Georgia Thompson-Curran is the 24 year old from Manchester who set up the nostalgic jewellery shop Blóma. Since selling her first pieces on Depop to opening an online shop, her designs have made waves on Instagram and been seen on bloggers like Sophia Rosemary and Harmony Youngs. Georgia's playful jewellery is a contemporary take on vintage for the person who enjoys having a little fun with their accessories. I had a chat with Georgia to find out how she taught herself to make jewellery, where she draws inspiration from and why it is important to Blóma that it embraces the slow fashion movement...
What made you decide to set up Blóma?
Blóma began as a hobby for me last year, when I was going though I hard time with my mental health. It was suggested to me by a therapist that I should try and distract myself away from my thoughts, so with that I hop footed it off on the hunt for something crafty to fill my time. 30 minutes and 20 quid later I had a tote bag full of beads, pliers, thread and earring hooks. From there I just began experimenting and soon I had to many pairs of earrings to handle so I began giving them away to friends and family. It was then from encouragement from my friends and family that led me to the decision to set up my Instagram page and put them on Depop and its really has just snowballed from there.
Where does you love of vintage accessories come from?
I’ve always been interested in jewellery, as a child I was always spending my pocket money in charity shops on old lady jewellery and I’m pretty sure I kept my local newsagent’s afloat from all my 20p machine jewellery purchases. I studied fashion at university and knew I wanted to continue to create once I left. However, I don’t think garment construction was ever my strong point and with my love for accessories, it just made sense to give it a go.
Where did you learn to make your own jewellery?
I've never been taught how to make any form of jewellery, I would say that 90% of Blóma"s designs have come to life through a lot of trial and error and experimenting. I remember when I decided that I wanted to expand into necklaces, it took me a good couple of days to figure out how to attach the clasps to the ends! I eventually figured it out by looking at pieces of jewellery I already owned and a hell of a lot of googling!
Can you explain a little bit about your design process?
Firstly I play around with colour and then when I have a rough idea of what I would like to create I just start to play around to see where it leads. Once I come up with something, I’m happy with I’ll wear and trial it out on myself for a couple of weeks, then and only then if I’m happy with it will it make it on to the shop.
What do you look for when you source materials for your jewellery?
Where possible I do try and source vintage and deadstock beads, a lot of which comes from eBay and Etsy from sellers who are clearing out old collections. Unless I’m looking specifically for something, I’m very open minded when it comes to looking for beads and often I can purchase things that I might not have a specific idea for, as I’m defiantly one of those people who will keep a hold of something in case it becomes useful in future.
For beads that I can’t source second-hand I have a few trusted suppliers and reliable here in the UK that provide me with excellent quality materials I need to make the jewellery.
What inspires you creatively?
I’m always looking for inspiration for future collections, colours and styles, whether it be on Instagram, Pinterest, photograph archives, old family photos, films etc. I’ve always been drawn to the past when looking for inspiration. Which is why I think a lot of people find my pieces to be quite nostalgic.
How would you describe the Blóma! aesthetic?
I would describe it as nostalgic, fun yet classic.
Why is slow fashion important to you?
As a small business owner, I appreciate that times are testing and money is tighter than ever, but I really do think spending a little more by shopping with sustainable and small businesses pays off in more ways than one. Not only can you feel much better about knowing where your money is going but I often find that the quality is much higher than highstreet and online brands. Although purchases are much appreciated, support can be shown in a variety of ways. Supporters can share social media posts or recommend a friend to keep the profile of a small business alive. Small businesses bring real choice and colour to the retail industry. Supporting a small business is supporting creative individuals to keep the future of diversity alive.
What advice would you give to someone who wanted to set up their own online shop?
I really believe that everyone should make time within their life to be creative whether it be knitting, ceramics, colouring in, photography the possibilities are endless. Everyone should have a crafty hobby regardless of whether it becomes a source of income or not, just give it a go! You won’t regret it I promise! Apart from that I highly recommend starting out on platforms like Etsy and Depop, they really are amazing for anyone who’s wanting to build up customers without having to invest a ton of money.
What plans do you have in store next for Blóma?
I have lots of ideas for future collections for Blóma and I also have a few more collaborations planned which I can’t wait to get going with.
Follow Blóma! on Instagram - @blomashop
And check out their website - www.blomashop.com
Make sure to subscribe so you can stay tuned for the next instalment of 'In Conversation With...' , coming every Wednesday!