Giselle Petty

"When my dad asked me one day what I would like for my birthday I replied enthusiastically: "A drill daddy, a drill!" He was taken aback and bemused, but granted the wish, eager to see what I would do with it. I guess being married to my mom, a passionate artist herself, who recently asked him for a printing press for her birthday, had prepared him for this rather special request. My journey started on the academic side with some time spent at Stellenbosch University and University of Cape Town, busying myself with fine arts studies. I soon realized, however, that this was not the approach that I had in mind for myself. I was looking for a more hands-on-approach as well as the opportunity to learn about the business side of being a manufacturing jeweller. I finally arrived at a place where my journey into jewellery took shape, direction and grew wings, when Michael Cope, an exceptional jeweller and designer, accepted me as an apprentice. And learn I did. Thrown into the deep end with no pay and big ambition, Michael guided, mentored, inspired and taught me, involving and including me in exhibitions and the running of a jewellery business from a very young age. I was, however, still not convinced that I could make a secure enough living out of jewellery alone, so adjacent to my apprenticeship I continued with my BA through UNISA. I finished my apprenticeship and successfully passed my trade test. Then it was time for me to stand on my own two feet. However, I knew that my education in jewellery was far from over. Learning to create jewellery is an eternal process if one is passionate and committed. Although very rewarding, it is also a difficult and sometimes very challenging one, especially if one is a self-employed artist/jeweller. My work ranges from cutlery over fine jewellery to mosaic mirrors and I am positive that the list will grow in the years to come. Manic-compulsive? You might say that, but in the best possible way: My inspiration is a case of a penny drops and I need to spend it. I don't know exactly where it comes from, I am just grateful that it comes. Hence one of my favourite quotes: "You don't need to know where you are coming from, you just need to know where you've been" (Mater, Lightning Mc Queen's pickup- truck buddy in the movie "Cars"). I draw inspiration from the world around me, nature, the jewellery and beauty of the Touareg and other Saharan tribes, to name but a few sources. I like clean, simple lines and try to incorporate them in whatever I am creating." Giselle Petty


' What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared with what lies within us' - Henry Stanley Haskins

'Hope' - to cherish a desire with anticipation

'Man emulates earth, Earth emulates heaven, heaven emulates the Way, the way emulates nature' - Henry David Thoreau