So, in this little series of blogs I will be sharing my inspirations with you, and where better to start than the original inspiration for everything that has lead to me becoming, well, ME...
Childhood experiences have inevitably lead to my personality, career choice, jewellery styles, etc?!
So, here goes...
I have always been arty and was brought up to be creative; my childhood was spent drawing with my dad, crafts/playing with my mum, watching a favourite film with my big sister (Disney's THE LITTLE MERMAID of course), holidays at the beach, and collecting things that I considered to be beautiful (even if that did consist of snails and rusty keys!). I wasn't to know that my collections of "treasure" would remain the influence of my work in adulthood but it certainly did, AND STILL DOES!
Here's some further blabbering about how I went from a strange child dreaming of being a mermaid while covered in snails, sand, and crayons, into the jeweller I am today:
As a child/teen/young adult I had no clue what I wanted to do when I grew up (well, as a small child I was convinced I would have 10 babies, so that would have certainly kept me busy! and as I started thinking of options in my mid-teens, early childcare was a potential plan B, but I knew deep down it was not my plan A, and I also knew I couldn't choose a career that I didn't 100% KNOW was for me)... all I knew was that it had to be something creative; so off I went to art college after sixth form. It was there that jewellery was first mentioned as a career path option, and INSTANTLY it called to me!
I went on to university, where I thought I would develop contemporary body adornment pieces, but after exploring and learning a range of styles/practices/techniques I knew my heart was in making RINGS using PRECIOUS METALS.
I worked as a studio assistant for many jewellers/craftspeople, managed a jewellery shop, and even designed/made jewellery for exhibitions/commissions; I then felt the need for "stability" and went on to become an in-house designer for an award-winning bespoke jewellery company where I specialised in engagement, wedding and eternity rings for almost 6 years.
After the birth of my second child, I knew it was "NOW OR NEVER", I had to be true to myself...I left my job and started up on my own... KATHLEEN JACKSON JEWELLERY was official!
Though juggling a newborn, a toddler and a new business was certainly not easy, it was immediately satisfying! I realised I had not felt myself for a long time and I was finally ME once again, exploring my original inspirations and expressing my personality through design work with no restraints.
I very s..l..o..w..l..y started building up the business, and since the end of Summer EVERYTHING has changed; we moved home (again, but this time for good), my children have started school & part-time preschool, I have a seperate studio, I am Fairtrade registered...and I am currently working on the very early stages of potential new collections of unique, high-end, ethical, rustic, luxury jewellery which speak to my soul and make me happy!
These collections are inspired by textures/forms found under the sea and hoarded treasures, much like the imaginings and doodles of my childhood....