One of the things I've enjoyed the most about featuring Etsy shops on my blog is getting to know the owners; what inspires them to design? What brought them to open their shop? I've started a new series of blog posts specifically for this occasion - owner interviews. I hope you'll enjoy learning more about these unique artists' process and inspiration!
When asked about how crafting became a part of her life, DinnerWear Jewelry owner Mary-Ann Wood muses, "Crafting has always been a part of my life, for as long as I can remember". Growing up in a family of artists, artistic expression came naturally to her. Not with a brush and canvas, but with found objects and vintage components. Mary-Ann originally experimented with china mosaic art, but didn't enjoy the process. She did, however, develop a passion for playing with the vintage china.
Creating her own style and process, Mary-Ann began to carve vintage china plates into gorgeous pieces of jewelry. Choosing pieces based on their patterns, colors and places of origin, Mary-Ann takes something old, and makes it new again. To most people, vintage china - especially if chipped or cracked - isn't of much interest these days. But, with an eye for creativity, Mary-Ann takes china pieces and transforms them into the best possible parts of themselves; there are no more cracks or chips, just beautiful pieces of china, waiting to be worn.
Mary-Ann's favorite projects to work on aren't always the ones that are closest to her heart...but are the ones closest to ours. Customers can send in china that they want custom jewelry made from, often the china of loved ones or eras gone by. It's a great way to keep and hold onto the memories, without having to worry about dropping the china plates while clearing the table. Often, when receiving an order, Mary-Ann gets to learn the history behind the china; why it's special, and how much it means to the customer. From the way she speaks about this process, I feel that learning about it only spurs on her desire to make every order the best order possible; to provide the customer with their memories and cherished loved ones in the form of broken china jewelry.
As for her crafting regrets? Mary-Ann only has one - "I wish I had taken more photographs of my work". I know the feeling; often we finish a project and give it away, only to wonder later about the specifics of the projects. Photographs of past work are a great way to learn from yourself, and your process.
You can find Mary-Ann and her broken china jewelry at DinnerWearJewelry.com, as well as DinnerWearJewelry on Etsy. She's also active on Instagram and Facebook - drop in, like/follow her page, and say hi!
Until next time, stay crafty!