Monday, October 20, 2008

JillreDesigns is wrapped around my fingers....wrist and ears!

Remember the Yart Sale on Etsy this summer? Not only did I get some amazing deals, but I also met Jill of JillreDesigns on Etsy. I featured one of her rings in a treasury, she convo'd me and said thank you and a friendship was born. I also bought the ring I featured, another ring, a bracelet, two pairs of get the idea. I'm in love with Jill's jewelry! This past year I've gone from being at the dog park for hours everyday to bouncing around to different galleries. I have to be dressed as a successful artist and Jill's jewelry gives me some much needed confidence. She's designed earrings for me twice now for openings and "she gets me" and my style, even when I don't know what I'm looking for. Be sure to check out Jill's store for gorgeous wire wrapped rings, luscious stones, funky earrings, handmade polymer clay Halloween beads and stylish treasure boxes. Below is a little Q&A I asked Jill to participate in.

How long have you been making jewelry?

I’ve been making jewelry in one form or another pretty much as long as I can remember. My dad was a designer for Napier when I was growing up, and I loved the animal pins that he would create. So I was hooked early on.

What is your jewelry background?

How lucky could I be? I had this talented designer living under the same roof! When I was 12 years old my family moved, and my dad converted the old barn on the property into a studio for his freelance work. There he taught me design, model making, everything I needed to know to create jewelry on my own. Since then I’ve worked in just about every area of jewelry design and manufacturing.

What is your favorite thing to make?

For now, I’d have to say rings. I’m exploring new ways of making them, and so far the results have been interesting.

Which artists (any art form) inspire you?

Warren Dontigney (my dad), and Earl and Dot Bushnell (my godparents), all talented artists who took the time to nurture my passion for art. Other than family members my favorite artist is Joan Miro. His paintings seem to capture a dream state that I find fascinating. Other artists are Alexander Calder and Edward Gorey. I appreciate all art, but I love Modern form.

What else have you dabbled in?

Being “thrifty”, I like to do my own home decorating and repairs. I made a space mural for the wall of my son’s bedroom, mosaic shelves for the bathroom, and lamp fixtures for the bedroom. I love to watch HGTV and try out the different paint applications that they show.

Is there any art form that you’d like to learn in the future?

I have a storage closet full of future projects just waiting for the time to do them. I have this friend who does fantastic mosaics, her work is definitely inspiring!

What are you most proud of?

Personally, I don’t think I’ve had that moment yet. If anything, I’d have to say my family, here and gone. They’ve given me an awful lot to be proud about.

What was your silliest/most creative/best Halloween costume you’ve ever worn?

I’m very traditional when it comes to dressing up for Halloween, and I’m also a big B horror movie fan. My favorite costume was a full length black velvet cape with red lining that belonged to my sister, white face paint, vampire teeth. It looked great till my sister took the cape back. I also had fun making costumes for my sons. One year I made a costume out of two pairs of old jeans and two old blue sweatshirts. He was the three armed, three legged, three eyed boy. I had a pretty realistic rubber hand, and I made a third eye out of polymer clay and painted it to match Tyler’s eyes. After I attached it with spirit gum I created lids with fake skin. He said he got a lot of interesting reactions to it.

What is your favorite piece of jewelry in your etsy store?

I always liked the pearl and Czech firepolished bead earrings that I use in my avatar. They’ve had many fans, but surprisingly no buyer yet. (Editor's note: They'd have been mine months ago if they were made with silver wire. I love them!)

Do you have a quote you’d like to share?

I’m hearing this quite a bit lately, but it is relevant to the times, “all we have to fear is fear itself”. The best cure for fear is knowledge, and with a very important election coming up we owe it to ourselves to know who we’re voting for.

Thank you Jill for agreeing to be my second featured Etsy seller!

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