Artists spotlight on Faye Higginson - The Beaded Bobbin #Blogtoberfest13 day 11

Recently I have been learning a little about how to work with seed beads and when Faye Higginson aka The Beaded Bobbin showed me the stunning wrap bracelet she had made with one of my encased tree beads I asked her if I could share her work on my blog. She also kindly agreed to be interviewed for my Artists spotlight, without further ado meet Faye and have a drool at her beautiful creations.

How did you get started in jewellery design and seed beading?

I have always loved being crafty ;) I saw a book on stringing seedies around 10 years ago and got some supplies. At that time there was very little available in the way of information and I could not get on with Nymo (the only stringing material I knew of) so I got frustrated and left it alone for around 3 years. Then when I was looking for tiaras for my wedding I couldn’t see anything that ‘spoke’ to me so I decided to learn how to make my own. That got my obsession with crystals started! I started to get involved with an online forum called Bead Buddies and later I found the OTTBS Facebook group, the gorgeous creations there continue to be an amazing source of inspiration. and admired all the seed bead designs but never for a moment thought that I could do it. Then I went to a bead retreat organised by Donna Sanders and Catherine Chinoy. I bezelled my first stone and have been hooked ever since! That was in 2010.

What would you like to do/learn/take up in the future?

I would like to learn more wirework – maybe even play with soldering. I have just started playing with resin and swelligants which I am really enjoying. I’m quite enjoying the results too.

How has your crafting and inspiration evolved over time?

I am more aware of the wearability of an item now. I used to need to show off all I could do in one piece. I now know that sometimes less is more and I love to try and mix different medias – sometimes with great failure.

Do you craft for your living or is it more of a hobby/passion/obsession?

It has always been a hobby. I have wanted to be my own boss for as long as I can remember and when I was made redundant 2 years ago, after many failed temporary employment opportunities I realised I was never going to be happy being employed and decided to take the plunge by opening a bead store online – recently I have also taken a retail unit to have a public presence. I have so many huge ideas for it and have to remind myself to walk before I can run and take 1 small step at a time.

What is your favourite ever piece of work?

I have 3 pieces I am really proud of. A wire weaved Tiara that was inspired by my imagination of what Anne Boleyn may have looked like and what she may have worn. I mixed it with the Something Blue rhyme. It took well over 12 hours and over 400 various sized Swarovskis as well as freshwater and Swarovski Pearls. I really wanted to create the ‘encrusted’ look and it definitely looks encrusted.

My other favourite piece of work is my first bead embroidered piece. I had a ceramic pendant that I got at a swap on an annual bead retreat I go to and as soon as I saw it I knew what I wanted to do with it. This just evolved and it turned into this beauty. Everyone comments on it and I think the colours make it look so regal and Egyptian. It’s a collar length and the pendant sits comfortably in the V of your neck.

I also am so so proud of the Pinwheel Design. This is the first beadwork piece I designed myself and wrote a tutorial for it. Everyone who has tried it absolutely loves it and it’s the first experience I have had of people taking my designs and making it their own. It makes me so proud.

Pinwheel Necklace
Where do you find your inspiration?

I find inspiration in lots of things. Historical figures, dress shapes, shaped building windows, architecture and the beads themselves. Especially lampies – I adore the colours in them and can find colour inspiration in those alone. This wrap bracelet design was adapted from Nancy Dales design and was inspired by your lampie focal that I fell in love with. I am very proud of it (pictured below).

Stunning wrap bracelet with a Kitzbitz focal
What other crafts do you dabble in/would you like to try?

I love baking – but also adore to eat the fruit of my labour. I used to scrapbook and cardmake too. I gave up scrapbooking because I have no children so there was no-one to hand down my memories too and it felt like a wasted task. I still make cards now and then. I have recently ‘learnt’ to sew. I use quote marks because it’s the loosest of terms. I am currently exploring different ways of incorporating this into beadwork. I would love to learn bobbin lacemaking but have no time. I have compromised by buying a tatting shuttle – although I haven’t used it yet. I would also love to learn crochet.

Do you listen to music while you create? What is your favourite track?

I usually put ITunes on when I am beading. It’s got loads of different tracks on – Music by Rihanna, Taylor Swift, Michael Bolton (I know! I know!), Banarama, Etta James and lots more. Its background noise really – I can easily bead in total silence

Who is your favourite artists or designer?

I love Jamie Cloud Eakin – her embroidery is to die for. I also adore Nancy Dales work, Manek Lady, Kerry Slade is a total inspiration. Nicole Hanna does a-mazing wirework. I also love my lampwork beads and have some favourite designers. Amongst which is you, Jacqueline Parks, Sabine Little and The Fyre Fairie.

When not creating/crafting what is your favourite thing to do?

I love playing and snuggling with my 2 pups. My 2 gorgeous Yorkies. You can see why. I also like to spend time walking in the countryside and city walking too. I was bought up by the sea and when I feel like some alone time I love nothing more than to sit by the sea and listen to the waves crashing against the shore. It’s peaceful and therapeutic. I find it clears my mind of the daily fuzz and allows me to see things clearly.

You can find Faye on the www at
Twitter - @thebeadedbobbin
Pinterest -Thebeadedbobbin

Link to Pinwheel tutorial - www.thebeadedbobbin.co.uk/shop/pinwheel-component-tutorial

Many thanks to Faye for such and fab interview and wonderful images.

If you are in the area why not pop over and visit Faye in her new reatil unit
The Beaded Bobbin - The Braintree Jewellery Village, Victoria Road, Braintree, Essex, CM7 3HL

Have a super day, Jolene x

1 comment:

  1. What a lovely feature!! A huge thank you to Faye for doing such a gorgeous interpretation of my design, and for mentioning me as an inspiration, I am so honored. Hugs to you both!!!