My Grandfather emigrated to Australia in 1947 on the Ten Pound Poms and by late 1948 had staked a claim on an Opal mine.
Rolling onto present day we are now Third Generation Opal Miners. Working with Opal can be very expensive, it is not a forgiving gemstone and as a family trade, I needed some corners rounding before being allowed to cut and set.
Starting as an apprentice outside of the family at the age of 13 and learning within the jewellery Trade Quarter in Birmingham. Once a month I would also travel to London for inspiration, meeting all types of Designers.
Not that you quite realise in youth, working outside of the family has given me far more respect and understanding for day to day workings, every day is different and every day I learn something new!
Within my time in the trade I have managed Wholesale and Retail, flown around Europe on buying trips and met inspiring people along the way which led me to creating my own Jewellery.
We now live in Somerset, spending a lot of time in Cornwall for fresh air and the glorious sea. There's plenty of curios shops on the one hand and the other, all types of designers to be inspired by.
Oliver, widely known as Little Man.
I first saw Oliver on a rescue site and knew he was ment for me, his last owner had brutally mistreated him though his fight for life was begging for a home that could adapt to his needs. This turned about face, and he gave his all to those who needed some light, joy and undying love in their lives. Without Oliver, Becky and I would not have met which is a debt I can never repay, I aptly rebranded our business name to OlliesOpals four years ago.
Ollie is buried with his 'I am OlliesOpals' Bandanna and his teddy bear which he would drag around everywhere - this teddy was three times the size of him, he would throw this in the air, sit on the sofa and drag it up with him and run along the hall with it, always creating much laughter throughout. On walks his ears would bounce up and down, due to his mistreatment his wonky tail would wag every which way happily bouncing down the road and when he ran with his wonky legs looked much like a crab scuttling off for freedom.
His character was bigger than all of us put together, for the last 6 months he has been there for a family friend whom lost his wife of 30 years through Cv19.
09/09/2020 We can not express our devastation, Little Man lost his fight for life at 16:32 pm, he has left a colossal hole, far larger than I think he ever realised. His undying fight for life and creating so much joy wherever he went.RIP My Faithful Little Man
Much Love O & B