Whoa, I can’t believe December has descended! For those of us who enjoy lavishing our loved ones through gift giving this holiday season, I’d like to introduce you to two inspired jewelry makers who have their work at Tara Davis Studio Boutique. Both of these makers are working with sustainable materials and are creating work which is made in Manitoba!
Featured this week is a line called Sheppards Hook, crafted by Katie Sheppard. She is originally from Pinawa, and has always had a passion for art, but also has a passion for nature. Katie decided to study both art and biology in university and now works as a biologist by day and jeweler by night. She uses natural materials including naturally-shed antler from White-tailed deer, plants, recycled porcupine quills, and gemstones. Her hands are kept busy cutting, sanding, drilling antler and metalsmithing as she designs each piece. Katie absolutely loves to do custom work and encourages people to contact her for those wilder custom pieces. Find her online at www.sheppardshook.com
The second line which we are featuring this week is Souvenir Handmade, a line of modern bohemian jewelry made by Rikki McDougall from Winnipeg. Inspired by nature and vintage objects, Rikki repurposes objects she finds in flea markets. She finds beauty in items with character as she aims to honour the history of each item she is working with. While Rikki keeps an eye on the trends, her ultimate goal is to create work that is classic and easy to put on every day. When designing she keeps her loyal clients and friends in mind asking herself, “Is this something I would see them wear?” Lately, Rikki is most excited about making earrings, and hair accessories, blending a modern aesthetic with a time-worn feel.
While thinking about the economic challenges of buying local, Rikki has thought a lot about how it is not always attainable for people to spend more on handcrafted items. She reflects, “I try to be thoughtful about which materials I use. Keeping quality while hopefully still being attainable.”
When I asked Katie about buying local she says, “I buy local as much as I can because I love getting to know the maker. It makes the item more special to me.”
We all know there is only so much money in the bank this time of year, and we are careful to make it stretch. I think it is safe for me to say that all of us makers feel really honoured to be on the receiving end of your choices. We know that you care about the culture around you and we are so grateful to be the given your stamp of approval. You have chosen us to be the culture makers that you all wish to shape the society you live in. As one of the makers supported by the community associated with Tara Davis Studio Boutique, I would like to say thank you for your commitments to take care of each of us!
Written by Kelly Ruth
Displaced Pegger, now learning to navigate inclines in her new home of Edmonton, AB