Meet The Maker – Debbie Barber

Debbie Barber - Ceramicist

Debbie Barber – Ceramicist

Debbie first trained as a textile artist, specialising in embroidery and surface decoration. After 10 years she returned to college to retrain as a potter having a life-long interest in ceramics. Now Debbie combines her love of colour, texture and pattern that she used in her textiles with her new medium, clay. Debbie specializes in naked Raku and sawdust firing enjoying the hands on and dynamic process of Raku firing.  Using resists she uses smoke to ‘paint’ patterns on the surface of the clay.


Heart - Debbie Barber

Heart – Debbie Barber

Raku is a fast firing technique that originated in Japan in the 16th Century and was associated with the making and firing of small bowls for use in the Tea Cermony. In the modern version vessels are removed hot from the kiln and smoked in sawdust before cooling in air or water.

Collection of raku birdies - Debbie Barber

Collection of raku birdies – Debbie Barber

Due to the individual nature of the technique, no two pots are the same; they are unique and have their own beauty. The finished pieces are burnished and polished to give them a soft satin sheen.

Close up

Close up

Debbie takes inspiration from the natural world, birds, trees and leaves for example. Her forms are simple, strong shapes and she uses surface pattern to introduce complexity and interest.

Heart - Debbie Barber

Heart – Debbie Barber

Debbie has been nominated twice for the prestigious City & Guilds Gold Medal for Excellence for her ceramics. Highly commended in 2007 and winning the Gold Medal in 2009. Only one medal is awarded in each discipline every year.

Andy Poplar and his new work for Heart Gallery

Andy Poplar

Andy Poplar

We have featured Andy here before so hop across to our previous post to read more about him and also this one on branding. What I want to tell you about today is the new ideas Andy constantly comes up with and below are our new glasses coming for Father’s Day and our milk bottle that can be commissioned for your Wedding/Civil Partnership.

Father's Day glass

Father’s Day glass

Father's Day glass bottom

Father’s Day glass bottom

Mr and Mrs milk bottles available for commission as a keepsake of your special day.

Mr and Mrs milk bottles available for commission as a keepsake of your special day.

He’s a clever lad that Andy Poplar isn’t he? A man so full of ideas I’m surprised he doesn’t pop! If you are in Hebden Bridge this weekend pop in to see his current work and if you are in Saltaire call and see Andy and say hello to him at the Saltaire Makers’ Fair.

‘I DO’ Wedding Exhibition at Heart Gallery – Valentines’ Day

I DO Wedding Exhibition - Sarah Mason, local photographer

I DO Wedding Exhibition – Sarah Mason, local photographer

This quick little blog is to let you know that Heart Gallery is holding a Wedding Exhibition on Valentines’ Day, 12pm – 5pm. So if you are celebrating the union of love in 2010 then you need to come down to Hebden Bridge to see what Heart Gallery can offer you and your party for your special day.

Meet Sarah Mason, a local photographer with a sensitive and individual approach to your wedding or civil partnership and the ability to capture those special moments. Sarah will be at Heart Gallery to chat with you about your requirements  and your plans to give you the photo’s you want. Sarah’s style is fresh, contemporary and natural and she likes to create a rapport with her client(s) and develop ideas prior to your BIG day. Sarah believes that the photographer shouldn’t take over your SPECIAL day so her approach is friendly yet discreet!


'I DO' Wedding Exhibition - Sarah creates your perfect cake

‘I DO’ Wedding Exhibition – Sarah creates your perfect cake

Sarah Jenkins’  fabulous wedding cakes are stunning; individually designed to meet your requirements  with style and attention to detail. For fashion conscious cakes for your BIG day then Sarah is the person you need to speak with. Sarah will be at Heart Gallery 14th February and inspiration is the key … from your invitation, your favourite flower, piece of jewellery, special place or perhaps a pattern from a vintage piece of china, Sarah can translate this into a scrumptious cake for your SPECIAL day using the best fresh ingredients including organic free-range eggs and Fair Trade chocolate.


'I DO' Wedding Exhibition - Amanda Cox bridal jewellery

‘I DO’ Wedding Exhibition – Amanda Cox bridal jewellery

Heart Gallery is already a stockist of Amanda’s amazing silver and gold jewellery so you have probably seen her stunning lily collection in Heart Gallery previously. On February 14th Amanda will be at Heart Gallery to talk to you about your bridal jewellery ideas and can also help you choose those perfect Bridesmaid’s gifts. Amanda’s silver lily collection is stunning and perfect for your SPECIAL day but she also has a fabulous rose collection too which can be chosen in polished silver and oxidised silver.

If you prefer more precious metals then we can also quote for any of Amanda’s pieces in yellow or white gold.


White freshwater pearls with small oxidised silver rose necklace

‘I DO’ Wedding Exhibition – White freshwater pearls with small oxidised silver rose necklace

As well as showcasing stunning bridal jewellery from top UK based designer/makers you can also bring your partner along too to look at a wide range of cufflinks from these makers. When it comes to gifts for your bridal party, personalise. This shows that you have taken time with the gift and it makes a great keepsake. You can do this in a number of ways. Bespoke is one. Have a jeweller make jewellery to your specification for your bridesmaids or cufflinks for the groomsmen. There will be many handcrafted cufflinks on display in Heart Gallery on Sunday 14th February so not only can the groom choose a pair to compliment his Wedding suit but so can the Best Man and Ushers knowing that they are choosing the Best of British Craft.

'I DO' Wedding Exhibition - Marisa Arna silver and 18ct gold cufflinks

‘I DO’ Wedding Exhibition – Marisa Arna silver and 18ct gold cufflinks

'I DO' Wedding Exhibition - Nick Hubbard silver/9ct gold cufflinks

‘I DO’ Wedding Exhibition – Nick Hubbard silver/9ct gold cufflinks

You can also see fabulous silk ties from textile artist Clare Webster who can talk you through the different silk swatches and match the silk to the bridesmaid’s dresses or a colour scheme of your choice. Clare also makes amazingly sculptural bags and scarves which are just perfect for the mother of the bride or groom and the choice of silk colours is endless so you can match to the outfit or the shoes and stand out from the crowd. So, if you are looking for an outfit for your daughter or son’s wedding, our advice would be to have something designed for you which is not typical mother of the bride and could be worn afterwards. Its always good to know if your accessories have been designed specifically for you as there’s no chance of meeting someone else in the same thing and Clare can make sure this happens.

'I DO' Wedding Exhibition - Clare Webster's silk bags are structural and amazing.

‘I DO’ Wedding Exhibition – Clare Webster’s silk bags are structural and amazing.

On Valentines Day, Heart Gallery will focus on adornment, especially rings, jewellery, headwear, textiles and bags but is also bringing you interesting gift ideas from a selection of the best designers in the UK – forget crystal, crockery and cutlery and choose something unique and exciting instead. Treat your wedding gift list as a Heart’s Desire List – think about updating any existing homeware and include any gifts you’ve always wanted. Ensure you have enough gifts for your guests to choose from. It’s better to have too much on your Heart’s Desire List than too little. Also remember to include a wide selection of prices as friends and family may choose to club together to purchase a large item. When choosing Heart Gallery for your Heart’s Desire List, you can be certain we have a good team, polite and helpful to your requests and we have a wide choice available, with something to suit all budgets.  It’s always a good idea to include gift tokens so that if your guests can’t find anything they love on your Heart’s Desire List they can get our fabulous pewter Heart Gift Tokens and then you are able to pick what you like in your own time. If you honeymoon in New York then you could make sure that Clare Caulfield is high on your Heart’s Desire List to remind you of your time together: Heart Gallery also sells Clare’s prints of other famous cities and we always have a choice of about 6 originals either framed or just mounted.

'I DO' Wedding Show - Clare Caulfield limited edition print Times Square New York

‘I DO’ Wedding Show – Clare Caulfield limited edition print Times Square New York

Or you could chose something stylish for your home from our London boys, Dan Black and Martin Blum. These guys have numerous design awards under their belts and Heart Gallery is this area’s stockist of  their amazing products.


'I DO' Wedding Exhibition - Loop candelabra £18bra

‘I DO’ Wedding Exhibition – Loop candelabra £18

'I DO' Wedding Exhibition - Fruit loop £28

‘I DO’ Wedding Exhibition – Fruit loop £28

At Heart Gallery, you’ll find every gift exceeds your expectations, from practical and innovative products to the luxurious and indulgent. You can choose from quality, well-established design-led brands and endlessly stylish exclusive lines from some of the UK’s top designer/makers working in ceramics, glass, textiles, wood and wall art. With a price range to match anyone’s budget you will not be disappointed choosing Heart Gallery as the destination for your wedding guests.


'I DO' Wedding Exhibition - Natalie Vardey Pearl necklace

‘I DO’ Wedding Exhibition – Natalie Vardey Pearl necklace

So folks, I hope we shall see you on Valentines’ Day and if you know anyone who may be joining with another to celebrate the union of love this year then pass this info blog on to them. Heart Gallery is a destination 365 days of the year but on February 14th, 2010, Heart Gallery will be THE place to be if you are getting married, thinking of getting married or taking your commitment  to your partner to the next level and planning your civil ceremony. Resident at Heart Gallery on Valentines’ Day will be Sarah Mason a local wedding photographer, Sarah Jenkins confectioner, Clare Webster textile artist, Heather Wilson hat maker and Amanda Cox, Bex Bardon and other UK based jewellery designer/makers to discuss your requirements and of course you will also have the expertise of Heart Gallery staff at your disposal in an extremely relaxed environment.

See you soon, Alison xXx

One piece of beautiful jewellery and two beautiful ladies tie the knot!

Friday 11th September and the sun was certainly shining on these two lovely ladies for their wedding day as Mel decided to make an honest woman of Sue!

Sue is a regular exhibitor at Heart Gallery with her delicate boxes hand-built from porcelain clay slabs. Sue’s pieces are fired twice in her old re-conditioned front-loading kiln. She has tried various clay body and glaze combinations, but has settled on a French porcelain called Limoges, and a transparent glaze which is silky to the touch, and enhances the cleanness of the lines and form. All Sue’s work is food-safe and waterproof.

Sue Candy

Sue Candy

Mel contributes enormously to The Hebden Bridge Handmade Parade which is a community-generated parade led by local artists which celebrates the creativity, variety and the uniqueness of Hebden Bridge and its surrounding areas. As an area fiercely proud of its local character, and apparently internationally known for its funkiness, the Hebden Bridge parade is not your average small town parade so Mel should be proud of its achievements the last two years.
handmade parade  2009

handmade parade 2009

handmade parade 2009

Sue and Mel came down to see me a few days before their civil ceremony and reception at The Devonshire Arms, Bolton Abbey to find something suitable for Mel to wear around her neck that would remain a classic piece worn time and time again. They both knew the type of thing they wanted and as soon as they saw Hannah Souter’s range from my ACJ exhibition, Cambridge they knew that they had found ‘the one’.

Hannah’s work is strongly influenced by her love of organic forms, in particular seed pods and buds. Comprising of hand press formed and individually fabricated units, her jewellery combines subtle surface textures and contrasting finishes to create unique pieces of fine jewellery. Heart Gallery was proud that Hannah wanted to showcase her work in Hebden Bridge with the Cambridge branch of The Association of Contemporary Jewellery.

H Souter -Textured large dome ring

H Souter -Textured large dome ring

Hannah Souter - Textured dome pendants

Hannah Souter - Textured dome pendants

Sue and Mel had just a fabulous day, everything was perfect, and this close up of them proves that … and also shows how perfect Hannah’s pendant was around Mel’s neck.

Sue and Mel

Sue and Mel

Heart Gallery sends heartfelt love and best wishes to Sue and Mel for a happy and joyous life together. xXx