Tuesday, 19 October 2010
The WireWorkers Guild
ARE YOU SITTING COMFORTABLY?
WELL, FASTEN YOUR SEAT-BELTS ...
... BECAUSE YOU'RE OFF
TO AMPANG IN MALAYSIA
to meet our
R I M A U M A N J A
When I first saw Mastura's beautiful designs on her website,
I was particularly enchanted by the mastery of her craftsmanship
and her wonderful dragonfly pieces, so I asked her for an
She very kindly agreed, even though she is currently extremely
busy working on some new pieces for a fashion designer who
will be showcasing her clothes, together with Mastura's
handcrafted jewellery, for the Maylasian International Fashion
WHAT IS YOUR BACKGROUND AND HOW DID YOU GET INTO
I am a graduate in Business Management (transport and logistics).
For 5 years I worked as a PA, but quit to be a stay-home mom and
raise my kids, especially as I needed to help my son who was diagnosed
with delayed development and attention deficit.
I have been crafting since childhood, but for the last 15 years, I have
seriously devoted any available time to crafting whilst being at home
raising my children and for 15 years I did everything, but jewelry making!
However, it was not until late in 2008, when I decided to repair a broken
bracelet for myself, that I began my journey into jewelry making.
One thing led to another and when I discovered wirework jewelry, it
was the beginning of the most interesting crafting journey I have ever
taken! There is nothing I would rather do now, than tinker with my
wires and pliers :)
DO YOU HAVE ANY FORMAL TRAINING?
No. I do not have any formal training where jewelry making is
concerned. I am 100% self-taught in every crafting journey
I have ever undertaken. I learn by reading a lot, as well as doing
WHAT'S THE INSPIRATION BEHIND YOUR DESIGNS?
Inspiration comes from my fascination with everything mystical
and ethereal. I have this fantasy-like imagination. My own ethnic
Malay culture also has a huge influence towards some of
the jewelry pieces I design.
DO YOU HAVE A FAVOURITE DESIGN AND WHY?
I like intricate pieces. My favorite design would be the
filigree components, such as my 'CHARLOTTE'S WEB PENDANT'.
I later combined the pendant components together
to make one piece - the example being: 'AMAZON NECKLACE'.
Another favorite design that you can see on my website:
is the dragonfly babies.
HOW DO YOU PROMOTE AND SELL YOUR WORK?
I promote and sell my work through my blog.
I do not have a retail shop nor a workshop.
Everything is sold online.
To help promote my online shop, other than marketing through
social network sites, I also distribute ECO cotton bags with
every sale and workshop.
TELL US ABOUT YOUR TEACHING AND TUTORIALS?
Initially, I started teaching from home on a small scale. It
was more about sharing knowledge, because during that time
I didn't charge any fees at all. It was a way of gaining
confidence and experience and teaching friends at home
provided good practice and training.
I started to make simple tutorials to help assist with my
teaching and now I write Tutorials seriously, to help me
earn some extra income. It is tough when I have to do
everything by myself and I admit that I sometimes find
myself laughing at all the ridiculous angles I have to be
in, just to take one picture shot for a tutorial!
When I write Tutorials, they are not just for creating
earrings, necklaces or bracelets, but more for teaching
others how to make one new component or technique.
This, together with added creativity can become a
unique jewelry piece.
Each tutorial is original, illustrating different
IS THERE ANY ADVICE YOU WOULD PASS ON TO
SOMEONE GETTING STARTED?
When making jewelry, never limit yourself, do not be afraid
to make mistakes and be experimental! Only through trial
and error can you improve and find what you're good at and
what you like, or don't like to make.
WHAT ARE YOUR ASPIRATIONS AND GOALS FOR
My aspiration is to continue to be a freelance instructor
and designer and to write as many jewelry making Tutorials
as I can with each one bearing a different technique, so that
I can continue inspiring and helping others to be better
I do have big dreams and goals that I will one day be able
to get a book published and share all the knowledge that
I have with crafters worldwide.
The most important thing of all, is to be a living example
to my children, that with knowledge, determination and
hard work, ANYTHING is possible when you put your mind to it!