About Melissa

~Let the beauty of what you love be what you do~ Rumi

I have been living and breathing my art since 1990. I am an artist, a dreamer, a dancer, and a mother who moves to the beat of her own drum. Ever since I can remember, I have had a strong inner calling to create using my hands, an inclination undoubtedly influenced by my parents’ creativity.

As a child, I was immersed in my mother’s art. She painted murals on our walls and life-size portraits as baby gifts. Our home was a reflection of her eclectic style and her deep appreciation for the stories captured in antiques. My father directed his own creativity into his business building custom kitchens, staircases, doors, and glass. Some of my earliest and fondest memories are of visits to antique shops in Winnipeg’s Exchange District, where I began to develop an eye for handcrafted artistry and architectural detail. At 12, I found my own creative self-expression in dance, which led to a life-long passion for movement that influences everything I do, particularly my art and jewellery designs.

My jewellery story begins at age 19 while on a backpacking trip in Central America. In Costa Rica, I came across some street jewellers who helped me buy metal, stones, pliers, and cutting shears. Fashioning my first piece awakened something in me — my heart soared, I felt light and free, and passion stirred within me. It was a pivotal moment. I knew the course of my life had been set in stone.

When I returned to Winnipeg, I registered for a jewellery course, where I learned basic techniques such as wax carving and casting, hand building, soldering, and forging.Hungry for adventure and determined to learn more, I embarked on an odyssey that took me to Vancouver, back to Central America, and eventually to Salt Spring Island, where I spent 14 years, perfecting my skills and selling my little creations at markets and festivals across Western Canada.

In 2008, I moved to Victoria and found a place to rest my tools — my own brick-and-mortar store in the heart of downtown Victoria. Thanks to my mom’s understanding of light and colour, my sweet 130-square-foot boutique and working studio at 608 Courtney Street has become my beautiful little home away from home.

Passion and a deep dedication to refining my art have carried me through more than 25 deeply satisfying years of art and jewellery making. Fueled by the beauty that surrounds me on Vancouver Island and by the cherished human connections I have made through my work, I continue to grow as an artist.

Mostly self-taught, I have developed my own unique style — a multi-flavoured mix of medieval, art nouveau, and East Indian influences, with a deep-rooted botanical element and, most significantly, dance. Everything I create is in constant motion. Vines and leaves are ever growing, spiraling out in all directions. Dance is the life essence that inspires my designs, infuses each finished piece, and, I hope, is felt by the people who choose to wear them.

“My craft is my solace, my meditation, and my joy. I am forever grateful to have found my passion and to be making this my life’s work.”

If you want to learn more about my life and my art, I invite you to read my blog, where you’ll find posts on the design process, materials, and where I find inspiration.

 

 

 

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