Animals, Nature

World Penguin Day

It’s World Penguin Day! By now you probably know that we have a knack for penguins around here! For good reasons: they are super cute and they live in some of the most inhospitable places on earth.

One of the issues that most affects Penguins is plastic pollution. They eat it and feed it to their chicks. We can help them by being my more thoughtful about what kind of plastics we buy, like single use plastics, but also polymer clay jewellery. Yes, I am talking about Creatureshire jewellery too! If you’re buying one of our pieces, make sure it will be appreciated and take good care of it so it lasts for a long time.

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É o Dia Mundial do Pinguim! Por esta altura já deves saber que temos uma queda para os pinguins! Por boas razões: eles são super giros e vivem em alguns dos lugares mais inóspitos da Terra.

Uma das questões que mais afeta os Pinguins é a poluição de plástico. Comem-no e dão-no a comer aos seus filhos. Podemos ajudá-los sendo mais atentos quanto ao tipo de plástico que compramos, como os plásticos de uso único, mas também bijutaria em massa polimérica. Sim, também estou a falar de peças de Creatureshire! Se estás a pensar comprar uma das nossas peças, certifica-te de que será apreciada e cuida bem dela para que dure por muito tempo.

Animals, Birds, Nature, Portugal, Scotland, Shop Update

Jewellery to bring you back to the seaside

Summer at the seaside

Come warmer days and I dream of the seaside. Of the seagulls flying over the ocean, of coastal wildlife, of bare feet walking over the warm sand. And when I bring these features into Creatureshire, I play with them to bring you a joyful experience of discovery and serenity.

None of these pieces of jewellery are entirely new. The lighthouses have been around for some time as well as the seals. They were both created while I lived in Scotland, just by the North Sea. The seals were inspired by a large colony of grey seals and common seals that lives in Fife.

Seals chilling out on the beach

The lighthouses came from the many lovely lighthouses that sit on Portuguese and Scottish shores. I have always seen them as guiding lights not just for ships, but also a place of safety for humans.

The seagulls were created earlier this year, and their design was inspired by the common seagull (larus canus). I took particular joy in their soft grey wings and their bright yellow beak.

On the rocks sharing ocean stories
On the rocks sharing ocean stories

Seals, lighthouses and seagulls are all available to buy at the shop.

What about you? What brings you joy by the seaside? Share it in the comments bellow!

Nature, Sustainability

World Oceans Day

Fish and anemone celebrating World Oceans Day

Today is World Oceans Day and I find it relevant to reflect on Creatureshire’s impact on the environment. This begs the question: what can I do to make my business more sustainable and lessen its footprint on our planet?

One of the nagging questions I ask myself is how to deal with polymer clay. It is the main material I use in my work and it is a plastic.

I think plastic is an remarkable material and that is one of the reasons why we use it so much. I also think that a plastic item can be treasured and cared for so it lasts a long time. And when it comes to the end of its existence we can dispose of it properly, preferably recycling it. That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t reduce our use of plastic as much as we can, but I believe we can do it in a thoughtful way!

Coming back to my work, I try to reduce the waste I produce as much as possible. I am very savvy on how I use polymer clay by working on small series so that each piece is meaningful. I try to make the packaging as friendly as possible and I do most of my errands walking or by public transportation.

I also believe that when we buy something, we should do it consciously. Thinking about how it will be used, and if it is a gift, asking whether it will be meaningful to the person receiving it. When we have these considerations in mind, we tend to buy less, but in a more thoughtful way.

So what do you do to reduce your impact on the planet?

Animals, Nature

World frog day

European tree frog on water lily.

Today is world frog day. There are almost 7000 species of frogs around the world, most of them living in tropical rain forests.

The European tree frog can be found across Europe in freshwater habitats. They are a nocturnal species that eats insects and other small creatures. They are quite small, weighing only 8.26 grams, and yet they can live up to 22 years. That’s pretty impressive! You can find more about frogs here.

Animals, Nature

Sperm whales :: Cachalotes

At a first glance Sperm whales may seem strange animals, with their large heads and bulky bodies. That, and their large size, is probably one of the reasons why they were seen as sea monsters.

Yet, as most whales, they are incredibly social, living in small groups and as they grow older, keeping more to themselves. An interesting feature about sperm whales is that their head takes about a third of their body and they have the largest brain of any mammal. The head also contains the spermaceti organ, a cavity filled with oil, which is used for communication and for regulating buoyancy when the whales are diving. And since we’re talking about diving, they are able to dive up to 1600 meters and stay underwater for 90 minutes: that is really impressive!

For these and so many other reasons I couldn’t resist making a sperm whale for the whaling exhibition. It came out quite different from their living counterparts but I think it looks vivacious and fun. I hope that you like it too!

À primeira vista os cachalotes podem parecer animais estranhos, com as suas cabeças grandes e corpos robustos. Isso, e o seu tamanho impressionante, é provavelmente uma das razões pelas quais eram vistos como monstros marinhos.

No entanto, tal como a maior parte das baleias, são incrivelmente sociais, vivendo em pequenos grupos, e à medida que vão envelhecendo começam a viver mais isoladas. Uma característica interessante dos cachalotes é o facto de a cabeça constituir cerca de um terço do seu corpo e de terem o maior cérebro entre os mamíferos. A cabeça também contém o órgão do espermacete, uma cavidade cheia de óleo, usada para comunicar e para regular a flutuação quando as baleias mergulham. E a propósito de mergulhos, os cachalotes são capazes de mergulhar até aos 1600 metros de profundidade e ficar submersos até 90 minutos: é mesmo impressionante!

Por estas e muitas outras razões não resisti a fazer um cachalote para a exposição sobre a caça à baleia. O resultado foi bastante diferente dos cachalotes reais mas eu acho que ficou vivaz e divertido. Espero que também gostem!

A sperm whale exploring the oceans of Creatureshire
A sperm whale exploring the oceans of Creatureshire

Sperm whale
Sperm whale

Nature, Photography

World Water Day :: Dia Mundial da Água

Today is World Water Day, an initiative from the United Nations to promote clean water and to celebrate all the good things it brings us. It is also a day to think about the challenges we face, like the lack of access to water, as well as pollution.

Water provides all sorts of conditions for many creatures to live in. From human life everywhere, freshwater habitats, like ponds, lakes and rivers, to the deep sea. Being essential to life it is important to think on how we can take steps to care for it. The World Water Day website has a lot of information on the challenges we face and it can give you some hints on how to better care for Water and for our planet.

To celebrate this day I have selected a few photos I have taken of some creatures that live in water habitats. I hope that you enjoy seeing them. Happy Water Day!

Hoje é o Dia Mundial da Água, uma iniciativa da Nações Unidas para promover a água limpa e para celebrar todas as coisas boas que nos trás. É também um dia para pensar nos desafios que enfrentamos, como a falta de acesso a água e a poluição.

A água dá origem a muitos tipos de condições onde os organismos se podem desenvolver. Desde a vida humana nos lugares mais remotos, a habitats de água doce como lagoas, lagos e rios, às profundezas do mar. Sendo essencial à vida é importante pensar em formas de proteger a água. O website do Dia Mundial da Água tem muita informação sobre os desafios que enfrentamos e pode dar-nos algumas dicas de cuidar melhor da Água e do nosso planeta.

Para celebrar este dia, escolhi algumas fotografias que tirei com criaturas que vivem em habitats aquáticos. Espero que gostem. Bom Dia da Água!

Eider, in St Andrews, Scotland.
Eider, in St Andrews, Scotland.

Grey Heron, at St Andrews harbour, Scotland
Grey Heron, at St Andrews harbour, Scotland

Iberian Green Frog, in Sintra, Portugal
Iberian Green Frog, in Sintra, Portugal

Sanderlings in St Andrews, Scotland
Sanderlings in St Andrews, Scotland

Star fish in St Andrews, Scotland
Star fish in St Andrews, Scotland

Tide pools in Magoito, Portugal.
Tide pools in Magoito, Portugal.

Animals, Nature, Shop Update

Spring Collection sneak peak :: Um olhar sobre a coleção de Primavera

In Creatureshire everyone has been calling out for Spring. For the last couple of months I have been busy preparing the new collection and in a week time all the new creatures will pop up just in time to celebrate Spring!

The new collection was inspired by pond creatures. I must say the biggest difficulty was to keep it to a small selection, as there are so many interesting creatures living close to the water. It was really challenging to bring all these species alive and I can’t wait to share them with you.

I hope that you enjoy this sneak peak into the creation stages!

Em Creatureshire toda a gente tem estado a chamar pela Primavera. Nos últimos dois meses tenho andado atarefada a criar a nova coleção e daqui a uma semana as novas criaturas vão aparecer por aqui, mesmo a tempo de celebrar a Primavera!

A nova coleção foi inspirada por criaturas dos charcos. A maior dificuldade foi restringir-me a uma pequena seleção de espécies, dado que existem tantas espécies interessantes a viver junto à água. Foi muito desafiante fazer todas estas peças e mal posso esperar para as partilhar convosco.

Espero que gostem desta espreitadela à fase de criação!

Sketches and final brooches
Sketches and final brooches

Dipper post earrings waiting for their wings and eyes
Dipper post earrings waiting for their wings and eyes

Water lilies on their way to becoming earrings
Water lilies on their way to becoming earrings

The European tree frog brooch
The European tree frog brooch

Creating a pond for all the new creatures
Creating a pond for all the new creatures

The pond is ready to welcome everyone. Join us too!
The pond is ready to welcome everyone. Join us too!

Animals, Nature

International Polar Bear Day :: Dia Internacional do Urso Polar

Today is the International Polar Day! It’s a great chance to remind ourselves that we all can make small actions to care for our Planet. One of the challenges sought is to decrease the thermostat by two degrees (or increase, if you are in a warm place). Saving energy is a way to release less CO2 to the atmosphere and reduce our impact on global warming. Are you in?
Hoje é o Dia Internacional do Urso Polar. É uma óptima oportunidade de nos lembrarmos que todos podemos fazer pequenas acções para cuidar do nosso Planeta. Um dos desafios neste dia é descer o termostato dois graus (ou reduzir se estiverem numa zona quente). Poupar energia é uma forma de libertar menos CO2 para a atmosfera e reduzir o nosso impacto no aquecimento global. Alinham?

International Polar Bear Day
International Polar Bear Day