Well its nearly Xmas and I've been practising for what I do best over the festive season...eating. Theres been a plethora of food recently, mainly because Steves been around and he is an amazing cook. I don't really enjoying cooking personally, if I can make it in 5 minutes its great! This has resorted in some bizarre dishes steve refuses to eat (Quorn, garlic and mayo anyone?! No...?!) anyway, heres the lush roast he made on sunday...it was so good! Steve had chicken but I didn't, he made red cabbage and cauliflower cheese too, Mmmmm....
Tasty Morning chocolate croissant with Rose tea :-)
Bit dark here, but we have a variable smorgers board of vegetarian delights; humous, babaganoush, olives, salad, balsamic oil, artichokes and tasty bread, had this with some mulled wine for lunch yesterday at a pub in Firle! Was so good I didn't eat dinner till about 10pm!
Beautiful Panettone! Took a gamble and bought one from Waitrose this year. This is what I will mostly be getting my way through this Xmas! I hate hate hate xmas cake, pudding and mince pies (bleurghhhh) so this is my saviour through the holidays!
Last Weekend at Brighton Fishing Quarter Gallery too...
As I write this I am gazing out of the window at a sea of angry rain and wind. I'm meant to be opening the gallery today but the weather is so bad I don't think its going to clear. Horrible cold winter is in full force, and my mind has turned to tights as it so frequently does this time of year! So I have been procrastinating by enjoying some online window shopping! I don't actually wear trousers, ever, don't really find them comfortable and being tall means you have to go on a bit of a mission to find a pair that fits, unless you want your shoes to look like they've had an argument with your socks! So I have a massive collection of tights instead.
I love unusual tights, and I love anything cool & handmade, and Gal Sterns hand screen printed designs are awesome. I have several pairs of hers and I heart them. She's got a new collection and I want them all! Sigh...
I'm also a bit obsessed by everything at Laste, a shoe boutique in Brighton that also sells awesome hosiery by Antipast, Falke and a local company called Funn. Just discovered their online shop and love it all!
Not loving the fact I have to go out in torrential weather and walk the hound though, one of the more negative aspects about owning a dog!
Had a bit of a revelation, as artists usually do, late last night whilst Christmas shopping. My sister wanted a particular necklace which on closer inspection I thought, I could do that with wire and save myself a pretty pocket. I was inspired by the street artists who write people's names in wire, so thought I'd give it a go and it turned out awesome! But then this got me thinking about writing in wire and drawing with wire on sea glass, as you can obviously draw anything with a line. I find it interesting as its much harder than it looks, your almost bending the wire in advance of what you want it to do, I'm more used to using tension techniques when wrapping...
I've been a bit addicted to writing words in wire today and have successfully managed "Ahoy" "Ship Shape" and "Captain" so far. Even Steve seems mildly impressed. Mildly. I like them so hope to do a few more and create a range in the New Year, the ones above are all brooches at the moment...
Listing this item in the shop later, a wire wrapped 17 stone sea glass necklace, made with sterling silver wire. Its quite chunky so great for people who like to make a statement!!! Its got a fabulous range of blue sea glass in it, the centre piece is a chunky deep deep aqua, almost turquoise, and it is surrounded by light and dark aquas, sea green and unusual teals.
Took Bean for a lovely walk down to Hove Lagoon earlier, it was such a nice day, sun shining, not icy cold, Bean found a ball, all is good...
Here's Bean barking at me on the beach because I am not throwing his ball. He actually looks quite angry. He is obsessed with balls, finds them everywhere. Or steals them off other dogs as he seems to think every ball in the world is his! This situation usually concludes when I prize the wet, sodden, disgusting ball from the Beans mouth (this does not happen easily, you can even pick him up right off the ground and he's still holding on).
Oh, and FYI, the spider survived his wine glass prison and was successfully released, back into the wild where he should stay and never ever return. Theres a massive Hardback Collins French Dictionary with his name on it if he does...
Been making more rings and brooches since most of these sold last week in Lewes!
These are all for sale at The Brighton Fishing Quarter Exhibition (see www.makersboutique.co.uk) for more info!
Its been really cold at the gallery so I bought these fabulous orange lace and grey wool wristwarmers by an artist called Anna Brixner, due to my new big phat ring being too big to be accommodated in traditional gloves! I heart them! Been wearing them with a fantastic leather and suede jacket I found on a bench outside the gallery, I love finding stuff, the best things in life are free!!! Very excited that a Cafe Nero has opened on George Street in Hove, not that we didn't have enough boring chain high street coffee shops already, but they sell individual chocolate Pannetones which are basically spiced chocolate orange dense cakes. As far as I know its the only place in Brighton to buy little versions of it! Yummmmm
White chocolate & Raspberry cake from Talk of Tea- best tea room in Brighton! Stocked up on loads of Earl Grey and Rose Cognac there recently...tea heaven...
Macaroons! I got my best friend into these when she was last in Brighton, she doesnt have much of a sweet tooth and hates Meringue (has a phobia of eggs-as you do!) But I persuaded her to try them and now shes addicted! And angry because she can't find any in Kernow! Gotta love the Macaroon!
And thanks Tina for my cupcake today from Cloud9, was AMAZING!!
I always think these lights are so pretty at the Grand Hotel in Brighton. It always makes me smile when I walk past...
Things that don't make me smile, horrible evil spiders. This one has been trapped under a wine glass for 24 hours as I'm scared to do anything else with it. On closer inspection it doesn't look that big here but its much bigger in real life. Honest. I can see its fangs! I'm feeling pretty bad about the whole conundrum morally, as it may die before Steve can dispose of it tomorrow, but I also hate spiders so much. I'm sure they all wait untill I'm alone and come out.
Very excited as I went to the Silver shop today and stocked up on more wire and findings so going to be making some more pieces for the online shop and some last minute stock for my stockists.
Had a brilliant day at the Artists & Makers fair in Lewes on saturday. I got to meet loads of new faces, see old friends from markets past and I also saw loads of fantastic new artists too. The event is an annual fundraiser for the local school so I hope they raised alot of money. Its always interesting to sell at a venue I'm not organizing, it's a different, all round more relaxing experience! I sold out of several collections I brought with me which was amazing and my Sterling Silver range went down really well too, overall a very successful day! I can't believe I didn't take ONE photo! I even had fairylights powered by battery, it was very christmas-sy! The shops been busy online too so been feverishly trying to make make make again this week.
Just about to list these and loads more in the shop...
Willow Stars - Sea Pottery Shards Necklace
Chunky Dark Aqua Swirl Sea Glass Necklace
Unusual ridged Rare Cobalt Blue Sea Glass with silver swirl...
Teeny tiny rare Cobalt blue sea glass necklace, the cobalt glass originally came from old medicine bottles.
The exhibition at Brighton sea front is running untill 23rd December which will be stocking all my new work if you are in the East Sussex region, and I will also be at the Makers Boutique at Brighton Unitarian Church on 22nd December if you need some last minute Christmas presents there will be over 30 local artists and designers showcasing their wares, and of course, tasty cake!
Hope you had a fab weekend!
Goodbye, untill next time!
Bean hates squirrels, he wants to kill and destroy each one, it seems to be his one mission when I take him to St Annes Well Gardens. I think theyre quite cute, managed to get quite close to this one...
Untill Bean came tearing down the path and proceeded to try and run up the tree, Matrix style! He'll never catch one...
Been very busy this week getting a stall ready for Lewes craft fair, arghhhhhhhh!!!! Christmas is so busy for me, I always have far too much to do and not enough time to do it! I think I'm nearly there just need to pick up some fairy lights for my stall to make it look twinkly and lovely jubbly! The Fishing Quarter Gallery was horrible weather-wise over the weekend, it rained and rained and rained and the wind wasn't letting up either! To rally our spirits I went to town and bought two massive boxes of chocolates, you know the ones you get at Xmas in a tin (buy one get one free - woohoo!) so this cheered us up, and the customers who were brave enough to come outside! Got talking to a lovely guy called JJ on saturday at the Gallery, he explained he was doing a photography project and wanted to take my picture. The project is called 100 strangers and you can see his work here... Excuse my portrait I was cold and tired and not expecting to be papped!!!
Had one of those weird days where nothing you planned gets done and you end up doing something completely random instead. For example today I ended up playing Trivial Pursuit in a care home with 10 elderly residents, drinking tea and eating cake! As you do. They all loved the Bean and gave him so much fuss! There was a lovely man called Michael who took a particular interest in Bean and fed him far too much cake, and a super-cute woman called Mo, who kept threatening to steal him! Promised I will bring Bean back soon to visit!
Furiously trying to catch up on my to-do list now... Got another weekend down at the Brighton Fishing Quarter Gallery this weekend, Friday - Sunday, so have been making more stock to top up my existing display. Also tomorrow night after work I'm going to this...
Its a very high end annual craft fair that curates a select chosen few artists from up and down the UK. Last year there were quite a few artists that exhibit with us at Makers Boutique, this year I only recognize one, the talented Gabrielle Vary. So I didn't score any preview tickets which basically entitles you to a free glass of wine and free entry tonight! Gutted! But the lovely Sarah Elwick (who knows my cousin and his wife, small world) has sent me some 2-4-1 tickets so I can't wait to meet her in person and check out her knitted fabulous-ness! I love going to see the ceramics and knitware, so hopefully there should be some interesting stuff.
Also next week I'll be doing this...
I've done it every year in Lewes after Matt Birch, who owns my stockist in Lewes, kindly put my name forward and they haven't been able to get rid of me since! I'm sure someone spikes the mulled wine every year theres usually some pretty drunk artists by the end of the day swearing they only had one glass! Its a great idea because it raises money for the schools Art department every year so 15% of all my sales go straight back to the school. I always have so much fun and its a strange experience doing a craft fair now and NOT having to set the venue down afterwards, like at the Makers Boutique, so I can just pack up and go home. We actually have the Makers Boutique running on that day in Brighton but Kate will be up to man that, and the Brighton Fishing Quarter will be open on the seafront too, so handmade loveliness everywhere next saturday! No excuse for buying mass produced boring high street commodities. Bleurgh.
Anyway, time to crack on with some secret plans that will hopefully be revealed / finished next week...tara
Just spent an amazing weekend in Devon for a friends birthday. Seeing as the last time we all got together we were staying in possibly the most insipid mouldy accommodation ever outside Newquay we have certainly upgraded! Its a castle! With a swimming pool! And a hot tub on the roof! I've never been in a hot tub before its great! The castle was so big I got lost on occasions, its certainly the type of place you are going to see a ghost!
Bean on a plinth! No idea why there was a plinth in the kitchen but Bean liked sitting there!
Bean in the morning rays...
Steve making me breakfast on the Agar, he makes some mean scrambled eggs! He also made an amazing veg soup for 16 people on saturday night.
So much cake was consumed!
Went to Lime Regis and did a bit of Beachcombing...
Found some unusual bits there as usual, Steve found the largest bottlestopper I've seen yet! That boy has the eye of a hawk he always finds good seaglass!
Amazing jug by a local potter, was going to buy it but Steve said it scared him, don't know why I didn't get it as I never agree with him on homewares anyway, or clothes....or decorating....ahhh men!!!
Anyway the place is called Rower Fort, Steves already planning on going there for his Stag Night!
Still would prefer to live in a boat treehouse though....keep dreaming...
Yesterday didnt start very well...stayed up far too late the night before (work not play!) and then slept through my alarms like a complete idiot (I have slept through firealarms in the past - I kid you not!).
I woke up at 7:42, 3 minutes before my lift was coming to take me and my holy moly tables to the gallery! Arghhhhhhhh!!!! Can I get ready in 3 minutes?! Yes! Yes I can! The spirit of Anneka Rice was looking over me! Felt horrible though all morning, really disrupts your whole day when that happens, bleurghhh.
Beautiful Views I get to look at for the next 6 weeks, its a hard life!
Setting up -all looking very bare!
This is Laura Munoz and Bean, setting up her jewellery display. Laura is my new best friend as she gave me a bar of praline chocolate that was soooooo tasty!
Claire Munday from Beetle Cherry...lovely girl, lovely Art!
Bean would mooch around sitting on peoples stuff...
Katie from Popcorny - Asian kitsch inspired screenprints.
Beksies Boutique - run by the beautiful Rebekah Shirley - her lasercut sign is awesome we were all coo-ing over it when she got it out! She also has some pretty awesome stock, I was eyeing up her faux fur hats.
Jessica Barrah - Art & Accessories
Basket & Bond - fab girls Sam & Nikki run this company which specialises in funky ways to make your life more organised.
Tina Davies - beautiful Artwork and Ceramics...
The annoying thing about working with so many fabulous artists is that I want everything! I have a certain addiction with woven textiles and ceramics...and Rosy Appleton makes these stunning hand woven silk textured scarves. Theyre certainly not something I can ever afford...but the man can...and Christmas is coming so I have already dropped some unsubtle hints to him!!! Hint hint hint hint hint overload!
This orange blue one is my fav!
HINT HINT !
It all was a bit too much hard work for Bean in the end and he ended up curling up on Tina's ceramics!!!
Hello! This is a really exciting blog about the trials and tribulations of establishing myself as a jewellery designer. The sort of jewellery designer that opens the Water bill and punches the air in joy, because she knows that it wont financially cripple her this month.