Friday, 1 October 2010

Feature Friday and Special Offer - River Gum Jewellery

My featured artist for this week is the very lovely Robyn of River Gum Jewellery.  Robyn is a fellow DUST member and Melburnian who creates lovely, lovely jewellery.  I know first hand, because I  was blessed to receive a GORGEOUS necklace from Robyn in a craft swap (see this post) and I also own a pair of her cute gemstone ear studs!  And don't forget to look out for her special offer to Two Cheeky Monkeys readers at the end of this post.

Tell us a bit about yourself.
Hello. My name is Robyn and I am very fortunate to live on a two and a half acre property in Sunbury, Victoria. I am wife of an incredibly supportive husband and mother of two gorgeous adult children. My daughter is living in London pursuing an acting career and my son will finish a Physiotherapy degree at the end of this year.
I work part-time in my husband’s business and teach piano part-time [Edit: Now you see why I like Robyn so much? He he]. The rest of the time is spent amongst beautiful gemstones and wire, designing and creating pieces for RiverGum Jewellery

Describe yourself in five words.
Determined, compassionate, enquiring, creative, nature-loving

When and how did you first start crafting and creating?
As a child I remember sitting in front of the TV on a Saturday night making clothes out of newspaper. I learnt to knit, crochet and sew very early. However, my childhood and adolescence were taken up with music. I played the piano, recorder, clarinet, sang, debated and acted in everything available to me. It wasn’t until I got married that I started to sew. I also discovered cross-stitch through my mother-in-law and then quilling when doing a calligraphy course. For a number of years I sold cards at the local craft market in Essendon. When my daughter first left home for uni in Perth, I took up patchwork. I felt I needed something new in my life to fill the void. During that time I started jewellery making and I have been hooked ever since. That was seven years ago

What do you create and what are your favourite materials with which to work?
 I mainly create jewellery that can be worn on a daily basis. I enjoying testing my designs. I will often wear the same piece every day for a week to make sure it sits well and wears well. I work with gold-filled, sterling silver, fine silver and copper wire, and love using natural gemstones and freshwater pearls. I enjoy wire wrapping, fusing and soldering wire as well as pearl knotting, chain maille and Chinese knotting.

When and how did you start selling online?
I started my online Etsy shop in May this year and my Madeit shop a month later. Until then I had stalls at various markets around Melbourne, including Flemington, sharing the space with my friend Keryn. We had lots of fun together but in the end, managing the heavy marquee and tables, bad weather and very early mornings, as well as being away from the family at the weekend, became too much. That was when I decided to try online selling.

Describe your store in five words.
Eclectic, simple, earthy, vibrant, appealing.

Who or what are the influences behind your creations?
 Sometimes it is the stones themselves that inspire me. I discover a stone in my collection, an idea comes, and before I know it I have every box and drawer open. I love it when something is created out of the chaos and I am frustrated when it doesn’t.
Clothing inspires me also. Someone will come with a new outfit and together we will create something that just finishes off the outfit or becomes the focus itself.
Other times it is when I first wake or I’m in the shower when an idea comes and I can’t wait to get into the studio to try it out.
Where can we find you online?
Etsy: www.etsy.com/shop/rivergum

*** SPECIAL OFFER: Robyn is offering all Two Cheeky Monkeys readers 10% OFF ALL earrings until the end of October. Please enter the code 10offRiverGum in “Message to Buyer” at checkout and you will receive a refund of 10%. ***

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