Friday Interview: Serasi Jewelry! May 11, 2012 07:32
Happy Friday, everyone! This week I'd like to introduce you to Rosa Czarnomski, one of our very talented jewelry designers and the force behind Serasi Jewelry. Read on to learn how an engineer transitioned to jewelry designer, and about an interesting addition to a martini. Have a great weekend, everyone!
Please introduce yourself and tell us about your handmade business.
My name is Rosa Czarnomski. I’m the owner and designer behind Serasi Jewelry. My jewelry is mostly made of 14k gold-filled and silver-filled wire with colorful semi-precious stones, pearls and crystals. Most of my time I spend weaving and coiling wire by hand into earrings and necklaces. I was born and raised in Indonesia. I came to the US to pursue a degree and worked as an engineer for 10 years before I decided to make jewelry full time. I found out that I truly enjoy colors and working with my hands. Currently I live in Rhode Island with my husband in our happy home, where I introduced him to a rice cooker and he introduced me to a toaster.
Describe your studio for us.
My studio is the top floor of our house. The room has a slanted ceiling (where I hit my head a lot) and a spiral staircase (where I have to balance myself when carrying stuff), but it’s peaceful and bright. It has a nice view where I can watch wildlife in-action while working, usually foxes and hawks hunting their prey.
Can you tell us about the name for your business, Serasi Jewelry?
Serasi (se-ra’-see) is an Indonesian word meaning something like “blend” or “well-suited”. I picked that name in hopes of evoking Indonesia’s rich, laid back and diverse culture. Indonesians embrace this philosophy, ensuring life flows in harmony and balance.
Does your background in engineering influence your jewelry collection?
Yes, it does. It gave symmetry and geometric influences to my earlier work. Someone asked me how I make my pieces consistently uniform and whether I measure it one by one. I said, no, it comes naturally and maybe it’s because of my well-oiled left brain. My engineering friend nodded with a smile. I felt validated and not so weird about making things symmetrical. Later, when I started making jewelry full-time I had to challenge myself to adapt to more organic forms. Now I have different lenses and filters to play with in my creative process.
What do you do when you need a shot of inspiration?
I keep photography books of underwater life from when I used to dive off Bali and Java. My inspiration comes from those colorful tropical fish and corals. I also get inspiration from everyday life, like vegetables, flowers and fruit. My sister sometimes gives me ideas and she’s a loyal and honest critique.
I heard that a cure to writer’s block is to just start writing any words by hand. When I’m really stuck I just start sketching. Usually it will jump start my brain right away.
What does handmade mean to you?
Handmade means made by hand and not by machine. To me, it’s very personal. For each individual item there was a person behind it, a person who is just like one of us, someone we can relate to. Each handmade item may carry an imperfection which becomes part of its beauty and unique signature.
How did you become involved with Craftland?
As soon as I moved to the Providence area my friends brought me to Craftland and, of course, it immediately became a favorite destination. A couple of years later, Devienna saw my work at a craft show in Providence and later I got her email expressing Craftland’s interest in carrying my stuff. That was one of the happiest days of my life!
Little know fun fact about you?
I like noodle soup, karaoke and sun-dried tomato. I even put sun-dried tomato in my noodle soup and martini. I also love to dance - my record is 5 hours non-stop!