When did you first start making jewelry and how did you learn?
Rebecca Skeels started her business in 1994 after graduating from the University of Wales. Since 1994, Rebecca’s thirst for knowledge and her passion for sharing has lead her to graduate from Central Saint Martin’s (MA Project by Design) and achieving a PGC in Higher Education from the University for Creative Arts.
Can you remember the first piece you made?
Probably a beaded piece while I was still at School
Where do you look for inspiration?
Materials are her obsession; bridging her work as a designer maker and her role as an educator. Materials and their related processes determine not only the form and function of an object, but also the object’s interaction with the surrounding environment, connecting with personal memories and associations. The use of materials within Rebecca’s own work can be fun, contradictive, functional and thought provoking. The knowledge of other craft sectors has lead to the exploration of traditional techniques and processes, along with new technologies and digital processes, developing current and future craft practices.
What's your craft space like and how do you organize your supplies?
Rebecca’s position as a design maker, leader of craft courses and as an active member of the UK’s craft industry, provides her with a unique perspective on education and requirements for the future of ‘the crafts’. Her interests allow her to continuously develop craft education to enable more inclusive learning experiences which are adaptable to the students’ abilities and her exploration of ‘other’ materials and processes from different craft disciplines provides an extensive view of the industry.
What music/podcasts/TV shows do you love to craft along to?
Do you do any other crafts and what are your hobbies?
As a designer maker, Rebecca’s work has exhibited across Europe and in the US and she continues to explore ideas and work collaboratively with likeminded designer makers within different disciplines utilising different materials. In parallel, Rebecca’s enthusiasm to encourage others to learn and to be creative has lead to her current position as Subject Leader for Postgraduate courses in Craft at the University for Creative Arts.
Is there anything else you'd like to add?
Rebecca Skeels is an enthusiastic and highly talented jeweller/metalsmith based in Farnham, Surrey. She is a meticulous designer-maker with a strong desire for knowledge of new materials and processes, and believes in openly sharing her enthusiasm and experience through varied teaching methods.
Since October 1994, Rebecca has been the sole proprietor of SKEELS, a developing jewellery and product design company. This has allowed Rebecca to work on commissions as well as her own collections ranging from unique handmade cufflinks, pendants and furniture to installations in public spaces. Her work is exhibited through galleries, shops, craft shows and trade exhibitions in the UK and abroad.
Through research and experimentation with alternative materials, Rebecca produces a number of one-off pieces to complement her existing ranges. This led to managing and running a symposium/exchange with the Jewellers and Silversmiths Network (JSN) and the Critique Collective Network in San Francisco in 2010.
Rebecca’s collection of bird inspired rings and pins are made from a mixture of metals, from metal clay, brass, steel and silver using a variety of processes including casting, hand building, soldering, texturing and oxidizing. The legs of the ducks, chickens and crows become individual display stands of the jewellery when not worn.
Rebecca continually expands her collections with more research and experimentation, taking opportunity of new, developing and different materials and technologies. Research will also take place to develop new methods in which jewellery and metalwork is taught, widening the knowledge of the jewellery and metalwork industry, techniques and processes.