Thinking of famous polymaths, I always wondered how someone could know and do so much with what they’ve learnt. I have been repetitively told that the design education is diverse and could teach you skills that will help you in the creative industry. I definitely don’t doubt it- I’ve been countlessly surprised to how many have designers have diverged from their original education. I’ve met a fashion-turned interior designer, architectural devotee to an avid game developer, and lately, an interior designer turned eccentric jewellery guru.
Meet Toronto based interior designer/jewellery maker, Ania Trica who owns this Etsy shop online called gum jewellery.
What inspired you to start making jewellery?
I was inspired to start making jewellery in December 2014 after going to the One
of a Kind Show. As I walked through the show I thought: I know how make things, I could do something like this. That evening I came home, took out my sketchbook and started drawing all the things I could make. I have quite a colourful imagination; I love food, always admired animals and nature, so naturally the things that came to mind were inspired by food and nature.
Do you think interior and jewellery design relate?
This process, I find, is very similar to interior design; at first one gets inspired, thinks-up a form, and then brainstorms what materials one can use to create the form. I think of my jewellery as designing, but in much smaller scale. Making jewellery gives me much joy as I can’t think of anything more exhilarating as creating with your hands, what you have already created in your mind. Interior design is more complicated as you have to wait longer to see your design complete, sometimes (especially if you work for a large firm) your idea gets passed along and altered, and your design is not built by you, but the contractor, verified by the architect, the engineer or other consultants. I feel very connected with my jewellery pieces as they reflect my imagination and skill.
Why did you choose to create jewellery with polymer clay?
I liked polymer clay because it was the perfect material for me; it wasn’t too hard or too soft, it is very pliable, it doesn’t change shape once formed, it’s versatile (you can achieve so many effects with it) it doesn’t take a long time to harden, it doesn’t crack, it’s very durable, and it’s relatively cheap.
How does the material of polymer clay influence your work?
Too often I find that people are not happy about what they create because their imagination does not match the outcome. My artistic background has taught me that you must not only practice your skill but understand your medium. Things made from polymer clay look handmade as this is almost the only way to use the material; you have to use your hands to mould and shape it.
Is there a specific product you particularly want to showcase?
I think I would like to feature my dung beetle necklace. I still have it available for sale. I hand sculpted the beetle and dung beads and mixed them with gold and violet fumed quartz, then used gold wire to bind the various beads. I loved making this piece as I think beetles are beautiful and interesting insects, they have very pretty iridescent shells, and I loved studying the anatomy of a beetle and then replicating the form and the colours in polymer clay. I used black clay to sculpt the beetle, then applied gold and various coloured powders to achieve eh iridescence. This necklace is also a bit cheeky as it’s a dung beetle, the wearer must have a bit of an attitude to wear a beetle that rolls its poo, but it’s such a cool looking beetle I had to make it.
Be sure to visit Ania’s Etsy shop to see more of her collection! Her pieces range from whimsical-like creatures and quirky food designs.