About Bijoutiful ~ Amber Yearwood

A novice Amber at the bench circa 2006 Bijoutiful: (pronounced with a silent or soft “j”)

‘Bijou’ is the French word for jewelry, or a small, intricately wrought trinket. Combined with the tail end of the English word ‘beautiful’, we have something truly special….Bijoutiful!

A novice Amber At The Bench circa 2006“I try to leave as small a footprint on this planet as possible, and have to feel good about what I do,” says Barbadian born metalsmith jeweler Amber Yearwood, whose commitment to an environmentally and socially responsible lifestyle carries over to each aspect of her work. Jewelry is a “dirty” business, from destructive mining for metal and stone, to the harsh chemicals and cleaners often used by jewelers in the fabrication process. Not only does Amber personally source her materials from sustainable businesses using recycled precious metals, ethically mined and cut stones, as well as vintage, antique and found metal components, about 95% of her creation process is eco-friendly as well. She strives to use only natural solutions to clean and age her metal, and post-consumer recycled paper for her packaging and marketing materials. True to the “local” movement, each piece is designed, fabricated, finished and packaged by Amber herself in her studio located in Dallas, Texas. For now, Bijoutiful is a true “one woman show”. In the future, Amber expects to only hire help for her online presence.

“The first thing I think about when designing a new piece is ‘Would I want to wear this myself?’”. Amber is personally drawn to intricate patterns and the ornate, having been smitten with ancient cultures and civilizations and all things antique and sparkly from a very young age. Her designs are driven by this passion, often looking to archetypal ethnic motifs, antique wrought iron, art nouveau scrollwork, as well as nature itself for inspiration. Marrying these influences with contemporary appeal, she creates eclectic pieces that evoke times gone by, yet with a modern touch.When it comes to techniques and mediums, Amber is a “Jane of all trades”, so to speak. She uses both traditional and contemporary metalsmithing/goldsmithing techniques, such as the following:

Piercing, saw/fretwork
Stonesetting
Soldering
Filigree/Filigrana
Torch and kiln-fired vitreous glass enamel
Patinas and oxidation
Wire-wrapping & Beading
Riveting
Texturing by way of hammers and other handtools
Forging & Fold-forming
Alloying
Rolling Mill operations (embossing, making wire and sheet)
Stamping (for personalization)
Metal Clay
Casting
Etching
Polymer Clay (faux stones such as Amber and Turquoise)

 
Picking apples with a certain special man...
In her spare time, Amber enjoys a multitude of things such as reading, cooking, gardening, staying in the sea back home in Barbados for so long that her fingers “prune up”, playing with and training her 2 lab mix pups, taking road trips with said pups and the love of her life, getting lost in dusty “Mom and Pop” thrift stores, playing guitar, as well as practicing her aim at the range with her 9mm Glock and other various firearms. She strongly believes in educated and responsible gun ownership, one’s inherent right to self defense of person and property, and though she tows no party line, she lives by the Libertarian adage of “harm no one.”      At home on the water

Amber has always been somewhat of an obsessive type, headstrong & ambitious. She studied a few different languages, but only two really caught her attention: Russian & Spanish. She can read Cyrillic, speak like a 3 year old “dyevushka” and recite Pushkin & Akhmatova, but she is most comfortable with Spanish. She also loves to dance Salsa, Merengue and Tango. Perhaps it’s the Spanish blood that runs through her veins…. Whatever the case, her biggest passion lies in metal and all things shiny!

Workbench - Spring/Summer 2014
Official PayPal Seal

About the Author

Amber Yearwood is a self-taught metalsmith jeweler born in Barbados, a beautiful, small island in the Caribbean. She currently lives in Dallas, Texas with her boyfriend, 2 cats and 2 dogs. She is an avid gardener, loves to travel, read, cook, visit dusty old Mom & Pop thrift shops and antique malls, visit the shooting range, and above all, learn new things, concepts and truths.