You can tell it’s been a busy year for all at In Equilibrium as our annual team away day slipped from the spring to late autumn. However, it turned out to be a case of what’s worth having was worth waiting for. Although we had originally thought another relaxing day at a spa would provide a good team bonding day, we ended up keeping our autumn woollies on and doing something completely different.
What we decided on was something none of us had ever tried before, something we were all open to attempting, and something we had no idea what the results would be. Sounds like a riddle, although one I fear I may have to help you out with as the options are endless!
So, one cold but dry Sunday in late November, an unsuspecting jeweller and silversmith in Perth had the In Equilibrium office team descend on her lovely shop for a day’s jewellery workshop. Our mission was to learn some basic techniques and then design and make our own pieces of silver jewellery.
Thankfully, we had the best teacher who was as patient as she was generous with both her ideas and her time; encouraging in the face of many despairing “I can’t get this into the right shape” and “I’ve no idea how to …”; and strict but professional in her assurance that the finishing process was definitely worth the extra time and effort if we wanted to be proud of our end results.
Amazingly, for once, the chat didn’t overtake the activity and, comfortable as we are in each other’s company, quiet concentration and creative musings filled the day. We were also well supplied with tea, coffee and refreshments, almost as if Linda knew that some of us might get a bit grumpy if our caffeine levels dropped too low or would be unable to concentrate if we were hungry!
It was a rare but pleasurable experience to spend the entire day without looking at a screen. Not to mention having something tangible that we had designed, made and finished to take away with us. It was interesting to see the different approaches we took to either carefully planning our design or just seeing where the creative process took us. Also, that when we were over-ambitious in our plans, how we reverted to simpler yet possibly more effective designs.
Another unexpected side-effect was that we were all exhausted by the time we got home. It was a “happy” tired, though, after a day spent together creating, learning new skills, full of good humour and, as usual, supporting each other in both ideas and practice. Poor Linda may just have done too good a job as, like little Oliver Twists, we’d all love to go back for more!
With our grateful thanks to Linda at Byers & Co.
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