The Winner & Editor’s Pick of the “Our Story” Design Challenge!

Congratulations to Kim Girouard of Kiki Bird Jewelry, our blog readers voted her “She Believed” bracelet the winner of our Design Challenge! Here is what inspired Kim:
My Story
Creating jewelry is art therapy for me. Once a hobby, it has become a business and under the most unusual circumstances. Several years ago I was diagnosed with bipolar II Depression, along with some other illnesses that usually accompany this diagnosis. Luckily, with the support of family, doctors and medication I was able to control my depression. Until 2011. In September of 2011, my depression had become so debilitating that I had to resign from my full time occupation which I had held for 15 years. I would no longer be able to work. So I thought.

As I mentioned before, creating jewelry is art therapy. It is a way for me to express myself and grow. When I was no longer able to work, I turned to creating jewelry to feel accomplished. Some days, when not feeling the best, I would make a pair of earrings. It may not have been much but it was an accomplishment. On days when my health was better, I may have created several pieces. It was actually making me feel better!

Fast forward several months. Not only was I going to be sending my pieces to a large award show, but my jewelry was now in three art galleries! I also built a website (which is a non stop piece of work). Furthermore, I am back to work full time! I truly believe that creating jewelry helped me to heal and grow not only personally but as a business. Running a business is not easy but I truly enjoy it! This bracelet is simple but makes a bold statement. “she believed she could and she did” tells my story.

Kim wins a collection of over 75 pieces of Vintaj charms, embellishments and findings AND her bracelet will be entered in our End Of The Year Challenge! Visit her shop to see more of her work!

Our Editor’s Pick for Our Story is Rhea Freitag’s “Our Love Story” bracelet!

Here is what inspired Rhea and the Vintaj products she used in her design:

Vintaj Products used:
Bird Charm
Lock/Key Charm
Square Tag Altered Blanks
Rectangle Tag Altered Blanks
Round Tag Altered Blanks
Black Patina
Buffing Block
Vintaj File

“Our Love Story”
This piece was inspired by a love story that started for me on 11/10/12. I used personally meaningful charms from the Vintaj line and also altered some of the small blanks to make my own unique charms to convey our story. Also included on this piece are etched metal tiles that I created to represent secret love letters and sweet nothings.

Thank you to Kim and Rhea, as well as the other five designers, for sharing your stories with us. Next up is our Northern Lights Design Challenge, submissions are due Friday February 1 by noon Central Time!


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5 Responses to The Winner & Editor’s Pick of the “Our Story” Design Challenge!

  1. Rhea says:

    Thank you so much for choosing me as the editor’s pick. I am truly honored! I am so very grateful for the creative inspiration that Vintaj provides with challenges such as these. Cheers!

  2. Kim G says:

    I would also like to thank everyone!! All of the pieces were beautiful and I am humbled by your support. Congratulations to Rhea on the Editors Pick!

  3. JeannieK says:

    Congratulations to you both.

  4. Congrats to the winners – both are wonderful!

  5. Congrats to both winners!! Great designs!

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