Shop Slow is a pop-up store coming to Ponsonby which exhibits local and emerging designers. We spoke to hand crafted jewellry label, Julia Marin, about its involvement with the new exhibition and how collaborations help to grow its individual message.
Ponsonby Central is due to be the home of a pop-up store featuring local, emerging designers. 10 designers are said to be collaborating in this pop-up, showing a mix of design, product, and individuality.
Shop/Slow is a collaborative venture of 10 designers who each have the vision to counteract against fast fashion and over-consumption.
The local artists want to encourage people to buy quality products less often and support local creativity, all while understanding where the clothing and accessories come from.
Julia Marin Jewellery was established in 2014, focusing on sustainability, minimalist design and limited editions small collections. Supplying one off pieces and also making custom wedding and engagement rings, tailored to the client’s individual style, utilising ethically sourced materials and reutilising metal and gems from heirloom jewellery when recycling is an option.
Q&A with Julia Marin
Tell us a little about the items you’re bringing to the pop-up – why these items in particular?
I am bringing a selection of pieces from my last five collections, Minimal, Blocks I & II, Acri and Spikes. As my work evolves, the themes change but there is always a thread that runs though all my work connecting these pieces. I am compiling earrings, rings, necklaces and a few experimental objects that combined, make an interesting grouping. Most of these pieces are made out of recycled silver and recycled gold, refined by me from my bench filings. And there are a few pieces made in copper, recycled from pipes and building sites discards.
Tell us about the process that goes into your products, from an idea to finish.
It depends on what I am making. When creating a collection I am more of an intuitive maker. I don’t always know what the final result will be and I try to make sketches to have vague ideas, but things always change as I start working the metal and testing the options with my hands.
My design process is very tied up to the making process itself, they go hand in hand so the result will often be somewhat different than the idea it started of, as it will continue being developed though the making, or eventually will be part of a different body of work.
I am still making pieces today that the initial idea came through back in 2005 for example, and that’s the great thing about slow design. It could be a continuous development as long as you stay productive, which will provide infinite options. One initial design sometimes becomes 4-5 different pieces.
On the other hand, when I make something custom, the idea will develop into a concept, then a design will be produced and after being approved by the client the piece will be made to the agreed specifications.
What do you hope to achieve from this experience?
I look forward to connecting with people that share our same passion for quality, locally made goods, conscious consumerism and innovative design. And I hope we can encourage consumers
to buy less often, better made, to support local creativity and get involved to really understand where our products come from and learn about the processes and practices that can be pursued for a better future.
When it comes to jewellery, not many people know that they have different options than what they see in chain stores or they think custom work costs an eye and a leg. I would love to see couples consulting about custom pieces when thinking of popping the question or getting hitched; considering hand crafted, ethically sourced gemstones and recycled options instead of choosing something mass produced and of the shelf.
Why is the message of the shop/show pop-up important to you?
Because I believe that if we continue rolling the ball of fast consumerism we are going into a dead end, really fast, really soon, and this is scary. If we don’t understand the impact this has on the environment and what kind of world we are leaving to our future generations, we will reach irreversible consequences.
Clothing and accessories have been essentials to humans since the man stood in two feet. Either as a way of protecting ourselves from climatic conditions for coverage and warmth, for adornment, for protection, or as a way of defining, celebrating who we are, stating our ideologies and communicating our values. As designers and makers of products so deeply rooted in this basic human need, it is our responsibility to make them in the best possible way.