There’s a tradition in Japan of taking broken pottery and putting it back together with gold. It’s called kintsugi, and the end product is considered to be even more beautiful than the original. I bring up this art to show that the idea of turning “mistakes” or “imperfections” into something beautiful is an ancient one with a lustrous history.
Florida-based jewelry company Jean & Alexander takes a similar approach with their one of a kind pieces. The artist, Kerri, creates necklaces and bracelets out of found objects. She transforms them from their “imperfect” state into beautiful works of wearable art that are much more beautiful than their original form, just like Japanese kintsugi.
Kerri links that celebration of imperfection to a bigger mission: making people feel good about themselves in a world that can seem rife with negativity.
Kerri started creating jewelry when she was 18-years old and kept at it for the past ten years, although it was only a hobby. Her website says that she recently left a corporate job to pursue jewelry making full time, a move that she says was “the best decision I have ever made.”
“Our flaws make us who we are,” she says in her blog post, What Jean & Alexander Is All About. “If we started accepting them, rather than being ashamed of them, we would all be able to achieve higher self-esteem, self-worth and self-confidence! Everyone deserves all three.”
A look at Kerri’s work shows a range of pieces, from a delicate drop necklace to more substantial cuffs. Each piece is completely unique, although you can trace certain design elements throughout them. She’s committed to showing that imperfect doesn’t mean bad or wrong or faulty and can actually mean beautiful.
Interested in seeing what a modern take on kintsugi could look like? Head over to Jean & Alexander’s homepage today.