The Craft Armoury is my personal version of a candy store, with myself being the proverbial "kid".
It began as a small hobby in 2011, when I started experimenting with some simple jewellery making techniques. After a while, though, I had amassed a large quantity of findings and finished pieces, but didn't really feel satisfied with my creations.... Until I decided to put the many thousands of jump rings to use and try my hand at chain maille.
I found that despite struggling to get the hang of it to begin with, I enjoyed the process, as well as the idea of learning techniques that had been around for centuries. I began to learn as many chain maille weaves as I could, and the hobby grew quickly into a passion. Eventually, I embraced the "addiction", creating the Maille Addiction brand and store by 2014.
Stainless steel became my favourite material to work with, however I was a little frustrated with the availability of stainless steel findings, both here in Australia and abroad, often having to compromise and incorporate other metals into my designs. So, I began trying to source the kind of items I wanted to use, in some cases getting them custom made. Over time I realised that not only did I have a bigger collection of findings than I could ever use, but that I wasn't the only one who would love to use them, and the supplies became a permanent feature of the store.
The things that inspire my own work are broad and eclectic, including mythology & fairy tales; nature; gothic and steampunk culture & aesthetics; both Celtic & African history, art and symbolism; anything whimsical; and cats (big or small). This also inspires the supplies I select for the store, and I plan to grow the collection with as many unusual, unique or hard to find items as possible, alongside the common essentials.
This also means I don't just like the items I stock, I use them myself, and their quality is as important to me as it is to my customers.