This small sculptural glass bowl adds a delicate touch of color where ever it is placed. The open lattice work makes these pieces appear to be light as a feather. And, while they are delicate the overall form is sturdy, like actual nests. The process used to make these insures that no two are ever alike. Each unique with its own twists and bends. This aqua color is like a cool drink of water.
Heather Palmer is a craftsman, artist and maker. Heather primarily uses glass to create objects but loves lots of other mediums too. Her work is varied including both functional and non functional pieces. She is inspired by communication, experimentation, play and from learning new ways of working. From these inspirations she and her work continually grow.
Catch these wonderful creations at Bob n Stitch.
Bio: When I was about five I would watch my mother make my Barbie Doll clothes from the scraps from her own dresses. Later I watched her make these long and beautiful gowns. Then she taught me to sew. Sewing was wonderful and frustrating at the same time. After many years of sewing the perfect way I now have given myself the freedom to draw outside the lines. With that new found freedom a new love has appeared and new and edgy work has been created.
Handprinting seems to be gaining in popularity in the handmade community, and it can be difficult for designer-makers to differentiate themselves. This week I’m talking with Alex Snowdon, a Cheshire-based graphic designer who sells beautiful handprinted bags, cushions and cards.
A few years ago, Alex realised that she missed the hands-on aspects of graphic design, as the industry became more computer-based. With a background in illustration and hand-lettering, she went back to university to study design and illustration, which she undertook while still working full-time. Alex loved the course and reconnected with crafting and printmaking, especially the joy of creating something with her own hands.
In 2009 Alex was offered a stall at a craft fair and frantically managed to print a small collection of bags and cards to showcase. The fair was a huge success and prompted Alex to set up an Etsy shop to widen her reach. Since then, she has made a lot of sales both on and offline, including wholesale to retail outlets in the UK and Australia – a dream for many crafters!
Alex still works full-time and crafts in her free time but would love to give up her day job eventually, even it that meant sacrificing a steady income. “I love the fact that someone has chosen to buy something that’s not mass produced, that they’re supporting the growing craft industry and basically, daring to be different. I love how the whole process is more personal when you’re buying or selling something handmade, for instance I always put a handwritten note in with my parcels – it’s just nice to have the human touch.”
Aside from crafting, Alex loves to travel and gains inspiration from her experience. She particularly draws on Chinese and European papercuts as well as Scandanavian design. Alex is also realistic about her goals and wants to work on promoting her products in order to increase her customer base. “I don’t really promote myself enough. I’ve been lucky so far in that people have approached me but I know that in order to make my business grow I’m going to need to put myself out there a bit more.”
Like many savvy designers, Alex already uses media-sharing websites like Flickr and takes advantage of the groups to share her work. She is now planning to set up a Facebook page for her designs and has identified shops in Manchester that she would like to approach.
Alex also sees the value of the handmade community for promoting work and sharing ideas. “The handmade scene in the UK is definitely growing and I think the support is there if you know where to look for it. The crafting scene is very big in North America and I think it will eventually be the same here. I think the economic downturn has also made people more concerned with getting value for their money and spending what they do have on something that’s unique and good quality, all the things that come with buying handmade.”
Do you have any advice or ideas to share on promoting your work? Post here or send me a tweet to @elliethouret.
I was thrilled to read recently that parts of the next Pirates of the Caribbean film are being shot in Cornwall, a very beautiful county on the southwest coast of the UK. I adore the franchise and although I’m nervous about the sequel effect, I can’t wait to see the next film. Inspired by everyone’s favourite pirates coming to these shores, I’ve put together this week’s product focus, with nautical-themed jewelry and gorgeous piratical artwork!
The inspiration for finestimaginery’s adorable cutout pirate necklace came from the idea of zombies, ninjas, cowboys and pirates being the top four character trends. The design is based on a captain hook style character, with a typical pirate moustache and hat. And, according to Kim, he wouldn’t be a pirate without a patch!
I love this octopus necklace from yellowsquirrel, who is based in Manchester like me. Nicole took her inspiration from the fact that it’s a popular image and combined this with her love of vintage. Nicole says, “Raw brass and antique gold chains, they just look ‘right’ together!” – she’s certainly hit the nail on the head with this piece!
Simple but pretty, louloudo’s ‘rope’ necklace was inspired by the very charm that makes it work. Louise thought that the silver charms were so sweet that they didn’t really need anything more then a nice, lightweight candy striped string. She also thinks that they look “sort of lucky, dangling there on their string!”
Andreakett’s amazingly detailed pirate artwork (top) just had to be included! I’m always green with envy over people who can draw as I have zero talent in that area. Andrea started working on this piece just because she loves pirates, which is the best reason for creating something that I can think of! Andrea says that she tends to have characters in her head when working on a drawing and with this one, she was channeling Poison Ivy from the Cramps and Tura Satana from Faster Pussycat Kill Kill, and the character Aunt Sally from Worzel Gummidge all together!
Are you a pirate lover? To share your favorite handmade pirate-themed pieces, or to just drool over Captain Jack Sparrow, post here or send me a message on @elliethouret!