In Memory of Hayden





Hayden was my life and business partner for over 20 years -

he was the main creative side of the business
and a talented leadlight artist and jewellery designer. 
His legacy lives on in the spirit of this new site.


Hayden Bowman
06/03/54 - 14/06/18

{His Brother David's part of his Eulogy}

Hayden Clifford Bowman was born at St Vincent Maternity on the 6th March, 1954. {David is 5 years younger}

Mum and Dad had tried so hard to have children and named him after the doctor Bill Hayden. Mum had trained as a nurse with him and spent most of her working life with Dr Hayden.

Hayden was a sickly child suffering terribly with asthma.

Some of my earliest recollections was with Hayden lying over a chair while mum or dad massaged his back to try and clear his lungs so he could breathe.

It wasn't until Hayden took up swimming that his asthma started to improve.

As a sick child he would also play up on this and I would get sent outside so as not to 'upset Hayden'. I was also the one who had to do all the outside jobs like mow the grass or do some painting and Hayden would give me a sly wink whenever I passed him. . . . he knew he was getting out of doing any work !!

Early family life was taken up with weekend drives to the Dandenongs, or Portarlington to stay with the Burton's (mum's sisters family) and this is when we all got the passion for fishing.

Christmas was always at home with twenty or more family and friends . . .Hayden loved getting up in the middle of the night on Christmas Eve after everyone had gone to sleep and opening not only his own presents, but mine too . . . he would then rewrap them badly and in the morning took great joy in telling me what had got before I was able to open them

Christmas was always followed by a holiday to Rosebud, Sorento, Portarlington or Warburton.

At Warburton one year he had organized the invitational Warburton handicap race down the Yarra River on inner tubes. By the end of that holiday he had about 40 kids racing down the river to our camp site, where mum and dad would always have a drink or something to eat. Hayden, known to bend the rules a little, would usually win.

Hayden was never a great scholar and was atrocious at maths - he had dyslexia which was undiagnosed back then. Hayden worked out that the rugby master was also the head math's teacher . . . seems that if you played rugby you were mysteriously able to pass maths.

Rugby turned out to be a large part of Hayden's early life. He was the perfect shape and build to be a Prop Forward. He was a wide across as we was tall and had no neck. He played for Box Hill High School for 2 years, then at Box Hill Rugby Club.

Hayden taught me some fine arts at the club - how to tap a keg, and pull a beer. I'll never forget the day I was servicing beers and looked up to see half the Box Hill Police Force in uniform. Now Box Hill was a dry zone and the club had an unlicensed bar, and I was only 14 years old. Hayden looked at me and put me to rest by saying the only way I was going to get into trouble was if I poured a bad beer, or if I tried to charge them. The night went on till the early hours and was one of the few times a function didn't have the be held the following day to finish off the keg.

Box Hill was an interesting club, unlike most sporting clubs where players would aspire to play in the firsts, at Box Hill the 5th grade (Quenchies) was where everyone wanted to be. I think this was because there were lots of ex international players as well as a mix of French, English, Welsh and Kiwis. They were exciting to watch even though there were slower - You had to be over 30 to play with the Quenchies. At 22 Hayden was invited to play with them on one condition - he was never allowed to miss a training session - these were held at the Whitehorse Hotel, and so Hayden never missed one.

Our dad died during this time (he would never have approved of me pulling beers at the club). Hayden was 18 and I was 13. Dad was a big part of our lives always taking time out for both of us. He always had time to talk to us about everything. When he died he left a big hole in all our lives, including mums. I think Hayden tried to step up and help me through this period, even though there was a 5 year age gap. He made me feel always included even when he smuggled me into bands like Billy Thorpe, The Master's Apprentices, Daddy Cool and so many more, I will always be grateful for this.

To have know Hayden in recent years, you would never have thought of him as a trend setter. . . . He was probably one of the first skin heads in Australia, right down to the boots, rolled up jeans and braces, though this was a very short lived trend, as it was very violent. He was a late bloomer to flower power, he would make his own flares by splitting them down the sides and inserting red velvet years before you could buy them.. I remember him pleading with Aunty Marjorie to embroider flowers on his shirt.

He always had the best records before anyone else had even heard of them - Reggae, Scar Punk - there were some failures though. I don't think Plastic Bertron ever became the musical giant Hayden told me he would be.

Hayden left school at 16 to become a screen printer and stencil cutter which suited his artistic flair. In school he only ever achieved average results, but in his chosen field he was a genius and achieved high distinctions. He became an estimate manager and delved into sales while also managing another print shop.

Fishing as mentioned earlier was a big passion for both of us, we would head up to Eildon on a Friday night, fish all weekend hour upon hour; sometimes we'd fish up up in the Dandenong's trespassing though people's backyards - and I'd say "this is not a creek" - but Hayden would cast a line and pull out a trout or redfin. He always found the most unlikely places to fish.

In our later years, Hayden, Dave and I started going back to Eildon - this time we did not need to traipse up hills and dales. During one of our trips, in mid winter, you could see the fog rolling off the dam, it was so cold Dave and I were freezing and our teeth chattering away - Hayden had a smile on his face, we thought he got used to the cold living in Woodend, but turns out he was wearing feet and hand warmers - the swine. . . .

In 1987 Hayden had a car accident which caused damage to his spleen, which was not known until he was admitted to hospital in 1988. He was at Monash, which had not been operating very long but when he started coughing up blood, was moved to Prince Henry's where he had surgery to remove half his lung, which had been punctured internally - they then called an abdominal surgeon to investigate. We were told he had cancer, and would be lucky to survive a week. Along comes a student doctor who started to think outside the box, as Hayden was still hanging in there. Turns out it was an infection from an ear piercing, but because his spleen was damaged the blood was not cleaning itself and an abscess had formed puncturing the lung. And so Hayden came out of hospital vowing never to smoke or drink again . .. famous last words. . .

During this time a good mate of Hayden's had also just got out of hospital and together they went off for a bit of a break. . . . on their return Hayden was drinking and smoking again. However now it would only be top shelf wine, and was only smoking half as much, with only half a lung!!

He worked in the printing industry for a few more years and then started working for a glass supplier who specialized in antique glass. He learned glass etching and lead lighting. He started to make his own glass boxes and sold them at markets. Hayden would tell me about "The Bead Lady" at the market who he had a bit of a crush on. . . . he would say things like "I hope she is at the next market". Turns out the bead lady was Margaret. For the past 27 years Hayden spoke about the bead lady over and over. I was happy that Hayden had found his love in life, and was truly in love with Margaret, no matter how good or bad other things were.

Margaret and Hayden started a shop in Brunswick street together, before it became trendy, and did very well, until a drug rehabilitation centre opened up a few doors away. They decided to close the shop after constantly being robbed. They would not even break into a run after breaking in, just stroll away. Hayden and Margaret would then start trading by mail and later online. They bought a house in Woodend and opened a shop there a little while later. Life was good for both of them.

This was not to last as Hayden's health started to decline - he was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, and struggled to keep this in check. For a while they moved the shop to Daylesford, and slowly Hayden's creative side began to suffer. He also stopped going fishing when it became to much. Hayden would rarely complain, just shrug it off with a smile.

Hayden died from Blood infections, renal and heart failure.

I will always remember Hayden with a smile and a wink.

This image is an amalgamation of two of Hayden's favourite photos he took.
The red sky appeared the night he got a new digital camera, and we still use it on the Cauldron Club folders.

The angel is from the Woodend Cemetery -
for years to had to stop at every cemetery we passed, looking for such angels.

{My part of his Eulogy}

Hayden looked like a tough biker when I met him, but I quickly learned he had a heart of marshmallow. We met while both selling goods at markets - me old beads and jewellery - him his leadlight creations - mainly Australiana designs such as blue wrens and warratahs

We became friends before dating - so were off to a good start.

Once that started however he was fully committed - I was just about to open a shop in Brunswick street Fitzroy, at the then grotty end - all wide eyed and innocent. He moved in and stayed to protect me- knowing how rough the streets and alleys were after dark having worked in the area.

That first shop was a mix of half “normal / light ” and half dark / gothic - gifts and jewellery - but it was the gothic side that really took off. In those days (well before it was fashionable, or we had the internet) it was hard to find anything gothic or witchy - and his work was quickly in demand with the other handful of alternative shops around Australia. We closed that shop after a year and moved away from the mass humanity that was inner Fitzroy to “quiet” Woodend and concentrated on wholesale.


We did go back to retail in the end - with a shop first in Woodend, then Daylesford, but are now purely online.


Hayden was always the creative side - he created our logos, his own range of jewellery designs and increasingly larger and darker glass creations.


 A very large leadlight box that Hayden made as a feature for our Brunswick St shop window,

It was a project he kept tinkering with over the years. It was also large enough to house his ashes
for a year or so before we scattered them at Eildon - one of his favourite places on earth.


His work slowed down as bad health set in - mainly diabetes and eye problems. Always the frustrated artist with a detailed perfectionist streak.


As the business moved more online he was happier to stay more and more in the background (packing orders and taking them to the post office etc) - and increasingly took on most of the household duties as well - he particularly loved meal planning and cooking. Favouring old fashioned favourites such as soups, risottos, roasts and curries.


Hayden and Margaret proved to be a good fit

(he loves cooking she loves eating)

Particularly once they appreciated that opposites attract

Hayden being caring, sharing, practical, hands on, one step at a time

Margaret more impulsive, changeable and trying to do 1000 things at once.

He kept her grounded and mostly on time, she kept him from falling into a rut.

There was also lots of teasing, fun and laughter - which you need to you are to live and work with someone for over 20 years.


As someone so physical Hayden’s declining health and energy levels these last two years have been frustrating - yet he continued to enjoy the simple things - such as shopping and long chats with the locals .

In summary Hayden was a kind, friendly people person - who chatted to almost everyone, but liked to consider himself a grumpy old man.

Very artistic and creative by nature- but he was at heart a true homebody that wanted nothing more than care for me, the dog and the cat - a job he did very well.

It has also been comforting to receive hundreds of condolence messages from our online audience.

A highlight was from a friend who’s husband was sent to the temple in McLeodganj to make an offering for prayers to be said by His Holiness Dalai Lama for Hayden. Another, our Northern Hemisphere Witch friend, who will light a candle for us on her Summer solstice altar in Denmark.

It touches me that our support has been so wide, so deep, and so long (most of the names I recognize and some of the stretch back 20 years).Also that many of them still treasure a creative piece made by Hayden in the past.

A lovely piece Hayden made for my birthday one year and typical of the creative use of solder that become his trademark. 

{An Interview I did with Hayden
as part of our Positive Pagan Interviews - many years ago}


Hayden was bought up in a non religious household and was always a hands-on arty child with a fondness for paper. He had a very encouraging father, who could draw very well himself. At school Hayden was good at the practical subjects like science and English but did not do well in other subjects - it was the early 70's and there was a lot of "new age" education - students were not required to learn to spell for instance. He would have been more suited to a technical school - but his mother wanted him to be a doctor. It was not to be however and at 15 he was bored with school and started to look for an apprenticeship with his fathers help. They settled on screen printing - as it was both artistic (Hippies) and hands-on. His father took him to the local print shop to check things out.. They then rang around for days before finally finding him a position. He completed his four year apprenticeship with that business and stayed on another 3 years until the place closed down. He ended up working at two other firms - mainly working on advertising and retail shop displays. But with Keatings "Recession we had to have" - all that work dried up and both those firms too went out of business.


Leadlighting was a hobby Hayden had taken up some time beforehand but without any work prospects Hayden took to it seriously and was soon selling his works at local craft markets - in those days he made "pretty" detailed glass jewellery boxes and Australian animal suncatchers etc - that were popular with local pilots and handcraft enthusiasts.


He had been doing this for around 12 months when I met him and trying to convince the CES officials to let him into the newly set up NEIS scheme - but was continually rejected as none of them could see a viable business in leadlight boxes.


I was about to set up a bead shop myself in Brunswick Street Fitzroy - and Hayden ended up joining me in that and moving in around the same time .. ..




I was already dealing in pewter charms and Hayden started using them in his work finding the most inspiration in the gothic bats and spiders etc. Our shop was originally set up as half dark and half light - but if was the dark half that got all the attention - as there was very little around for the Melbourne Goths to buy, so Hayden happily turned his creative attentions there.


Over the next few years Hayden produced some of the most amazing glass works (using the copper foiling technique - most commonly used on tiffany lamps etc) - stretching the genre to its limit with has fancy solder work and 3 dimensional designs. From simple glass coffins to very fancy spider web clocks - and my favourite a pendulum "cuckoo type" clock with witches flying out of a house chimney .


Most of the big pieces were sold at Mortisha's - the big goth shop in the city - Hilary the owner would buy everything Hayden made. Hayden also developed the jewellery line featuring the redbacks we still sell today We closed the Fitzroy shop and moved to Woodend to concentrate on wholesale.


In time however the coloured glass and leadlighting supplies started to get very expensive with the falling Australian dollar - plus there was more competition from imported goods - such as coffins from Mexico etc. Then Mortishas closed down.


So Hayden eventually stopped doing his glass work - I complain I live with one of the best leadlighters in Australia yet the ugly yellow glass panel on our back door has been broken and held together with packaging tape for years. (I'm resigned to it now)


He is still an expert with a soldering iron however and still hand works most of our jewellery designs and has his distinctive black finish. We saw a lady in the supermarket here the other day wearing one of his designs that must have been at least 15 years old. Another time questioned a young man at a Music festival who was wearing one of Hayden's early glass coffin pendants - it was my mother's he said - "an antique"! Indeed


27/3/21 - a great find

Today I drove to Ballarat to pick up some boxes of books I have sold. I had planned to make a day of it and have lunch and look through some of the local op shops etc before my appointment, but was running late and didn't have time to go to the big ones - however there was a little one right near where I was going that I spotted and I did have 15 minutes or so to spare - so popped in for a quick look.


Found the mirror above . . . and knew it immediately.


It was made by Hayden Bowman (my highly talented, late partner) - I'm guessing around 10-15 years ago. We sold them at markets and in our own shops (Woodend and Daylesford) as well as wholesale to places like Mortisha's in town. It is one of his medium sized ones - there were small plainer ones and some very large fancy ones. They were his unique creations using mirror tiles, coathanger wire, copper foil, lead solder and pewter charms.


I don't actually have much of his glass work left - so was thrilled to buy this one for $4!