Reaching Out 2 – Handmade brooch


Reaching out was what we did during Covid – to help our family, friends and neighbours – in different ways than before. Perhaps a phone call, a letter or a trip to the supermarket for someone. This brooch celebrates that we can once again reach out in person – for a coffee, a visit, a trip to a gallery or movie together.

I created this one-of-a-kind handmade brooch called Reaching Out 2 from a beach pebble, metal and plastic. I found all the bits and bobs needed to make this brooch on the streets and beaches during my daily Covid walks. It was included in the international Bekkie Ora ‘Unity in Isolation 2021’ challenge on Instagram.

Normally I create wall sculptures and 3D sculptures from the wood, metal and tiles I find on the streets of Melbourne. However, through Instagram I met handmade jewellery designer Lynn Powers from New Orleans. She encouraged me to try making jewellery from the objects I found on the street, but I never had.

How I became a brooch designer

Then in 2019, I saw that the Contemporary Art Society of Victoria was holding its Australian National Brooch Show at the Fitzroy and Eltham public libraries. I displayed five of my brooches–and found that making them is great fun. In 2020, my brooches were in Wearable Art at The Old Auction House in Kyneton and online in Survival Kit at the University of Melbourne George Paton Gallery.

In 2021, as part of Geelong and Melbourne Design Weeks, my brooches were featured in exhibitions at The Reimaginarium in Geelong and again at The Old Auction House in Kyneton. A special series using handmade 19th-Century nails from a friend’s roof were in the 2021 Australian National Brooch show from May to October at the Fitzroy and Eltham Public Libraries, and a wide range of my brooches was at CoLab Arts in the Park in The Pavilion at Fitzroy Gardens from July to September 2021. In 2022, they were featured in the exhibition Gold Rush at The Old Auction House.

You can find my brooches at Incube8rGallery

And, of course, my brooches are always available through Incube8r Gallery, in the Fitzroy shop, as well as online.