Our Story

Life’s too short to sit back and watch kids stifle their creativity. We’re here to bring messy, expressive, risk-taking wonder back to childhood and encourage outrageous curiosity the whole family can enjoy.

Hi, I’m Claire Gillespie, Founder of Oglee Poglee, mum of two boys, and a champion for unleashing kids’ creativity!  

As a creative myself with a long career working in the craft and design sector managing events and supporting designers, I’m tired of seeing children have their natural creativity go unnurtured.   

Whether it’s the cookie-cutter activities of pre-school crafts, the neglect of creativity in school curriculum’s or, simply, the rhythm of modern family life leaving no room for curiosity… I know there has to be another way!  

Helping parents unleash their kids’ creativity

A way for children, and their families, to succeed while nurturing their imagination and being encouraged to express their ideas through creativity. A way where parents, educators and children are reunited through creative exploration and all see the value in it. 

Imagine what the world would look like if we were no longer living in fear of making mistakes? If we all embraced creativity as a means of exploring, experimenting, learning and having fun – just as children are naturally wired to! 

The world is changing fast. Life’s too short to sit back and watch our kids have to stifle their creativity in favour of good grades and preparation for future careers which may not exist…  

It’s time to raise the future’s pioneers through creative fun!

Creativity is the most-underrated skill in school and yet one of the most valuable tools in all areas of adult life. It’s not good enough. 

 Oglee Poglee’s aim is to lead the way for children, parents and educators to embrace creativity as the joyful future-building resource that it is.   

Will you join us? 

The Team

Claire

Claire is the Founder of Oglee Poglee. A former glass-blower, with a 3D Design Degree, eight years’ experience managing contemporary design events, crafting is in her blood.  Oglee Poglee started when she was at home raising her two boys and has grown around her family into a much loved business dedicated to promoting open-ended creativity and the importance of play.

It’s hard to choose one!  I loved paper mache as a kid, all that squishy goo stuck to your fingers and the endless hours waiting for your creation to dry before you could paint it. Play dough is also awesome. You can make it in about 5 minutes and then spend hours making all sorts of crazy stuff with the kids.

A big yummy breakfast, a long walk in the woods then home for a game of something with my boys.  In the summer it’s  French cricket in the garden and in the winter it’s board games or Uno.  I am pretty competitive and love a good game.

Oglee Poglee is a word that’s been in my family since I was little.  It’s the word my mum used for anything when she couldn’t find something. “Where’s the Oglee Poglee” was often shouted in my house!  Ha ha fun times.

Amy

With a BA in 3D Design and an MA in Fine Art Sculpture Amy’s experience in organising exhibitions, developing creative learning activities (schools and families) as well as continuing her own artistic practise make her an essential part of the Oglee Poglee team.   Amy works alongside Claire facilitating workshops and Creative Heroes Club.  She can often by found devising all sorts of crafty activities, constructing huge cardboard props or making sure our families are supported and feel welcome at all our events.

I love junk modelling. There is something so exciting about the potential a pile of ‘rubbish’ has. No two models are ever the same and you can go wherever your imagination takes you. 

I also love to experimenting with mark making – using homemade brushes from sticks to draw or paint large gestural marks then turning these into imaginary animals or far away worlds.

When my parents finally arrived home with our dog, that was pretty special!

When we were children we had an ‘art’ cupboard in the kitchen which my mum always kept full of all sorts of craft materials, pens, useful boxes, paints, newspaper etc. I loved that cupboard, it was never off limits and as a family we spent a lot of time working at the dinning room table on projects.

It would probably start with a lovely long walk with my dog whatever the weather, followed by some nice food before heading into my artist studio to paint.

Oglee Poglee’s  values and aims resonate with me.  I believe children should be given the space and time to be creative and to learn and gain confidence through doing. We should encourage curiosity and celebrate our children’s ideas, allowing the wild, the wacky and the unexpected. There is no better feeling than having a child proudly present their creations and ideas to you at the end of a workshop. 

“ I want to say thank you for a great workshop yesterday! All 3 of mine loved it and got something out of it, which is hugely unusual being 6, 4 and 2!  See you again in half term!”

Hannah, St Albans