Hello there! What a gloriously sunny few days we have been having. Perfect! It's also a perfect time to introduce one of our makers. Elin Horgan. Elin creates stunning delicate jewellery pieces and we couldn't be happier to have her work in our Made in Britain Shop. We caught up with her recently to find out more about her creative life...
Please can you introduce yourself and tell us a little about your work?
Hello there, I’m Elin. I’m originally from Wales, but have lived in Bristol for over 10 years now. I work predominantly in silver to make modern, minimal jewellery.
Apart from creating things what else do you do?
I spend most of the rest of my time running around after a lively two year old.
When did you know you were an artist/maker?
Probably not until I set up my business last year. I wanted to be a jeweller when I was at school, but didn’t pursue art beyond sixth form and ended going in a non-creative direction career wise. I took up jewellery making as a hobby a few years ago, selling occasional pieces to family and friends. After the birth of my son I decided it was time to shake things up a bit and resurrect those childhood dreams!
What do you love most about working in your chosen discipline?
I love the challenge of turning an idea into reality and that fact that as a jeweller you are constrained by having to produce something wearable. I also find the whole making process completely absorbing. I’m naturally impatient, but making jewellery is very calming because you’re forced to work slowly. If you rush you end up making mistakes.
Where does your inspiration come from?
Anything and everything really, but particularly architecture and the urban environment. I love walking around the city looking at buildings and noseying into nooks and crannies. Anything might spark off an idea - from the shape of a window to the pattern on a manhole cover.
Describe your studio or workspace?
Well, I share it with the washing machine and four bikes, but luckily I don’t need a huge amount of room. My bench and tool board are tucked away on one side with jam jars full of files and drawers for various bits and bobs. I’ve got some speakers so I can listen to music and I’m near enough the kitchen to ensure a constant supply of strong coffee…both essential parts of my creative process!
If you could peek inside the studio of any artist, designer or craftsman (dead or alive), who would it be?
David Watkins – his jewellery never fails to delight and he always pushes the boundaries of materials and innovative techniques.
How would you describe your creative process?
It mostly happens in my head, but I have to do lots of sketching to understand whether something will work or not. Sometimes I make up a prototype then tweak, other times I just go for it on the basis that I can always wear it myself if it doesn’t quite work. I have quite an extensive collection of not-quite-right jewellery.
What handmade possession do you most cherish?
A couple of beautiful wooden Shaker boxes that my dad made. He was a scientist, but also very creative and made lots of things in our house – everything from cooking utensils to furniture.
What do you when you are stuck in a creative rut?
I need plenty of time to sit quietly and daydream so a long train or car journey usually does the trick.
Which is your favourite local independent shop or eatery in Bristol & why?
I love Zazu’s Kitchen on Gloucester Road – it’s just up the road from me and is great for a dinner as well as lazy weekend brunches.
Where would you like to be in ten years?
Thank you Elin. A really lovely insight into your creative world. You can find Elin's beautiful work in our Made in Britain shop. Pop on down this Easter to find perfect gifts for your loved ones.
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