I use different techniques and materials to create each piece in my collection, based on its design. My creative process begins by planning out my designs. Next, I select the materials and methods for making each individual piece. I create each piece myself, altering my designs as necessary to achieve my vision for the end product. I strive for high quality in my products because I am a perfectionist; I aim for originality because I value uniqueness. I believe that my creations stand out in the jewelry marketplace because of the materials and techniques I combine in my designs.
For my beaded pieces, I do bead weaving, stringing, or use a bead loom, depending on the project. Sometimes, I combine techniques for a unique quality. For example, my “flower garland” bracelets are first strung on beading wire to create the base design. Then, I use bead weaving techniques, such as netting and fringe, to fill out the rest of the design. As another example, I like to give a “3-d” effect to some of my loomed pieces by bead weaving sections of the pattern off the edge, and even embellishing over top. In such ways, I am able to create one-of-a-kind pieces of jewelry by combining my techniques.
I have a multi-step process to create my “Pysanka” jewelry, made from the shells of Ukrainian Easter Eggs. First, I prepare the piece of eggshell to fit the chosen bezel by cutting, shaping, and sanding it with a Micro Dremel tool. Then, I mix epoxy clay, and fill the bezel with it. Next, I set the eggshell piece in the clay within the bezel, and sometimes add embellishments (such as crystal chatons). After the clay has fully cured, my final step is to finish the piece of jewelry with the appropriate findings (such as ear wires, bails, and chains). Due to the limited availability of the decorated egg shells which form the basis of these designs, each piece of “Pysanka” jewelry is truly unique, because no two pieces are exactly alike.
For some pieces, I combine not only techniques, but also materials, to create unique designs. For example, I like to contrast textures by combining beads with fibre, leather, wood, or stone (or a combination of several of these!). These mixed-media pieces allow for unique design opportunities to create one-of-a-kind pieces of jewelry.
I love the creative opportunities my techniques allow! My goal is to create beautiful, unique jewelry pieces, and I feel that I have found the right mix of methods and materials to achieve this. From planning to completion, I am proud that my unique jewelry collections are entirely handmade by me.