My path as an artist has had many turns and twists. Handwork was important to my parents: my father had a woodshop and my mother’s expertise was in textiles. I studied art at St. Lawrence University. In graduate school I worked in clay. As an art educator for many years, I learned many techniques and used many media in all forms of art. Through the years I have worked in clay, papermaking and oils, exhibiting all of these.I came back to jewelry making after a course at Haystack School of Craft working with Ellen Weiske. I continued my education there with courses taught by Marlene True and Robert Ebendorf. Making pieces of art that people will adorn themselves with gives me a sense of purpose and satisfaction.
Great images reside on printed tin. Discovering those cool patterns and images in discarded and recycled tin containers and turning it into wearable pieces and useful objects of art is what I love about my craft. I use traditional metalsmithing techniques on uncommon materials. Whether an olive oil, a cookie, or a vintage tin that has been well loved, it is the tin that fascinates me. My jewelry is eco friendly due to the recycling, up cycling nature of my materials. My jewelry is handmade and each piece is unique. I handcraft my necklaces, bracelets, earrings, most of the findings (the connectors), and the sterling silver ear wires. I do not use lightweight aluminum, preferring the feel of tin.I strive for surprise and fun in my jewelry: creating wearable art out of pieces which might not fit the traditional material list of jewelers. Humble materials, uncommon jewelry: jewelry with a nod to the environment: recycled, repurposed artisan tin jewelry made with cold connections
Betsy Menson Sio