Anna is the founder and maker behind Form Norfolk, creating headbands, necklaces, and earrings from recycled cotton cord and reclaimed leather. Here, she explains how her creative business was a ‘happy accident’
I was born in Suffolk and moved to Norwich for a bachelor’s degree at the University of East Anglia some years ago. I fell in love with the city, met a boy, and the rest is history! I adore Norfolk and often find it hard to believe that I live somewhere that many people choose to spend their holidays.
It’s a county surrounded by beautiful coastline, inland waterways, woods, and friendly villages, towns, and the vibrant city of Norwich. Norwich is buzzing with culture, independent shops, arts, and amazing people. The whole county has incredible food on offer, from street food outlets by the sea to fine dining. I feel very lucky to call this place my home.
I love having a full diary enjoying what Norfolk has to offer, from workshops to paddle-boarding to sampling awesome new food venues. I often share what I’m up to around Norfolk on my Instagram Stories, spreading the small business love along the way.
Form Norfolk was a by-product of the pandemic. Like many people, I found myself with more time on my hands, and I did more of the things I loved, like making jewellery. I’ve always been creative and artistic, and it’s very easy for those passions to be side-lined when life gets busy. Lockdown made me slow down.
There is only so much jewellery one person can wear (especially if you can’t go out!), so I started posting pieces to friends. With enough comments of “you should sell these,” I got a brand name, a logo, and created my online shop. In just over two and a half years, it has grown and grown into a side business that I love.
Only a few days ago, I spotted a very stylish lady crossing the road wearing one of my necklaces. I was so proud that I stopped her for a chat. I hope the novelty of seeing my pieces in the ‘wild’ never wears off!
Form makes a variety of necklace styles and sizes from recycled cotton cord, fastened with a convenient magnetic clasp. They are super lightweight and comfortable to wear. The statement pieces are available in a vast array of bright and muted shades.
I hand-make the pieces to order from my home studio. After enough customer requests, I started making headbands from the same materials, which have proved to be a bestseller. I also produce reclaimed leather earrings from leather offcuts. So your earrings could have been a coat, bag, or scrap from a leather sample book in a previous life.
Sustainability is important, I strive to keep reviewing and improving my own processes, reduce waste and find uses for my own offcuts. I use recycled cotton cord and reclaimed leather. It’s great to see these materials have a new lease of life. I would love to find more reusable materials that I can turn into wearable pieces.
I sell my pieces online via Etsy, and I also sell at markets. I’m next lined up for The Norwich Lane Fayre on July 9, Burnham Market on July 15, and Holt Market on August 6.
I love markets and getting to meet people, talk about the pieces, and see what colours everyone chooses once they’ve tried them on. I honestly have the loveliest customers; I feel very lucky.
Pieces are also stocked in Atwin on Bridewell Alley, Norwich. Handstand on Earlham Road, Anteros on Magdalen Street and further afield in Suffolk, Essex and Somerset.
Form was a happy accident; I have no idea what next. As long as I keep loving my business and making pieces, then it will keep going and growing!