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Flowers of my childhood

As a child, growing up, plants and flowers were a big part of my surroundings. As far back as I can remember, there was someone gently pointing out something to me in the garden, “this is the rhubarb, and those are courgettes”, or on a walk in the woods, “this is an acorn, and this is a horse chestnut”. 
My grandfather maintained two gardens, one at his house and one at our family holiday home. We enjoyed banana passionfruit (back before it was illegal) in Christchurch, and harvested all our veges for Christmas meals from the garden at the Rakaia river mouth. My childhood is filled with memories of forsythias, gerberas, fruit blossoms, wheat fields, and general greenery – which is why it never ceases to amuse me how terrible I am at gardening! 
​Even the name of my business, Copper Catkin, comes from my love of the furry pussy willow catkins that I first encountered in our Geneva garden, down by the stream, before I was even 5 years old. 

Roadside colour

In New Zealand, I smile every year when the montbretia, or crocosmia × crocosmiiflora, start to appear. It makes me sad that they are considered a pest species, just like the beloved banana passionfruit of my childhood. I only found this out recently, when I tried to buy them online to add to our garden – so I decided to draw them, instead. 

Creating designs

I use my designs in several different ways – in jewellery, in fabric, and in print-to-order items like t-shirts and phone cases on Redbubble. 
What this means is that one simple drawing has to be manipulated in about 20 different ways in order to create a suitable pattern for each application. Here is the difference between a design for earrings, fabric, and a selection of options for a t-shirt, to give you an example.
And here are some photos of earrings being made!