Interview with Osage Orange Studio


Shades of Water by Osage Orange Studio

I recently “met” Linda of Osage Orange Studio and I thought Mireio readers might like to learn a bit about this amazing jewelry artist and her work! In addition to her interview, Linda is offering a 20% discount on anything in her store through the end of September! Just let her know you saw her work on Mireio in the notes to seller.

The Interview: Where Wende Gets to the Bottom of the Awesomeness that is Osage Orange Studio!


Twilight Sky

Welcome, Linda! Tell me a little bit about your process and the materials you use. Do you have a favorite stone or color palette you like to use?

My background is in interior design, thus my process for making necklaces is very much like selecting materials for an interior. First I look for lots of material that I like and then I play around with combinations, pattern and layout until I find a visually pleasing aesthetic. I use affordable gemstones, glass beads and my newest find, vintage Lucite. I pair the beads with silk or nylon thread, which is used to string and hand knot. When I started out, I saw that the marketplace had a saturation of metal jewelry but not much hand knotted jewelry designed in a more modern way (getting away from the look of traditional pearls). 

I love shades of green, aqua, teal and citrine and have always been drawn to these colors. But being a designer who favors the classic modern style, I also incorporate neutrals – white, black, brown and gray, into my palette. I tend to focus on materials and layouts that are fairly simple. You’ll notice a lot of module repetition and symmetry in my work. I look for beads with great color saturation or transparency, nice weight, size and feel. I also think the clasp is an essential often overlooked component, so I search for unusual ones. When you add something like a modern rectangular clasp (see ‘Lemon Meringue’) it makes the necklace truly one-of-a kind. I focus on creating unique items and am all about making a single creation – no mass production here. Each finished necklace is like a little painting to me. 


Lemon Meringue

Your jewelry has an almost dreamy quality to it, what inspires your work?

Quite honestly, color in of itself truly inspires my work. I often see a combination in nature that is striking and try to replicate that in a necklace. Last spring after a very long winter, the first signs of yellowy-green tree buds against the blue sky inspired me. Food color is also a big inspiration, as you may notice a number of my necklaces have been named after food (such as ‘Lime Sorbet’). Things like a melon rind and the inside flesh really peak my interest as far as color go and will influence a piece. I am fascinated with the subtleties of color and like to work with shades of a hue or a gradation of a single color theme. 

When I photograph my necklaces I try to do it early in the day, when the light has a certain ethereal quality to it. Sometimes, the smooth gleaming surface of the beads, seem to come alive in a photograph when the light hits it just right. Photographing the item is very important to me and is where each one tells a little story of its own.

Each piece is one of a kind and unique, what keeps the creative process flowing?

With my background as a designer, I am naturally a very visual person and am always looking around, wherever I go. For example, I love visiting unique stores or old antique shops. In the summer, I enjoy visiting farmer’s markets. These types of places offer a visual feast of shapes, textures and color. It really comes down to ‘looking’ wherever one might be – that’s what keeps creativity alive. When I was an interior design student, I was interested in designing small unique stores or restaurants and that notion of creating one-of-a- kind pieces (as much as possible) is still engrained in me. 


Coffee and Cream

Do you have a favorite creation? And if so, which one and why?

It’s hard for me to pick a favorite because I get truly excited when I finish each one. There is an emotional connection and each has a history to it. At the moment, I really like ‘Coffee & Cream’. It uses amber colored transparent beads, which creates the lovely effect of being able to see the thread through the bead before slipping back through an opaque one. This necklace is made with vintage Lucite which is a light material, but creates a chunky, bold and retro look. I have two favorite gemstone necklaces at the moemnt. One is ‘Shades of Water’ because the turquoise color is really just so delicious. I also really like ‘Mini Glass Blocks’ which is comprised of the most unique rectangular stones. They appeal to my designer side that loves geometric shapes. The light blue thread running through the transclucent stones makes this such a delicate combination.

If you could design a piece of jewelry for a famous person (alive or historical) who would it be?

I really enjoy watching old classic films, so if I was to design for a famous person, I would pick an actress from the past. I’d choose someone like Grace Kelly who was the face of classic beauty. Her style was elegant, refined yet uncomplicated. Audrey Hepburn is another person that I would love to design for. She represented a young, fresh, modern style yet always remained delicate and sweet. I hope my work represents both instincts in me, my inclination toward something bolder and also that which is more delicate, refined and feminine.

Thanks again, Linda. And remember, if you would like a gorgeous piece of jewelry from Osage Orange Studio, now’s the time to buy! It’s not too early to be thinking about holiday presents either!

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