Saturday, March 31, 2012

Featured Artist: Andrea Cocco Rodriguez of Cocco Jewelry on Etsy

For April, we are delighted to feature the designs of Andrea Cocco Rodriguez  of Cocco Jewelry on Etsy.

When someone shows repeated interest in a particular Bumbershoot supply, I just have to know what they are doing with it, so that is how I found myself at CoccoJewelry.

I love seeing all the ways Andrea is using our vintage copper flowers in her designs.

They look great with the teal patina she has applied for a verdigris effect.

They also look beautiful in their natural state.
Andrea’s designs have a strong industrial chic flair, and the flower motifs and rich colors add an overlay of softness to her metal pieces.
In Andrea’s words, “…I have developed a love for natural jewelry. From stones to metal to fabric and leather I enjoy creating and wearing something different and unique. I love earthy and rustic added with just the right amount of girly…”

I’ve focused on Andrea’s designs using the copper flowers, but Andrea also has several other beautiful designs, including this popular oak leaf ring…

As well as this cuff bracelet.

 I hope you will enjoy a visit to Cocco Jewelry for some industrial chic inspiration!

Friday, March 30, 2012

Book Review: Wabi-Sabi for Artists, Designers, Poets & Philosphers

I recently read Wabi-Sabi for Artists, Designers, Poets &Philosophers by Leonard Koren, and I recommend this book to those of you who love and work with vintage materials because it articulates so clearly their appeal and beauty.
Because wabi sabi is a core concept of Japanese culture, there is much more in this book than design principles or ideas.  However, when Koren talks about the material characteristics of wabi sabi, it seems as if he could be talking about the vintage materials we source and use at Bumbershoot Designs and Bumbershoot Supplies. Vintage materials often show time-related wear. Wabi sabi recognizes that all things are imperfect, and “tarnish…peeling…signs of attrition are a testament to histories of use”. Further, “Things wabi-sabi have no need for the reassurance of status or the validation of market culture…it is best if the creator is of no distinction, invisible or anonymous.” This reminds me of the deep respect I have for the artisans who created the beautiful vintage glass we enjoy today.  Although not precious gems, these glass pieces are also precious, a result of collaboration between many skilled artisans at each of the several steps in their manufacture, artisans who are unknown to us today, unrecognized for the beautiful items they created.
This is a short and accessible book, with lots of white space throughout the text, and interspersed with black and white photographs that to the author’s mind illustrate the concept of wabi sabi.  Koren explains the genesis of wabi sabi in the tea culture of Japan, the meanings of “wabi” and “sabi”, design principles associated with this aesthetic and the larger philosophical underpinnings of wabi sabi, providing a good overview of this important component of Japanese culture.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Bumbershoot Supplies' Vintage Heart Button Cards Featured on The Daily

Bumbershoot Supplies' beautiful vintage heart button cards were recently featured on The Daily, a news service for the iPad, Android and Facebook. It was very exciting, we send a big thank you to The Daily!  As a result of that promotion, we are running low on our heart button cards, but no worries, we will be restocking these. If you want a button card, check the Bumbershoot Supplies website here, or email me at and I’ll let you know when our next shipment arrives.

These gorgeous buttons are about 1 inch in size and were made in the US Zone of Occupied Germany. For that history, see my blog post here.