Let fire inspire

Captivated by the magic of working with glass, Rebecca Weddell creates beautiful and unique lampwork beads and offers a range of beadmaking courses.

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Artists in action

As a surprise for my husband’s recent big birthday I secretly commissioned a mutual friend, artist Christa Hook, to paint my portrait. To put into context what a big deal this felt to me, let me explain that we don’t have any pictures of ourselves up at home - so it was going to be either a ‘gosh, how lovely’ moment or a ‘what have you DONE?’ moment when he unwrapped the present…..*

Christa took part in our local open studio event in the village over the summer, and was kept busy doing on-the-spot watercolour portraits. Across both weekends the little voice in my head saying ‘Jim’s birthday, Jim’s birthday…..’ kept making itself heard. Here’s what set it off in the first place:


I wanted Christa to paint me at work, so we found a date when the birthday boy wasn’t going to be around (he works just next door), and she pitched up at the Let Fire Inspire workshop with her gear. I was absolutely beside myself with nervousness about it when she arrived (‘what am I DOING?’, ‘this feels really weird’ and ‘I feel I must be really vain, doing this’ were some of the things I gabbled in welcome) but we had a cup of coffee and a chat while Christa set up her easel and filled her water pots.

It was an absolutely enthralling morning, and an incredible experience. We had identified that the best part of the beadmaking process for Christa to show was the winding of the glass, and I picked my favourite transparent green for the purpose. I sat and wound bead after bead at the torch flame, and put all other thoughts aside.

I was at work. Christa was at work. And we were both doing what we loved. Rather nice, I thought.

I made beads and Christa painted for about three quarters of an hour. She told me that she was done, and wanted to show me the painting. I stalled her for at least five minutes on this one, finding every excuse in the book NOT to have a look. I think I was terrified!

But then I looked. And burst into tears. I was absolutely blown away that she’d captured me - in paint, absolutely 100% - being me at the torch flame, letting fire inspire. She gave me a hug.


*The verdict from the birthday boy? ‘Awwww Rebecca.’ #smileyface


Renowned artist and illustrator Christa Hook has created military artwork, book illustrations, portraits, watercolours and natural history paintings. Weekly life-drawing ‘since forever’ gives her confidence and expertise in drawing with paint for her watercolour portraits, and she tells me that she was never not going to be an artist. It certainly comes across both in her work and in her approach to it - this girl has paint coursing through her veins.

@christahookwatercolourartist on Instagram
@HookChrista on Twitter

Happy to be happy!

It’s been a little while since I posted, and I thought I’d just have a little muse and write down how things are going this week.

Despite being quite tired from all of my open studio shenanigans (my last Open Studio weekend of the season ended at the weekend) I’m very very excited about some pending projects! I’ll keep you posted!

This week I’m feeling particularly grateful for social media and my online business life. I’d been under the social media radar for quite some time, until a bout of illness in January this year caused me to gently revamp my website from my sickbed (!) and at the same time reintroduce myself to Twitter and Instagram.

The benefits of being back on social media have so far been manifold. I have found out about all sorts of things, like:

  • What a Bullet Journal is

  • How to use the Pomodoro Technique to NAIL tasks

  • How absolutely lovely the online crafting community is

  • Inspiration for colour combinations and patterns can be found in all sorts of unexpected places

  • Low carb granola can be delicious

….and many, many more.

I’ve found out what a hashtag hour is, and have found some absolute beauties! I participate in several - #womaninbiz, #HandmadeHour, #HHlunch, #UkCraftersHour and #CraftBlogClub to name just a few - and have met some incredibly lovely fellow crafters/makers/businessfolk in doing so.

And this week - TA DAAAAAH! - I have started offering my lampwork glass bead and sterling silver jewellery for sale on the fabulous new sales platform www.myCrafty.com. I’m utterly thrilled to be part of this site - have a look here and see what you think!

I’m selling jewellery on myCrafty, and beads on Etsy.

All is good at Let Fire Inspire - how about you?

The Workshop, 8 Village Works, London Road, East Hoathly
Lewes, East Sussex, BN8 6QA
01825 840638

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