In Conversation with Oddie & Hope
I really wanted to get behind the creative gurus this year and find out who is behind the brand , what inspires them , where do they find ideas.
I also wanted to visit the place , ie workshop , shed , study or kitchen table where they bring their to products to life and this is something I wanted to share with you all.
Due to current circumstances this has not been possible so here are the 20 questions from jewellery maker Dominy from Oddie & Hope.
1. Who are you, and what type of business do you run?
I'm Dominy Hope and I design and create contemporary jewellery in Surrey
2. What is the name of your business and how did you come up with it?
My business is called Oddie & Hope which is a combination of my husband's and children's surnames! I also quite liked that it came together as 'OH' which I use for my really WOW collection
3. Why did you start your business? I have always had an interest in jewellery and traditional silversmithing as. my parents are archaeologists and my father always used to take us to auctions where I'd spend my time looking through lovely things I couldn't afford!
4. How old is your business ? I started Oddie & Hope two years ago during my second year at college
5. If you had to pick 3 words to describe your business what would they be ? Dominy had not completed this but I’m going to choose 3 words for her :- Design,Creation & Love
6. Are you formally trained or self trained ?
7. What was the first piece you made and how long did it take?
It was a 4in copper cuff textured to look like bark of a tree with cut-outs to represent the knots. It took three weeks as it was a little ambitious for a first piece but I still have it and love it!
8. Where did you sell your first piece?
Online but via an instagram post
9. Do you have an online shop, and if so do you prefer selling online or in person?
I do have an online shop but I love meeting people who want to talk jewellery! It is such a personal thing and I completely understand certainly for the first purchase, why people want to touch the jewellery they are buying and see the quality first hand.
10. What’s your favourite thing to make? I love to re-use something old such as a silver vase, or an old un-fashionable ring that maybe someone has inherited and turn it into something new, contemporary and ready to be worn and loved again.
11. Is there anything new you are adding or doing this year ? I have two main focuses this year. For the design and creation I am focussing more on sustainability and re-use of old materials as I think it's so important environmentally to reduce waste and un-necessary manufacturing. I am also offering a 'made to measure' service for locals to come and choose their design, get measured (maybe over a glass of Prosecco or cup of tea) and then come for a final fitting. It actually reduces waste as I'm only making to order and it is a lovely experience. It has been very popular as a gift voucher type present.
12. How do you keep your creative skills fresh? I still go to college! We have 20 silversmiths all at different stages making different things in different ways so I am constantly learning. If there's a skill I want to seriously improve or have a particular interest in I attend intensive courses.
13. How do you work? Do you have a dedicated workspace? I have my own studio full of tools and materials all to hand where I can sit and hammer to my hearts content whilst listening to the radio. The station depends on my mood, what I'm making and how much time I have!
14. Where do you find inspiration? Simple - the Surrey Hills. I love the peace and tranquillity and can never tire from the stunning views
15. What’s been your favourite customer feedback?
Thank you she loves it and wears it all the time....
16. What are you most proud of that you’ve made ? My figure of 8 necklace. It took two people, a large vice and two rolling pins of different sizes to get it to the shape and fluidity I wanted. It looks so simple ... it wasn't!
17. What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given by someone? It takes time.... be patient and be brave
18. What’s the one piece of advice you would give someone starting up?
It takes time.... be patient and be brave
19. Where can customers find you this year ?
Obviously Handpicked but also a number of other local fairs (I'm trying to minimise my CO2) and at home too by appointment.
20. What is it you like about Curated ? Like? I love Curated By! The ethos behind Curated By focusing on local and truly handmade aligns with my own and they are so careful with their choice of company and hugely supportive with their marketing. I hugely value the effort they put in.
Thanks for reading!