Artizen Magazine

Artizen 2-4

An interactive magazine featuring interviews with artisan creators of everything from food and wine to clothing, fine art and jewelry. Live links for directly shopping from the best artisans around the globe.

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Page 45 of 51

Like Vanessa Walilko, chainmaille artist Melissa Banks says that she designs all of her pieces by doing. "I never sketch first," said Banks, who also hails from the Chicago area. "With chainmaille, you really just have to dig in and experiment with the idea you have in your head, especially since weight and gravity play a major role." Banks' chainmaille jewelry might appear at first glance to be rather heavy but she says that many of her customers will pick pieces up and remark on how lightweight, soft, and comfortable they are. "Stainless steel is not as heavy as it would seem," said Banks. "It's a wonderful material if you can manipulate it well. There are of course some pieces that do have some weight to them, the ones with a lot of chunkier chain. You've just gotta be willing to rock it." Fb Tw And many wearers are indeed rocking Banks' chic, contemporary mesh fabric pieces, which have been featured in the uber popular fashion- forward Daily Candy ( and are sold in boutiques and shops from coast to coast. In addition to selling her wearable art through retailers, Banks said she does most of her business at shows. 46

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