Tag Archives: designer

Interview: Ella from The Curious Wonderer

1. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

My name is Ella Zheng and I am a Singaporean Designer. I currently hold a BA (Hons) in both Fashion Design and Graphic Design.

I am a designer who loves simplicity, clean layouts and type. I have found a new level of confidence and love for experimentation through my latest project, Destination: Play. Aside from that, I also enjoy churning out vector illustrations, zines, personal projects and making fun craft .

In the future, I hope to be able to nurture the Singaporean’s mindset towards design.

2. How did you come up with your shop or brand name?

The products and philosophy behind The Curious Wonderer reflects my personality — constantly curious about things and how stuff works.

3. What got you into crafting/arts/illustration?

I started doing vector illustrations after coming across many awesome works of art. When I finally learned how to make them, I was overjoyed and never stop making since.

My calling for craft came much later in life. To me, crafting and “making things” are two different entities — the difference being that crafting is about refining what you make. I wasn’t good at craft from the start, which sparked me to start the project, Destination: Play, to challenge and improve myself.

4. What do you make and why do you make them?

I make Destination: Play badges, Finder Keepers (my envelope books), paper poms, clay items and a colouring book filled with all my own illustrations that encourage children to create a story on the back page!

I like making and designing fun little objects, it brings a smile to people’s faces. I like how design can make someone happy. I also like hacking an object’s function and making it into something else. I want others to have fun with my products.

5. Do you have a favorite item that you created? Is it sold or still available for purchase?

My favourite product is the Destination: Play Badges! They are very special to me. I did a project, Destination: Play. It is about stepping out of the comfort zone. The badges were originally achievement badges, if you perform a specific task such as “Experiment with different materials in your designs”- you will be awarded the “Visual Scientist” badge. The idea behind the badges was inspired by the “Young Scientist Series” in my younger days, where you complete a certain science task and is awarded with a badge.

The series is still available in store, individually and in a set of 10!

Destination: Play Badges

6. Are you a full time artist, designer or crafter? If not would you like to be?

I am a full time designer who loves to make things.

7. Do you have any favorite blogs or resources that you can share to our readers?

I love Eat Drink Chic! I would like to also like to share my photo blog, Wandering with Ella (http://ellawanders.tumblr.com). I love exploring and there are many interesting places in Singapore, I have yet to discover. Everyone loves saying how boring Singapore is but I am sure they have yet to explore such places. I am showing another side of Singapore to everyone and I am enjoying every bit of it!

The Curious Wonderer

Interview: Melissa from Dare to Charm

1. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

Hi everyone! My name is Melissa and I am a jewelry artist from Dare to Charm. I have an obsession for bunnies and like to collect anything photos of bunnies on it. In fact, I have two very adorable Holland Lop rabbits at home. I had them since they were babies and now they are now two and a half years old. In my spare time, I also like to explore the town to scout for new chocolate or desserts shops. Chocolate is my sinful indulgence.

2. How did you come up with your shop or brand name?

I am been known to be a very daring person when I’m among my friends. The word “Dare” conveys a strong and majestic feel for me. In my opinion, we have to be daring to pursue our passion. I started my business by selling handmade jewelry charms so that’s where “Charm” comes from.

3. What got you into jewelry?

Since I was a little girl, I liked to create and draw stuff. Whether it’s a handmade tissue box or hand-drawn postcard, I was always trying out new art forms. I found myself selling my own creations to friends since I was 10 years old. In college, I decided to take a jewelry design course. Looking back, it was a very unusual choice for me since it was a spur of the moment decision. In the end, it turned out that I really loved it and I really enjoyed the course. I got to know great mentors, meet friends with the same passion and this decision brought me closer to discovering my real craft.

4. What do you make and where do you get your inspiration?

I make gemstones carving out of jewelry featuring mainly animal designs. I have always admired the ethnic art and murals from early civilizations and take my inspiration from Greek and Indonesian influences. In Greek mythology, I’ve always been captivated by the Centaur, Medusa, Chimera, and the like. In Indonesian culture, the stories about Hanuman the monkey has always fascinated me. As time goes by, I would like to explore creating bigger jewelry as statement body adornment inspired by these concepts.

5. Do you have a favorite item that you created? Is it sold or still available for purchase?

My favorite piece was the one I created back in school. My school project was titled “SMOKE” and it was a headgear. I created every single detail in that statement piece by hand, from binding every twig to the sterling silver finishing. It was made with recycled tree branches, light bulbs, candle gel and 925K silver wire.

This piece also had a meaningful message behind it. It was a campaign to encourage people to stop smoking. It is a very sentimental piece for me. I have watched people around me, who are either the passive or active smokers, fall sick from the effects of smoking or even have had to say goodbye to some as they have departed from this world. The piece is now in private collection in Indonesia.

SMOKE 2009 Head Adornment

6. Are you a full time artist?

I am a full time artist working on my jewelry collection. One of the causes I champion is animal conservation regardless if the species is endangered or not. I want my jewelry to become a voice to speak for this issue. In fact, I am a volunteer with Singapore Zoo as a docent and if you are at the Singapore Zoo and spot me at the docent station feel free to come over and say hi.

7. Do you have any favorite blogs or resources that you can share to our readers?

My favorite source of inspiration is the blog, Jewels Du Jour. This site reviews high-end jewellery. I have always fascinated with colored gemstones and this is a great site to indulge in looking at their beautiful creations.

8. Do you have any discount codes or promotions that you can offer our readers?

Sure we do! Enter discount code KAT10 when you checkout for 10% off your purchase from now until 31 March 2014.

Dare to Charm