Wednesday, March 9, 2016

What's Old is New Again?

My previous post was titled "What Goes Around, Comes Around" and offered a glimpse of my ventures to revisit jewelry design after spending many years in academia and the world of painting. I haven't abandoned either of those, just feeling a bit nostalgic for the hammers and tools of the workbench.

As I have been pulling out packed jewelry supplies, I came across a carton of laminate chips better known as Formica samples. Speaking of nostalgia, some of you know my father was a residential builder so we always had a plethora of paint chips, charts, sample books, catalogues, plan books, material specs, and fixture catalogues. I guess that had an impact on my never ending interest in materials !!

Laminate samples are about 3 X 2" and held together by brass ball chains. Unable to throw out something this good, I kept them thinking there would be a time when I would need these. Many are from the 1960's and some of you will be reminded of a former kitchen table or countertop while others will see connections to contemporary graphics and color palettes influenced by the retro effect. Reviewing the the design names reminds me of the time of George and Jane Jetson, with names like Envy Daisy, White Gold Satellite, Green Irish Linen, Neutra Fantasia Marble, Nougat Grey, Island Drift Wood, Tawny Walnut, Golden Buckskin, and Blonde Marble. Several of the brand names and manufacturers are included with the most recognized as Formica, and also Wilson Art and Micarta

I have been using acrylic (known as Lucite or Plexiglas) in many of my new jewelry designs, so when I came upon this carton of laminate chips I realized it was finally time to use this bounty. Below I share with you examples of the vintage laminate material and then examples of how I am incorporating it into the jewelry.

Enjoy !

Now, see how I am integrating laminate into the jewelry!

Check out my jewelry ventures on Instagram, Facebook and the web Jane Nodine Jewelry.

Feel free to email or message me if you see an item you wish to purchase. I will be glad to post it in the store section of my website !

Friday, February 12, 2016

"What Goes Around, Comes Around"

Some of my followers know that in a previous life I owned and operated a jewelry design and manufacturing business called Jane Nodine HARDWEAR. I've always loved bold, forward fashion, and since I minored in metalsmithing I was able to make my own art jewelry. It is always a pleasure to have strangers compliment something you're wearing and then ask if you made it. 

It's funny how life takes you places you really didn't plan on visiting. The more I wore the jewelry, the more attention and requests I got to sell or consign pieces to individuals or boutiques. I had finished grad school in the late 70's during the first big recession and I wore out a car commuting to several institutions where I was teaching art and design. So one day I decided to stop commuting and dedicate the time I was traveling and teaching to designing and making jewelry. I had a studio in Spartanburg, South Carolina that was focused on my painting practice, so I reconfigured the space and set up for metalsmithing.

Long story short, I sold one piece and bought materials to make two pieces. Made three that sold to make six and so on. Soon I had a small team of college students working as assistants duplicating the prototypes I designed and crafted by hand. There were sales reps, fashion and apparel markets 5 or 6 times a year, and even a retail shop at one point. It was fun, and an interesting ride being in the fashion industry. In coming blog posts I'll give more details on past and present as I introduce followers on my return to handcrafted art jewelry in 2016. with a new name and new designs with Jane Nodine Jewelry, Jewelry Inspired by Nature Crafted by Hand.

Follow along with me and see where the journey goes in this era of hi-tech 3D printers, marketing on social media, and selling electronically. Below are a few shots of past designs from the 1980's (oh those big shoulder pads!!) and a few new designs as I am getting back to the workbench.

Jane-L and Susan-R in our retail store Miss Minnie located in 
Spartanburg, SC 1980's. I'm wearing one of my belts with my favorite leather pants.

Photocopy of my jewelry featured in WWD in the 1980's.

Now, forward to 2016 and the 21st Century!!

I love wearing statement neckpieces, so I've been focusing on that the last few weeks.

Brass and lucite pendant on fiber cord with copper accents.

Brass and steel on white lucite and leather cord.

Red lucite and brass pendant on fiber cord.

Lucite pendant  embellishment on fiber cord.