Jen Hough makes Jewelry. Sterling silver jewelry. Mostly rings. Her Etsy shop is located at
http://www.etsy.com/shop/jenhough. Jen says she's drawn to making jewelry because, "at its best, it can be tiny, wearable sculpture - an idea that is a goal and constant inspiration to me." Jen gets further inspiration from the world around her, whether it be from the city streets, or the back of the slow Oldsmobile that she "has been trying to pass for the last 10 miles."
Her finished pieces can be a surprise, even to her. "I guess you never know what will end up in my finished pieces," she explains. " Often I start with a very firm concept in mind only to have the cut shapes shift into an even better configuration. As long as I am not working on a custom piece, I try to stay open to change in whatever stage it takes place in. "
In her work, Jen enjoys the process of being able to take sheets of metal, cut, bend and manipulate until it becomes something engaging. She loves showing that simplicity can be a disguise for detail. Hidden in her streamlined designs are the many tiny decisions that she made along the way. Those tiny details, says Jen, add subtle interest to each piece.
When she's not creating , Jen loves traveling, and it doesn't matter where to! "Anywhere, any time, by any transportation," she declares. "I love seeing things I have never seen before, and meeting the people there."
I asked Jen if there is something she has always wanted to try." Her answer: "I have never done pro wrestling, but I hear it may not be real, so..." Guess you're out of luck on that one then, Jen. We may be hearing from readers on this!
Jen's most cherished handmade item is a simple sterling silver band that she wears on her pinkie finger. " I learned to solder on this ring, it has about ten solder joints and of course it is all banged up and scratched. I have a permanent indent in my finger where it fits perfectly for the past ten years," Jen explains.
Like many of us, Jen values her family and says they are what she could not imagine her life without.
Her second love is movies. Here is a run down of a few of them, followed by Jen's comment on each:
You and Me and Everyone We Know by Miranda July: Everything she makes is gold!
Everything is Illuminated: A movie that remained in my thoughts for months after watching it. The idea of simplicity masking complexity, such a difficult idea so beautifully realized.
Beyond the Fold: A documentary about origami. Again, simple. Beautiful. Origami. Again, simple... beautiful.
In addition, Jen listens to audio books and pod casts for hours a day as she works. Her podcast recommendation is the Moth podcast, an amazing live podcast of true stories told without using notes. "I can never guess where these stories are going. " Audio books by Augusten Burroughs and F. Scott Fitzgerald also top the list of Jen's favorites in this category.
Jen's Etsty shop can be found at http://www.etsy.com/shop/jenhough. She also works and shows her jewelry at a beautiful gallery in Door County called J. Jeffrey Taylor.
Jan had recently started a fan page on Facebook and is offering 10% off to fans through the month of May. She also offers free worldwide shipping on everything. Also, look for Jen at the Door County Festival of the Arts in Sister Bay in August. This will be her 3rd year there.
The newest addition to Jen's line of jewelry is a pair of earrings named This Time Tomorrow. A very lucky winner of a random drawing will win a pair valued at $100! To enter, visit Jen's Etsy shop. Then come back here to leave a comment for Jen about her shop or favorite item. You have until Tuesday, May 11 to enter; the winner will be announced on Wednesday, May 12. Good Luck!!
And thanks, Jen, for being our featured member this week.