We recently featured jewelry handmade by Jessie Adams of Busy Bangles. Jessie was kind enough to provide a photo of herself and daughter, and answer our interview questions. Here we have a glimpse of the artisan behind the beautiful pieces she creates.
To view items made by Busy Bangles, visit these links!
Facebook business page
Facebook chatter group / fan page
In this post, Jessie answers questions about her family, business origins, and thoughts on motherhood.
CC: Tell us about your family. Significant other? Children’s names and ages?
JA: I am married to my high school sweetheart named Ian. We have been together for 13 years. We have one daughter named Nora who is almost two. We also have five Chihuahuas and a Border Collie.
CC: Where are you currently located?
JA: Orlando, Florida, USA
CC: Tell us about your work space. Do you create items in your home? A separate studio?
JA: I work in my home- currently in my den! Half of the room is devoted to my studio, and the other half is quickly being invaded by my supplies!
CC: What is your best time of day to get work done?
CC: Anything special about your business name?
JA: Busy Bangles are not only for moms. They are also meant for little hands to discover and explore! I wanted my business name to show that my jewelry is a sensory experience for young children. The jewelry is for more than to sit on your neck and look pretty!
CC: How long have you been in business as an artisan? Making mama metal?
JA: I have been making jewelry since I was a little girl! We had a school store in elementary school and my “business” was beaded and woven/knotted bracelets and ankle bracelets. As a teenager, I made tons of woven necklaces with shells I collected from the beach. I’m even wearing one in my high school Senior photos. My parents were not happy at the time! Fancy photos, black dress, hair and makeup fixed up… hemp shell necklace around my neck! I started making mama metal about a year and a half ago. I opened my business after friends and fellow babywearers wanted necklaces of their own!
CC: What drew you to enter this field of work?
JA: My daughter broke a beaded necklace of mine when she was about three months old. She grabbed it and seed beads went everywhere! I’ve never been a fan of silicone nursing necklaces. I wanted to wear a piece of jewelry that made me feel dressed up! When I started Busy Bangles, my goal was to create a super strong necklace that could function a few different ways: a real piece of heirloom-quality jewelry, an item strong enough to take the abuse of my daughter’s exploration, and a sensory experience my daughter could enjoy!
CC: How would you describe your subject matter or the content of your work?
JA: I enjoy making pieces that celebrate the relationship between mother and child! I have worn (babywearing) and breastfed my daughter since she was born. Both are important reoccurring themes for my necklaces. I also enjoy taking real-life experiences and adventures, and turning them into tangible memories. For example, I took my daughter strawberry picking and had an amazing day. It was beautiful and messy and perfect. That night I made a strawberry-themed piece for myself. Every time I wear it, I’m reminded of the fun we had that day.
CC: What mediums do you work with?
JA: At the moment I work with fine silver and Argentium silver. I prefer working with metals that can be fused rather than soldered.
CC: Do you have a motto?
JA: Don’t ever give up! There are always people who won’t believe in you, but you have to believe in yourself.
CC: What inspires you in your creative work?
JA: My (almost) two year old daughter is my greatest inspiration. I use many of our adventures and experiences together, to translate them into metal. It’s an amazing feeling to create a piece of art that will hold these memories forever.
CC: What are you presently inspired by— are there particular things you are reading, listening to or looking at to fuel your work?
JA: Everything! Right now I’m inspired by the changing seasons. There is so much new life right outside my window that I want to “capture” and translate into metal!
CC: How has your work / practice / design changed over time?
JA: After making over a thousand necklaces, I have definitely honed my skills! I’m constantly growing as an artist and finding ways to make my work better. If you’re not going forward, you’re going backward.
CC: What kind of experience do you want a viewer or user of your art to walk away with?
JA: I want to create jewelry that will be passed down generations. So many things are created to be discarded, jewelry included. I want to pass my charms down to my daughter to wear when she has babies of her own. My necklaces are made to last forever, even while being loved and played with!
CC: What risks have you taken in your work, and what has been at stake?
JA: I’m generally a reserved and private person. I feel as if I’m sending a piece of my heart out with every necklace I make! My biggest risk is sending my jewelry out into the world, hoping it will be loved as much as I love it!
CC: Fill in the blank: Motherhood is….
JA: the best chapter of my life!
CC: How has being a mother changed you?
JA: Being a mother has changed everything. I am a better person, a better artist, more compassionate, more patient… I could go on and on. My daughter has brought out so much good in myself!
CC: What is something your children have taught you?
JA: How to find joy in simple things!
CC: What do your kids do that makes you laugh?
JA: My daughter just turned two and makes the funniest animal sounds. Whenever we see an animal she says “quack” or “moo” and so forth. There was a snake in our driveway a few days ago and she started hissing at it!
CC: What is one piece of advice on motherhood that has helped you?