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Black Heart Creatives Jewellery Making Workshop

As you probably know, I’m a huge fan of the acrylic jewellery that Black Heart Creatives makes. What’s not to love? The designs are clever and unusual, the pricing is reasonable (and makes you realise how much other brands mark their products up!) and Charlotte is one of my favourite people I have met through Twitter and blogging.

When she was looking at doing a jewellery workshop last year, I helped out by sending her a few places that she could approach to do a workshop, and after a few months, there was finally a date set for a workshop in Bristol. Held at the Crazy Fox in St James’ Arcade in Broadmead (which if you haven’t been there for a while, you really must visit! There are some wonderful independent shops in there, including Milliners Guild who have recently moved to a larger shop), a few of us piled upstairs after work one night for cups of tea, bottles of cider and a lot of chatting – oh, and making our own necklaces and earrings!

First up was a set of earrings – for the Valentine theme, it was a heart and an arrow. Charlotte started off simple and showed us how to open and close a jump ring to be able to attach things together.

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The little pack we were given had the heart and arrow, a piece of chain, four jump rings and two earring hooks. Despite this, I don’t think there was one pair of earrings the same!

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We took a little break to top up our cups (and our bellies – go for the cookies at the Crazy Fox, you won’t regret it!) and when we returned, we found a selection of hearts at our places, with more chain, jump rings and a clasp – everything needed to make your own necklace. Charlotte had also brought along some spare pieces, so we dove in and started playing around with the shapes.

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I went for a simple three heart design – I couldn’t resist the beautiful new glitter that Charlotte had just picked up that week!

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Black Heart Creatives are aiming to hold more events like this on a regular basis, but if you’re holding your own event, then you could hire them to run a hen do activity or perhaps for a birthday party activity?

Thank you Black Heart Creatives for inviting me to come and try my hand at jewellery making – I’m already looking forward to the next event!

When Copying Is Acceptable

The big story in fashion this week has been about Clare’s Accessories’ blatant copies of some well loved Tatty Devine pieces. Tatty Devine posted a blog post where it invited the reader to spot the difference between their originals and the copies costing a tenth of the price.

Twitter (of course) was outraged and made sure everyone knew about it. Clare’s Accessories trended for a while when your timeline was probably filled with “Shame on you Clare’s!” Claire’s have handled this blow up in a spectacularly bad way, deleting and blocking comments on their Facebook page, and ignoring Twitter completely.

At the same time, I was going through my neglected Google Reader and saw the latest in VIPXO‘s eBay posts. (I think its a great series, and Victoria does amazingly well to find some of those items). It made me wonder though – what makes the Clare’s Accessories thing bad but eBay fakes ok?

In both situations, a designer who sells an original for a high amount is being copied by someone else happy to sell at a lower cost (and lower quality). The difference (as far as I see) is that with Claires, its a large corporation ripping off an independent designer. With eBay, you don’t know who is behind the fake, and there’s always a possibility that its made in exactly the same factory as the original but without the label.

But why does that make it OK to buy the fakes? Where is the line drawn?

Movember!

I love anything that encourages people to get involved with raising money for a charity, especially if its a cancer charity. (What can I say, I’m very biased). You probably know at least one bloke who is doing Movember this year, where men are sponsored to grow a tashe, and raise money for mens health, more specifically prostate cancer.

Unfortunatly, my ‘tache growing skills are not that great due to…well, y’know, being a girl. But there are other ways to get involved ladies! Alice‘s latest project was creating the Tache Off app for 118 118’s Facebook page where if you tache-ify (yep, thats a word) your photo, they will donate £1 for each pic made.

Theres also a huge amount of jewellery especially that will help you join in – here’s a few of my faves!

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