It's interesting how a commission can drive your ideas forward and really impact on development of designs.
I had designed and made some lollipop-type mosaics mounted onto one metre mild steel rods as garden stakes. Something to pop into a flowerbed to add some sparkle and colour in those months when nothing much seems to be appearing in the garden. The idea was to be able to use up the scrap thermal panelboard left over from larger handcut mosaic boards.
These garden stakes had proved to be quite popular and were rapidly turning into my best-seller. And then a client commissioned me to make 9 garden stakes to pop in their garden during the National Garden Scheme Open Days 2018. They have opened their garden to the public before, but wanted to ensure they had points of interest if flowers were not blooming on time! As we all know flowers and the weather can be unpredictable! I am sure everyone creating gardens at Chelsea Flower Show will know all about those traumas.
The commission was to create 3 flowerhead stakes of 3 different flowers - anenome, daffodil and peony which were in their border planting scheme. So the simplistic lollipops evolved into more complex shapes and a greater use of handcut stained glass.
The flowerheads are fixed onto metre lengths of mild steel rod, which should rust slowly and gain a lovely patina outside.
This did prompt me into thinking about how to display the flowerheads so I'm playing with the idea of putting them in florist galvanised buckets filled with sand - these pots still have soil in them and cause rusting at the base only which wasnt the effect I was after!
I think the design that works best is the daffodil design, the small circles of tiny round tiles at the centre just catching the light. The flowerheads are mosaic-ed on both sides and edges have mirror tiles to reflect the light. The black grout is still a firm favourite and adds to the graphic quality.
New flowerhead designs are now on the workbench and will be completed shortly. The studio is looking more like a florist than a mosaic studio but at least it's full of colour. They are £35.00 each and can be commissioned if you have a particular flower or colourway in mind. Just contact me via the contact page for more details.