One has to play.
"Playing keeps you connected to this world, to your work, and to the people around.
Playing is essential to my work. I play with colours, shapes, materials, textures, senses, and stories. The coalescence and interdependence of these elements shape my work and make it multidimensional. Through my work I share a part of myself. The pieces I create should evoke memories, feelings, and thoughts - in myself and especially in the viewer".
- Saimi Joutsi
Tell us a little bit about your journey to jewellery making? Have you experimented with any other materials?
Saimij jewellery was showcased during NID´s showroom in London in 2019. Our visitors were fascinated when we told them that actually they are made of many layers (up to hundred!) of hand cut paper. From where did you get the idea to create jewellery out of paper?
The first time I used paper in my jewellery was while I was studying jewellery design and we were given a brief to design brooches made of recycled material. I used newspaper and pieces of broken skateboards. The versatility of paper excited me immensely and I ended up using it in other briefs and even based my thesis on the subject.
From start to finish a pair of earrings can take up to six hours of active work, depending on the design. There’s also quite a lot of waiting period for the pieces to dry before being able to move forward, which is why in reality it takes at least three days for a pair to be finished.
I glue the layers together with a high quality wood glue that can withstand humidity and very cold or high temperatures. The layers are pressed together under a steel block.
As it goes with my jewellery, most of the times I have no idea where my ideas come from. I do daydream a lot. I try things out and sometimes they work and sometimes they absolutely do not. I photograph everything myself. Self timer is my good friend. Simply because for the time being I can’t afford to hire a professional model, photographer, or a set designer. I could always ask a friend to do me a favour but as a principle I refuse to do so. I bet everyone in the creative field knows exactly how well ”exposure as payment” pays the bills. Fortunately I do enjoy photography quite a bit and am somewhat knowledgeable in it.
What have you been up to during these months and are you currently working on any new projects?
The Arts Promotion Centre Finland has recently awarded me with a grant and I’m currently working on stretching the uses of paper in jewellery even more. So there’s definitely something new and exciting coming up.
Photos by Saimij