During the summer months in Guernsey, we hold several parish shows across the island. Starting with the South Show, then the West Show and finishing with the North Show.
The Guernsey North Show is one of the main events in Guernsey’s summer calendar, and takes place in the wonderful rural setting of Saumarez Park. Each year the Show attracts thousands of visitors to enjoy the displays of exhibitors’ entries, ranging from Guernsey livestock through fur and feather, fruit, vegetables, flowers, flower arrangements, cookery, photography, art and craft.
There is also a programme of arena events, showcasing local and off-island talent, and the Guernsey Battle of Flowers, which culminates in the evening illuminated cavalcade followed by a firework display.
As a child I have fond memories of attending the North Show and remember the buzz it gave me to enter the exhibit tent and find out whether my entries had won anything. I only started making jewellery late in 2009 and with a few months learning under my belt, decided to enter the jewellery section at the North Show for the first time in the summer of 2010. I knew I wasn’t going to win anything as was I very new to jewellery making techniques, but was proud of my piece and proud of myself for taking part and entering.
I didn’t take part in 2011, not sure why, probably too busy or using that as a pathetic excuse so this year after having watched Kirstie Allsopp’s Handmade Britain, where she learnt new skills and entered handmade items into shows, I felt that I must get involved again and enter. My jewellery making skills have come on a bit and felt that it would be good to put something more technically challenging in. So then came the decision of what to put in….. I knew I didn’t have time to make something new specifically for the Show, which I aim to do next year, but chose a bridal piece made last year which I loved.
It was a 5 stranded bridal cuff bracelet made on wire using Swarvoski Crystals and Pearls and fastened with a 5 strand loop clasp. The piece was made for a bride who wanted a chunky piece of jewellery that made a statement and matched her wedding dress.
I also made a matching bracelet for the bride’s sister who was a bridesmaid but a 3 stranded version. You can read all about both pieces in Davina Le Page – Wedding Commission.
Anyway, I was proud to enter the bracelet in the Show and decided to display it on top of a heart shaped stone to give it a more dramatic feel. The stone was one I found a few years ago on a beach and had carved for my wedding day.
The judging took place and I eagerly set off to see how my entry had done. As I entered the tent and approached the jewellery section, I was pleasantly surprised to find out that my bracelet was awarded third prize. The entry that had come first was an arrangement of matching jewellery made out of a silk painting so I could see straight away how much work had been put in and loved the mix of blues and greens in the pieces.
I was not aware you could put more than one piece of jewellery in under one entry so could have added the bridesmaid bracelet too but at least now know for next year!
Looking back at the piece I entered in 2010 and this year’s entry, I am proud of how far I have come in my jewellery making skills and if anything, this exercise has taught me to stop and remember what is important and that is to enjoy what I make and be proud of it….
Now all that’s left is to pick my winnings up next Friday. Now what shall I spend that £2 on! It’s the taking part that counts…..