Friday, May 23, 2014

Feature Friday Q&A with Patty Schwegmann of Schwegmann Studios Jewelry

Every year, there are numerous art fairs throughout the suburbs surrounding my hometown of Kansas City.  One of my personal favorites is a bit smaller than some of its counterparts but has some amazing artists.  And, of course, tons of fine jewelry!  It is the Brookside Art Annual.  It has gathered quite a following in certain circles here in KC and is well-worth a visit if you're looking for fine jewelry that is outside the box and artisan-made.

It just so happens, that this week's Feature Friday artist is one whom I met at the Brookside Art Annual.  I was completely taken with her mixed metals designs and the very organic flow that they had.  Patty Schwegmann of Schwegmann Studios Jewelry has stockists all over the Midwest that feature her playful, fun designs and her newest designs featuring sterling silver and yellow gold.

So while I'm on my way over to one of her local stockists, please enjoy this Feature Friday Q&A with Patty Schwegmann of Schwegmann Studio Jewelry.  I think you'll designs as playful and interesting as I do!  


Patty Schwegmann

1.  What prompted your passion for jewelry and jewelry design?
Being a maker has always been very important to me.  I started making jewelry when I was a teenager and really got hooked when I took my first metals course in college.

2.  What is your favorite piece or collection?
Right now it would be my Ocean Mood necklace.  I love the dimensionality of the piece and calming colors.

The Ocean Mood necklace by Patty Schwegmann Studios Jewelry.

3.  What would your perfect “jewelry day” involve / be like?
I love looking at antique jewelry; a perfect “jewelry day” for me would be exploring some estate jewelry shops.

4.  Thus far, what would you say is your proudest jewelry moment or memory?
When I first started working with porcelain and silver I had a vision, but wasn’t sure how it would turn out.  I made a cuff bracelet with three painted porcelain pieces and after I had finished it I remember being so excited because the piece had turned out even better than my vision.

Four Spot Earrings - I love the organic feel of these earrings & the colors are stunning!

5.  Where do you find your greatest inspiration?
I receive so much joy from being outside.  I love hiking, gardening, animals, different landscapes, etc.  I aim to translate that joy into my work.   

The Molecule Necklace features colored porcelain set in oxidized silver arranged in a molecule-like form. There is
one piece of 18kt gold that sits at the bottom of the design.  It has a wonderful earthy, organic feel to it!

6.  In your personal wardrobe, do you find that you gravitate to one particular jewelry accessory (rings vs. necklace vs. bracelets vs. watches, etc.) more often than others?
Earrings.  It seems so easy to grab a pair that complements what I’m wearing.  

These Gold Earrings by Patty are absolutely my favorites!  I saw these in person at the Brookside
Art Annual & they are stunning!  I regret not getting them when I saw them!

7.  When putting together an outfit, how do you feel about mixing metals, designs and even new with vintage pieces?
Go for it!  I have designs that have silver and gold elements together and they compliment each other well.  Vintage jewelry pieces should be enjoyed and worn; I have pieces that were handed down to me that I pair with new pieces.  When pairing new and old I choose stylistically similar pieces. 

Gold Flower Earrings are made with oxidized sterling silver and 18k yellow gold.  I love the way these
earrings have a very industrial yet organic feel in their design.  Stunning!

8.  Layering seems to be a trend that is here to stay, for now. What are your feelings on the layered look?  How do you like layered necklaces with layered bracelets plus layered rings? 
I like the layered look.  Most of my necklaces work well for layering and my Milky Way bracelet looks handsome by itself or with other bracelets.  Layering is fun because it allows us to wear more and let more of our personality show.

The Milky Way Bracelet - Yes, it is completely perfect for layering!

9.  What advice would you give to budding jewelry designers? To budding fine jewelry collectors?
To budding jewelry designers – it is important to find your voice, what makes your pieces unique to you.  It might take a while to figure this out, but don’t give up.

To budding collectors – buy things you like.  I have varying tastes and find that if I just buy things that I like they work well together.

Flash Question - Dream trip destination?
Gorilla Trekking in Uganda or Rwanda.  I would love to see the mountain gorillas, I can’t think of a more perfect trip right now.

Just in case you didn't believe me about how playful her designs are...Here's some little
Coral Bird Earrings in sterling silver.  You're welcome!


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