird's wings, for example,
-there's a feathering.
-That is natural from the grain of the wood.
-That is a sort of happy accident.
Maybe it was an accident, but you've really used the wood beautifully.
Wood is there to be used. Wood is absolutely beautiful.
And if you get it right, you can do amazing things with it.
And a lot of it's in the wood to start with.
And it's bringing out the nature of the wood.
Every piece of wood has a sculpture in it
and the wood generally tells you what it wants to be.
You showed me. If you just tap it gently,
we can see the hummingbird move in the flower,
which is a really lovely thing.
How many years have you been working with hand-carved wood?
-I retired in 2004.
-So eight years, or so?
-About eight years.
I had no formal training in woodwork at all. I was a stockbroker.
So it provides me with a little beer money.
When you sell your pieces, Andy, what sort of price range do they sell at?
-That would sell for about £350.
A lot of people watching might think, "Wow, that's expensive."
But how many hours of work went into that?
That particular bit took about two months
-and that's working most days.
-There we are.
And when people say, "Wow, that's expensive,"
I say, "£350, two months' work, come on."
There are a number of very clever people out there
and until such time as you try these things, you don't know what you can achieve.
I think the price tag would be likely to leave Andy
out of pocket for his two months of hard work.
Like many people in retirement, it has given Andy the opportunity
to try new things and, for an amateur, he's made something beautiful.
I didn't know I could do wood carving until I started doing it.
I found that I could do things I never thought I could do in a million years.
As part of my drive to get the nation crafting,
I've been visiting craftsmen and women all over Britain.
I've always admired people who are keeping these old skills alive,
working with their hands, and they don't come more ancient than stonemasonry.
So with chisel in hand, I've travelled to Gloucestershire
to have a lesson with a professional carver
and get my hands on some local Cotswold stone.
Stone working is a traditional skill that dates back thousands of years
and the tools used have barely changed.
Here in the Cotswolds, there is evidence of stone working everywhere you look,
from the buildings to the stone walls framing the fields.
The Rococo Gardens in Painswick are a wonderful example
of early 18th-century garden design.
This beautiful backdrop is the unconventional workplace
of a sculptor in residence who has agreed to teach me the basics in stone carving.
Ann-Margreth Bohl is a typical handmade revolutionary
in that sculpture is her second career.
Born in Germany, she worked as a paediatric nurse
until deciding to requalify as an art therapist.
As part of her training, she tried stone carving,
and the rest, as they say, is history.
It's a fantastic privilege to be here and work in the garden.
-I often come early in the morning.
-When there's no-one around.
-It's great. It's really very special.
-Are you here all year round?
I have just been, really, from the beginning of this year,
artist in residence.
-Just one year, you get all the seasons, you get to see it all?
-The frozen lake in the winter.
-Ah, how lovely.
I think sculpture should be viewed outside and I think nature plays a bit part in looking at sculpture,
-with the light and the weather.
-I couldn't agree more.
Especially with stone.
In a gallery environment, it really kills it off.
I really feel this is the place for stone carving.
-When did you start to learn this craft?
-18, 19 years ago.
-I was completely hooked from that moment.
-That was it?
-How many items of work do you have on display?
-I think it's eight.
What's your favourite piece?
The favourite often is the one I have just finished.
Obviously. Typical artist! The latest thing you've created.
-This one is called Through-hole.
-It's very Barbara Hepworth.
I like the circles, looking through the circles, different light.
And the way to look at sculpture is to look from every single angle.
-There's no bad angle.
Stone workers have to toil for many years to become master masons
and Ann-Margreth prefers to think of herself as an artist.
But she works in an ancient tradition
and her hands have fashioned some remarkable pieces.
One of my favourite British sculptors was Barbara Hepworth,
who is credited with having helped to develop modern art in this country.
Here, we can see her turning a piece of cold, hard stone
into her wonderful Curved Reclining Form of 1962.
Ann-Margreth has agreed to show us how to make something special from stone.
-Before we get started, are you going to go through some of the basic tools?
OK, let's look at the chisels.
We've got a pitcher here so if you've got a block,
you draw yourself a line with a chisel and then hit quite hard with a pitcher
and whole chunks will just fall off.
You've got all the different varieties. You've got the gougers.
-The gougers, as you can see, are sort of round.
-And sharp, as well.
-You sharpened these up today!
-Well, I did, yes.
I mean, the designs haven't changed in 4,000 years.
-Not even the mallet shape, although the material has changed.
-This is rubber.
-A shock absorber.
-It bounces back. So if you're hitting the stone all day every day...
-It does the work for you.
It really does.
What couple of chisels would you set out to buy at first?
-You really can do with very little.
-Very little tools.
-I would probably go for a claw chisel, medium-sized one
and get a lump hammer. You can get those very cheaply. Those mallets are very expensive.
-A little lump hammer will do the job.
-This is Cotswold stone. Lovely.
-It's an oolite stone.
-200 million years old.
-It's old, isn't it?
I know vaguely what I want to do with this. I can see it standing up.
But I think if you show me how to get into it, it'll all...
Once you start working, something will emerge.
So find a rhythm of working over the stone.
It's a bit unpredictable, the way it's coming off.
-But at this stage, it doesn't matter.
-We're just roughing out. It really doesn't matter.
Now it's my turn to get busy with a hammer and chisel.
Do you know what I really want to do to that, straight away?
-I want to put a hole right through it.
-Well, you can do that.
-I can work from both sides?
-Yeah, you can do that.
Ah, it's looking good.
-You tell me when I think I should turn it.
I will tap away a little bit, as well.
-You tap away and I'll have a chat to you.
This is slightly Barbara Hepworth, Henry Moore-esque.
Find the form in the stone.
Would you consider yourself a master stonemason now?
I'm definitely not a stonemason.
-I would say I'm an artist using stone.
-Is that a good start?
-Very good. You're very fast.
I'll have to speed up a bit.
I don't want to make something that looks like it's come from the garden centre!
You know, like a bunny rabbit or... Yeah.
Just under an hour and I've broken through.
-I'm very pleased.
This is the first time in my life I've ever put a hole in a stone.
-It's a good thing to do, isn't it?
-It's quite addictive.
-I'm addicted to this little lump today.
Getting dangerously close to the edge now.
This is where it all goes horribly wrong.
Yeah, that's a good angle that you've got there.
That is...starting to hurt.
I'll have an ice cream now and sit down and cool off
and have a stand back from this
and have a real think about exactly what is going on,
-Have a look at it from all angles.
-And turn it round.
Let's think about that and have a breather under the tree and get an ice cream.
That sounds a good idea. Yeah, let's do that.
Cor, that was delicious. Ginger ice cream.
-Wasn't that nice?
Do you know, sitting here looking at that, the top's got to come off,
because, right now, it reminds me of a Tellytubby.
-Do you know that, it does? I'm going to take the top off.
-Let's take the top off.
-A planet. It's a play on the planets. If I can get that round.
Yeah, and it's like a portal into another dimension.
-What happens is, you've started working on the stone...
-This is how artists talk!
-We're underneath an oak tree, in the shade.
With ginger ice cream.
-Back to work.
It's been three and a quarter hours and I'm spent.
But I'm thoroughly enjoying myself.
I think I've had a masterclass in technique.
Do you know what I've ended up with now? This is my version
of Madonna and Child. Look.
If that was mounted on a plinth like that.
There's the hand holding the baby,
-here's the shawl.
-And the arm coming out.
-I can see that.
-Do you like that?
-I can hardly lift it!
This is thoroughly enjoyable.
I guarantee you'll get a lot out of this, you really will.
-You can develop so much.
-You've done really, really well.
-Thank you so much.
-You've worked so fast, I can't believe it.
You overtook me. THEY LAUGH
Well, I'm really happy with that. In a matter of hours,
I've had a masterclass from Ann-Margreth in stone carving.
It can be done, because I have just done it.
Why don't you check out what's happening in your area and give it a go?
You'll be pleased.
I love getting hands-on
and admire any talented amateur who gives it a go.
From among hundreds of applicants, these five handmade revolutionaries
were chosen to go before our judges today.
It's tough, but only one of them can be anointed judges' favourite.
None of the finalists have any idea what could be in store
for that person.
An opportunity that could potentially change their life.
It's the moment of truth.
OK, guys, here we are with the objects made by our five finalists.
Mary Jane, perhaps you can start by telling us about the folks you met.
These beaded flowers are made by...Pernickety Pam, she likes to call herself.
She used to be a bobbin lace maker
and swapped to working with beads
and each flower uses 2,000 beads.
-A lot of intricate work.
If I were the judges' favourite, I'd be thrilled.
I think it would give some recognition to the work I've done
and, hopefully, stimulate other people to take up the craft
and have a go at doing it.
Andy is a retired stockbroker and he now turns his hand to wood carving.
This little piece is made of all sorts of types of wood.
He doesn't stain his wood.
-I think it's really sweet, actually.
-Very fine, very sweet.
Very intricate details.
It would mean a great deal for my self-esteem
and it would prove to some of my doubters out there
that I can actually do what I said I could do.
-OK. How about the hat?
-Thomasina, a glamorous, glamorous great-granny.
-As glamorous as you?!
-I wish I could be as glamorous as she is.
We can all hope. LAUGHTER
This is the felt hat she has made for the Queen's Jubilee.
I think of all the felt products I am always seeing,
I think these are the colours which are still OK to use,
because everybody uses such clashy colours.
With my millinery background I have to say the hat,
it doesn't quite cut it for me.
But, remember, she's a felt maker and that's just a product she makes.
I think even coming here today has been fantastic for me,
given me more confidence, support in the fact of the felt that I make
and, hopefully, that will spread out to other felt makers.
This is Nicola. She's a glass-maker.
She is a student and switched from ceramics to glass,
because glass is more complicated.
-So she likes a challenge.
-Yes, she likes a challenge.
I think it's quite refreshing to see the colours,
because a lot of people use very bright colours in glass.
It is one of the most challenging crafts there is,
so she's picked the right one,
if she likes a difficult job.
I like the molten quality of the composition
and I agree the colours are nice and restrained - a lot of glass, frankly, looks kitschy.
-There is a fluidity about it.
-And soft, romantic colours.
It would be really nice to be recognised if I won,
because I'm trying to become less of an amateur
and trying to get into that professional world.
So it would give me a big step towards that dream of mine.
-What about the sculpture?
-This sculpture is made by Vincent.
We had a beautiful conversation about his health issues
and how he transformed that issue into his work.
This is a stone sculpture.
It's actually, if you can see that, a family.
Male, female and a small child.
Very traditional view of the family, isn't it?
-Daddy - big, mummy - medium, baby - small.
What's it made of, is it alabaster?
This is alabaster and slate.
So how he connects with his work is about the emotions
and that's so entrusting, that whatever his issues are,
they come up in his work.
It would mean an awful lot.
I'm not big on self-confidence when it comes to my work, or anything else,
but I think if I were to win that, that would perhaps give me an edge
and a push to take it a little bit further, maybe,
and start being a bit more commercial.
But I do worry it is more than an art form than craft.
Well, that's a distinction I don't really feel comfortable with,
because, to me, every great artwork has a strong element of craft in it.
How it's made is part of its meaning, part of its narrative
-and that's the case here.
-I totally agree.
-There is no line there for me.
-I feel I'm learning a lot.
-So we've had a look at each of them. Mary Jane, do you have strong leanings?
-I think I do.
I think for me, this time, I think I've got a pretty distinctive choice in mind. Yes.
-Definitely. I know who is my favourite in this bunch.
-What do you think? What's really struck you?
-I think they all have different virtues.
For me, there's one piece that speaks to me the most,
so I think that's the way I'm going to go.
-It sounds like we've got a common decision.
-OK. Shall we have a word with Paul?
This is what it's all been leading up to.
Judges. Have you reached a decision?
-Yes, we have, Paul.
-You're all smiling, aren't you?
-You're all smiling!
-It was a very easy decision.
-OK. A unanimous decision?
OK. Right, it's time to bring in the finalists.
Now, all the wonderful work that you see before us today are testament
to the skill, passion and dedication of each of you.
So thank you very much for sharing your work with us today.
Now, I'm going to let you into a secret.
The person who has been nominated as judges' favourite today
will have the opportunity to have their work put on display
in the V&A shop in the Victoria and Albert Museum in London,
-alongside the world's finest collection...
-..of decorative arts.
So one of you is going to be keeping very good company, OK?
I can now reveal who today's judges' favourite is.
And one piece in particular stood out from the rest
because of its depth of feeling and its sensitivity towards the materials being used.
It gives me great pleasure to announce who today's judges' favourite is.
And that person is...
..Vincent and his sculpture.
That's going in the V&A.
Vin's alabaster family sculpture appealed to the judges
because the work was so heartfelt.
His feeling for the nature and texture of the stone was manifest in the piece.
Vin could hardly believe that he was judges' favourite,
but I hope it gives him the confidence he needs
to take his work forwards.
What can I say? The judges agree all of today's makers show real promise
and it goes to show what you can do if you put your mind to it.
So, come on, join our Handmade Revolution.
See you next time.