Spring has well and truly sprung here in the Lake District. Trees are filled with pretty pink blossoms which are just beginning to scatter their petals onto the ground; the sun is making increasingly frequent appearances; and flowers dot lawns and fields, adding colour to the landscape. Amidst this beautiful sense of spring, I received a very special commission to create a bespoke gift for a milestone birthday in early May.
Much of my work is created on commission: some are specific, others are left more open to interpretation. I love both, and on this occasion it was the latter. The brief was simple: six glass tumblers for a significant other’s thirtieth birthday.
After talking with the client, we settled on a floral theme to tie in with the season. Given the timing of the birthday, focusing on flowers associated with this time of year seemed only natural! We chose to give each glass its own individual character by opting for a different flower to decorate each tumbler: bluebells, daisy, Lily of the valley, cherry blossom, early purple orchid and violet.
Keeping the tumbler itself a simple, clear, smooth texture, I worked to colour and manipulate the glass to give a semi-3D look which really brings the flowers out and allows them to take centre stage. Creating something beautiful was the main priority, but practicality was also key. We wanted these glasses to be used for years to come and properly enjoyed. Choosing to craft the tumblers from borosilicate glass means that they’re as happy when used for refreshing spring/summer cordials as they are when filled with warming herbal teas.
It may have something to do with living in an area of natural beauty, and working in a studio surrounded by trees and plants, but flowers often feature in my work. When I was younger, we would visit our grandparents in Burneside and pick dandelion flowers from their garden to brew up into tea later on. All you needed to do was steep the petals in boiled water for a few minutes before adding a little sugar to taste. It’s one of those seemingly small memories which serves as a happy reminder of childhood, and probably helped to spark my love for incorporating natural elements into my work today!
Once finished, the glasses were ready to be packaged up and sent out to their new home. A 100% unique, hand-made gift which will (hopefully!) put a smile on someone’s face this May. If you’d like to discuss a bespoke commission don’t hesitate to get in touch (my contact details can be found here ).