Today’s Meet the Seller candidiate makes one of absolute favourite product ranges in the whole of Brighton! I first saw her work at the Brighton Tattoo Convention in January 2011 and stalked her until she agreed to sell at Craftaganza.
Please introduce yourself….
Hi! I’m Carola, designer and maker of Lux and Love jewellery among many
other things. I’ve lived and worked in Brighton for 16 years now and been a prop
maker, project manager, studio manager, set builder, performer…there are more incarnations, however right now I am here.
Describe the products you currently make to sell
I’ve made and sold many things in my life! But currently one of my main focusses is Lux and Love jewellery. The jewellery I make is very eclectic, my style seems to appeal to almost everyone, however almost each piece is unique. I don’t believe in ‘less is more’, in fact I think ‘the more the better’! and my favourite pieces could be described as ‘statement pieces’ full of charms, stones and individually made elements, although I have to rein it in as my best sellers are the more simple pieces.
It’s important to me that my jewellery has history, and wherever possible I use
reclaimed brass, vintage stones, vintage and pre-owned jewellery and curiosoties, and try to weave them together into something beautiful, interesting and unique.
Most recently, I’ve been collecting antique charms and making casts from them,
thereby reproducing beautiful old charms and using them in my own creations.
Where and when do you design and make your products?
I design my pieces constantly in my mind, while looking round flea markets, online, museums and antique treasure troves. My treasures are all gathered together in my studio in Cross Street, Hove, which is home to 3 floors of talented, inspiring artists, and this is where I tinker away into the night.
How long have you been selling your wares and how did it begin?
My current incarnation of Lux and Love has been going for about 2 years now, and was born from the desire to learn how to use metal. I’m actually a prop maker by trade, and I wanted to extend my skills in order to make metal models and small automata for films and TV. I took a beginners silversmithing class, learnt how to solder, and from there developed my own style, beginning by making moths and butterflies in reclaimed brass, slowly turning them into brooches and taking off from there.
What drew you to the Brighton area, if you are not a ‘native’?
I almost consider myself to be a native now, I actually came down for a party in
1995 and never left….. Ahhh, when Brighton was cheap and cheerful!
Any other crafty disciplines you like to practice?
As I mentioned, I’m a prop maker, mainly a polystyrene carver. I make huge
sculptures for theme parks and the like – this is the company that I run with my
partner who also teaches set construction at RADA.
My secret passion though, is pewter teapot sculptures made from antique
pewter teapots. These are personal journeys and where I let the full force of my
overdecoration obsession run riot. I make these pieces to commission, or just
when inspiration takes me, and am usually working on 1 or 2 at a time. : my teapot sculptures.
What inspires the things you make?
I take inspiration from Victorian jewellery and the ostentatious gaudiness of Catholic altars and try to condense those rich, dark, mysterious qualities into wearable pieces. My style is inspired by bustling flea markets with treasure hidden at the bottom of boxes, and antique shops – you know, the ones where you can hear a clock ticking and dust settling, where time stopped about 100 years ago. I love curiosities and really anything with history, I
rarely buy new things myself so I encourage finding beauty in old things.
Take every opportunity, and you can never have enough friends.