odette artist portrait.jpg


We caught up with the talented Odette Smaldon, the designer-maker behind Design By Odette (www.odettesmaldon.com) to hear about her latest award, the prestigious Young Creative of 2019, hosted by Creative Bath.

Still receiving critical acclaim for her first show at 44ad, our recent spotlight feature artist fills us in on what’s instore for her now and what we can expect to see very soon from her creative practice.

(Left - Odette with her most recent work)

(Awarding Body - Creative Bath)

What are your first thoughts on winning the Bath Creative Award?

I’m so excited! The awards came at a fantastic time for me as I’m in the first year of my business so it’s a great boost to keep me going forward!

How are you going to celebrate?

I’m currently in America and it’s the weekend, so...! I’m also looking forward to the Winners Dinner at the beginning of next July where I’ll get to meet the other winner as I missed the awards ceremony!

What have we missed since the last time we spoke; what’s the latest for your craft?

I’m looking to stock my jewellery in more stores as well as experimenting with some new materials including reclaimed leather.

What are your next plans now after winning the award?

I’d love to connect with more local businesses in Bath and beyond to work on more commission based pieces/installations.

What have you noticed about the other nominees work that’s similar/different to yours? What seems to be a prevailing trend?

The ‘Young Creative’ category was quite diverse and it was great to see the talent from fellow young people in Bath, maybe we will get to work together in the future! In the ‘Maker’ category it was lovely to see each finalist show such a high standard of craftsmanship within their creative discipline.

How’s your practice’s relationship with plastics going at the moment; what are your thoughts on your materials since the last interview?

I still intend to work with Perspex/acrylic in future pieces with the same ethos of maximising the materials to their full potential, as I am very aware of my responsibility to minimise waste. Additionally, I’ve recently obtained some surplus leather that I am experimenting with. This material would otherwise be thrown away and I want to give it a new life; potentially working it in with the acrylic and plywood components.

Which one’s got your attention the most right now, jewellery or interior design/lighting?

I think I’m still enjoying working on everything at the moment. I have quite a catalog of techniques at this point that can be applied to a multiplicity of forms and products. Going forward I would love to make more lighting to clients specifications as a more collaborative endeavour in terms of size, colour and shape.

What kind of work do you want to do at the moment; what’s your dream project currently?

I’m looking to create some larger pieces but, as mentioned, I ideally want to be creating products/pieces that are desired by the client and fit their specifications. That being said, the current dream is to make a room divider. I have visions of it, and would love to make it happen!

What kind of crowd have the awards drawn in to appreciate the work?

A whole host of local independent businesses ranging from digital marketing to woodworking were present at the awards. Additionally, 44ad Artspace curated a small exhibit of work at the awards to share with the public and nominees. This was a fantastic opportunity to be showcased amongst everyone!

When are you thinking about having your next show/what are you waiting for to fall into place?

I think at the moment I’ll be working on the digital side of things. I’m aiming to create some 3D representations of potential applications of my designs to build on my portfolio.

People seem to be generating a lot of interest in your work at the moment, and very quickly off that back of your first show, how does that feel?

It honestly feels amazing! I just want to keep going (I find it hard to stop anyway!). It’s so encouraging to have the support from the city where I work and this spurs me on even more!

Find her creative practice here

Find her first spotlight feature here