Sian Thomas of Elsker Creations will be leading a crafting workshop in London, introducing you to oil based gilding techniques. From this session you will be able to add a little gold to all your Christmas presents, read more here.

We caught up with Sian to hear more about the brand and where it all started…

Company overview

Elsker Creations takes traditional crafts such as gilding, calligraphy, book binding and letterpress printing and applies a contemporary twist to produce beautifully handcrafted products and designs. My workshops for adults introduce participants to key skills and materials, so that they have the confidence to apply what they have learned to their own handmade projects. I want every participant, from the littlest artists to the hardened crafter, to leave my sessions feeling inspired and revitalised.

How did it all start?

I have two passions in life aside from my family, art and food. In my twenties I was able to work in both of these industries. Increasingly I started developing my practice in various traditional crafts, predominantly gilding. I worked on commissions and got to a stage where I realised I needed to just go for it and start to make, design and sell my own products. I haven’t looked back!

The story behind the name…

I grew up in Denmark and stylistically it has greatly influenced me. The beautiful hints and twinkles of gold at Christmas I think is why I enjoy gilding so much, there is something very nostalgic about the practice for me. ‘Elsker’ means love in Danish and Elsker Creations is entirely based around a love for what I do, create and teach in my workshops. I thought love creations was a bit cheesy and ‘Elsker’ was a great alternative and nod to my past.

Where are you based?

I’m based in North West London and work in my studio in my tiny garden.

What inspires you?

Scandinavian Christmases. The wild and unstructured beauty of my allotment and more recently my baby.

What is your creation process?

I tend to get ideas and then have to let them develop until I am at a point where I can visualise them. Often this will involve researching aspects of the ideas and talking them through. Sometimes I have to let the idea brew over time, it is more of a thought that I keep returning to. Once I have developed the idea, I need to make it. Even if it isn’t exactly how I envisaged it, I have to get my thought process out and made. From there I can assess whether or not it is an idea I can keep developing and refining. It’s interesting though because my creative process is shifting since the birth of my baby. I used to be quite impatient when developing ideas, now I am more settled and pensive.

What makes you, your brand or products unique?

I make everything entirely by hand. I use traditional crafts and apply a contemporary twist to my designs.

What is your next project?

  • Developing my gilded pressed flowers, the new works incorporate glass gilding with 24ct gold. I am also going to be working on a herb series and press brides wedding bouquets.
  • I am launching baby, toddler and childrens workshops and this includes gilding workshops from 7yrs+ and gilding babies footprints (a fun one for parents and babies!).

What are your plans for the next 12 months?

After having a year of refining my company and having my baby I am looking forward to pressing on with some of the projects that have been put to 1 side such as developing my workshops and wholesale side of my business.

What is your biggest achievement?

Being featured in Vogue was pretty huge for me. Running successful fairs.

What is your best-selling product/line?

Gilded flower frames.

What do you love about Country Living Fairs?

These were the first fairs I did. I love the variety of makers and small businesses that are shown here and the workshop aspect. As a maker who runs my own business, this can sometimes be quite solitary and I have found that through the Country Living Fairs, not only have a developed a lovely customer base but also a very supportive maker community.

Your three top tips for crafters and makers…

  • Keep developing your skill set
  • Don’t give up
  • If not you, who. If not now, when!

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