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craft&design Selected

  Selected Makers

Jenny Ayrton

I capture miniature wonderlands in molten glass; tiny stage-sets upon you may project your own story. Many of my scenes have a domestic twist and are directly influenced by my surroundings. I have a young daughter and whenever possible I try to see the world from her viewpoint, I find inspiration in the mundane and overlooked; a washing line blowing wildly on the first day of spring, an unknown couple on a park bench, a door ajar giving just a glimpse of what lies within... 

I graduated from Plymouth College of Art in 2012. In 2014 I was selected for the prestigious Crafts Council Hothouse 4 scheme; this has really helped to give me confidence and direction. I now sell my work through galleries and craft events, and offer a commissioning service for bespoke scenes.

My pieces are solid sand-cast glass with metal inclusions. I begin by creating tiny wire models in the comfort of my home. I then spend an occasional (rather intense) day in the hot-glass workshop. I create a detailed impression in a bed of sand, into which the molten glass is poured at 1100°C. I get one brief opportunity to carefully add the wire using just tweezers, a fiddly action especially when exposed to such heat. It is the unpredictable and uncontrollable flow of the glass which brings each scene to life, creating the breeze in the washing and the foliage on the trees, it also ensures that every piece is truly unique!

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"So long, and thanks for all the fish"

After very many years of craft&design we've decided that we'd like to retire and so in 2 days we will close the craft&design website, including craft&design Online and the craft&design Selected Makers and Craft and Design Month websites. We've had a brilliant 35 years and would like to thank all our readers, advertisers, writers, contributors and website visitors for their support throughout that time. Our very best wishes to you all for the future - Angie and Paul.