Whether she’s strolling through local galleries or travelling to old factories to treasure hunt, Rachel Bingham has jewellery on the mind. Luckily for Edmontonians, those travels are the inspiration behind Bang Bang Bijoux—a jewellery collection inspired by inspiration. Meet Rachel Bingham…
You incorporate vintage materials in your designs. Where have your treasure hunts taken you?
I used to typically take one fantastic trip a year to Europe and wander through the markets and auctions. It was so fun and easy to incorporate into my holiday. Now I prefer a more targeted approach. The East Coast of the U.S. has a wealth of vintage jewellery factories that I visit. That area was the jewellery capital of the world before production moved to China, and you can still visit these factories and buy the old materials.
What led you to jewellery design?
I remember feeling pretty lost after graduating from the U of A. I knew I’d like to live a creative life, but I wasn’t confident I could make a living at it. When I ended up at a job that was a terrible fit, I decided to make my business a priority for one year to see if I could make a go of it. There were some really tense moments, but it was the best decision I could have made. No regrets.
Is there a particular era or style that inspires your work?
My influences are always shifting. I used to be heavily influenced by the 20s, but now I take my influences more from colour schemes, art, and different architecture. I really enjoy looking at abstract paintings to see how different artists combine colours in unusual ways.
People often give your jewellery as gifts. What’s your favourite piece of jewellery, and who gave it to you?
I absolutely love my wedding ring! It was made by (former) local designer Andronyk Jewellery. It’s beyond beautiful.