A short (ahem) first post.


What a wonderful few days it's been! Full of lovely, magical, people, and amazing stories. And so many ways to see those playful, cheeky little tendrils of creativity; growing and entwining, collecting and connecting folk en route. You can almost hear its' glee as it heads your way with plans of mischief budding a' plenty.

It started off by knocking at Sharon Cooper's door. We sat at her table, drinking spiced hot chocolate, as Sharon set Graham (a rather rotund squirrel) obstacle courses in the garden, and introduced me to the joy of badge-making. Yes, badge-making. You should definitely give it a go. Such an easy pleasure. I felt like I was at a quilting circle for the lazy! As Graham (wheezily, I felt) completed the run, claimed HER edible prize, and proceeded to drop crumbs onto the fur of her over-sized belly, we 'ka-chunked' out badges on the amazing steampunk-esque machinery, and it got me thinking about all the different species of creativity.

I think of Sharon's form of creativity as an outward form, which, up until a couple of years ago was completely alien to me. My creativity has been mainly introvert. I have ALL. THE. FUN, but inside my own head! So, this outward joy  feels like something I'm very new at. Sharon is a wedding photographer by trade; but really she is a memory maker, and bottler. And, as she talked passionately about the relationship with her couples, it struck me how much alchemy is involved in coaxing the best out of people; in order to extract and record what would become most treasured memories. This outward creativity's aim is to spill over to other people. And it spills over to all the other areas of Sharon's life too. The care she puts into creating the perfect hot chocolate, setting new challenges for the ever-suffering Graham, her use of badge-making to proclaim her love for the supermarket, 'Iceland', on a routine food shopping outing! Sharon uses her creativity to make people smile. I've rarely been in a home which felt as playful, and as loved.  The mechanical, almost meditative quality of this making process we'd shared, mingled with our collective and thorough over-excitement of seeing it's results revealed. How a teeny tiny version of one of the pieces I knew so well could still surprise me, and transform itself, not only into something so tactile and wearable... but also so fun. I left with not only a jangling, clanking bag of treasures, but also the feeling that some of Sharon's magic outward creativity had worn off on me. And I hope to pin that to my lapel too.

Badges available from my shop
See Sharon Cooper's photography here