Saturday, March 9, 2013

Busy and happy...

As we are approaching Easter, we are also approaching the time of year that this area comes alive in anticipation of the visitors that come with the spring and summer. Galleries and shops dust off their shelves in readiness and, obviously, those who provide goods for those shelves find themselves busy in preparing items for sale.

I have spent the past month readying pieces for their new homes. I have been concentrating on the sterling silver and premium gemstone pieces that will find their home in a display case on Skye in a couple of weeks' time. But yesterday, the impending opening of a gallery in Inverness prompted me to ready a necklace. The gallery is only able to take my bronze and copper jewellery, which is fine. It makes perfect sense to not include the sterling silver work as the gallery already has two sterling silver jewellery designers and makers. So, I wanted to be sure to provide some killer pieces to represent The Selkie's Haunt. After a drive out yesterday, I settled down to my table and started creating a necklace that will make its way to the gallery. I had had the main part of the necklace in mind for several days. Three pieces of very large gauge copper, each slightly smaller than the other, linked together. That is as far as the design had gone in my mind. It would take siting down at the table to complete it. And that I did. The design is very deco/Egyptian. When the Carter expedition and the discovery of Tutankhamen's tomb occurred, it was also the time of the Art Deco movement. The influence of the ancient jewels on the jewellery of the day was enormous, particularly in Britain. While I would never dream of comparing my jewellery to that of the time, it does have a real sense of the era and I will look forward to seeing whether or not it will prove popular. Today I will be creating some earrings and a bracelet to match. The design features carnelian as the only gemstone and I have created a satin finish on the copper, all by hand. It was great fun to watch the design emerge. But then, it always is. In most cases, it happens just as this piece did. I start with an idea that has been bouncing around in my mind for a couple of days and then I see where it goes from there. And that is what today will bring - we will see where it goes as I create earrings and a bracelet to complement the necklace.

By making my pieces available in shops and galleries, I am hoping for more time to design and make. The non-creative side of this business can eat up my time when I'd rather be creating. My calendar is now full of events and markets, which I will never cease to do because I enjoy meeting and chatting with customers who are genuinely interested in what I do and how I do it. That goes hand-in-hand with the joy of creating. But the going to and from markets can be tiring for both of us. Our local market participation is being reduced to twice a month rather than five times a month. We have added the Torridon summer markets this year and look forward to them. All in all, I have a feeling it is going to be a very, very good year.