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Hand-crafted jewelry

 

 

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welcome to BButtler Designs

I hope you enjoy perusing my work. I love making it, wearing it, and selling it, although sometimes it's hard to let go of a piece after spending days on end with it, nurturing the metal, bending, cutting, sanding and annealing. I do very little production work-- I like to change things up on a regular basis, so my pieces really are made one piece at a time. I like to consider them tiny, wearable sculptures.

where pattern meets patina

Surface texture and patterns are an important aspect of my work. Perhaps that's my signature -- a little rough and tumble, I tend not to leave a surface smooth and highly polished. Patinas turn sterling and copper to the color of gunmetal, but will leave the gold bright and shiny. All my patterns begin with found objects and through several different processes, I end up with etched templates of copper and red brass.  That's when the fun begins!

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barbara buttler

Jewelry making has been an on-going passion of mine for over thirty years. I’ve been a jewelry and bead-collecting addict since creating my first pendant in Kindergarten class–agate with wrapped copper wire, hanging from a leather cord. I had found my creative muse.

I did my formal design training at the Massachusetts College of Art & Design with a certificate in graphic design. This training greatly influenced my approach to jewelry design–I was introduced to typography, calligraphy, and font families, and I came away with an appreciation of the letter form, type, words and patterns, and of course, color. 

It only took a few years of working in the graphic design field to make me realize that I missed working in metal, so I went back to school and completed the Certificate in Metal Craft from the Worcester Center for Crafts in Massachusetts. There I developed my original signature jewelry line and have been developing my style and design aesthetic ever since.

Having an extremely active mind that is easily distracted by shiny and colorful objects, I’m very aware of my physical surroundings. I look for graphic components in found objects, from nature–tree bark and sea shells– photographs, architectural drawings, even scraps of paper found on the street. 

My work explores surface textures, communication – using typography in some pieces and color in all. I often integrate colored stones and minerals in my designs, and I enjoy use contrasting-colored metals (sterling and fine silver, 14k-24k gold and copper);  adding a patina in the final stages of design really makes the gold pop. I have done many commissions and enjoy doing one-of-a-kind, personalized pieces– birthstones on a mother’s bracelet, or personalized words of affection roll-printed on the surface of a ring.

The most satisfying aspect of jewelry making (and what keeps my passion for the art alive and growing) is knowing that I can create a piece of wearable art that is seen, touched, and appreciated by both the wearer and the observer and–I hope–will be passed along to family members or friends, keeping the piece alive and adored for generations to come.