The last time I went to Brighton, I was in my teens. I went with a school friend to stay with her big sister at the University and we got separated on the underground. I remember it so clearly. We were getting onto a busy tube, having got off the train at Paddington from Penzance and the doors suddenly closed. I was inside and there she was, still standing on the platform. It was several hours before we were reunited and it being my first trip without the eagle eyes of my parents, it wasn't a great start. We had a brilliant time in Brighton though!

Anyway, all these years later and I find myself back there once again. I wanted to go down to the Bungeroosh Gallery Open House sale where I'm showing a small portion of my jewels and bags and, even though I'm quite capable of negotiating the underground these days, hubby very kindly decided to chauffeur me there and grabbed the opportunity to show the children around. (They had a great time, lunching at Jamie Oliver's restaurant, visiting the Sea Life aquarium and pottering on the pier.)

Open Houses are a huge thing in Brighton; they are held over several weekends running up to Christmas and again in May, which is festival month. And it seems to be a well organised, finely tuned set-up.

I've never been to an Open House sale before, so it was really exciting to go and have a look, to see what it's all about. Living in London, I can't imagine anything worse than opening my house up to complete strangers but in Brighton it's such a ritual for some, who make a day or more of going from one house to another in search of the perfect Christmas presents, decorations and cards. Plus, knowing that everything on offer has been hand crafted, in this country - mostly locally actually - and by small enterprises, it is clearly a satisfying concept for those who attend.

Another great thing about these sales is the fact you get to meet other like-minded people, to share stories and learn hints and tips. So I took some photos to share the experience with you ..

These gorgeous ceramics were handmade by Katie Brinsley. I particularly loved the egg cups, butter dishes and milk jugs (so clever)

Pretty felt advent calendars and handmade greetings cards by Laura Windebank

Cute badges by Chiara Bianchi

Unique cushions made from vintage fabrics by Maria Tilyard

Fun oil paintings on hinged boards by Miranda Vincent

Sweet gift boxes by Melissa Hall of Small Hall

And bags and jewels by yours truly (with apologies for the bad photos - the jewels were under glass)

And lots more besides. Do you know what I bought? NOTHING! How restrained of me. I was on my very best behaviour, although I have to admit it would have been so easy to have gone ever so slightly mad!

The sale is on for one more weekend so if you're in or near Brighton, it's definitely worth a look. But not only this one, there are loads of others too.

Anyway, I'm off to make some more necklaces - I sold a few so I'm a very happy bunny today!


  1. I am glad the sale went well for you - it all sounds a wonderful idea!

    Pomona x

  2. All those goodies and not one to bring home - ah well I guess Christmas is just right around the corner,

    take care,

    Nina x

  3. Well done Kate for making some sales at the Open House - I keep meaning to have aother lookie at your website - I will soon I promise!

    I went to a similar thing on Saturday here in sleepy Suffolk and I was a bit wary of taking photos inside the house - it must be the result of some deep-seated London insecurity coming out in me - but after seeing your lovely photos I wish I had now!

    Have a good afternoon. Jeanne x

  4. How could you possibly resist all those lovely things? I know I wouldn't have been able to.

  5. Hello
    I have just discovered your lovely blog and am off to catch up with some of your older posts.
    Warm wishes
    Isabelle x


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