The Dazzle Collection – 40 brooches for 40 years

This year we are celebrating 40 years of Dazzle exhibitions. It seems a long time since holding our first exhibition in 1981.  As part of our 40th anniversary celebrations, we are excited to announce our 40 Brooches for 40 Years exhibition. We have invited 40 makers from across the four decades to make and exhibit a brooch. These will be available to buy online at and at our Edinburgh Festival Dazzle at Dovecot Studios 7 – 29 August 2021. Alongside this we are showing 40 Brooches from our own personal collection dating back to our first exhibition in 1981 to the present day. Each one is catalogued in this blog post below. 

Tony Gordon and Christine Bola, the Co-founders of Dazzle, both feel very privileged to have been involved in the craft world and with so many wonderful makers for such a long time. What started as an interesting side line, developed into a lifelong commitment to showing and selling handmade jewellery by individual makers, often just graduated, in a wide variety of venues and introducing the general public to work, not seen outside specialist galleries.

Along the way we have met so many interesting people and made connections with so many of our makers and they have made connections with each other through Dazzle. Many of which have become great friends. This exhibition will give you a little snapshot into the history of Dazzle and the makers that have shown with us over the years.

The Dazzle Personal Collection

By Christine Bola

It is so easy to be tempted by all the lovely pieces we have in Dazzle but as the years have rolled on I have had to become more discerning.
In the early days, it was all so exciting, seeing new things made from different and unusual materials. Things that you would never see in a High Street jewellers. Many of the pieces were non-precious and really low priced. Can you buy a piece of handmade, unique jewellery for £3 now? You could in the 1980s at Dazzle! I loved the colour and the fun of some of the pieces and it was good to be able to support and encourage some of the designers by buying a piece.
I have always bought pieces that I like and will wear. Pieces that will make a statement. Unfortunately, there are ones that got away, which I still hanker after, either because I couldn’t afford them or more likely, because I let them go on display and they were snapped up by a customer
It has been fun choosing my 40 Brooches spanning the four decades of Dazzle, some didn’t make the cut for various reasons. What you will see is a mixture of favourites and brooches chosen because they represent a particular time or maker. I don’t think that my collecting days are over yet!

To view the 40 Brooches made especially for our 40th anniversary click below. These are available to buy online at

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