Hi! I'm Nikki, owner and maker of Paly Glass, which launched online in March 2016. I am a stained glass artist who specialises in the copper foiling method and everything is made by hand by me in Bristol, South West England.
I studied graphic design at college and then went on to do an art foundation degree at UWE. The year long course was great and gave me the opportunity to try out many different things. I would definitely recommend an art foundation to anyone who isn't sure which creative path they would like to pursue after A levels!
Whilst studying, I made my own jewellery and sold the pieces on eBay. This eventually turned into a full time business and I became self-employed. I did this for 4 years before I decided I wanted a change and I started working at a pre-school. At this point, sales went down and work took over so I stopped my eBay business.
Five years on and I really wanted to be creative and start making again. I found an antique pressed flower frame and a terrarium at a car boot sale and I fell in love with both of them. I wanted to make my own and did a lot of research, learning all about copper foiling. I booked on to a local stained glass course in September 2015 and I loved it instantly. I purchased all the tools I needed and haven't stopped making since!
After completing 3 terms of my stained glass course I continued practising at home. Over time, I began to see a massive improvement in my soldering. I opened my Etsy shop 7 months after I started my course.
I started off making small terrariums and pressed flower frames. I then started selling at local markets, my main one being The Frome Independent which is held every month and is an amazing market with over 200 stalls of handmade goods and food stalls (if you have never been, you must!). Selling at amazing markets like Frome and Crafty Fox really gave me the opportunity to meet customers and other traders and get invaluable feedback. I realised how much I loved talking to people and selling my items face to face. So selling at markets is just as important to me as having an online presence.
My products have now evolved in to bigger terrariums and many more flower frames in lots of different shaped frames. They are filled with both flowers I have personally pressed (and also now pressed by my Mum and my fiancé's Mum !) and custom orders from customers sending me very sentimental flowers to be framed by me, some as far as America and Sri Lanka!