MEET THE MAKER | River Hazel of Hazel & Herb
I have been following the work of Hazel & Herb for a while. I even had the beautiful creative behind the brand, Rivel Hazel, create a collection of ring cones and jewellery pieces from my wedding bouquet this year! Her products are delicately crafted with a genuine love for the natural world that surrounds us and a patient, slow approach to creating that is rare in this fast-paced society.
How did you get started?
Hazel and Herb began ‘officially’ back in 2015, but I had been crafting for a few months prior. I had this strong urge to create something tangible for myself to remember all the beautiful forests I had been visiting.
I made a few pieces for myself and put photographs of them on my Instagram. I had friends messaging me to make them pieces, and it kept growing from there. My first little ‘shop update’ sold in I think two minutes? That kept happening, and so I kind of fell into the business.
What drew you to this form of creativity?
I was so inspired by the nature around me! I was (and still am) a keen photographer, but the pictures didn’t capture the beauty of the colours and textures enough for me. I wanted something you could hold in your hands and look at from all angles. I’d seen a few resin pieces done with bugs online and bought some to try for myself.
What does a usual day look like to you?
I have my partner, Dan, working with me these days, which means my days are a lot busier! We wake up, have breakfast and do a short drive to the studio to work. We’ll usually spend a bit of time in the morning looking after all our plants before getting into work. I start by choosing out the flowers I’m going to use for the day and the begin setting them inside the resin. He spends the day hand sanding and polishing my finished pieces and giving me a hand.
Our favourite days are when we head out to run errands or visit the flower markets and native plant nurseries!
What do you enjoy most about making?
Honestly, for me it’s a total escape from reality. I get so wrapped up in my own little world of flowers, mosses and mushrooms. It’s incredibly relaxing. I couldn’t imagine not doing it everyday!
What projects are you working on right now?
I’m one of those crazy people that always has a million and one projects happening at any one time, haha! We’ve just moved into our new studio space, which is an old warehouse, so we’re working on making that all pretty. I’ve also got plans for a heap of new designs and Dan is looking into silversmithing!
There is something so incredible about owning something that is handmade. It might sound bonkers, but I definitely believe I can feel the energy of the maker! You just know that there have been hours upon hours of love poured into it.
What are your goals for the future?
I’d love to be able to host some events with my fellow makers! I’m super passionate about supporting small business, so I think it would be really cool to help promote that. I’d also really like to see Hazel and Herb stocked internationally.
What is something that you couldn't live without?
Vegan ice cream!