BEHIND THE SCENES: AWAY FROM PAINTING
t probably feels like I was here writing this newsletter not long ago, but I'm just getting back into the normal schedule as our holiday messed up the routine a little bit. It will be another month until you hear from me again!
OKAYYYY where to start with this month??? Wahhhhhhhhhhh!!!
I always consciously try to be positive and optimistic, purposefully leaving politics and current affairs away from the customer facing elements of my candle business, I don't want to rock the boat with much personal thoughts, and potentially offend customers and risk losing sales and my livelihood. I also like to think I am providing some pretty visuals as a form of escapism… BUT I can't not use my voice this month as I am so furious at our government right now, I can't try and pretend everything is all rosy and pretty in the world. I'm so appalled at how many visas the UK has issued Ukrainian refugees, it is embarrassing to be British and I feel so disgusted.
I have donated cash, written to my MP and bought things on Etsy from Ukraine sellers but feeling so, so useless. Not knowing what else to do, I have painted some sunflower candles to sell and donate further funds.
My brain is feeling even more useless after visiting the Van Abbe Museum in Eindhoven this week. My inarticulate ramblings will not do it justice, but I went to see the brilliant Parallel Lives, Parallel Aesthetics exhibition by self-taught artist Leon Ferrari and Gulsun Karamustafa. Two artists who grew under military regimes and 'managed democracies', and their right to free expression and artistic autonomy had to be fought for in their home countries of Argentina and Turkey. The exhibition really struck a chord, and I burst out in tears for the first time in an art gallery!
The work of Argentinian Leon Ferrari particularly got in my head. His son ‘disappeared’ in the Dirty War, and he dedicated his life and art to his struggles with political and religious powers. There was a huge varied body of work on display, but the pieces focusing on the defence of human rights really got to me. History repeating itself again and again, and it was a lot to take in.
I realise I have customers all over the world, so I'd love to hear how your own communities are helping Ukraine and if you can offer some alternative ideas we might be missing here in the UK. Please reply, I'd love to know and help spread the word.
BEHIND THE SCENES: WHAT I'M PAINTING
As mentioned above, I have dedicated time to painting sunny yellow Sunflower candles for tomorrow's drop at 10am. Sunflowers are the national flower of Ukraine.
100% of the money from the Sunflowers sale will be going to the DEC Ukraine appeal. This charity who work with local partners in Ukraine to provide food, water, shelter and medical assistance.
As newsletter subscribers, you will always see the new candle collections first!
The Hedgerow Treasure candle collection will be available for PRE-ORDER tomorrow at 10am GMT, along with the existing collections that have stock ready to be packed and sent next week. The collection has some playful elements including new singing birds, and carrot munching bunnies (good for Easter tables or gifts). You can see more of the inspiration on my dedicated Pinboard.
The Hedgerow Treasure hand painted candle collection will be available for general ready to go sale at the end of March.
Lucky Dip Painted Candles
The Lucky Dip option for January was inspired by a bespoke design request, that I loved so much I had to make a batch! That is why I love creating bespoke designs, as customers often choose combinations or elements I would not naturally go for myself. I loved the red poppies and clash of the cornflowers.
Lucky Dips will be available at the next drop and will be floral based again (the only clue I am giving) so good for Mother's Day gifting!