THANK YOU TO EVERYONE WHO SUPPORTED ME THROUGH THIS KICKSTARTER.
I am overjoyed to finally be in a position where I can create a hotglass studio all of my own.
The next stage of this project is to source all the equipment and get the studio up and running ASAP.
I will be sending out badges, pendants and kindestcups before the studio build as I have these in stock.
So if your planning on giving one of these as a Christmas gift. You should have it in plenty of time.
Follow my progress on my website helenhancockglass.com for future updates and new projects I will be working on. Let new mothers know that there is support available to her if she is struggling with breastfeeding. I am still a qualified Breastfeeding Counsellor and that role continues throughout my work life. The support I offer is free and informed.
You have been through trauma and feel lost. The glass can offer some healing.
In 2017 I established a WORLD FIRST in Hot Glass.
By infusing human milk into glass and using a special technique to maintain the milks true colour.
NOW, I receive milk posted to me from all over the world.
This glass offers some healing. It is a representation of you and the connection to your baby.
"Helen's glass captures memories of motherhood in the most beautiful way." Noirin McFadden.
"Helen very kindly made me a piece of milk infused glass as a gift and I was blown away by the end result. The talent and vision to be able to combine her two passions says everything you need to know. My piece is proudly displayed in my home and I know I will treasure it forever. Thank you Helen." Eilise O'Hart.
(Shaping the hot glass)
Your glass marks a very important moment in your life.
Living through birth trauma, baby loss and breastfeeding trauma, I came to realise that as a mother, basic instinct is best practice.
I am my children's mother and I want them to grow up being who they are. Not who I think they should be.
This is were the concept of my glass making developed.
The trauma's and experiences I had through mothering have offered me insight into what we go through and also inspires me. Offering a creative view on how we approach breastfeeding and also birth.
I was a glass maker long before I was a mother.
So, why should you invest in me?
I will take your precious milk, your baby's teeth, your baby's ashes and I will create something totally unique.
I will make you that glass goblet with the birthstone stem that has grandad as well as all your children involved.
I will make you that bowl using that precious milk you have in the back of your freezer that you know you can't throw out because you want to do something with it, but just not sure what that thing is.
I will make you a paperweight because I empathise and recognise the trauma you feel handing me that small bag of ashes from your baby that did not cry or suckle from your breast. Because I walked in your shoes. I felt that ripping of my being when she left this world.
I can make you something from the heart that you know you can trust in and see was made from love.
Who am I?
1. I am a qualified Advanced Cuidiu (Irish Childbirth Trust) Breastfeeding Counsellor, which means I support new mothers every day. I do this voluntarily and I love it. I can fully empathise with your trauma and pain when first trying to feed your infant and my role is to offer you informed, non judgemental support. I've just been nominated as 'Breastfeeding Volunteer of the Year' through Friends of Breastfeeding.. So I must be doing a good job in my role.
(Receiving my Cuidiu Breastfeeding Counsellor badge after 2 years of training)
2. The glass I make is unique in that I am trained as a breastfeeding counsellor and doula with full understanding of what it takes to birth and nurture your child. Creating special glass with their milk, baby teeth, placenta, umbilical cord and ashes.
I am passionate about opening up the conversations around lactation, baby loss and taboo subjects that involve trauma and parenting every day.
Those awkward conversations that otherwise go silent can be drawn out by simply talking about what your glass means to you.
They are healing.
(Me and the kiddos)
3. I absolutely LOVE making glass..
I walk into that hot shop and all my stresses leave me. I am who I need to be to create something so unique and special.
I feel special too because I know that so many people believe in my work and how I can represent them through the glass I make.
(Making hot glass, picture: Stephen McCauley)
4. I believe that through this work I am sending out a strong message of hope and understanding around breastfeeding and baby loss and mothering.
(Above picture taken at the Breast Wing of the City Hospital, Belfast featuring hand blown human milk infused glass breasts displayed on the wall, with student doctors using art as therapy training. Being inspired)
So there you are.. My reasons...
I am asking you to come with me on this journey. Be part of it.
What your money will do:
* provide a furnace built and shipped from England, which costs around £7K
* provide a glory hole costing around £2K
* provide a Kiln to anneal the glass costing around £2K
*provide a bench that I can work at, blow pipes and tools too costing around £2K
When this studio is up and running you are all welcome to come along and watch us work. I even hope to run some small classes in glassblowing down the line.. There are so many exciting ideas and I really do want to share them with you all.
You are not only investing in me, you are investing in social change for millions of women across the world.
(Large human milk infused glass breasts at London Glassblowing Gallery in May 2019)
WHATS ON OFFER:
Risks and challenges
The risks are I won't reach my target to enable me to set up my studio.
I have spent most of my life dreaming of building my own studio.
Now I have a good reason to.
Challenges are day to day life with young kids can sometimes cause plans to go astray..
- (40 days)