About Me

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North Somerset, United Kingdom
My parents were worried when I ran around with scissors – now I play with fire and (intentionally) break glass! Based in the beautiful South West of England, close to the sea and often the scene of beautiful sunsets, I am inspired by the countryside around. Working with sea glass collected from remote beaches, soda lime glass from Murano, Italy, Europe, USA and beyond, I create artisan beads, for use in my own jewellery or for you to enjoy in your own creations. But I couldn’t stop there; continuing the theme from round rods to flat sheets, mostly from the USA, I break large sheets of transparent, opaque, multi-coloured and dichroic glass into much smaller pieces to make a kiln-formed range of bright, colourful jewellery and home decoration. Each piece I make is individually designed around the shape, size and beauty of the materials and intended to be unique, wearable, usable and affordable. All my glass work is kiln annealed for strength and durability and designed to give pleasure for years to come.

Thursday, 26 November 2009

Ooh, pressies!

I do love it when parcels arrive, even if I have paid a fortune for the contents. Combine this with my love of textiles, the feel, the expectation of what I can do with them and you have my perfect day.

Today is one of those days.

Last weekend I was busily screen printing scarves when I ran out of black velvet. To me it's a bit like getting to the end of a jar of coffee (except I don't drink instant coffee), there's the expectation of banging the spoon through the foil cap on the new jar (but I have instant for visitors who don't like proper coffee). It was raining, blowing a gale and I couldn't get my screened and steamed scarves on the line to dry. My studio may seem big but it isn't when it is filled with hanging rails, steamers steaming, screens dripping ... you get the picture. I sneaked some washed scarves into the dining room and hung them on the old wooden airer that comes into play when the weather is not up to drying things outdoors. In Clevedon that's most days, but not usually the days I am also printing fabrics. At the moment I have no choice. It's my busy time of year and my galleries keep asking me for black velvet scarves that I've painted.

As well as making all the things I make, I also work 3 days a week in an office. My job isn't stressful but it can be very pressured so coming home and locking myself away in my studio painting and making scarves is the perfect antidote. Usually there's something worth listening to on the radio although this week I treated myself to Rod Stewart's Soulbook CD. Not that I've had a chance to listen to it yet. I come home, make a cup of tea, paddle (on a bad day) out to my studio, shut the door, crank up the heating and settle in for some dye painting. Usually DH comes out (dry days) or rings me on the phone, we have ones with an intercom (wet days) to ask who's cooking dinner and has the answer 3 letters ('you') or two ('me'). I like odd numbers so guess the answer. I'll make it up to him after Christmas.

My supplier in the US was out of stock of my usual velvet so I started looking around for a UK supplier and found one which offered a very similar price, taking into account the $£ rate, VAT, import duty, customs charges, Parcelforce fees and the hassle of having to go and get from the Parcelforce depot. DH collected it from the courier today, they needed a signature and couldn't get it in my parcel storing dustbin and I've just unwrapped it. 14 metres of lovely, pristine, soft, beautiful silk viscose velvet, just waiting for me to haul it to the studio when it stops raining and start work on it.

Pictured here with the scarves I printed, steamed and washed on Sunday, desperately trying to dry themselves on the old airer by the radiator. If DH has noticed them he's not said. He doesn't like me dripping dye all around the house, hence needing a studio for this, perhaps he things these don't have a drip potential. Last weekend's scarves will be hand painted tomorrow, dried, washed and sewn, ready for despatch to some of my galleries or perhaps an up-coming craft fair.

Unwrapping the roll of velvet is just like popping the foil on a new jar of coffee to me.

1 comment:

  1. Oh my, your scarves are so gorgeous. I agree, opening up a parcel of crafting goodies is a great feeling, familiar but as exciting as the last parcel everytime.