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Author Topic: AOTM February 2009 - Julie Fountain  (Read 7094 times)
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« on: January 29, 2009, 03:32:51 PM »

Julie Fountain - Lush Lampwork



Like most of us, I’ve always felt that creative urge and eventually found my way to jewellery-making – well, bead-stringing really!  A few years ago, I developed an Ebay habit and discovered beads there, actually I came across glass rods first and was captivated by the range of colours and the wonderfully evocative names!  I was transported back to childhood Saturdays in WHSmiths, lost in a world of crayons, felt tips and pencil cases … heaven! 



The first lampies I ever bought were from Caroline Cash, and that was it, I was hooked!  I’m lucky to live close to Funky Cow Cath and made my first beads with her, gosh it was hard to get the hang of turning the mandrel “away” from me!  By this time I was spending every spare moment browsing the net, soaking up every word on FH and drooling over websites and Etsy.  I picked up my starter kit from Tuffnells at Stourbridge in August 2007 and since then, barely a day has gone by when I haven’t made, cleaned, photographed or sold a bead! 



After a couple of weeks with my first torch, I took a trip over to Hinckley and had a fantastic class with Sally Carver, and since then I’ve had a day with Sarah Hornik in Belgium, an afternoon with Claire Morris, the MnM class with Emma Green and Ema Kelly, as well as informal sessions with lots of wonderful FH friends including Heather Webb, Lesley MacFarland and Anna Richards.



I continue to be mostly inspired by the glass itself – many of my colour combinations are suggested by rods lying side by side on my workbench – proof that a messy studio is a productive studio!  If I’m feeling out of ideas I tend to select a couple of rods that I haven’t used in a while and I’m soon buzzing again.



When browsing I find myself consistently drawn to “graphic” style beads, I love blocks of opaque colours, with black cartoon outlines and funky patterns, simple, bright shapes that make me smile. I have always doodled daisies so I was naturally compelled to doodle them with glass and often add them to a set of beads just for fun.  My Sunbaked beads have been incredibly popular, and I enjoy coming up with new colour combinations.



I’m still working on my encasing and focal-shaping skills, and my ongoing battle with silver glasses continues – they just won’t be told who’s boss!



I’m really looking forward to 2009 – the world of lampworking has provided me with a rich social life, my diary is filling up nicely with bead fairs that I will be selling at, local shows where I hope to demonstrate and teaching sessions in my “torch porch” which I plan to develop.



My beads are available to buy through my website, www.lushlampwork.co.uk, where I also have links to my Flickr album and Etsy shop, and a list of upcoming bead fairs that I will be attending.



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