Meet the jewelry artist behind the Instagram account @shop_rediviva, Jean Korpi Brozka from Belgrade, Montana. She shares she has made different types of jewelry ever since she was in middle school. Think friendship bracelets, beaded necklaces, etc.
While she pursued her degree in Art Teaching, she also took several metalsmithing classes and she loved it. She also said she got really serious about creating her own designs back in 2018 when she started her Instagram page.
When we asked Jean where she usually gets her turquoise from, she mentions that her mantra for Rediviva jewelry-making and sourcing raw materials for her work is to upcycle and recycle! Having said that, a lot of times, she buys vintage or pre-owned pieces to take them apart and redesign them her way. Using what she can, such as scraps, broken pieces, and things that otherwise would have been thrown out. Most of the turquoise she currently has comes from Turquoise Moose.
From the point of view of a jewelry artist, we wanted to know the factors that help in making decisions when it comes to choosing pieces to get. Jean shares what draws her to a piece is the color, at first! She has long been a lover of the standard turquoise color, not only in stone form but everything. Jean looks for unique colors now - she’s quite fond of the greener, yellower varieties, and she loves to see the matrix that holds it all together.
In addition, we also asked what are the advantages and disadvantages of working with turquoise. As Jean often sources vintage and pre-owned materials, most of the time she is guessing. She explains that she won’t always know for certain if the stones she’s getting are genuine turquoise. She loves to know where the turquoise is mined, and she says that goes right out the window with mystery jewelry. However, as turquoise is so universally loved, cherished, and sought-after, Jean says she doesn’t usually have to worry if people will like and buy her work.
When it comes to her favorite type of turquoise, Jean shares she’s enamored with Damele and Royston, saying the colors are often so rich and bright, with lots of the greenish hues she adores. She also got mostly Yungai from Turquoise Moose, just because the particular stones grabbed her attention.
We asked if she has any bezeling techniques she wants to share, and Jean answers, “I am still quite fresh in my bezeling abilities! My technique is very textbook/basic at this point, but I think sometimes sticking to the basics are what makes your stone really shine and stand out.”
In an effort to being more environmentally-friendly, we’re on a constant quest in learning more from the community as well. Jean shares she’s a re-user, re-worker, and re-designer. She explains that her shop name comes from the genus name of the Montana state flower, the Bitterroot, called lewisa rediviva. She took the word rediviva and she uses it as her own because it truly describes her awakening to pursue jewelry and the way she goes about it. Jean adds, “It means living again, revived, renewed, and reborn. I strive to revive, and renew cast off materials and restore them to their former glory, to bring them back to life”
This definitely made us smile and feel inspired. :)
Lastly, we asked if she had any favorite or signature design technique when creating handmade jewelry. Jean says her design techniques are many. When working with cabochon stones, she often begins with the stone - the stone sets the stage for what type of setting, thick or thin ring band. If she has multiples, then they may become earrings - the list goes on! She explains, “I am a very action-oriented designer. I have tried sketching ideas, but find that the paper sketches don't often make it to the final pieces I create. I have to design the pieces as the action is happening. I feel like that makes my pieces unique to me.”
Take a look at some of her amazing pieces!
What do you like about working with Turquoise Moose?
“Working with Turquoise Moose is amazing! The stone shopping process on instagram is incredibly easy (almost too easy!) and has changed quite a bit since I started working with you folks. Purchasing stones is simple, just sending along a Paypal email and waiting for the goods to arrive! The best part about Turquoise Moose is the quality and uniqueness of your product. The cabochons I have purchased are expertly cut and polished, excellent quality, and I have yet to be dissatisfied. Thank you for all you do, and keep the gorgeous rocks coming!”
-Jean Korpi Brozka