Agne, Lithuania

My name is Agne. I am 29. I am from Lithuania. I am from Klaipeda. It’s beside the sea, the Baltic Sea, third biggest city in Lithuania.

In Lithuania I was a student, just finished high school and went on to university to study economics. I left Lithuania in 2005, then I was 18 coming onto 19. I left by myself, but I came to Northern Ireland to join my boyfriend at the time. I have been living in Northern Ireland now for 10 years. I do like it here. It wasn’t really my choice to come to Northern Ireland, just because I followed my love, or the person that I loved.

Now in Northern Ireland I work as an interpreter, and I also have my own craft business. I speak Lithuanian, Russian and English. I learned Russian since my early days, because Lithuania used to be a part of the Soviet Union. And when I was growing up I would have watched Russian cartoons, I had Russian books, and I went on to school and learned Russian there.

I am a felter. I design and make slippers from scratch, from wool. I’m a self-taught crafter, designer, maker. But I also do other things: I knit, I crochet, and I cross-stitch. My granny taught me all these things.

Today I brought with me my amber necklace, because up until 19 years old I was living in Klaipeda, which is by the seacoast, the Baltic Sea, and it’s famous for its amber. This necklace is even more precious to me because it made from three joined necklaces- one is mine and the two of my two boys. My older son Sky is 4.5, and my younger son Adam is 14 months.

[So it’s your necklace with a necklace from each of your children as well?] Yes. It reminds me of the Baltic Sea. And, because amber has some healing properties- it calms you down. So, I like to carry it around with me. My older boy sometimes asks me to put it on him, so I just separate it and give him his bit.