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November 11, 2021

Bowerbird is a market filled with stories

Adelaide’s distinctive design and craft market Bowerbird returns this month, and creator Peggy Byrne says the stories behind the bespoke crafts alone are worth the visit.

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  • This article was produced in collaboration with Bowerbird.

Ingenuity is an important consideration in Peggy Byrne’s curation for Bowerbird, the design market she owns.


Bowerbird design market will be held at the Adelaide Showgrounds from Friday, 26 November to Sunday, 28 November.

Purchase tickets and browse the market stallholders at the website.

“So new things, things that we haven’t seen before, or things that are done incredibly well,” Peggy says.

“Quality is there across the board.

“Sometimes you see a product and it just screams quality and detail and attention, and that is something that you will find a lot at Bowerbird.

“The products you’ll find are worth the money due to the time and attention and detail that has gone into them.”

Bowerbird will return to the Adelaide Showground from 26—28 November, with a number of leading independent Australian designers set to congregate together in the Wayville Pavilion.

Valerie & Bob

Among the designers Peggy has handpicked for this year’s event is fashion label Valerie & Bob.

They offer ethically crafted overalls and A-line shift dresses made from sustainable fibres. Their new range of shirts with hand-drawn designs of the business owner’s late grandfather will be released at this season’s market.

“This is truly a family business, steeped in great fashion heritage, as Liz [Foubert], the mother, is the lead designer at Caleche Bridal House in Norwood,” says Peggy.

“Liz’s daughter has taken an interest in fashion, and she wanted to create things that were more of her age, so they have created wonderful linen dungarees and dresses, super comfortable and super fun, but also ethically made.”

New to Bowerbird this year, Mayde Studio is bringing a range of art prints, original paintings, greeting cards, ornaments and hand-painted earrings.

Crafted by Lauren Grieger, these pieces are designed with happy, floral art to encourage, inspire and bring warm feelings to all who see them.

“The colours that Lauren uses are just so soft and so calming and, in a world where everybody is trying to be bold and loud, I found that her choices were really beautiful,” Peggy says.

Mayde Studio


The Craft Kit creates a range of embroidery, felt plush animals, cross-stitch and crochet kits of varying complexities and skill levels, for beginners through to experienced hobbyists.

The kits contain all the necessary materials, as well as detailed, visual instructions to create your own artisan product.

“It’s an entry point for people to discover the joy of craft,” says Peggy.

The Craft Kit

“I’m in my forties and I love making them, and my niece is only 10 years old and she loves making them too.”

Nellie May creates hand-tufted pillows inspired by her visit to the National Gallery of Victoria, where she saw an exhibition of rugs made by Brazilian artists.

Having grown up in America and Hong Kong, Nellie wanted to depict some of her stand-out memories of the exquisite scenery she witnessed during her travels.

“She went on road trips and took photographs and she then recreated these landscapes using tufted pillow methods to add a 3D element to the fabric, to get these fluffy clouds and rolling hills,” says Peggy.

“She just makes these beautiful, colourful pieces of sunshine that you can add to your home.”

Peggy believes the people behind the products are just as important as the products themselves.

“We certainly encourage people to talk to the vendors when they’re at the Bowerbird, to hear their passions and their story,” she says.

“When they buy the mug or the t-shirt, they take home more than just the product.

“They bring home a piece of someone’s life and their story and they can share that story with their friends and family when they share that product.

“That’s the essence that we are trying to impart with people when they come to Bowerbird, that the things that you buy should be really special to you and hopefully they’ll stay with you forever.”

Bowerbird design market will be held at the Adelaide Showgrounds from Friday, 26 November to Sunday, 28 November. Purchase tickets and browse the market stallholders at the website.

Nellie May

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