Being self-employed and running your own business (as well as being a full time mum) is hard work and long hours, lots of highs and lows, but I wouldn’t change it. I am lucky enough to work from home, with my own studio in the garden and can come and go as I please. It gives me the flexibility of looking after my four year old.
I also live in a rural location, so can work all week without seeing anyone, so it is also important to network/meet with like-minded folk, just to have some adult conversation and share experiences. I belong to a business womens club and networking group and it does help.
I hope you enjoyed reading all about Lazy Daisy Glass and hope you can take some of this information and adopt in to your own business. Thank you for reading!
I love marmite.
I once did the conga with Norman Wisdom
I'm allergic to Mr Tumble, I come out all spotty! (mums will know who I mean)
I love my bed
What got you started crafting?
I have a creative streak that started from a young age and loved metalwork, pottery, sewing and carpentry when I was at secondary school. That's when the bug really hit me! I followed a career in administration, so did little 'crafty' things. Out of the blue one day, I decided to try glass painting (when it was really popular!) and sold small pieces at craft fairs - it wasn't a huge success! As they say, don't give up the 'day job'. When I moved to Scotland in 2003, I came across a stained glass workshop in Aberdeenshire. I joined and continued to attend for one year, and set up a mini studio at home.
However, my passion was fused glass and this was the path I wanted to follow. I attended a 3 hour fused glass workshop and was addicted! I loved it. I gave up my well paid office job in 2007 when I was due to give birth to my daughter. I wanted to be a full time mother. But. also wanting to do 'something creative', so I spent my maternity money on my first kiln - like you do!! I bought some books and materials and set about experimenting, alot of trial and error. But can proudly say I am self-taught.
The hobby, soon turned in to a full time business and attended my first trade show in 2008 (such a scary and exciting time). My order book became so full, that I had no alternative but to invest in my second and larger flatbed kiln. Business has steadily grown since and now have over 60 stockists throughout the UK.
What is your source of inspiration?
I'm a Cornish lass at heart and spent my childhood either in a pool or at the seaside, and a lot of my creations are themed around the sea. I make a lot of wave forms and use blues frequently.
Also, ideas just pop in to my head and find that it transforms in to something worth selling.
I try and read trade magazines to find out what the upcoming trends are. For instance at the moment, there are a lot of birds, cages, penny farthings going around - so I have created some Little Bird Coasters using a screen print technique.
What have you made recently?
As stated above, my Little Bird Coasters are the recent items, together with smaller priced things, such as heart keyrings/handbag charms. Money is tight at the moment, and have made small items to reflect this.
I recently learnt screen printing on glass and have used this technique on my newest items as there is not a lot of screen printed glass around at the moment.
The fused glass market is flooded with pretty coloured products, so have diversed slightly to incorporate the screen printing - it is important to keep one step ahead and to be fresh!
Where do you sell your crafts presently?
I attend trade shows - Glasgow and Harrogate and attend public events throughout Scotland. I love exhibiting at the larger shows, they are often 2-3 days, so we pack up as a family and take the caravan and make a weekend of it. My daughter loves it too, she gets to visit so many places. I also attend local events, they also need your support and I still believe that my 'brand' needs to get out there. It's all good publicity, although as a business person, I have to keep that head on and make sure attending small shows is worthwhile. You have some good shows and some terrible ones - in the creative industry, you just never know how it wil turn out.
I have my own website and sell on the following sites:
Why are handmade crafts important to you?
You cannot beat handmade - on a personal level, it is so satisfying that you have nurtured and made something with your own hands. To sell it, is even more of rush because people like it.
There is so much imported cheaply made items on the market, that people are now appreciating handmade. Handmade is not on the High Street - it is creative and unique!! Yes, it can cost a little extra sometimes, but what you have to keep or give as a gift is totally original.
No two pieces are ever the same.
For me, it is a sense of achievement!