Recently I was in in Manchester doing a photo shoot for my upcoming book on recycled materials/found objects in jewelry. The book focuses on my work as well as the work of 5 other jewelers. One of these jewelers is Emiko Oye of San Francisco who creates jewelry with LEGO®. I admire her jewelry very much for it's thoughtful use of materials + amazing colour scheme. There are a number of examples on the internet of people using LEGO® to make jewelry but I think Emiko's LEGO® jewelry is without a doubt the best out there.
This bracelet here is a limited edition bracelet made of repurposed LEGO®, patinated sterling silver tubing, synthetic ruby corundum set in 14k gold, rubber cord and is titled 'Fruit Stripe'. I fell in love with this bracelet the very moment I saw it. The colours just made me salivate and totally made me think of my childhood chomping on Fruit Strip gum as a kid in my Nana's kitchen.
After I returned from the shoot I became very reluctant to send this baby back to Emiko so asked her if she would be interested in a swap for some of my jewelry. She happily agreed!! I am now the proud owner of this sweeeeeeet thang and Emiko has my Fluff Vent Necklace + Fluff Heart Ring in purple. Two very happy artists sharing their work.
As important as it is for us to sell our work so our businesses thrive sometimes it is just nicer to get back to basics, ignore the money + barter. It never hurts to ask. And in these harder economic times it's a little easier. So if you have a talent making jewelry, art, cooking, writing etc. share it with someone and barter.
The Holidays don't have to be stressful. It's all about being thoughtful + giving, not how much stuff you buy or what it costs. What to barter? Let me know.
photo courtesy of Emiko Oye