If anyone told me this time last year that I would have a love for jewellery making I would have laughed. I don’t consider myself naturally creative, it’s hard work for me at times and I have to be “in the mood” although what I do like is making things and seeing an end product, I just copy other peoples’ ideas!
It all started when my hairdresser, who is also my friend, mentioned collecting sea glass during a conversation. “What’s that” I asked and from there my new interest was born. For those who were naïve like me, it is glass which has been tumbled by the waves for many years to give it a lovely, smooth and frosty look and then washed up onto the beach. I’ve spent many an hour being blown away on the beaches of Scotland searching for that elusive piece which would make a brilliant piece of jewellery…still looking! Other days it’s nice and the picnic rug and flask come out and I just chill. That’s not a snake keeping me company it’s a piece of driftwood which to my husband’s discontent is sitting in the greenhouse…I’ll find a use for it – won’t I?!
My love of sea glass then progressed to sea pottery which is in abundance on certain East coast beaches. There must have been potteries many years ago in the areas surrounding the Firth of Forth and remains thrown into the water. I have found some lovely pieces since I have been looking and often wonder what the piece originally was, where it came from and how long it had been tumbled by the waves. I love how the pottery feels, and some of the shapes are just perfect for making into necklaces.
My friend then mentioned that she had been on an evening class involving silversmithing and was thinking about going back and she thought I would like it. You don’t need to ask me twice to try something new so, off we went, excited about what we were going to make. I walked into the room and it was a totally alien environment to me, it was like a science lab come workshop – tools and machines everywhere, benches with large blow torches, and chemicals in tubs. What have I done I thought, I struggle to be creative never mind scientific! My fears were allayed and within weeks I was like a flame thrower with the blow torch. We were shown the basics and then left to decide what we wanted to make over the 8 weeks. I knew what my project was going to be instantly as my husband and just recently lost, yes lost his wedding ring! I was going to surprise him with a new hand made one. Unfortunately, the surprise wasn’t really a surprise as when I came home telling him we had to make something, immediately he piped up “you can make me a new wedding ring”. My disappointment at the lack of surprise faded quickly as I wasn’t sure how I was going to size it without him knowing and got him to pick the thickness and width he wanted and the rest was up to me so the result was still a bit of surprise.
The project was a bit of a labour of love and there was literally blood, sweat and tears put into it what with having to learn new skills and produce a nice looking ring which he was going to like…no pressure then! Eight weeks later I finished and was more than happy with the end result and so was he when he opened it on valentine’s day!