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Celebrating Craft Year 2015 across Canada and on PEI

The Hands of CraftPrince Edward Island is home to a diverse group of jewelers who work with various materials such as precious metals and gemstones, gold, silver, pearls, and diamonds. Some artisans creatively combine these stones and metals with found objects such as sea glass, wood, antique watch parts, plastics, and more. 

There are also artisans on PEI who create their own unique glass beads and incorporate them into pieces of jewelry to create beautiful and memorable works of art. Although, these innovative artisans live in close proximity, their work is unique and vastly different from each other reflecting their individuality and each artist’s perspective on the medium. 

Some artists’ work is also influenced by their training, while others are self-taught gaining expertise in a variety of related areas. Some of the best pieces created by jewelers are created as a result of experimentation which also greatly contributes to the development of each person’s artisanship and unique style.

Metal is an ideal material, because it is malleable, yet it also has a memory. Metal can be bent, hammered, wax and sand casted, sawed, imprinted, polished, stamped, soldered, etched, enameled, printed, wrapped, used for stone setting, and many, many more techniques. The variety of approaches is seemingly endless. Oftentimes, the metal wires and sheets that are the starting point for this work, are completely unrecognizable after the artisan has manipulated them through one or more of these processes. The art of metalwork, today, uses the same techniques and tools used in ancient times.

This summer The PEI Crafts Council recommends that you follow the Arts and Heritage Trail, visit the artisans’ studios and experience the authentic environment of the jewelers, and learn what it’s like to create with this versatile medium. And if you’re feeling inspired, you may even want to sign up for one of the workshops offered by Island artisans.

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