Artists at Home 2024: Jeweller Azelle Thorowgood

Images: Azelle Thorowgood, ‘Unique blue twisted sea glass crafted in to a striking pendant drops from antiqued brass chain’

Azelle Thorowgood joins Artists At Home 2024

Artists at Home 2024 is approaching, in what has become an annual celebration of creativity and community spirit. The event, which takes places between Friday 14 and Sunday 16 June, is when local artists open their doors to show their work in the intimate setting of their own homes.

From painters to sculptors, photographers to ceramicists, this unique event offers art enthusiasts the opportunity to explore a diverse range of artistic talents within their own neighbourhood.

This year, interior designer Azelle Thorowgood is making her debut, where she will be showing her beautiful and unique sea glass jewellery.

Azelle, a mother of four originally from Scotland, runs her own local interior design consultancy with a speciality in incorporating antiques and the restoration of existing furnishings and upholstery. Quality, craftsmanship and sustainability are at the forefront of Azelle’s work.

Her elegant and cool collection of jewellery is made with pieces of sea glass, found on Azelle’s visits to the coast from East Sussex to the Hebridean Islands off the West Coast of Scotland.

Sea glass is physically and chemically weathered glass found on beaches along bodies of salt water. Weathering processes produce natural frosted glass, which is often then used for decoration, most commonly in jewellery.

Ever evolving and ‘a la mode’, Azelle’s collection now includes earrings, bracelets and necklaces all of which look “equally chic teamed with casual three quarter length jeans and a shirt, as they do with more formal wear.”

The necklaces are deliberately designed to be versatile enough to be worn as necklace, choker or bracelet. Understated gold-filled and brass chains carry carefully selected pieces of sea glass.

Images: ‘5 exquisite fragments of sea glass hover on an understated brass chain that drapes closely around the neck. Equally stunning wrapped twice around the wrist to double as a bracelet’, ‘Pretty pair of sea glass earrings. Highly flattering against the skin’

“Ethical, sustainable jewellery” 

Having been inspired to take part in Artists at Home through her day job as an interior designer, Azelle told me:

“I really love when I come across really beautifully made one-off pieces”

She is excited at the opportunity to showcase her own unique works of art.  “Ethical, sustainable jewellery” is a constant source of inspiration for Azelle.

“The environmental issue is the single-greatest issue we’ve all got to tackle. Any interior design work I do is inspired by the colours and the shapes of nature… that’s where the beauty lies.”

Importing that philosophy over into her jewellery, Azelle prefers not to alter the sea glass she finds but rather to “take it on as nature has treated it”, which makes every item unique.

Sustainability is “massively important” when creating works of art, Azelle says. “It’s key to my interior design business, I wouldn’t want to be promoting anything that wasn’t”.

The majority of people want to be as sustainable as they can be, Azelle tells me, “but unfortunately the main offering out there is still from big shops” who don’t give people an option to buy things which are good for the planet or are up-cycled. She says that given the choice, people tend to choose more sustainable options.

Dominance of corporate interests not only robs people of the opportunity to buy sustainable, Azelle says, but also has an impact on taste, something she hopes to challenge with her pieces.

“In a world now where we’re saturated by monopolies, big companies, shopping centres, everyone’s taste in interiors has become very uniform. We’ve all been forced to become very uniform in our taste because that’s all we’re offered.”

Image: Studio 15 is accessible only from Uxbridge Road

Where to find Azelle 

If you plan to visit Azelle during Artists at Home she is in Studio 15, which is on Keith Grove in Shepherd’s Bush. She is sharing a space with painter and sketcher Jill Revie.

“Our home is on the peripheral of artists at home, at the end of a very little known cul-de-sac… Lots of people are intrigued by the street but don’t have an excuse to go down it, but we’re down the very end” Azelle said.

One of the houses on Keith Grove won a prestigious award from the Royal Institution of British Architects, which Azelle says in itself makes the street worth a visit.

Keith Grove can only be accessed from Uxbridge Road, not Askew Road, so if you are planning to visit be aware of this.

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