VERSO jewelry is made from metal forms cast in handmade paper. The metal is dipped into a pulp of water and finely beaten paper fibers from a plant called abaca. The fibers cling to the metal and shrink as they dry. A tight, translucent paper skin is built up on the form over successive dips. The concept is the same as making a sheet of handmade paper, but around a three-dimensional form, and by building up thin layers over the course of several days.
After a translucent layer of paper has built up, the forms are hand-dyed, and finally heavily sealed to make them water resistant and durable.
The pieces are inspired by the sinuous lines of art nouveau and rococo design, and details found in nature, like seeds, petals, dewdrops, flowers, the curves of a river, ferns, the night sky, leaves, spider webs.....
The production line includes necklaces, earrings, rings, hairpins, and flower crowns, and is available for wholesale or consignment to retailers.
Each piece of paper jewelry is handmade and therefore unique. Variations will occur from piece to piece.
Melanie Brauner is a metalsmith, bookbinder, and papermaker.
She holds a BFA from Oregon College of Art and Craft,
where she studied books arts and metals.
Her studio is in Shoreline, Washington.