"I have always been a maker. I was the kid who made everyone in class Valentines Day cards," says Jenn. "The parents appreciated the effort more than the kids in my class did! My mother was a painter and she kept us busy with painting, arts and crafts projects, baking; anything we could do to create a project we could say we made ourselves."
Jenn's journey to jewellery making was based on a very practical reason. "I was never totally happy with jewellery I bought," she explains. "There was always something I wanted to change – the length, the way beads were put together, and I always wanted to change the clasps to toggles! 14 years ago I met someone that sold silver findings. I spent more money on pearls, beads and silver than I made in a month! The next day, I went to get a business license.
"Initially, I was self-taught. Over the years I have taken jewellery and metal smith courses at George Brown and Mohawk. I have taken private lessons to learn a particular skill, and participated in many workshops in Metal Clay. And I buy and read a lot of jewellery books!"
Jenn actively collects and records ideas for projects. "I have been pulling pages out of magazines, collecting jewellery inspiration for years! I have a basket where I keep everything I collect. Every once in a while I go through and see what is in there. I used to subscribe to a number of fashion, jewellery, and design magazines – that is a lot of paper! Now I prefer to collect images on my Pinterest boards. You can find me at www.pinterest.com/metalclaypins.
"Creating and deciding on projects usually has to do with trying to solve a problem – how do I include this stone here, how do I make this closure work there,"explains Jenn. "I am always trying to incorporate varied materials into a piece in a way that unifies the elements. Sometimes it is a struggle. Other times it comes together easily. I usually don’t know which way it is going to go when I start the piece. I would say that ultimately the pieces I have to work at the hardest I enjoy the most."
Like most of us, Jenn is inspired by many things. "Beautiful photography, travel, old buildings, nature, mid-century modern furniture, typography, colours; just about anything can inspire me. If I connect to something emotionally, I become inspired by it," says Jenn.
Why teach? "I love to meet new people, and I like to keep in touch with the people I meet in my workshops. Some of my students have gone on to start their own metal clay jewellery businesses, and I always want to celebrate their successes with them. And I find I always learn a little something myself!"
Jenn's advice to others who create? "Keep at it! It is all about staying connected to your creativity. Find your artistic voice and strive to infuse it into everything you create. And stay true to your vision. At the end of the day your own creative spirit is your most powerful guide."
Upcoming classes with Jenn Jevons:
Art Clay Silver Intensive Weekend
Saturday, July 19 & Sunday, July 20
10:00am - 5:00pm both days
To register for Jenn's class (or any other class!), please call BeadFX at (416) 751-1911.