Jewel School, Part 5
Once you have assessed the pieces you own and sold what you don’t want, you may have a few outlying sentimental pieces. These pieces are often out of style, could be damaged, or just don’t fit your personal style.
Emily Maynard, of Elva Fields focuses on using vintage and antique materials to create personal jewelry creations. Today’s Transitions asked her about her business, creative process, and how she can help you repurpose your vintage and sentimental pieces.
“Elva Fields designs are fun, statement-making, one-of-a-kind, and not for the faint of heart,” Emily says.
How do you find vintage pieces for your art?
“The treasure hunt is my favorite part! I love antique malls, flea markets, estate sales, and even garage sales for finding great vintage materials.”
What kinds of pieces do you create?
“Most of my jewelry takes the form of necklaces that feature repurposed components, like a 1950s jeweled brooch at the side of colorful gemstone beads, or a collection of vintage African glass beads clasped by a 1920s rhinestone buckle. In recent months, I’ve begun to transition a bit from jewelry into mixed media collages made of interesting vintage and antique elements, like swatches of 1920s Japanese silk kimono fabric, vintage French sequins, 1930s Czech glass beads, and vintage embroidery floss.”
What is your creative process like?
“I used to create sketches of each design, but after 15 years, the process is much more intuitive and hands-on. I like to have a supply of beads and vintage materials on hand, and eventually everything is laid out on the design table and moved around until I find an assortment that appeals to me.”
Do you do custom work?
“I adore custom designs! So much so that I created a product on our website called “What’s In Your Jewelry Box?” It’s a mail-in kit for people to send us their heirloom or vintage jewelry so we can work together to create a fresh design with the piece. Whether it’s a brooch of your great aunt’s that you love or a set of costume pearls from childhood, I love collaborating with customers to give new life to their old jewelry.”
Whether you have vintage or antique materials or fine jewelry, setting up a consult is a great way to explore your options. Davis Jewelers offers custom jewelry service for clients interested in repurposing these types of sentimental pieces. “We conduct a one hour design and discovery consultation to determine what the design will look like,” Ashley says. “I think a lot of people feel that the word ‘custom’ means it’s going to carry this huge premium and be really expensive. However, I like to remind people that in the end if they’re providing the stones then they’re just paying for metal, labor, and a little bit for customization. We know the importance of creating beautiful, sentimental jewelry in a way that breathes new life into your meaningful pieces.”
By Emily Gahafer
P.S. Marta Willis continues to create a live she loves and reaches out to help. Read about what she is up to.