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.

Friday, 27 March 2009

Just spotted I've featured on another blog!

I get so excited to hear that customers like my work. I've just spotted that I've been featured on Jolicious' blog.

I took part in the Get Eurofied sample box, sending in lots of my little sea glass pendants and Jo bought one.

The idea with sample boxes is that sellers send small samples of their work, people buy the boxes and if they like what they sampled, they can buy more products direct from the seller. I think it's an idea that's slow to catch on in the UK but big in the US and elsewhere.

I'd love to hear from other people who received one of my pendants in their box, I've taken part in a few. Did you like the pendant? Would you buy more of my work as a result of receiving this sample? This will help me work out whether sample boxes are an effective way of marketing my work.

The next Get Eurofied sample box goes on sale on 1 April so follow the link although I'm not taking part in this one. There are sure to be lots of lovely things for you to try.

Wednesday, 25 March 2009

North Somerset Arts Week will soon be here! [or, 'watch out, the brochures are about!']

Happening every two years, usually at the beginning of May, North Somerset Arts Week is a 10 day open studio event in the south west of England. Some exhibit alone in their homes, others form groups and rent a venue for the event. There is everything from art to crafts to theatre and storytelling. Some are professionals in their field, others are enthusiastic amateurs. Many are something in-between.




This year North Somerset Arts Week is from Friday 1st May to Sunday 10th May and I will be exhibiting from my studio in Clevedon. More on that later, nearer the time; but I'm venue 39 if you want to start planning your visit.




Meanwhile, you can pick up a brochure from local shops, tourist information centres, libraries around the county or wider afield, or venues when they are open. They are also available by post.




Further information can be found on the North Somerset Arts website and, specific to my venue, my website




Do come and support local handmade work. My venue is raising funds for Holly Hedge animal sanctuary with a percentage of our sales going to this really worthy cause. We'll also be offering light refreshments with all proceeds from this going to Holly Hedge so, when you are out and about during NSAW and fancy a break, stop by venue 39 - it's a worthy cause.





A mirror on the world ... a different view

I'll shortly be featuring some talented artists that I've recently discovered; just waiting for some info and pictures from them. In the meantime, here are some more of my latest makes.





For some time I've been buying pocket mirrors from various Etsy shops, to use a promo items and small thank you gifts for customers. As much as I would have liked to make these myself, I couldn't afford the machine to do this. I recently found out that, through an organisation I belong to, I could borrow a badge making machine and make my own. Having made basic enquiries I found out the make and model of the machine on loan and undaunted by the fact that they came in boxes of 200 sets, ordered my parts.





I wanted to try making my own pocket mirrors using some photos of beaches I've discovered in my travels as well as use some of my own silk fabrics, hand dyed using shibori techniques. I wasn't sure if this would work but, after a little trial and error and a couple of yards of interfacing, I find that it does.





Having thought that the process would take me far longer than it has, I've borrowed the machine for a couple of weeks but in reality, with a lot of enthusiasm, I've made all the mirrors in just a couple of days. I was quite disappointed to come to the end of the components, I was just getting into my stride. Perhaps if they sell well I can make some more. Next time I'd like to try batik dyed silks and perhaps some silk devore; I think velvet may be too thick.





So, here's a picture of some of the little mirrors I have made. They will shortly be available in my Etsy and Folksy shops. If you can't see the one you would like for sale, email me and I'll let you know what is available and how you can get it.





Now, lets face it (oops, a pun!), most people can use a mirror at some time or another: girls, to tweak your make-up, keep an eye on the guy at the table behind you or just to convince yourself you really are stunning and one of a kind. Boys, have you not found a use for a mirror? Perhaps I have married the only 2 men on the planet (in succession I hasten to add - I'm not a bigamist, nor a sucker for punishment) who needed mirrors to make that all important 'cappuccino check' after coffee - or was that an attempt at a Clark Gable moustache in froth and cocoa? These are small enough to be discretely held in your hand. Handy also for finding that lost screw or contact lens on the floor, getting a view of what's around the corner (or back of the cupboard in my case) or, if the mood takes you, checking your make-up. And at this price, you can afford one for each of your girlfriends!