Its been a crazy few months for me, literally, and sadly my blog has gathered dust and cobwebs, but thankfully no spiders!
Lots of things to update you on... bullet points will work well here...
NEW METAL -
My new metal of choice is both maverick and very exciting! I am now using the highest quality stainless steel. After months of research I actually managed to find a supplier outside the UK, and a new supplier in the UK, for my chain, findings and wire. It was an incredibly hard metal to work with and its not as malleable as sterling. Using this new type of wire meant I had to find new pressure points to bend the wire and learn to work with this stronger type of metal, that doesn't feel like its been annealed at all! The wire also had a lovely habit of whipping back off the reel and lacerating me, so my legs and arms looked like I had been attacked by zombie kittens! Even the chain is hard to cut and I have developed amazing strange positions and comedy facial expressions to prise open the links to make my 5 stone necklaces on chain. Its like trying to cut glass with jelly.
its all been worth it as this metal is very very special, it does not rust, and it does not tarnish, which even sterling and gold will tend to do after time. It is incredibly durable because it is so hard and is also perfect for people with allergies who can only wear Sterling or Karat Gold. It is used in the medical industry to operate on people and also in the nautical trade because it bears up well to sea water and the elements. I love the colour of the metal too, its not as brash as shiny sterling and looks more like a well loved darker silver. This is one bad boy metal! Once you gone stainless steel you aint going back!
One of my favourite exhibitions of the year is Staacks Gallery just outside Liverpool, run by the lovely Kara. I have sent a whole batch of lovely jubbly necklaces to them to exhibit and it includes all my new stainless steel pieces, including earrings, bracelets, pendants on chain, 15 stone necklaces and 5 stone necklaces. I also have my new summer pieces which involve sea glass and sea pottery on handknitted organic hemp rope that is super soft and not itchy at all. I carefully sourced my hemp too outside the UK after becoming increasingly irritated that the stuff here was scratchy and not durable in the slightest. My hemp is strong, durable and like a good leather gets better and better the more you wear it.
Heres me modelling one below... This one I have actually kept for myself, its really cool and the middle bit is a circular piece from the bottom of a ceramic bottle that says MADE IN ENGLAND on it, just like me! Haha!
UKHANDMADE - I also write for UK Handmade, which is one of the leading independent arts and crafts resources on the web in the UK, which is not funded by the government. I do the MEET sections where I get to interview loads of amazing talented artists and also write the business articles for the magazine. My last piece in the Summer Issue 2014 was on CE testing for handmade businesses and you can read that here and also the rest of the fabulous magazine here... theres SO much eye candy in one publication! Still makes me smile that these guys featured my work when I first started out and now I'm so proud to be working with them and featuring new artists.
BFQ 2014 - I've been busy with Makers Boutique, the arts and crafts event organising I do in Brighton too. We've been doing a 6 month stint at Brighton Fishing Quarter Gallery, which is run by the fabulous Gill Copeland, an amazing photographer and friend. We only have 3 weeks left now untill it ends on the 20th July, but its been an amazing exhibition with a huge selection of talented artists circulating, and some amazing customers who I have had the pleasure of meeting. Its been a great place to sell my work, and it fits so well by the seaside. Heres my display below...
Amazing Sculpture by Jim Pilston, everything is salvaged, the pieces are made from paper mache and even the paint has been dug out of skips! I have my eye on the weird square woman, I Heart.
Also LOVE LOVE LOVING Chris Hagan's work at the exhibition, his illustrations are just beautiful and spell bounding. Defo going to have to take a few of his prints home myself. I am currently addicted to mountains (only visually, you will not catch me hiking up one!)
COMPETITION - I'm also having a giveaway on my Facebook Page so if you would like to win a necklace by me worth £12 squids please click here...
The sea glass is a beautiful rounded shape, approx 20mm long, and is made using surgical stainless steel which does not rust or tarnish! You can even wear this bad boy in the sea! Surgical Stainless Steel is also suitable for people with allergies who can only wear silver or gold.
FOLKSY - I've also got some pendants on chain available in my Folksy shop which I will be adding to, including new work necklaces, bracelets earrings etc over the next few weeks...
I will try and write again soon and not leave it 6 months!
Back to Bridget Jones now which I think I have seen about 50 billion times now!
Goodbye, until next time!