Thursday, 24 November 2011

My Twitter Support Group!

Hi folks!

Well what a week it's been! Times, they are a changing...... they could write a song about that I reckon....

Last week I told you about my submission to Flameworks Art2Go Christmas Exhibition at the Royal William Yard, Plymouth.  Last time I entered this I turned up on the night to see a few of my items displayed and felt a rush of pride, and when I had an urgent message to contact them on Tuesday I thought the worst.  Not so!! They want even more so last night was spent sorting, coding, labelling and pricing lots more work for them to choose from today.  The downside of this was that I completely forgot to attend a pre-arranged Twitter party at 8pm.  I was one of 2 birthday girls and I forgot to go to my own party!!! How lame is that?!?

This brings me on to this week's subject matter - Twitter.  Now I know some of you will be sitting there shouting get a life at the computer screen, however, I figure if you're reading this, you're already half way there yourself!!

The fact is, I blooming love Twitter!!

This week has been a rollercoaster, with potential plans afoot to change my whole lifestyle and as well as the support of my husband and family, I've found great props in a couple of my Twitter friends.  Yes, I know it's strange because we've never met, but we do support each other when we can see that it's needed. Emails have been flying back and forth as well as tweets with ideas and plans - you see what could be better than bouncing ideas around with people of a like mind? It makes perfect sense to me, because often, we can't rationalise something and we get bogged down by it, but someone else comes along and offers a simple solution and off we go again.

The party organiser last night was Sarah Marks from and she makes gorgeous sparkly wedding jewellery and heirloom bouquets and is a bright and chirpy tweeter and along with Tara from who serves the most amazing goodies from her vintage van at weddings and events, we regularly meet up on Twitter to give our very knowledgable opinions on Strictly Come Dancing and anything else we all happen to be watching!

There is one person who's given me her time and ideas tirelessly this week though and that's Sarah from and she makes stunning bespoke bead and wire jewellery.  We've emailed and supported a lot and she's decided that I need a plan of action!! Her help has been invaluable and many months ago she spent time explaining a lot of SEO jargon to me as well. I really hope that you'll go and visit the websites of all these lovely ladies and buy lots of nice things from them.  If you're in Wales, look out for SL Jewellery - she may be teaching somewhere near you soon!!

Ok I'm off now to deliver my jewellery to the exhibition - come and visit if you can - photos next week!!

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Exhibition Time

Hello again! Hope you all visited Rare Notions after my blog last week!

Well this week it's been all systems go, pieces of jewellery have been finished, listed, coded, labelled, packed and finally today they've been delivered to their destination.  It's time for Art2Go 2011 - Flameworks Christmas Exhibition!! I visited the exhibition last year but wasn't involved personally and I saw some wonderful work on display.  This year I have submitted jewellery for consideration for this year's show.  It's a real thrill to walk in to the opening night and see your work on display as I did in a previous year.

There's a real variety of contemporary work available to buy and for anyone who hasn't been before it's housed in the stunning setting of Royal William Yard.  To find out more visit  Art2Go 2011 runs from 26th November till the 10th December. Make sure you take the time to visit to finish/start your Christmas shopping and you'll be able to buy some really unique presents!

Flameworks is a Plymouth-based creative arts facility which has communal workshop areas available for members to hire.

Just a short blog from me this week as it's a been a busy old time and I'm a little bit sleepy!!

See you all next week!!

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Collaborative Blog with Rare Notions!

Hello folks! Well I promised you a stonker of a collaborative blog this week as I feature the work of the lovely Phiona Richards of Rare Notions who some of you may have seen on Channel 4's Kirstie's Handmade Britain.  In that programme Phiona taught Kirstie how to make a rose ring from the page of an old book - recycling at it's very best!

With my very best interviewer techniques I asked Phiona some questions and here's what she told me about her fabulous work.

Smocked Book (closed)
1. Where do you get the inspiration for your designs?

The inspiration for my designs comes from literature, etiquette, traditional feminine crafts and historical costume. When reading works like Little Women or The Tenant of Wildfell Hall, you really seem to get an insight on perhaps how life was for women; the manners, the social standing, and the rebellious woman.

Curved and Crotcheted
2. Is there a craft medium you’ve always had a hankering to try your hand at?

I have to say, I’m a bit naughty that way. I’m so craft driven that if a new tool or medium appears on the market and sparks my imagination I just have to try it. I think my favourite at the moment is UTEE, I’ve found ways of using it as a substitute for resin, which to be honest frightens the life out of me.

Organic Repose Collection

3. If you could see one famous person owning one of your designs, who would it be?

As I’ve already seen one of my sculptures in situ on the mantelpiece at Meadow Sweet Cottage in Devon, I would have to say Kirstie Allsop.

Ruffle Bead

4. Where can fans buy your work?

There are galleries up and down the country that stock my work but this changes regularly depending on where I’m exhibiting. A good way of keeping informed is to sign up to my newsletter via my website I also sell online with, and There is list of current stockist on my website, but if you’re look to have something created from your favourite book, I welcome commissions.

Eva Collection - Ring with Tatted Tag

If you really love Phiona's work as much as I do, you can contact her at and follow her on Twitter at and if you'd like to follow her blog (she blogged about me last week which was lovely!) that can be found at and I would just like to thank her for participating in the collaborative blog idea.

Well, what have I been up to this week? I've been busy with the day job, I've actually made myself a necklace for a change, but I'm looking forward to a weekend of making, especially as the weather's rubbish! This collection is called Animal Instincts - hope you like it!

Make sure you visit Phiona's website to start your xmas shopping and if you've got the time take a look at mine too

See you next week!!

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Collaboration with Poppy Treffry

Well, here we are again and I'm enjoying Kirstie's Handmade Britain once more!  For those of you who've also been watching this series, remember I was going to get in touch with Phiona Richards of Rare Notions with a view to finding out a little more about what makes her tick - well, we're going to have a collaborative blog with her next week!!

On to this week.  All my buses have come along at once!  I have another blog collaboration featuring the work of the amazing Poppy Treffry who can be found in gorgeous St. Ives, Cornwall.  Her lovely shop just makes you wish you had a bottomless purse!  Over to Poppy.

1. Where do you get the inspiration for your designs?

I try to sketch as much as I can and these sketches inspire my designs. There's so much to draw just on my own doorstep in Penzance and I always take a sketchpad on holiday with me to collect inspiration. I also love sketching in museums because everything stays nice and still!
2. Is there a craft medium you’ve always had a hankering to try your hand at?
Not really but I would love to have more time to knit - I'm knitting a fair isle tank-top at the moment but I don't expect it to be finished this decade! I would also love to have some time to paint. I always thought I would grow up to be a painter but I got sidetracked into textiles - lured in by all the pretty colours!
3. If you could see one famous person owning one of your designs, who would it be?
Will Young of course! Team Treffry Love Will Young! (Rumour has it that Ben Fogle has a coffee cosy - and we also love him!)
4. Where can fans buy your work?
You can buy online at our own website where you'll also find a list of stockists throughout the country.

If you like Poppy's delightful bags, accessories and household items then why not do your Christmas shopping online - there's surely something for everyone.  If you fancy having a go yourself then why not buy yourself the book above and get sewing?

As for myself, I've been continuing with the work on my signature pieces and I've included some pictures for you to see what I've been up to.

I've been looking at how best to marry my silver work with my painted aluminium and I've been working on deeply textured aluminium and so far I'm liking the results.  What do you think?
So have you all done your xmas shopping? No? Then check out Poppy's website and mine too whilst you're there!! and
See you next week with another collaborative blog by Rare Notions!