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Artisan Feature - Found Treasure

Artisan Feature - Found Treasure

Her craft is inspired by the natural treasures found on the shores of New Zealand. We sit down with Naomi from Found Treasure to talk about her hand crafted jewellery brand, inspired from the shells and sea glass found on her walks along the beach.

Tell us how Found Treasure came to fruition. 

I first got into jewellery making whilst I was back home in Cornwall, UK. I had an amazing tutor who was so encouraging and said that, "the only thing between you and I, is practice and time." This really helped motivate me to continue my craft, despite it being quite challenging and a lot to learn!
I thoroughly enjoy the creativity, the sentimental value and the feeling of empowerment that it gives me. 
Since studying at London College of Fashion I have worked as a Stylist and as an Event Designer. I enjoyed working within trends and themes although felt that I had more to see and experience in order to bring something new to my work. This led me to travel and I've realised that it's the ocean that grounds me and has helped me to feel connected, no matter which country I am in. I've learnt to listen to myself and develop my own style which has been an interesting experience and that working with my hands gives me the most fulfilment. 

What do you see for the future of Found Treasure?

I would love to do some more workshops in order to encourage others to practice their creativity. I also have some markets coming up which is really exciting and new for me.

What challenges have you faced with the brand?

My new year's resolution was to build a website and here I am at the end of a very strange year, feeling very humbled. Covid 19 gave me a lot of time to think about my values and what is important and enabled me to practice what I love.

How is Found Treasure contributing to environmental sustainability?

Found Treasure was created through a love of the ocean and a need to create, so the values of being eco friendly came naturally from the start. Using seaglass is a form of recycling in an artistic way, turning what was once trash into treasure. Treasure is however you see it, however you find it and maybe even reminds you of one special place. The colours and textures of recycled and compostable packaging work so well with the beachy tones that I am inspired by and there really is no need to wrap pieces in plastic. Starting a brand enables you to make eco conscious decisions right from the beginning which I am so proud of. I discovered R3 packaging, an NZ based company who supply compostable mailer bags who I use to post each treasure! Plus, a local supplier Feather & Stone who hand make textured paper in the most beautiful shades. The natural jute string finishes the wrapping and adds to the beachy textures and to the moments of receiving a handmade gift. I've put a lot of energy into designing the packaging so that it is not only special, it's also sustainable. As I realise how responsible I am as a maker, bringing pieces into the world for people to enjoy & to feel absolutely no guilt for. Treasure is found and it's what you make of it.

What other New Zealand made products are you loving at the moment?

I am a long time lover of ceramics, so I have to mention a few of my favourites, from my own collection - Wundaire, Elena Renker & Michelle Bow.

What advice would you give to those who are interested in starting their own company making products in New Zealand?

Go for it! It's been one of the best things I have ever done. It takes time, a lot of time, but if you can't imagine doing anything else, you are onto a winner and it's worth a shot! Stay true to your values, make a mood board, speak about your ideas, practice and stay focused.

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