Artisan Feature: Sudify!
Susan (suda) Storck is a self-proclaimed plant freak who also happens to be an artist. One really has to be in love with their materials in order to create such pieces of sculpted beauty. Susan’s pieces are stunning!
verb (used with object), sudified, sudifying.
1. to preserve the form or qualities of objects found in nature via resin particularly by a lady named Suda; alter partially; to protect from decay and resist wear: to sudify a leaf.
In between pours, I was able to ask the following questions of Susan.
Becky: I know that you have a great love for horticulture, but when was the first time that you started to incorporate plants and resin into your jewelry.
Susan: In the fall of 2015 I was on a mission to preserve beautiful autumn leaves. I began experimenting with different mediums and discovered epoxy resin to magnify the colors and be the most durable. I would use a paint brush to coat five layers of resin on each leaf! I turned these leaves into earrings and that is how Sudify Jewelry began!
Becky: Did you have a learning curve? Can you tell us some of your trial and error stories?
Susan: Hahaha, oh, where to begin?! I think the first time I used resin there was a lot of cursing, sticky fingers, and leaves stuck to my table and pants…but from there it got better! I now NEVER rush when using resin, and that has helped in a lot of problem areas. I make sure all of my botanicals are bone dry and cut and placed in the right arrangement before mixing resin. Once I am prepared I make sure the resin mixture ratio is just right and slowly stir for at least 3 minutes (boring but worth it). Once I have added resin to all the pieces I do a once over for bubbles, then cover and leave for 1 hour. After an hour I check to see if any botanicals have moved around or bubbles have emerged. At this point, I am able to take care of those issues, but have found after the 1-hour mark anything you do with your resin jewelry will do more harm than good, so it is best just to set and forget!
Becky: The pieces that you create are small sculptures of nature. Does it take you a long time to compose the plant arrangement?
Susan: Yes! This is by far the most time-consuming part of my jewelry making process, but also my favorite and most rewarding! Everything I include in my jewelry I have collected from nature because I think it is beautiful! I am always fascinated by their unique and wonderful colors, textures, and shapes. Teeny, tiny, wonderful treasures from nature. I can sometimes spend hours arranging items on one piece.
Becky: You are a busy person! I see that you sell retail, wholesale, do shows and also take custom orders. Do you have a preferred form of selling?
Susan: I love shows! They provide a great opportunity to meet customers in person and enable people to see my jewelry in real life. Those interactions are so important to me and really fuel my jewelry making. I really appreciate everything Instagram and the internet has offered to artists and small business owners, but I still prefer face-to-face interactions by far!
Becky: What are some of your biggest challenges with running your business?
Susan: I am a one-woman show which can be quite challenging, especially because I also work full time as an educational farmer/naturalist. My passion for creating jewelry began with my admiration for the beauty of nature, and I love finding special bits of nature and preserving them in the form of jewelry. I do struggle with keeping on top of emails and maintaining an online store. I also am learning that it is okay to say ‘no’ to opportunities, such as wholesale. I was excited when these opportunities arose but quickly realized with all my pieces being one of a kind it was hard to meet expectations. It can sometimes be hard to realize your limitations as a maker, but I also think it is important so you can continue to enjoy creating!
Becky: What are some of the things that you love the most?
Susan: I really love collecting objects from nature and watching them transform through the whole jewelry making process, it is amazing how resin can really magnify and highlight an object! I love to experiment with new ways of making. I think lichens are so fascinating and beautiful, I love educating people about what they are, and then watching them walk away wearing a lichen ring like a huge gemstone on their finger! The custom work I have created has been more moving than I ever could have imagined. Using my jewelry making process to help people memorialize a loved one or a special day is great.
Becky: Thank you for trusting your jewelry to Nunn Design Findings. How did you discover us and why do you continue to entrust your creations to Nunn Design?
Susan: Thank YOU! I think I found Nunn Design while in search of a hexagon open frame bezel…and was hooked ever since! I really love and appreciate how innovative Nunn Design is, with your flash sales and new designs released seasonally, it really keeps things fresh and helps makers innovate. The focus of my jewelry is mainly on natural materials and resin, the findings from Nunn Design are able to support that in a way I wouldn’t be able to create on my own. Thank you for supporting small makers like me!
See more of Susan’s Work!
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