A little look back at 2012
I'll let you into a little secret: it's really lovely to be back in the studio after nearly two weeks of enjoying festivities. We had a lovely break, and I feel very refreshed, hence why I'm keen to get 2013 off to a swift start!
Firstly a little look back at 2012. A great year for me, work flowed in, I met some wonderful clients and students who have made me laugh, think and on one occassion, cry (with happiness!).
Early in 2012 I felt like I wanted to do something meaningful. This resulted in applying to Guide Dogs for the Blind to become a volunteer. In May we welcomed Tasha, a beautiful black Labrador/Retriever into our home. She has become my workshop buddy and is always alongside me. Once a year she will have puppies that will be trained to become Guide Dogs, and over her life time could have up to 60 puppies!
I welcomed many brides and grooms to be into the studio in 2012 to make their own wedding rings. It is a wonderful day. I may never see the couples again, but for those hours we spend together it feels like I will always be part if their special day. I enjoy hearing all about their plans and often wonder how their wedding day went. It gives me great pleasure to receive an email or card after the wedding day, just to hear the end of the story...
I have many returning students who joined Georgina and I for group workshops in 2012. Sue, Kate, Bridget, Nicki, Su and Andy - you have been a pleasure to have in the studio. Likewise a group of ladies that join me every year, for one day, when they have an annual reunion, Pat, Annie, Sandra and Mags, always wonderful too see you.
Goldsmiths' Fair was the main show of the year. It's the "biggie". As usual it brings apprehension and you constantly question yourself and the the new work you show before the event. Once I have set up and begin chatting to customers, the feelings all change and it becomes enjoyable and a time of rich engaging conversations with a diverse range of people. The show went well, sales were good and commissions were amazing. I have three commissions from Goldsmiths' Fair to get my teeth into in 2013.
Commissioning has become a large part of my work now. Often via email, sometimes by telephone and occasionally customers travel from far and wide to visit me to discuss commissions, often combining their visit with a stay locally to enjoy the wonderful countryside here in Herefordshire. It is surprising how you build a relationship with clients during this process, even by email. The trust placed in you is something that I take as a huge compliment and never take it for granted.
Outside of work I adore the UK coastline, and we enjoyed many trips in 2012. Highlights include the north Norfolk Coast which was a new discovery for us, and we loved exploring the area. Tasha enjoyed her first beach experience on one of our favorite beaches in Pembrokeshire and we returned to Dartmouth to enjoy the Regatta in early September. We escaped the awful summer weather to enjoy the delights of Corsica, which was a very special place.
So, that rounds off 2012! I have been fortunate to have had a brilliant year, and that is all thanks to Adie, my family and friends who make me smile and keep me balanced. Also to my three little nephews Jack, Tom and James who never fail to remind me of the important things in life!