FAQs - Frequently Asked Questions
Thank you for finding my FAQs! I appreciate your interest in my work. This project is a one-woman-show, and it is a great help to me if you can have a look through my FAQs before contacting me. I hope you will find the answers helpful. (Updated January 2018)
- "What is an avocado stone?" -
An avocado stone is the seed inside an avocado. In Ireland, 'stone' is often used as a word for a seed or pip - usually when there is just one large seed inside a piece of fruit. We also say peach stone and plum stone.
- "Do you sell your original avocado stone carvings?" -
I have sold them over the past years, and may continue to do so - but this will only be an occasional occurrence from now on. Shop updates of original carvings will not be a regular event as they were in previous years - the reason being that I want very much to build up my own collection of work as I would love to have the option to do an exhibition sometime. That will never materialise if I keep saying goodbye to all my carvings. I do apologise to those who really wanted an original, I know there are quite a few who had tried to buy my carvings in the past and missed them by seconds. I will potentially sell individual pieces every now and then, which I will alert about on my mailing list, Instagram and Facebook. I cannot alert individual people about these occasions.
Most of the carvings I'll show on my social media accounts will not be available for purchase from now on. I will try to make this clear by writing "NFS" (not for sale) in the captions. My carving rate has naturally slowed over the years, as I spend more and more time on the small details of each individual piece. I am venturing into other creative projects, and my energy is shared between those and my avocado stone carvings. I simply won't be producing enough individual carvings to sell regularly. I hope you will continue to enjoy seeing photos of my creations on social media and if you would like to see a particular design available in bronze, be sure to let me know. The bronze castings available in my shop are my offering to those who want to adopt one of my designs into their life. I have chosen my favourite designs for this bronze collection, and I love each of these pieces as dearly as I love the carvings. I am delighted by the response they have received so far and I hope to cast more of my designs in the future. You can read more about the bronze castings further down.
- "But it says on the Facebook video that you sell the avocado stones?" -
Viral Thread released a compilation of my videos on Facebook which, when I last saw it, had been viewed approximately 20 million times. Unfortunately they didn't run it by me before publishing it, and they wrote in it that my original carvings can be bought online. Since then I have received multitudes of emails asking me: "Where can I buy one?" Firstly, I would like to say that I'm touched that so many people have responded to my creations enough to want to buy them. My position is: I am just one person with a hobby for carving avocado stones. I carve for fun, and don't produce a huge amount. I will never churn them out, piece by piece, until my creations and I have lost our souls :) If you don't see any avocado stones in my shop, then it means that there are none available. If you love my designs, you are welcome to adopt one of the available bronze castings. If you are determined to wear an avocado stone pendant, I encourage you to try making your own one!
- "What are the bronze castings?" -
Last year I released some of my favourite designs in bronze. I am delighted by the positive response they have received from customers. In order to make the bronze castings, moulds were taken of my original avocado stone carvings. These moulds were used to create solid bronze pieces, faithfully replicating every detail of the original carvings. They were cast by hand, using traditional techniques by the artisans at the Bronze Fine Art Foundry in Dublin, Ireland. This foundry has worked on some exciting projects in the past, making many of the feature swords and bronze ornamentation that appears in the tv shows, Game of Thrones and Vikings. When I started selling my avocado stones, I felt pressure to continually replicate old designs to try to meet the demand for them. It wasn't really feasible for me to keep doing this - I thrive creatively on changing and evolving ideas. The bronze castings have made it possible for me to work on new designs, while people are free to purchase my previous designs as they wish. Bronze is a material I have always loved. I am fascinated by the Bronze Age period in Ireland, and I like to imagine my bronze pieces were found buried amongst an ancient hoard of treasures ;) I hope to continue casting popular designs in bronze, and release some more collections in the coming years.
- "Do you do custom orders?" -
No, I don't ever do custom orders.
- "How do I check your prices in my currency?" -
My prices are displayed in Euro. To convert the prices to your local currency, use a search engine like Google. For example, to find out the price for Siofra in US dollars I would type: "103 Euro to USD" and the most recent conversion rate will magically appear :)
- "Do you ship worldwide?" -
Yes, I ship worldwide at a fixed low rate of 10 euro. My packaging is made entirely of recycled paper materials, and is plastic-free.
- "How do you carve avocado stones? What tools do you use? etc, etc." -
I continually receive questions of this nature... It's great that so many people want to try it, but I simply don't have the time to answer these questions. Sometimes I feel like I'm a search engine for all your avocado stone carving queries... If I ever decide to share my techniques, I will do a proper job of it and make a tutorial. I get the feeling that most of the people who ask me these questions have never tried carving an avocado stone before - asking me is the first step. I promise you that is entirely possible to work out how to do it yourself. I know this to be true, because it is what I did. I never received any help or training - I wanted to learn how to do it, so I did it and learned along the way. There are many different ways of carving avocado stones - no one method is "the right way." I am always experimenting with new techniques. Use whatever tools you have on hand that can make marks and cuts. Your hands, mind and time are the tools that really matter. Buying a specific brand of blades won't magically turn you into an amazing carver :) Enjoy the process of learning and don't dwell on the end result. If you still want to read advice on carving, I suggest you look up tips on wood carving. The two materials share many similarities.
- "Do you do paid promotions on your social media accounts? Will you promote my product/agenda etc.." -
No, I don't ever promote something that someone has asked or paid me to. If I ever promote someone's work or product, it is a genuine recommendation from me, done because I love what they do enough to want to share it.