The work is greatly informed by process itself. Working exclusively in the medium of metal mesh, the articulated fabric brings challenging physical properties—successful designs are executed within a variety of exacting constraints. Encouraging the fluid material into pleasing, stable shapes is an ongoing study of tension and release, always with a focus on gravity.Metal mesh from vintage and antique purses is cleaned, deconstructed, and re-engineered. Framed Mesh pieces draw lines of dark, oxidized, sterling silver chain—all hand linked—around the borders of gold mesh elements. This edging delivers graphic impact and also provides finish and structure to the mesh shapes. Joinery around these elements is all soldered or welded directly chain-to-chain—no bulky jump rings—drawing slim, uninterrupted lines throughout the work. Earrings display the mesh held open in a flat plane, suspended from hand hammered armatures. Detailing is always minimal and discreet, focusing attention on the form of the piece and the inherent beauty of the vintage materials.
Hand-carved bracelet clasps are cast in sterling silver and brass. These clasps were carefully designed and created as two distinct halves, allowing them to be easily hooked with one hand.
Materials used are recycled or reclaimed whenever possible. Pieces are finished with oxidized sterling silver, 14 karat gold fill, 22 karat gold plated sterling silver vermeil, and select vintage brass. Mesh may also be custom plated with .999 fine silver, 14k + 18k yellow and rose gold. Earrings are 14 karat gold filled or sterling silver.
Reclaimed metal mesh is antique and vintage brass, often with silver or gold plating, carved exclusively from signed, Whiting & Davis and Mandalian purses dating from the 1890s through the 1980s. All were manufactured in the United States or Canada. Chipped, torn, tarnished bags are sourced from antique dealers, estate sales, and flea markets—the mesh selection ranging from antique, heavily worn patinas to newer, bright finishes. The earliest versions include colorful enamel designs, hand-painted by groups of women gathered in Massachusetts at the turn of the last century. Think quilting bees, but for painting mesh—the industry was booming.
Select pieces may employ new metal mesh, also exclusively Whiting & Davis, which is still produced in Massachusetts on the company's original machines dating to the 1930s.