Planning Officer sets sights on a future in jewellery design

jewellery - Nicky Ried

By day she is an Eastleigh Borough Council Planning Officer, by night a contemporary jewellery designer and maker…

Nicky Reid has discovered a hidden talent after taking up a weekly workshop with jewellery designer Joanne Tinley, who is based in Eastleigh’s thriving design-makers studios The Sorting Office.

Nicola, who works as an officer in EBC’s planning department, started the course two-years’ ago and is now confidently creating and making her own designs and pieces.

Speaking about her passion for jewellery making, Nicky, said:

“I used to take art at school and I loved it, so when a colleague told me about Joanne Tinley’s jewellery making workshops I decided to give it a try. I mostly take part in the evening classes but I have been to a few 1-1 all day workshops too.

“Joanne teaches you the skills and technique and then gives you the freedom to create your own style in her classes; but is always on hand to help if you need it.

“It’s very creative and rewarding when a design goes the way you want it to.”

This newfound talent recently saw Nicky, along with two other of Joanne Tinley’s workshop students, accepted to display and sell her work at The Sorting Office’s annual Winter Open Studios. This professional trade and professional event that annually sees around 800 people attend was a first for Nicky.

Describing the opportunity Nicky said:

“It was a huge learning experience for me to sell my designs, but I relished the opportunity to showcase my work.”

“It was nerve wracking for me during The Sorting Offices Winter Open Studio’s event as you never know what the reception of your work will be like.”

“However I came away having learned some new selling techniques and I look forward to doing it again in future craft fairs soon.”

Nicky’s simple and contemporary designs reflect her own sense of style, although she has also been making bespoke pieces for her friends and is hoping to sell more at future craft and makers fairs. She has discovered a particular flair for the technique of ‘setting stones’ which she says she enjoys making the most and which can be seen in many of her stunning designs.

So, what’s next for Nicky and her jewellery making?

 “It would be amazing to sell my jewellery as a career, which isn’t on the agenda at the moment, but I hope to take part in more craft fairs in the future…”

You can find Nicky on her Facebook page:


For more information on this story, please contact Eastleigh Borough Council Culture Press and PR Intern Chandler Divers on

Check out this story on Creative Eastleigh


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