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  • Writer's picturejemma millen ceramics

New Products for 2021

Updated: Aug 18, 2021

The last year has been difficult, I've had to turn away orders and new stockists due to having less time in the studio to make. I've been so grateful of my current stockists for their continued support in placing wholesale orders throughout the last year - while it has been a bit stressful to fulfil them with less time in the studio, it has been a huge life saver too.

BUT - amongst all of the madness, I have been working on developing new pieces for launch around September this year. Some of these may seem a bit familiar - the Figgy Pudding baubles now boast at least 50% more 'fruit' than before with a new sparkly 24ct Gold Lustre option! The first batch of these golden flecked puddings are landing at In klover NI soon!

And my Stingy Jack baubles now have a non-hanging option - but a new addition to my product range is a large actual lantern!

These Stingy Jack Lanterns are also non-hanging (as they're pretty big and weighty!) and have a little hole below to place a small battery operated tealight. I do not recommend the use of an actual flame candle, as the ceramic would get quite dangerously hot inside and out. These large lanterns will only be available direct from me this year as they won't be available for wholesale.

I also had my new products photographed by Simon Mills as part of a photography scheme run by Craft NI at the start of the year - what do you think!?


Do you know the legend of how Jack o Lanterns originated in Ireland?

Jack o lanterns are said to have originated through an Irish myth about a horrible man nicknamed “Stingy Jack" who invited the Devil to have a drink with him. True to his name, Stingy Jack didn’t want to pay for his drink, so he convinced the Devil to turn into a coin so Jack could use it to buy their drinks but - Jack kept the coin instead and put it in his pocket next to a silver cross, preventing the Devil from changing back into his original form.

Jack eventually freed the Devil, under the condition that he would not bother Jack for one year and, should Jack die, he would not claim his soul.

As the legend goes, Jack tricked the devil a few more times and when Jack eventually died, he was too unsavoury to get into heaven.

The Devil, upset by the tricks Jack had played on him and keeping his word not to claim his soul, wouldn't allow Jack into hell.

He sent Jack off into the dark night with only an eternal burning ember from the depths of hell to light his way. Jack put the ember into a carved-out turnip and has been roaming the Earth ever since. The Irish refered to this ghostly figure as “Jack of the Lantern,” and then, simply “Jack O’Lantern.”

People began to make their own versions of Jack’s lanterns by carving scary faces into turnips and placing them into windows or near doors to frighten away Stingy Jack and other wandering evil spirits. Irish emigrants brought the jack-o’-lantern tradition with them when they went to the United States. As turnips were not so easily available, they soon found that pumpkins made perfect - and slightly less terrifying - jack o lanterns.


I'm working towards hosting a workshop where you can come and make your own Stingy Jack Lantern, however all the details are pending! I'll update across my social media when anything becomes definite.

I'm planning a shop update for all of these products for the start of September (although I have sneakily added one or two of these to my shop already) - and slightly snuck under the radar - has been a refurb of my online shop! I previously used Etsy as my ecommerce site but after some feedback from the Design Ireland panel, they had recommended the shopping experience for customers was not quite good enough. To be honest, the idea of moving away from Etsy (cheap) and messing up my Facebook/Instagram shops (which I finally got working in March!) was a real headache but I did agree that the Etsy shop and checkout experience just didn't fit with my brand.

With this in mind I researched a lot of ecommerce options and decided on using Pattern as an alternative - I think it looks great, so check it out!

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