June Featured MCA Member: Natalie Reed
Here in Maine, our lives and pastimes are heavily influenced by the breathtaking scenery that surrounds us and the places we love more than any others in the world. When MCA member and metalsmith Natalie Reed was 5-years old, she’d spend precious time visiting her aunt by the ocean, playing in a room filled with beads, making her first creations. Later in childhood, Natalie created sets of beaded earrings which she sold at a flea market near her family home on Vinalhaven. Now in the early phases of her professional metal-smithing and jewelry-making career, these fragments of her childhood come to life through timeless pieces crafted from stunning precious metals with elegant details.
Though seaside life was a tremendous part of Natalie’s personal development, she did not start incorporating these influences into her craft until her time at Maine College of Art, like her aunts before her, from which she graduated in 2013. There she created the prototypes for what would become her sophisticated line of buoy silhouettes and other ocean-inspired works, hand-crafted from silver and gold.
These skills do not come without putting in the effort. Natalie has worked by the side of Gary Roe of Roe Metals for approximately six years, creating custom pieces for jewelers all over new england. With Gary’s expertise, and access to 3D printers as well as other high-tech tools, Natalie has been able to take her creativity and ocean-side inspiration to new heights.
In her Gray studio, Natalie is working towards creating more one of a kind pieces, similar to her Charon Kransen Arts collection inspired senior thesis. She is learning the ropes as a Maine craftsperson, seeking out specific markets and clientele for her incredible designs. During the winter, when island life slows down to a crawl, Natalie doesn’t rest. Find her on the slopes with her second love: her snowboard.
Select pieces of Natalie’s sterling silver and 18k gold jewelry line are available for purchase at the Center for Maine Craft. View her work at the Portland Fine Craft Show, August 24, 2019.