Shetland Fairy Logo
Shetland Fairy Logo

Meet the Maker

by | Nov 10, 2022 | Behind the Scenes | 0 comments

Hey and welcome to Meet the Maker and how The Shetland Fairy came about.

  • My name is Stacey, I created and run The Shetland Fairy. I am married and we have four beautiful children. When they are not drawing on the walls!!
  • We live at North Roe in Shetland – It’s blooming beautiful, I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else.
  • I started needle felting as therapy to find me time and to find myself again. Being a mummy can sometimes send you a bit off your personal goals in life.
  • I love all things magical and fantasy themed, it allows us to escape reality and enter the realms of our wonderful imagination.
  • Being fed up of not finding work and needing something to work around us as a large family – The Shetland Fairy was created.

Have you got time to read a story and have a proper read? Great, go pop the kettle on and get the biscuits. I hope this blog gives you a sense of who I am and what The Shetland Fairy is to me. Please know it may be triggering if you suffer from any mental health issues.

So hey, if you didn’t know already, I’m Stacey.

Stacey Bradley The Shetland FairyI am 21 years old, plus some years, shhh. I am a wife to some weird guy (I love you baby :p ) that gave me his hoodie by the bins, at a bike show, in a field. Oh the romance *giggles*.

That was many moons ago and four little munchkins later, here I am living the dream in the beautiful picturesque, Shetland. Oh I’m also a mummy to a cat, two dogs and a tank full of tropical fish. I guess you could say I like having pets, or maybe it’s because I like caring for others.

I was once described as an earth mother. In short, meaning a nurturing, maternal woman. I think that person was spot on. I’ve also been told that I am sensitive, again they were right, I am. I used to think this was a weakness, but it takes a lot of strength to show your true colours and emotions, so I take pride in that now.

Some days can be a struggle and I can feel way too much! Like crying at an old lady crossing the road, just random stuff like that. I have since learned the benefits of grounding. From the words of google, grounding yourself, is the process of balancing your physical, emotional, mental and energy state and reconnecting them. Though do check it out if you’ve not heard of it or done it before. I highly recommend. It is also called earthing. I also have a love of crystals with their magical powers. Yes, I’m one of those hehehehe, are you? If not that’s okay, they are still so pretty to look at, right?

I’ve not always lived in Shetland and my life hasn’t always been flowers and rainbows, is anyone’s?

Hell! It’s not always great now, I am human after all.

Yes sad fact is I’m not a fairy, but how cool would it be if I was! I am from Nottingham, and have always had an active imagination. I used to be in the garden at 6am playing in the mud and making up wonderful stories. We used to have this big giant blossom tree in the middle of the garden and it was so beautiful. I loved sitting in that tree. I had an awesome childhood. Though the house was haunted, believer or not something spooky was going on in that house and many years later I still have nightmares about it. That story is for another time.

During my teenage years I hated school and became somewhat of a “goth” my nickname was awesome though, can you guess it? Yep it was Fairy (I’m grinning, I loved being called that). Another name I was called was NOT so cool and that was Dumbo, yes I’ve big tabs (slang for ears) I’m so over that. Very creative bullies *rolls eyes*. So yeah anyways….

When my second little baba was born I had that pesky condition called post-natal depression and it sucked!

Sadly I didn’t get diagnosed until she was a year old and by that time it had all got messy and I was self-harming and just not wanting to live anymore. My days were spent either in the bath or in bed. I wanted to die but couldn’t go through with it as I couldn’t leave my babies without a mother. I’d cry myself to sleep most nights it was an awful time and I still carry a lot of guilt over that. Gosh I’m getting tearful just writing this. With the help of my husband, doctor and some therapy/meds I got back on my feet. Woo hoo!!

If you suffer from any mental health issues please do seek help. I know it’s a cliché but it does get better, YOU CAN get better… Sending you lots of love and healing vibes. If you don’t reach out you’ll never know what could be, be brave and take that step, you are not alone.

Dream goals since leaving school.

I told friends I was going to dye my hair blue and sit around the street (so cool Stacey sooooo cool *laughing* ) I did dye my hair blue, I’ve had my hair practically every colour, but my dream was to live in the middle of nowhere and run my own business. I have done soooooo many courses as I like learning, stuff I’m interested in of course. School was a prison for my soul. I’ve also had many jobs from cleaning toilets, to café work to working in a pharmacy as a dispensary assistant. I loved my job at the pharmacy, the caring nurturing me, loved it, why did I leave then? Well we can thank the mental breakdown for that one. It’s all okay though as I’m a firm believer in everything happens for a reason.

I had always been side hustling with little ventures trying to find my dream business. I’ve done sweeties in mugs, sex toys, Avon, making chocolates and Usborne books, and probably more. Trying so hard to find my passion, to build my dream. When I was a child I used to pinch salad from the fridge and sell it to my brother’s friend for his rabbit, or I used to make stickers with my sticker maker and sell them at school. The best one was putting on shows with my brother and setting up a bar and selling drinks back to my parents …. I love you mum and dad *cheesy grin – please don’t kill me*

How we ended up in Shetland

One day with all four kids, the youngest being only three months. We went on holiday with my parents. Long story short it was an awful long week. When we got home feeling more stressed than we did before we left, we saw that someone had tried breaking in. I hated where we lived (I had done for the past seven years). I put on a ranty post on Facebook, as you do and then an old school friend’s mother replied saying why don’t you try Orkney or Shetland? The wheels started turning. Her daughter had moved to Shetland five years prior and so I got to talking to her about it all.

One night, listening to the traffic and the sirens out the window and looking at our view of, well not much really, the house backed onto other houses and everyone had cut down their trees (this made me so mad and upset, yes I’m a tree hugger too) and replaced their lawns with plastic! I just said f*#k it, enough is enough. I was over this place.

Family and friends laughed at us and said we were mad but I needed out, my soul was heavy and I needed to go where my heart desired and we decided that place was Shetland. We lived of a shoe string and Hubby passed his driving test within a few months and along with the help of a dear friend with a 7.5tonne license it was then all systems go go go! After eight months, in April 2019 we said our goodbyes and headed towards our dreams, to a place we had never even stepped foot on. It was a massive leap of faith, but I don’t regret it one bit. I feel so at home here and the communities are AMAZING! I can’t thank them enough for making me and my family feel so welcomed.

So how did I get into felting?

Well living here my creativity was bursting. I had so much inspiration, and one day while I was having reiki by the lovely Claire Ward, who I thoroughly recommend, she suggested I try finding a hobby or just take some time for me and do what I would enjoy.  Coming from a very busy social life, working, volunteering, and having childcare to having none of that and having the children 24/7, it was easy to say I was feeling a little frazzled.

So while wandering around the shops I saw a book on needle felted fairies. It called to me, I couldn’t stop thinking about it that night. So I brought the book and a small starter kit and stabbed my fingers a few times (okay a lot, it was A LOT!). I still do sometimes, but don’t worry no fairies or enchanted items come with Stacey blood, ever! A year had passed and my wool stash had grown.

I was getting so many compliments on my creations. It felt good.

In January 2020 and feeling settled, I decided I wanted to go back to work, but sadly I couldn’t find anything that was close by and fitted around my children. I was getting disheartened and the COVID-19 hit!! What a bloody nightmare that has been, it still feels surreal and for the first time in a long time my mental health deteriorated. I was so anxious and my OCD thoughts were racing! I’m sure I wasn’t alone with that feeling. As time passed and the summer months seemed hopeful. I started applying for jobs again and then I got turned down a cleaning job. I got so upset about this. Gosh I had so much experience in cleaning from past employment. I asked for feedback and it was just because I had been out of employment for a couple of years!

ARGH!! My upset turned to anger and with that came a f*#k you moment and then voilà, The Shetland Fairy was born!! See I told you everything happens for a reason.

I love quirky, whimsical stuff, along with fairy tales and enchanted, mythical creatures.

To have fantasy is to have an imagination. I mean after all you can’t dream without a good imagination and to not dream is to give up in life. Becoming a mother I lost myself, I forgot who I was and what I loved, I tried to fit in with the other mothers and it worked for a little bit but that wasn’t me I missed my crazy self and as crazy as it sounds, through needle felting and my creations I am finding that happy go lucky girl I was. Needle felting has become a passion of mine and I hope it shows through all of my work. I take pride in every single thing that is created, and try to be as environmentally friendly as can be. I love my craft and I love you for taking the time and reading all of this. It was a little bit long, I hope you didn’t eat too many biscuits.

Any questions or comments please do feel free to contact me, I love hearing from you. Please stay safe and take care. Don’t forget to sign up to my newsletter if you haven’t already, you’ll receive 10% off (do check your spam, as I sometimes rudely get put in there!). Thank you so much for supporting my dream, it’s an absolute pleasure to make others smile through my creations. Be magical and never stop believing.

Lots of love,

Stacey xXx

Update: I am now trained in Reiki Level one and plan on doing my level two. From what I’ve been through, it sucks to feel in a bad place and I infused my items with reiki now to pass on love and positive energies to each and everyone in the hopes that they feel that magical energy from the universe.

I am also doing a diploma in the use of crystals, as I love them and their attributes they can offer us.

shetland arts and crafts member

Oh and I am now a full member of The Shetland Arts and Crafts Association which means my work underwent a quality assessment so you can rest assured that my work is of the highest standards as I had to demonstrate an original approach to the styling of my craft, a thorough understanding and mastery of the materials I use, a consideration to the presentation of my products to enhance and protect them and that I maintained a consistent high quality throughout. 5 STARS for me please!! 😀 Hehehe The day I got the email to say I was approved was a happy memorable day!


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