Thursday, 22 April 2021

Diligent girl has picture turned into brooch as reward

Diligent girl has picture turned into brooch as reward

A YOUNG girl’s artwork was transformed into a brooch and displayed in a Henley jeweller’s shop window.

Vivienne Higton-Burnell coloured in an A5 image of a mermaid and dolphin, which had appeared in a magazine, using ultra-fine permanent markers to ensure she stayed within the lines.

The 10-year-old from Watlington took more than a week to finish it before her father Piers Burnell had it framed as he was so impressed with her effort.

Mr Burnell, from Remenham, decided to have the image turned into a piece of jewellery to congratulate his daughter for finishing all her schoolwork at home during the coronavirus lockdown.

He took it to David Rodger-Sharp, who runs the shop of the same name in Duke Street, and he created the brooch by copying the outlines in silver and filling the gaps with coloured enamel.

Mr Rodger-Sharp placed the finished item in his shop window beside a photograph of Vivienne holding her framed artwork and then invited her to see it as a surprise.

She spotted the brooch straight away but didn’t notice the photograph so asked what had inspired the piece. Mr Rodger-Sharp replied, “We’ve been working with a young designer called Vivienne” and the penny dropped.

He then sat her down and explained how the brooch was made before she took it home.

Mr Burnell said: “I wanted to reward Vivienne for being so good with all her schoolwork and I knew she loved this picture.

“She was getting up early to get her home schooling done in the morning, which left her free in the afternoon, which is impressive for a girl of her age. When she realised what was going on at the jewellers, she was over the moon and fascinated to hear how the brooch had been made. It’s quite big so she’s going to wear it at Christmas, birthdays and things like that.”

Vivienne said: “Learning at home was tricky at first but I got used to it and it’s going to be strange going back to school.

“I was completely surprised when we went to the shop and I didn’t see the photo of myself because I was so confused to see the brooch. I thought someone else had done the same thing.

“I really love my brooch but it’s quite heavy so I’ll probably use it mostly as a decoration.”

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