Some places you go are full of "transplants" -- like no one is really from New York or L.A., are they? Places like that seem to attract a lot of people from all over the place. Usually I don't think of Wisconsin like that. Maybe it's because I'm from here. But now that I'm also sort of a transplant, it's really comforting to know that I'm not the only person who hasn't totally taken root here yet. Which is why meeting Jenny from Resign was especially comforting. She's from Australia and recently moved here via Arizona. She now lives in Nashotah, Wisconsin, which is basically just directly west of Milwaukee.
Jenny makes beautiful jewelry, or jewellery as she spells it, and homewares. I was struck immediately by the colors she uses, and how much the pieces look just like candy. I hope you love them as much as I do!
Tell me a little about yourself. When did you start crafting? What kinds of crafts do you enjoy?
My name is Jenny, and I make jewellery and homewares using hand cast resin. I'm an Aussie (hence the weird spelling) currently living in beautiful Wisconsin with my husband, 2 children and 2 dogs. We moved to the US a little under 5 years ago for my husband to take up a new position in Tucson AZ, but have very recently relocated to Nashotah WI, which I am loving!
I've only recently started working with resin but have always been interested in crafting in some shape or form. As a child I did everything from crocheting squares with my grandmother, to leather work, weaving (both baskets and wool), copper jewellery and enamelling, macramé and pottery. While I was at university, and before I had children I made a lot of my clothes as well. I love interior design, fashion and cooking and now that we're in the cold country, I've started knitting scarves for the family too!
What inspires you? What other artists/crafters do you admire?
I've always loved the look and feel of hand cast resin but wasn't inspired to actually make pieces myself until we moved to the States. It is very popular in Australia but I soon realised there was a big gap in the market over here, so with time on my hands I decided to give it a go. So, after much research and experimentation (that never stops), here I am, sharing my story with you. As far as inspiration for my pieces...I see colours all around me to use in my work. Sometimes a shape or form will inspire me to grab a lump of clay and start modelling but usually I just knead the clay until I end up with something I like.
I admire anybody who can make beautiful, interesting and unique pieces with their hands. I had no idea there was such a world of talent out there until I started my shop on etsy. I'm now an avid etsy buyer as well...there is so much lovely stuff to be had!
What are some shops that you love?
That's a hard one as there are so many shops on etsy that I love and so many more that I haven't found yet. At the moment I'm loving the vintage shops on etsy for finding unique pieces for the home. I love that mix of contemporary and old.
I'm still finding my way around Milwaukee, but the whole family (well maybe not my 14 yr old son) loves going to Third Ward to the public market, restaurants and eclectic mix of shops there. I'm also loving the art gallery and lake front area. Then there are the little shops in Delafield, not far from where we live, where you can spend a quiet Saturday morning browsing and having coffee. I have found one great boutique there, don't even know the name of it but they do have some very nice pieces!
What's a guilty pleasure of yours?
Staying in bed for way too long on a weekend, surrounded by my Australian home and cooking magazines, enjoying the most aromatic tea in the world (Mariage, from France), with the beautiful Wisconsin scenery outside my window...and I cannot wait to do that in winter so I can have the fire on as well!
What's a perfect Milwaukee/Wisconsin day to you?
As I've only experienced Spring and Summer so far, I would have to say a perfect Milwaukee/Wisconsin day would be spent outside. Either on the lakes surrounding our house, walking through the beautiful parks and having a picnic, or in town enjoying the lake front or river outdoor dining. I have to say though, that I'm looking forward to all the seasons and the diversity that each brings. I've never really experience a truly cold winter, so the thought of snuggling up with comfort food and a good book or movie, while it's snowing outside is also very appealing!