About Me

My photo
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.

Saturday, 29 August 2009

Someone else's destash is another person's treasure trove

Over the years I have hoarded a lot of things on a whim, thinking I would get around to using them one day. Recently there were two destash swaps on Folksy, organised by fellow shop owners through the forums, and seeing this to be a guilt free way to remove some of my hoard I took part in both. Beads, pendants, ribbons, lace have gone out and fabrics have come in.

My last parcel contained lots of fabrics, nets (which I've never worked with before, being a child in the 50s, not of the 50s) a handy tape measure (can never find one when you want one) and lots lots more. I was itching to make something with them today and have come up with a couple of things.

First up I made a fabric brooch. I think it looked better without the cerise pink on the top but it is the seed of an idea and something I will be developing over the coming weeks. I am intending they will be inexpensive items for brightening up a coat, bag or jumper.

Next, using some very pretty black and gold fabric, gold net, apricot satin and cream fabric, all from my destash swap, I made this evening bag. I already had some magnetic fastenings and the black rat tail for the straps. I'm really pleased with it. Inside is a large pocket, large enough to take your mobile phone and a small purse and the bag holds quite a bit. It's the same size as other small shoulder bag in my Etsy shop, and I also have a few more to list.

My favourite charity at the moment is Holly Hedge animal sanctuary, near Bristol (UK). I try to raise funds for them with some of my items and at fairs and have decided that I'll give 75% of the sale price from bags made from materials I was given through swaps to Holly Hedge. The remaining 25% will cover the items I bought for the bags.

If you live in the Bristol area and can offer a pet a home, or you can offer financial support, please visit the Holly Hedge site. If you'd like to buy any of my items supporting Holly Hedge, visit my Etsy and Folksy shops and search for Holly Hedge and charity tags in my listings.

Introducing ~ Keep It In A Frame

This year's New Years resolution was to finish my Christmas shopping before Christmas. I'm pleased to say I am nearly finished and will be able to sit at a craft fair selling things, instead of leaving my husband in charge whilst I go 'panic shopping'. Looking for a family gift I came across Keep it in a Frame on Folksy.

Tina's albums are beautiful and my first purchase, not shown here in case the family member spots it! was personalised exactly to my requirements. Tina even included 5 extra sheets of card so more photos can be stored.

Tina's service was excellent and I was so delighted with my purchase that when husband asked what we could give to a friend of his who is soon having a wedding celebration, I knew what to suggest. The bride is Burmese and the groom a keen photographer.

Tina made me another album, personalised with their names and sea shells evoking memories of far off lands, especially for the happy couple. I hope they like it as much as we do!

Tina has albums, pads and more suitable for lots of occasions, and if you can't see what you are looking for, she'll make it for you, suggesting suitable wording if necessary. Very reasonably priced, I've another couple in mind who may like one for Christmas.....

Friday, 28 August 2009

Christmas came early...!

If there's one thing Charlie likes in his Christmas stocking (yes, they both have a Christmas stocking), it's catnip! So, spotting reusable catnip pouches by Stuff on Etsy, I had to have some. The idea is that the little envelope pouch unrolls to be filled with loose dried catnip. Then you roll it up, popper closed and wait to have it snatched from your hand by some passing moggie.

I first knew they'd arrived when Charlie was pushing the post around on the doormat - not his usual trick. I opened the jiffy bag, closely watched by 2 feline pairs of eyes. Inside, carefully wrapped in tissue was my (or rather 'their') prize. I'd just got the tissue paper open when the phone rang, so I left it all on the coffee table, thinking it might be safe for a minute. Grab phone, dash back, this is what I found....

Charlie has gone in for a closer look

Where's it gone???????

Damn, have I knocked it on the floor??? Look innocent, Me? I've not seen it!!!

Ah, my reward for 'finding' it again!

Having an expert catnip inspector in the house, I can assure you that these are a great idea, are hand washable when they get a bit 'soggy', can be refilled and provide hours of pleasure to any discerning cat. Within about 10 minutes, Charlie is 'stoned'. It doesn't have the same effect on Teddy, who just sits on his, waiting for it to hatch.

Osha, these are a great success, even if Christmas came early for Charlie.

Monday, 24 August 2009

Introducing Flower Power polymer clay creations by Jayne

It's been a long day. I had an appointment at the hospital to see what could be done about the torn tendon in my elbow. I did this over a year ago and despite endless treatments of all sorts, it's still painful and limits the work I can do. First I couldn't park, then when I did, arriving early for my appointment, I was sent for x-rays, more waiting, then told I would need an operation and, more waiting, needed to get through pre-op today. What I was told was a 25 minute appointment turned into many hours. Thank heavens I took a new book to read - I've nearly finished it now.

Imagine my delight then when I came home to find another prize I'd won in a blog give-away. My gift arrived beautifully wrapped in pretty paper with raffia bow and handmade button. It was almost too pretty to open, but I forced myself. Inside was a pretty necklace in my shades of blue and green, won after I suggested that the necklace reminded me of 'solar storms'.

The pretty necklace has been made by Jayne who has shops on Folksy and Etsy. Jayne is a mother of 2 with a full time job in local government who enjoys making fun stuff out of polymer clay in her spare time (she's got spare time?). She started making things for herself and her family but when she ran out of spaces to store all the beads and bracelets, decided to give Etsyand Folksy a go!

Jayne has some really pretty beads, necklaces and bracelets in her shops and at very reasonable prices. Do have a look, you might just find something to kick-start your Christmas shopping! I can say that, I've nearly finished mine. Who threw that rotten tomato at me? I have to start early, I don't have time between work and craft fairs which start up again for the Christmas season in September.