Hello! My name is Helena, and I make glass jewelry and objects. My brand is called here & now because I believe in living here and now. I’m originally from Russia, but last year I moved to Kingston, Canada, with my partner Anna and our dog, Lis. I love this beautiful city and the little home studio where I create my pieces.
I’ve been making things for as long as I can remember: I’ve tried felting and knitting, designing wooden objects, and making paper clay dolls. When Anna and I decided to move to Canada, I had to choose what I was going to do here. This was around the same time that I discovered stained-glass terrariums. I fell in love with their simple, elegant shapes and realized that I wanted to try making them, so I bought my first soldering iron and a supply kit and got started.
The glass-working process is fairly complex – it’s one of those things that teaches you patience (which I sometimes lack!). The first step is to cut the glass and grind it to the perfect shape. Next, I wrap the pieces of glass in copper foil and solder them together. After that, it’s time to apply the patina and polish. Depending on the piece and the desired finish, I might have to skip, repeat, or rearrange some of the steps.
I try to find beauty in everything – nature, architecture, people. We live near a beautiful park and I often walk there with our dog, looking for treasures like twigs and pine cones. When I look at something, I try to imagine whether it can be made in glass (which is how my origami theme started). I don’t typically use any color in my pieces; I find it more interesting to play with shape than with color.
Etsy is a door to an entire world of artists, customers, suppliers and admirers, and it has been helpful to me and my business both on- and offline. When I moved to Kingston, I didn’t know anyone; I had no idea how or where to meet local artistic people. Luckily, I found another jewelry artist, Brandy (from Salvage Co.) here on Etsy, and met other crafters through her. I also participated in the Etsy Road Trip in Kingston, which was a fun and enjoyable experience. My goals for the future are to improve my skills, get organized, stop pulling all-nighters, finally build a website, and increase my social media presence. And of course, to find more crafty soul mates to exchange ideas and collaborate with!
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All photographs by here & now.