December Distilled: Richard McVetis

| Nov 24, 2018

Words by: Richard McVetis | Photos by: Richard McVetis

Wilma asked a selection of creative thinkers and design practitioners to distil December to the essentials, whatever it means to them. Each perspective comes with an edit of gorgeous, well-crafted gift ideas for design lovers. First up is Richard McVetis, conceptual artist and Loewe Craft Prize 2018 finalist.

All I want for Christmas is…

I love reading, so books please. Fiction, non-fiction, science fiction – something unusual and thought provoking. I also have a thing about cups. It’s a real joy to drink from something hand crafted and well-made. I love Jono Smart, Sue Pryke and Sam Andrew.

My festive traditions include…

Every year I host a small gathering of friends to watch Strictly Come Dancing.
It’s become a bit of a tradition and just a great excuse to get everyone together. Life
is busy and sometimes this might be only time when we can reconnect as one big group. We’ll Skype in anyone who can’t make it. It’s a dream evening. I’ve just returned from Sweden and throughout December people tend to drink Glogg with almonds and raisins. I intend on making this my new tradition.

My approach to gifting is…

Gift giving is very specific to each of the people I buy for so I try not impose too many of my own personal choices. I really believe in quality products responsibly sourced and wherever possible, I like to support independent shops. I always think the best place to get unique gifts is at an artist open studio. These are the people I want to give my money to.

December is a time when…

I like to clear everything down, both in the studio and at home. The process of decluttering sets me up for the year ahead. It’s also a month when I slow down and look back on the year’s achievements. We always tend to look to the future without fully evaluating all the ups and downs of the previous year. It’s a time of contemplation and being grateful for what we have.

My one December essential is…

Investing in a new coat. It’s been ten years since I bought my last one. It was a huge investment but buying quality means it’s going to last a very long time. The style isn’t trend-led and will therefore not date. The old coat went swiftly to the Wrap Up London Charity.

An early 2019 resolution is…

I spend a lot of my time running workshops and teaching, so next year I’d like to be the student! I’d really love to try my hand woodcut printing or tapestry. It always feels good to learn something new.

Richard is running a two-part embroidery workshop in London.
13th and 20th December at Ray Stitch. More info on:


Have a McVetis Christmas

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