Interview with… Ukiyo-E Designs

 

Ukiyo-E Designs and The Quirky Bride are both run by one busy lady based in Norwich, Nella Gasteazoro. She works both with wire, silk and many other luxurious mediums, and really is very talented! Here is a little bit more about her and her work…

 

Who are you and where do you come from?
My name is Nellamargarita Gasteazoro and as a revolutionary baby, I ended up living a rather nomadic lifestyle -living in Nicaragua, El Salvador, and Guatemala before the age of 3 – so it’s hard to say where I am from.  A safe answer would be somewhere in Central America.  I have several different passports so I guess I could become an international spy if the medicine thing doesn’t pan out.

What do you do in your spare time other than craft?
I am a ridiculous movie buff.  It drives my fiancé crazy as he hasn’t seen nearly as many movies as I have and can’t, to his satisfaction, have that first viewing chat afterwards.

Please tell us a little bit about what you make…
I studied sculpture and did quite a bit of metal work when I was younger as a welder.  It was only until Medical School that I started manipulating Sterling Silver wire to create the sort of pieces I make today.  

As my fiancé and I are getting married in a few weeks I’ve also started making wedding accessories.  Being a rather picky bride (but then again what bride isn’t) I turned to making most of the items for my wedding – candles, cake topper, table decorations, a  variety of favours, place cards…I’ve been very busy.

What do you enjoy making most?
I love making rings but I think it stems from the fact that I love wearing rings.  Also it’s exciting to transform two simple bands into something dramatic.  I am currently working on a line of gemstone (over 1 carat pieces) floating in sterling silver wire.  I made myself a ring with a 4 carat smoky topaz and have created quite a local interest.

What are your main inspirations for making a piece?
As most of my work is custom, I will get asked to create a piece in a certain colour scheme.  I usually line up the stones that I have chosen and the inspiration – the way I combine the colours and the shape it forms- comes as I work.  I had a piece that I loved dearly which I called “Blue as the sea.”  I had been asked to make a pair of earrings in Caribbean colours.  I sat at the pool at True Blue Bay in Grenada, sipping on a Pina Colada, staring out at the ocean, and these magnificent earrings poured out of me.  The pina colada might have helped.

What are you currently making?
I am currently finishing up the table decorations for my wedding.  I’ve made lace and silk dupioni love birds in burgundy and ivory with sterling silver legs.  They are just too adorable.  Unfortunately it takes me 6 hours to hand sew and finish one of my birds so it has been a true labour of love.

Can you make custom orders?
Most of my work is custom orders.  I actually enjoy the challenge of taking another’s aesthetic and moulding my work to meet their expectations.

Where can we buy your work?
If you don’t live in Norwich you can visit my etsy shops : www.ukiyoedesigns.etsy.com and www.lostmykitty.etsy.com.

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