Atlanta artist, Kristi Hyde, is a self taught jewelry designer who has been creating one of a kind handmade jewelry since the year 2000. She was born and raised in north Alabama, has a BFA in illustration from the Savannah College of Art & Design (1998), a passion for drawing, painting, sculpture and gardening. In 2013, André Leon Talley, former American Editor-At-Large for Vogue Magazine personally selected one of Miss Hyde’s favorite statement necklaces from a gallery in Savannah, GA to exhibit with a Zac Posen gown in Paris, France for his curated show- Little Black Dress. Her work has been collected by women across the US, sold in small boutiques and galleries (mostly scattered around the southeast) and also sold by the artist herself at indoor and outdoor art fairs.
“My jewelry is influenced and inspired by nature, art nouveau and a pretty simple desire to bring beauty into the world. Creating with nature is all about honoring it’s mystery, complexity and grace- all things I’d like my jewelry to convey. I used to make clover chain necklaces as a little girl with my grandmother. I believe this is where it all began. When she first showed me how to thread the stems of clover flowers together, I was enamored that nature could be used in such a way to create jewelry even though every one of those necklaces eventually turned brown and fell apart. Reflecting back on this fond memory from my childhood, it makes perfect sense to me now that I’ve have developed a way to capture the delicateness of nature into something that can potentially last a lifetime.”
The design process for Hyde’s work begins by her mindfully choosing botanicals such as hydrangea flowers, orchid leaves, seed pods and bark to become the focal points of each finished work. She sculpts onto these natural forms with precious metal clays using a paintbrush and sculpting tools, and then sinters them in a kiln which is what alchemizes the clay body into metal. Each metal botanical is finished by polishing, setting stones and applying a special patina by hand, achieving dimensions of color that give them all a lifelike appearance. And finally, the last step is figuring out how she’ll incorporate her botanical sculptures into a necklace, bracelet, ring or earrings along with semi precious stones, pearls, leathers and chains.