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Four independent jewellers share their stories

Discover wearable art at MADE MAKERS, hand-crafted by independent jewellers. Read on to meet four of our October artists: Elin Horgan, Art Gems (Annie Ruthven-Taggart), Poppy Norton and Naomi Tracz.

Rhea pendant & Meteorite necklace by Elin Horgan


What will you exhibit at the show?

Elin Horgan: I will be exhibiting my range of beautifully simple geometric-inspired jewellery, handmade from 100% recycled silver- and gold-plated silver. I’m inspired by abstract art and architecture and I love the challenge of creating beautifully simple jewellery from just a few different geometric shapes.

Art Gems: I will be promoting a new collection, which explores the use of fine watercolour paper texturing on fine silver and 18ct gold. My work is inspired by marine life and geological structures found in rocks and pebbles. This means lots of holidays combing beaches and rock pools for inspiration.

Poppy Norton: Modular brooches and powder-coated circle brooches in limited-edition colours. I’ll also show a selection of my favourite jewellery designs – some big, some small, all of them pared back, graphic and bold. And a new range of silver pieces inspired by the textiles of Lucienne Day and Midwinter Pottery.

Naomi Tracz: I will be exhibiting a collection of my handmade jewellery, a selection of rings, pendants, earrings and cuffs made with silver and 18kt gold. I will be offering 15% off all of the 16 pieces in my Makers gallery; exclusive to my mailing list subscribers on Saturday, and open to everyone on Sunday.


Tourmaline Ring by Art Gems


What made you become an artist?

Elin Horgan: I’d always wanted to be a jeweller as a child, but my career took me in a different direction.  it was only after having my first child that I was brave enough to take the leap and pursue my dreams….and by that point it felt like a need deep within me to do something creative!

Art Gems: I initially embarked on a linguistic career studying Italian and French at Kent University, but I secretly wished all along that I had taken a more creative path. My mother was a printmaker and painter, so the artistic genes were destined to surface eventually. I assembled a portfolio of drawings and a wealth of inspiration whilst on a year abroad in Venice. After my graduation I started an Arts Foundation course at Central St Martins, followed by another degree in Jewellery and Silversmithing at Sir John Cass. Then I set up as a freelance designer jeweller with my own business and for the last 25 years I haven’t looked back, or ever wanted to do anything else.

Poppy Norton: I’m inspired by architecture and product design – most of my designs come from a process of playing with geometric shapes. I originally trained as a product designer before working as an interior stylist and trend reporter for 20 years. I loved my job but I very much missed the process of designing and making. So I headed back to the workshop and retrained as a jeweller.

Naomi Tracz: I have always loved creating, as a child I drew a lot and went on to do a fine art foundation course. I then moved to photography and took the Editorial Photography degree at Brighton Uni. Jewellery making came a few years later after I attended a jewellery making class with a friend. I quickly fell in love with it and went on to City & Guilds part-time. Exhibiting with Made Makers has helped bring my jewellery to a new audience of true craft lovers, they are such well curated and well run shows!


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Dot Dash Hair Slides by Poppy Norton


How did lockdown affect your process?

Elin Horgan: Everything took a lot longer and it was tricky to begin with as most bullion suppliers were closed. Having to work around primary school age children at home was also a challenge, but I used small pockets of time to produce a small collection of one off pieces, challenging myself to use/re-use the silver I had and look at how I could re-purpose my scrap. Creating is what gets me out of bed in the morning… I enjoy getting lost in the making process. When I’m locked away in my workshop sawing, filing and soldering it’s almost meditative!

Art Gems: Lockdown was tough for all creative industries. Even if you had your workshop at home, as I do, inspiration to work was hard to find, as were clients. I found the best way to cope was to just take a break, I knew I would come back to it eventually. So, I spent most of lockdown creating an e-commerce site which has opened up new selling avenues and a new way of working with clients.

Poppy Norton: Lockdown changed my career again – I became a homeschool teacher to my two young children. But they’re both back in school now and I’m happily back in the workshop. I seem to work better with a deadline, so I try to set myself design briefs with an end date. Going to galleries and keeping inspired also helps. Made Makers keeps me motivated to keep making.

Naomi Tracz: I am lucky that my studio is in my house so I could still work during lockdown, but my hours were very reduced as I had two primary school aged kids at home. I still had commissions coming through, for which I am very grateful, and they kept me busy. I would get up at 4:30 three to four times a week to get some extra work hours in!


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Rings on the bench by Naomi Tracz


See which independent jewellers are getting ready to join MADE Makers here

Visit the galleries from 9.00am, 3rd – 4th October 2020, to browse beautiful handmade pieces of art.

Until then, follow us on Facebook and Instagram for sneak previews! #MADEmakers