Recently at the 10th anniversary celebration of Nucleus arts I came across a new range of jewellery – which I absolutely LOVE. I felt I had to feature these creatives on Creatabot. So I introduce to you Shelley and John from Snapdragon Designs…
So what is your creative background?
John and I met at KIAD (Kent Institute of Art and Design, now UCA) in Canterbury where we both studied for a BTEC National Diploma in general art and design. We both went on to study Graphic Design at De Montfort University in Lincoln graduating in 2004. John has always made military themed models and scenery and I discovered a love for bookbinding and print making at KIAD.
What made you set up Snapdragon Designs?
Snapdragon Designs was set up initially to give me a way of creating my own line of luxury books but when John’s school (where he teaches) bought the laser cutter last year it opened up new ideas and made us create the jewellery side of Snapdragons.
What other career paths have you taken?
After uni we took quite divergent paths, I went to get an apprenticeship in bookbinding and have been working as a bookbinder for almost 8 years. John initially went into Graphic Design for a small company (Team Cortexx) near Maidstone and later retrained as a design and technology teacher which he has been doing for 5 years. John is also an archery instructor and we both enjoy making our own arrows.
Who inspires you both locally and universally?
Vivienne Westwood has always inspired me and in the future I hope to do a whole line of jewellery using vintage tartans. Its really hard to say who inspires me locally as I’ve only just started getting involved with the creatives of Kent but I think Nucleus arts are doing a great job and there’s lots of inspiration to be found there. John’s inspiration tends to come from more traditional sources and artists such as Barbara Hepworth, John Constable and artistic movements such as Art Deco, but also from many wargaming/fantasy artists.
What would you like to achieve in the future?
We would love to see the jewellery really taking off with a hope to expanding further and getting it into shops.
Can you recommend a creative website you love?
I love looking around www.folksy.com it has so many talented people.
You can see the gorgeous Snapdragon Designs range at