Brooke VanDerzee

 I have always been a collector of sorts, from buttons and postage stamps, to old bits of lace and vintage jewelry.  I have a fondness for things forgotten and discarded. Although my style has changed over the years from simple beaded jewelry, to earthy, natural pieces, I continue to work these lost treasures into many of my designs. An old piece of junky costume jewelry can be cast into resin to preserve it and turn it into something beautiful.  An interesting postage stamp or other paper ephemera, can be collaged inside an old watch case to tell an interesting story.  An old tea tin can be combined with hand cut copper using cold connections to create stunning jewelry.  It has been a great privilege to have several of my pieces featured in the Stampington & Co publication Jewelry Affaire since 2012. The designs that have been featured in this magazine reflect my exploration into working these found objects into wearable art. Finding new uses for these things and feeling that “aha” moment when a new design idea takes hold is what inspires me to keep creating.  

It is my goal as a jewelry artist to make pieces that are both casual and easy to wear, but also makes a statement and creates a connection to the wearer. When a customer buys a piece either for themselves or as a gift, and comes back to me to tell me how much they (or the recipient) loves their jewelry, that gives me great joy. Although I am primarily a self-taught artist, I have, and will continue to take classes and workshops in metalwork and mixed media techniques to enhance my skills.  To be an artist in any medium is, I believe, to be a student for life and I am excited to see where future explorations in art will take me. 
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