Join us this Saturday, February 11 from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. to shop for SafeHouse Denver with local maker Craftbelly in the house offering up colorful home decor and paper goods. We'll have festive refreshments, too!
Currently showing posts tagged Valentine's Day
When we're on the look out for new artists and producers, first impressions of their designs and the aesthetics of their work are so important. If something grabs us right away, we know others will feel the same way. But things get really interesting when an artist's work starts to evolve and change over time and they take us on a new journey. We've enjoyed going on that ride with Alison Blair Stern, a Colorado artist who we met on our first buying trip to New York City. Sometimes you have to travel away from home to find what's right there in your own back yard.
Here is our latest artist interview featuring jewelry artist Alison Blair Stern:
How did you get started in jewelry design and jewelry making? How did you learn to do what you do?
I am self-taught. I got started because I was looking for a way to de-stress, so I started stringing beads. I had seen a necklace I loved and decided to try to make it. My mom bet me that I wouldn't do it and I did. Then I went to a local consignment shop and told them I was a jewelry designer and asked if they would carry my jewelry. I made a few pieces and everything sold that weekend. Then I was hooked.
Where do you find your inspiration - how do you come up with your design ideas?
I am inspired by very simple designs, in a natural state. That's why I love raw diamonds. I also love playing with color combinations. My father was a fine artist and many of my colors are derived from his early abstracts.
What are some design elements, materials and/or products that you are particularly excited about right now?
I love presenting tension in my designs, like the sophistication of diamonds but in their raw state; similarly I've been working a lot with leather, but alongside distressed metals, as you can see in my magnetic arc bracelets.
What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs in creative industries, especially those starting out?
I would say to create what you love regardless of trends. The designs will often align, but I find that if I don't love a piece, it is usually not successful. Also, start out modestly and from the heart. Don't go after the latest trend and the big bucks. Just love what you do.
Diamonds, leather, silver . . . so much loveliness used in unexpected ways by jewlery artist Alison Blair Stern. Her pieces are romantic without being trite. Pick up something for yourself or someone you love for Valentine's Day - or for no reason other than they are indeed lovely.
Join us on Thursday, February 4 from 5-7 p.m. for a Happy Hour Trunk Show with Alison Blair Studio.
One of our very first card lines, La Familia Green, has been a steady favorite of our customers, too. With ever-changing designs and sentiments both sweet and just the right kind of edgy, Mollie Green, the artist and designer behind La Familia reveals how she got started and what keeps her going.
We are pleased to feature another installment of our occasional interviews with Reverie Living artists.
How did you get started in (greeting card) design – how did you learn to do what you do? After I completed my BFA with an emphasis in printmaking at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, I worked in a stationery store. This was the early 2000s, and the independent card world was beginning to bloom. I was really inspired by the creativity of Hammerpress, Hello Lucky, and Egg Press. I felt that greeting cards were the perfect canvas for my work. I started gocco printing (a little desktop screen printing kit) and hand cutting cards and selling them in the store. I learned the business side by helping with the buying in the store. Ten years later, I run La Familia Green full time and send cards out to stores and customers all over the world. I’m very grateful to work for myself in this inspiring field.
Where do you find your inspiration – how do you come up with your design ideas? I keep a list on my phone of ideas. One occurs to me, and I add it to the list! I seem to be inspired most by animals and food. Go figure. I love my studio, neighborhood, and Chicago—but it can be really gray and cold. To combat that and stay inspired, I travel, read pretty magazines and books, and expose myself to art – both fine and folk.
What are some design elements and/or products you are particularly excited about right now – both for your own work and what you're seeing from others? I love anything unique. I get tired of seeing the same old stuff, and I detest copy cats! Right now, I am excited about the weaving trend that’s emerging. And I would love to go textile hunting in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. It keeps popping up on my radar. I just went to Marfa, Texas, and I came home wanting a big cactus and lots of white paint.
What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs in creative industries, especially those starting out? Pay your dues, be yourself, and keep your standards high.
One of our perennial favorites, the Luchador Valentine from La Familia Green.
Valentine's Day can be fraught, so let's elevate this love-it-or leave-it holiday a bit. Come embrace this mid-winter holiday as an opportunity to show either ourselves or someone we love, well, a little extra love.
On Sunday, February 9 from 12:00 - 3:00 p.m. we will host a trunk show with local jewelry artist Susan Murphy featuring her Doozie jewelry line. Always distinctive and ever-changing, Doozie jewelry is a perfect way to express a stand-out style while keeping things clean and simple. Here's to a little extra love.