Wednesday, February 20, 2013

I will write a blog, I will write a blog, I will, I will, I will, I will, I will write a blog!

(In case that blog title sounds entirely mad, I am thinking of the Cowardly Lion in 'The Wizard of Oz' with his 'I do believe in spooks, I do believe in spooks, I do, I do, I do, I do I do believe in spooks'. Yes, I know, random. But that's me.)

The Selkie's Haunt has been up and running for nearly three weeks now and I'm not unhappy with its progress, but it could be better. I am so passionate about what I do and this new little iron in the fire is quickly proving a favourite. I just want everyone to be as excited about my offerings as I am. Without the hallmarking limitations imposed when working with sterling silver, I can have a ball with the copper and bronze and design the most amazing things. You see some of my designs already on the site, but the ones I have waiting in the wings are amazing. And I don't say that as self-praise. My hands simply work through the inspiration that comes to me when I look at the shapes and colours of all the wonderful materials I have. I have fallen in love with malachite and have discovered the hidden treasures found in a piece of jasper or agate. (I have just discovered a source of Scottish agate which I will be tapping into when next I need some focal pieces - how exciting!) I am having a great time. And now I am dying to learn how to solder and bezel set stones because the designs that are flooding my mind require skills I don't already have. That is going to be sorted very shortly with a visit to my fellow American ex-pat, the brilliant silversmith and goldsmith Garth Duncan, who has so kindly agreed to share his incredible knowledge with me. I can't wait to have the limitations of only doing wire work removed and allow me to use fire and stone together to create jewellery as it has been created for millennia. So much to create. I am excited.

As the spring arrives, and we are enjoying warmer and longer days, I feel that surge in creativity that comes with the sunlight. I enjoy sitting at my work table with the huge window looking out at the loch and beyond. How can I not be inspired by the views? I can't wait to see what the market season will bring. The Selkie's Haunt will make its debut at the Aultbea Market on 1 March. So exciting. I do hope people like what I've created. I made just enough to make a website debut viable, so I need to get busy in the next week to be ready. A week from Friday! February has sped by.

If you've seen the site, you've seen what sort of jewellery is going to feature. Lovely, organic, chunky, sculptural jewellery art. Like this lovely piece to the right here. If you haven't yet seen the site, I hope this will tempt you. I love this necklace - handcrafted bronze metalwork with beautiful fresh smooth rondelles of green fluorite and hammered and tumbled disks of gem-quality rose quartz. The necklace (and there are matching earrings) was very labour intensive with the metalwork, but I really enjoyed the process. There are even lovely earrings to match. The name of this creation: Signs of Spring. An appropriate name, I think, for a piece of jewellery that is pastel and fresh. Like its sister site, Ailleas Designs, The Selkie's Haunt is all about bespoke, one-off, limited edition pieces of jewellery art. Oh, and between now and 6 March, I have a mother's day sale running. See the site for details. I am also planning on a giveaway once the subscription list for the monthly newsletter hits the magic number 50 (I have over 500 for Ailleas Designs). So, if you want to subscribe, you can go here to do that.