In this blog I will present commented discussions on the advantages and disadvantages of various art resins; discuss how to prepare flowers for use with resin and which flowers have worked best/not worked for me. I will be presenting interviews and discussions with other pressed flower and resin artists. I will have a "tip of the day" section.

I'm hoping that lots of you contribute; comments, arguments and disagreements are always welcome. Resin is such a complex medium that we all have something to learn. Besides, tweaks and even new resin products are coming out all the time.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Garden Gifts Jewelry Shop: an interview with a fantastic pressed flower jewelry artist

I have the honor to present an interview with Cindy, from (non-Etsy!) shop Garden Gifts Jewelry.


How did you get started working with real flower jewelry?
My in-laws, Bev & Lawrie Garvin, are the ones who taught me everything I know about pressing flowers and making beautiful jewelry.  They also make this jewelry and sell it wholesale to the Gift shop in the famous Butchard Gardens in Victoria, BC Canada.  It  is a lot of fun to get together with Mom and Dad and trade ideas, plants and pressed flower.  There is a lot of experimentation involved in our process so it is always fun to learn from each other whenever possible.

When I first started making the jewelry I sold it at all the local Farmer's Markets.  As I started to feel more confident I expanded to Christmas and Artisan shows.  Every year I would see repeat customers.  If I did not show up at a show customers would contact me at my home.  But that takes up a lot of time.  After about 5 years of doing that  I decided to open an on line or web based store.  I also have another web based jewelry business with my husband.  Re-Cycled Accessories is a line of jewelry made with recycled bicycle parts.  So two websites, a full time job and a passion for cycling, running and swimming keeps me pretty busy.


What are your favorite flowers?
My favourite flowers to work with are Delphiniums.  I love the deep colours and the different varieties.  Roses and Pansies are also nice to work with and
are a favourite of many people.

What can you tell people just starting out?
My advice to anyone starting out is to start with fresh picked flowers, preferably ones that have just opened.  The pressing is the most important part. If you don't get a good press you may as well forget about going to the next step.  If a flower does not come out of the press looking 100 percent then don't use it!  There are a lot of flowers that do not press well.  Don't be disappointed.  Just find out which ones work best for you.Succulent flowers are very hard to press because they are so full of moisture.  Play around with different kinds of presses including the microwave type.  Practice, practice, practice and take notes, lots of notes.

Check out my flower jewelry at
http://www.gardengiftsjewelry.com/
check out my recycled jewelry at
http://www.recycledacc.com/
 Thank you so much, Cindy. I think this is the loveliest flower jewelry I have ever seen!


Instead of a "hint of the day", I get to pat myself on the back a little. Yesterday I received the catalog from the Korean International Pressed Flower Competition. With it came my certificate indicating I had  placed as a finalist in the competition. Since this is the only competition I have ever entered as a jewelry artist, I am astonished and supremely honored!  Here is the piece of jewelry I entered:
 Thank you for stopping by. I love comments and questions.  Chris

7 comments:

  1. Cindy I just love those green kiwi looking flowers you have made into earrings. What are they?

    And Chris that is just wonderful that you have won that competition!!! Your items are so beautiful, you really deserve it.

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  2. Congrats Chris for winning the competition it was well deserved. Another great article too. Peace

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  3. Penne Designs ..... the green flower is a petal from the Hellebore flower. Also known as Helleborus Oriental, White Spotted Lady or Christmas Rose.
    Cindy

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  4. Hi Chris,

    Congratulations! The piece you entered is absolutely stunning, and the honor is so well deserved. I am so happy for you!

    Dianne-Gift For All Seasons

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  5. Cindy, your work is beautiful! Very unique, and so wonderful!

    Dianne-Gift For All Seasons

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  6. Such amazing jewelry! I have my first try at resin jewelry drying as we speak. I have my fingers crossed that they turn out. Thanks so much for sharing these wonderful pieces! :)

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  7. This is a great inspiring article.I am pretty much pleased with your good work.You put really very helpful information. Keep it up. Keep blogging. Looking to reading your next post.
    Chandeliers

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