I started making fused glass jewellery over 17 years ago, making many different pieces after buying a necklace from America and falling in love with it. After months of research, I bought a microwave kiln and some glass, set myself up and had a go. I am completely self educated through trial and error, experimentation and lots of practice. This soon led to my memorial jewellery journey.
My 1st piece of memorial jewellery came about when a friend was travelling to Egypt. Her husband had died before the holiday and she carried a pot of his ashes around with her. It is prohibited to take ashes into Egypt, so she asked if I could put some into glass. This was way before any of the companies around now, had even started.
I researched and there was nothing online at all. Her response to this was 'he'd love to have been experimented with'. I sat and worked out how I could do it and wondered if it would actually work. I was so happy it did. 1st try and the result was a beautiful green piece of glass with the ashes showing through a clear layer. I turned it into a necklace and delivered it. She cried, I cried, we were a bit of an emotional mess. She went to Egypt with him and I was left feeling like I'd really helped someone at such a difficult time. I decided then, that one day, I would make special pieces of other people. Although life, work and having a child took over, I've never looked back.
I began working with silver at the end of 2015. My motivation to learn silver came from my journey making memorial jewellery. Such a special piece of glass should be held within an equally beautiful setting.
I attended classes in Aldershot with Kirsten Hendrick, completed work experience with Donna Collinson in Guildford. I was also privileged to spend some time with Isabella Day watching her work and learning new techniques. They have all been a massive inspiration to me and taught me so much.
I currently teach monthly for a charity in Torquay. Abbey Recreational Crafts is a place where anyone can come along and learn a new skill, have a chat and a drink. It's great for those who are isolated and want to come and meet other like minded people in a relaxed atmosphere.
Classes in microwave glass fusing are also available at my premises. Contact me for information.
I am a member of the Guild of Jewellery Designers.