About Gem’s Concrete Gems in Gemma’s own words
Back in 2014, I was sat in the garden of my in-laws having a family barbecue, with me bemoaning my boring accountancy job (again…) and wishing I was doing something more creative. From somewhere the idea arose of making concrete clocks. I think my sister-in-law had just bought one! So nothing much happened for a while – I was pregnant with my second baby and work was going through redundancies again!
I escaped the cut for the third time, but I started thinking that this really wasn’t the life for me. I wanted more flexibility, more time to spend with kids, to be able to take and fetch them from school and be around as my mum had been for me. Also nursery fees are sooo expensive. So I started experimenting with the concrete idea and produced some quite good products. A few years later, I’ve learnt a lot and improved my products massively, but there is always more to learn. My products are mainly small pieces, clocks, candles, coasters etc., which will look great in any home.
The industrial texture and look of my work complements the modern urban home, but also provides a stylish feature to more traditional houses as well. I try to make my pieces as unique as possible and put a lot of care and attention into the finish of each item. I use silicone moulds to cast my concrete, which I have made myself using my own prototypes, so that the pieces are truly individual.
I hand finish each piece: some are sanded to reveal the stone effect underneath, whilst others are finished with wax or other painted decorations. Some of my pieces also include resin, which I am only just starting to really experiment with, so watch this space for more resin pieces. Concrete in its purest state of cement, sand and stones, is a natural product. I try not to add too many other additives to my concrete unless it is necessary, to keep it as natural as possible.
My products are packaged in either recycled or recyclable materials wherever possible.
All of my work is hand cast in concrete using silicone moulds, most of which I make myself. I create my own concrete mix, often using pigment and marbling techniques. Each piece is then sanded, sealed and finished by me.
Some of my products have additional stencilled motifs whilst others are just left plain. I also sometimes add gold leaf. Pots, candles and coasters all have a cork base to protect work surfaces.
Average Production Time for Custom Orders: 14 days
Custom Order Options: Custom orders include the number and colour on my concrete house numbers, additional decorative features, such as a word or letter added to a pot or coaster. I also take custom orders for marbling colours on any of my pieces. I can also create something totally new from concrete if you contact me to discuss this and there is plenty of time for the process.