Friday, January 24, 2014

Interview : Sara Fletcher

We will be adding a new Designer in the shop and are excited for you to see her pieces.  Sara Fletcher is the Owner and Designer of Rugged Grace, a jewelry line as beautiful as her name sake.  We sat down with Sarah and had a chat.

Where did you grow up?
My whole childhood was spent in Humboldt County (Ferndale and Arcata, specifically).  I moved to Santa Cruz when I was 18 and have been here ever since.

What did you have for breakfast?
Most days, including today, I have a piece of wheat toast with almond butter and a banana (and two cups of coffee).

Where do you get your inspiration from?
My inspiration is found truly within.  The name and description “Rugged Grace” is attached to more than just my jewelry; it is a reflection of how I grew into seeing myself.   I have found much satisfaction in taking something with obvious “imperfections,” building upon it, and then appreciating it for exactly what it is, honest “flaws” and all.   It’s specifically in the combination of both the rugged and graceful elements where I really see the beauty and take pride.

When did you start to make your art and what sparked you?
I started about two years ago, after discovering that it was a way that I could flexibly earn some income while still primarily being a stay-at-home mom.   I discovered a variety of interesting materials to begin working with, which sparked the creativity that I needed to launch my business.  With that inspiration and where I was in my life at the time, the name and the philosophy followed naturally, and it all came together to create something very personal and meaningful to me, even more than I had expected.

Did you continue your education?
I received a BA in Language Studies.  I also returned to school for a year of interior design classes before starting my family, and I love that I get a chance to apply that kind of broader design into my jewelry displays, which are a distinctive element of my brand as well.  
My jewelry and metalwork skills are self-taught so far, and I am continuing to expand my knowledge in that area.  My grandfather was a metal shop teacher, and although he passed away years before I’d ever have a chance to be his protégé, it feels good to be teaching myself something that reminds me of him.  I also still enjoy working with the original metal pieces that I found when I began my business, particularly because they now have sentimental value.

Who is your inspiration?
I am surrounded by so many inspiring people; I don’t think I can pick one in particular.  There are so many incredible friends and family members of mine who have overcome adversity and have transformed into the most positive, healthy, authentic, giving people.  They collectively inspire me on a daily basis.

Where do you want to go with this?  Where do you see yourself in 5 or 10 years?
Given the amount of unexpected, dramatic change that has happened in my life in the last 5 or 10 years, I’ve developed a preference for not planning ahead that far.   As I have consistently stuck to working on a few big goals only one year at a time, I’ve noticed a pattern of unpredictable, but exciting developments that surface for me to expand and explore.  As far as my jewelry business goes, I will continue pushing myself to branch out more with it through events, wholesaling and charities, while also integrating some work toward fitness-related certifications.  Whatever develops and wherever I am in five or ten years, I am confident that I will be right where I need to be and will be making the most of it.    

What is your favorite thing to create with?
I am consistently drawn to Czech glass and semi-precious stone chips, and love combining them with rustic copper and brass.

Describe your style?
Relaxed.  I like to make “everyday” jewelry…some more rustic, some more sparkly.  I’ve had a lot of people tell me, “I don’t usually like to wear jewelry, but I would totally wear this!”  In my mind it’s for people who are open to appreciating imperfections, transparency and change.

What’s your favorite thing to do?
If I’m alone my favorite thing to do is to go out and run in the woods for a few hours.  If I’m with my family I love adventuring and reading together.

If you could live anywhere where would that be?
I am pretty thankful for the exact spot I’m in.  Our home is in the treetops in the Santa Cruz Mountains.  I’ve got seemingly endless beaches and forest within 15 minutes of my front door.  I love our school, my artist co-op, and our small, inspiring, eclectic community.  We are surrounded by great friends and family.  There’s not a lot more that I could ask of a home base.

Where is the one place that you would like to travel to that you haven’t been?  
I would love to travel to New Zealand.  I think my family and I would have some incredible adventures there.  We are fans of J.R.R. Tolkien, and a commonly heard comment on our outings is, “That place looks Lord of the Rings-ish.”  I would love to see their expressions if we were able to explore that amazing land!

What is your creative process?  
My creativity comes in sporadic bursts.  I am definitely better at sitting down for a whole day and making jewelry, than I am at trying to work on a little bit everyday.  I generally have different beads to work with for every batch, so when I unpack my newest materials into their trays, fun combinations jump out at me and I dive enthusiastically into production mode.  Sometimes I consult my kids and I have to say, they have some good ideas!

365 days of iphone : day twentyfour

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

365 days of iphone : day twentytwo

With the crazy hot weather here in Cali the only thing left alive in my yard are my succulents. xo N

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

365 days of iphone : day twentyone

Another creation by Miss Lily.  Not sure of what it says, I think ... happy, love you?  None the less, love the watercolor effect. xo N

Friday, January 10, 2014

Thursday, January 9, 2014

365 days of iphone : day nine

We've recently renovated our bathroom so the next few pics will probably be of the commode area.  Lucky you :)
xo N

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

365 days of iphone: day one

Happy New Year everyone!  I hope 2014 brings you exciting adventures and fond memories.  Thought I'd kick off the year with a challenge to myself by taking a photo from my iphone everyday until 2015.   xo N
01 09 10