The Skye Magazine is an exciting insight into Skye and Raasay, as well as providing information on new up-and-coming businesses, and new ventures on the island. The Skye Magazine in its printed form, appears once a year from May, and thousands are distributed throughout the islands.

And the on-line edition - below - is updated throughout the year with new reports, photographs and information from all across the Islands.

So, just click download, enjoy learning about the beautiful isles of Skye and Raasay, and, if you aren’t here already, make sure to plan a visit sometime soon!

How stories hide inside books

By Roz Skinner

The owner of Gilleasbuig Ferguson Rare Books has come to the belief that books contain at least two stories: the one on the printed page and a different, unexpected one.

Gilleasbuig has discovered countless newspaper clippings, engravings, interesting inscriptions and notes concealed in the pages of his various books! 

He says: “I sell a lot of books by Charles Darwin and the scribbled notes by scientists who have challenged his views give a window into the thoughts of people who died many years ago.”

Located next door to Skeabost Country House Hotel, Gilleasbuig operates out of a book-crammed shop in his garden.  The shelves are loaded with Gaelic and Scottish interest books, natural history, music, poetry and place-names, as well as fiction and non-fiction titles – making it a book lover's paradise.

Read more: How stories hide inside books

Lights! More lights! And action!

By Roz Skinner

Lisa Nisbett, who took over the Isle of Skye Lighting Company in February 2017, has plenty of action planned for the Kyleakin-based shop.

Part of that action involves a brand new consultation service.  Says New Zealand born Lisa: "We won't just be a lighting store where customers come to us.  I have begun offering a free consulting service for anyone building a new home or renovating their existing property.  I will come to you so I can get an understanding of what you would like to achieve, and together we can create a lighting plan for your home.  I am happy to help commercial property owners too."

Along with the new management, the shop has a brand new name and identity: Handley & Co.  Lisa's dream was to supply customers with homeware, gifts, scented candles, cushions, throws and upcycled furniture.  

Read more: Lights! More lights! And action!

Gaelic Americana...from Alaska to Sleat and beyond!  

By Katie Macleod  

American singer-songwriter Kyle Carey spent her early years in Alaska, grew up in New Hampshire and currently resides in Brooklyn, New York – yet to
hear her speak Gaelic, you could be forgiven for thinking she was an islander. 

That’s all thanks to the year she spent at Sabhal Mòr Ostaig, studying An Cùrsa Comais from 2009 to 2010. “Oh my gosh, it was honestly – still – the best year of my life,” says Kyle of being immersed in Gaelic in Sleat. “There was structure, and I was doing something I was passionate about, and I had a really nice group of friends there. All of that just made for a really wonderful experience.” 

Despite being “probably the most clueless in the whole course,” Kyle found herself reaching basic fluency after just three months, success she attributes to sticking rigidly to the campus language policy.  

“A lot of people do revert to English after class, but if you do choose to surround yourself with people that don’t, you are basically in the full immersion environment, which is so rare to get as an English speaker really anywhere, and that’s kind of the key to fluency.” 

Read more: Gaelic Americana...from Alaska to Sleat and beyond!  

A modern tradition of baking

By Roz Skinner

Putting a contemporary twist on traditional food is something the Isle of Skye Baking Company does extremely well.  

Flavoursome names like Rose Petal Shortbread, Talisker Whisky chocolate-spread and raspberry scones are guaranteed to make your mouth water before you take a single bite.

Liza Hawthorne, who co-owns the company with her husband, Barry, explains: "We like to take traditional products and make them our own."

That aim often takes the Baking Company team on a culinary adventure to discover which flavours best complement each other.  "Because everyone has different taste-buds, we get our staff to test our latest creations," Liza laughs.

Read more: A modern tradition of baking

Fiona…a life amid the science and scents of soap

By Roz Skinner

What do whisky, seaweed and nettles have in common?

They are all ingredients in the beautiful soaps lovingly handcrafted by Fiona Meiklejohn, founder of the Isle of Skye Soap Company.

Fiona's shop, tucked in at the northeast corner  of Somerled Square, Portree, opened in 2001 and is crammed full of scented soaps, bath bombs and gifts.

Fiona remembers creating soap during her high school years and although she went on to work in IT, her love of crafts and chemistry never left her.  Her soap-making skills resurfaced when she became a mother as she sought a purely natural product – one that would be soothing for her children, who suffered from eczema and asthma.

“My son had especially bad asthma and I found that the less chemicals we used, the better,” explains Fiona.  “I began to look into aromatherapy and discover what plants and herbs worked best to soothe the skin.  I started selling the soap at craft fairs and the business took off.”

Read more: Fiona…a life amid the science and scents of soap