Tell us a little bit about your story and how Glas was started?
When I decided to create Glas Events it was because after a few years working as an Event Manager, I was surprised to see that the contemporary styling I would look for in my home didn’t appear to exist locally. I wanted to create a style and a range that I would personally look for whilst ensuring that it embodied values that mattered to me, such as ethical product sourcing and working with repurposed/recycled materials.
I spent a long time researching and sourcing products to get started and made inspiration boards reminding myself about what I wanted the business to look and feel like. One very wet and windy day in Cornwall, I drove to the coastline for inspiration, notebook in hand. And did something I had always done when I needed to find some inspiration and regroup. I sat and stared out to sea. I listened to the wind and rain whip around my car and took in the power of the waves crashing on the rocks below. I walked and got soaked and climbed back into my car feeling renewed.
It was there, that I knew I needed to merge this moment into everything. I googled the Cornish word for Gray – my surname and where I am from, and there it was, GLAS the Celtic word for grey/blue sea, the kind you find on a stormy day.
It felt perfect. I sat and scribbled design ideas and bought the company name immediately… and well, I guess everything else kind of fell into place after that. With a ton of work ofcourse, but it all felt like it was coming together and felt ultimately very me.
How would you describe your style?
The style of Glas is more a merging of textures materials and influences rather than a single look or style. It is about balance and simplicity of shape and colour – I would never have anything patterned or brightly coloured within the hire range. Not because I don’t like patterns or colours, but because I think it distracts from the design of an item or a room. Yet I love wood grain, marbling and organic elements.
What do you feel sets you apart from other hire companies/stylists?
I created the business based on ethics and values as well as on a look that I love and couldn’t find anywhere else. To me the wedding industry can be incredibly wasteful, and I wanted to be a part of changing that. All of the hire range is made in house using reclaimed or repurposed materials, or I buy from ethical businesses, artisans and artists. The hire range isn’t the cheapest out there, but I am proud of that. Its quality products made to last the test of time.
Aesthetically, I think the thing that makes us stand out is that ‘black’ really is our default. We aren’t following trends. We are following what we love. We love contemporary styling and are hugely influenced by the rawness of materials in nature and with industrial practises. The merging of these elements to us, the feminine and masculine is just magic.
What is the best thing about your job?
I love many things… I love being my own boss. I love working with wonderful couples, going to beautiful locations and meeting the most amazing suppliers. I love being free. Free to make decisions about products, the people I work with and being able to work towards a long-term goal. I love for the first time in my life feeling as though I can live authentically and with my whole heart and not compromise on values.
I started this business knowing that I wanted to be part of the change that I think is possible in the world, and I feel that slowly but surely, I am getting there.
It is my long-term goal to work in collaboration with a charity and donate some of our hire proceeds to do some good in the world. I hope to be able to run events for wellness and wellbeing as well as offering creative days for those that need a little confidence boost. I am not quite there yet… but I am close.
Working for yourself and running a small business is hard, but it is worth it. I hope, very much, that this is just the beginning for me. I have so much I hope to achieve, and it feels like not enough life to achieve it in.
What is your top tip to our couples for choosing a company to help with their hire items?
I think my biggest tip would be to ask the following: What matters most to you? And what is your style?
I would always begin by telling couples to work with suppliers and stylists that they feel align with their own values and aesthetics as ultimately that means there is an ease of relationship, and they will work with other likeminded suppliers themselves. Don’t get me wrong, I love a challenge, but be authentic about who you are and find the right match – just like you did with one another. Then it’s a breeze.
Any tips you can give couples on where to start when thinking about styling their wedding and what to hire/buy?
Don’t buy your decor. It might seem like a cheaper option, but its wasteful and you are left with tons of items that you don’t know what to do with afterwards. Work out your budget and hire from companies that do this for a living. Trust in the professionalism of others and if they don’t have something you need – ask. They might know another business that can help or have a new product in the pipeline.
Where do you find the inspiration for your work?
My inspiration comes from many places but largely it comes from a combination of the natural and industrial world. I love the balance of nature and industry. I love the juxtaposition and contrast of metals and florals, or stone and feathers. I love the merging of both masculine and feminine and the balance when combining both.
In truth, I am a collector of art, movies, music. I am a nature nerd, lover of books and all things creative. I find inspiration from 80s sci-fi, street art and album covers. I find it in great architecture and Scandinavian design. As a creative, I think the world is inspiring and all the above play into my influences.
I try not to follow a trend or a moment, but instead source materials and pieces that are timeless and beautiful as part of a collection or on their own. I only add to the collection based on an “ah ha” moment. If it makes my heart sing…… it’s in.
What are your favourite features at Upton Barn?
The interior design of Upton Barn is something I absolutely adore. There are many things that I love from the polished concrete floor to the imperfectly perfect cobbed walls. But my absolute favourite thing is the balance of materials throughout the venue and of course….. the black cast iron accents throughout, giving a nod to both the history of the venue and modern minimalism.
What services do you offer?
I offer a broad range of services from Event Management to Hire and Styling. For me personally my favourite way of working is to be able to offer a bespoke service, working with couples based on their requirements, which may be a combination of the above or one aspect.
As the business has evolved, I am finding more and more that styling and hire is the larger part of my business and I love that my vision is being so well received. As an artist myself, this plays well into many things that I love and being able to share my creativity is a privilege.
Where can couples find out more about you?
Are there any new trends/changes coming through in hire items/styling?
I don’t follow them. I really believe in order to be creative and authentic I need to follow my gut and what is intuitively awesome to me. So rather than predicting trends I can say what I am looking forward to adding to my range. For the end of 2022 and into 2023 I am looking to add more sculptural pieces, more recycled glass, and metal.
I am hoping to create at least two new colour block ranges, working with both an industrial and natural colour palette and have my eye on a few new pieces for this.
Is sustainability on your agenda?
Sustainability and being eco conscious are a huge part of the business for me.
To me the wedding industry can be incredibly wasteful, and I wanted to be a part of changing that, whilst also offering luxury, social and eco conscious products. All our hire range as mentioned before are made in house using reclaimed or repurposed materials, or I buy from ethical businesses, artisans and artists. I work to only buy quality products made to last the test of time. The only plastic we use is our boxes for storage and these are all made from recycled plastic – it’s not ideal I won’t lie and we are looking at longer term options to better ourselves, such as how we offset our carbon footprint. I have just begun a conversation with an environmental company that are aiming to help Glas become carbon neutral and I am excited to improve the overall business model.
Ultimately though, every choice I make, considers our impact on the planet and how we can improve the way we live and how we balance our need to travel, make and buy with the needs of the environment. I haven’t got it all sorted just yet…. There is always lots to do and lots of ways to improve, but so far, I think it’s going pretty well.
If you’re feeling smitten with Stacey’s work at Glas Events, we welcome you to get in touch here! Make sure you head straight back to the blog to discover more of our real love stories here at Upton Barn or book a tour and come and meet us in person and discover Upton for yourself.