We are thrilled to have the opportunity to showcase some of the stunning pieces created by The Alchemist Forge. Sam Glendinning, Owner of The Alchemist Forge has partnered up with Shieldhill Castle to provide handcrafted one of a kind jewellery, to not only be exhibited but also available for purchase. Next time you visit Shieldhill Castle check out our Alchemist Forge display, even take a piece home with you. In light of working with Sam we thought to share with you a little more details about her passion and how she began working with Shieldhill Castle from Sam herself.
How long have you been creating jewellery and what made you want to share it with the world?
I have been designing and making artisan jewellery for 7 years from my home studio here in South Lanarkshire. I’ve spent most of my life in the countryside and have always felt a connection with the wide
open spaces, waterways and woodland. Its where I take all my inspiration from. I just love the natural forms you find when you re out and about.
What makes you want to work with Shieldhill Castle & display your creations within the castle?
I had been looking for somewhere to showcase my work for sometime. I knew what I wanted but didn’t know where to start to be honest. I found Shieldhill completely unintentional. I knew it had been bought
over and that it was being renovated but no idea it was actually open. We stopped to ask directions and we got chatting to Jane at reception. She offered to show us round and I fell in love with it. It felt so
welcoming and as though we were in someone’s home. The staff were so friendly which made it feel even more personal & inviting. As we walked round, Jane explained about what they had planned for the future
and the changes that they had done. The whole time I’m thinking…this is perfect. I asked Jane if she would consider having a cabinet of work and showed her some images. She agreed there and then. Two weeks later we launched the current collection’ ‘Pebbles & Pools’.
What are your favourite pieces you have on display at the castle and why?
Its really hard to choose one. I loved creating this collection but if I had to, I think I would choose ‘Calm Waters’. It was designed to imitate the river Clyde running through the Leadhills. As you travel up through the Leadhills, you pass through gullies as the road meanders through the hills beside the river until you come to a large flat basin. The river slows down through the valley and curves over the rocks to create little pools surrounded by pebbles. Its like chaos chaos chaos and then all of a sudden you come into this beautiful calm area. It like the eye of the storm. Surrounded by hills heather and burns all flowing do to the valley floor.
‘Gold Rush’ is another. It’s design is based on the rivers course but studded with tiny 9ct gold pebbles. It represents the history of the gold that can still be found in the river and surrounding burns. Almost a nod to the time of the panners. Its still very common to see gold panners up there today. I actually have a license myself to pan.
07943 707 579
All materials are recycled from NHS X-Ray films so its as environmentally friendly as possible and reduce my impact as well as supporting the NHS.
All stones are sustainably sourced and bought from suppliers that insure the welfare & safety of their miners. This in turn gives them a better lifestyle as well as a higher wage. All packaging is FCS certified to so that its taken from managed woodlands. I use traditional techniques with hand tools to create all my work. Everything is hand fabricated.