Contemporary jeweller and visual artist Emma Cuppleditch hails from Adelaide is all about creating statement jewellery with a strong focus around sustainability. Offering a versatile range of jewellery that can suit anywhere from casual to semi-formal to formal events, you can expect to see a bit of delicate, a bit of bold, and a whole lot of character!
Since founding her business ELC Studio in 2012, Emma hopes to be able to provide a line of jewellery that plays with concepts of memory, sentiment and imagination to let her creativity flow in full freedom.
In anticipation of her participation in the upcoming Bowerbird Market (May 3 – 5), I was able to conduct an e-interview with Emma about her business – have a read of our exchange below:
Tema: Can you please tell us a bit about yourself, Emma?
Emma: My name is Emma Cuppleditch and I am the creative force behind ELC Studio. I am 27, born in Adelaide and a recent Graduate of UniSA’s Bachelor of Contemporary Art.
Tema: What inspired you to open up your own business?
Emma: The urge to make, build and create has always come naturally to me. However, it wasn’t until I had worked for several years in a service position that I realised I needed to focus on a career more fulfilling.
Tema: How did it go from being a concept to a reality?
Emma: It has been a slow journey from the birth of ELC in 2012 to being able to call it a ‘real business’. For several years, I was creating work as a hobby – something to bring me joy outside of my mundane 9-5, and selling at local markets and online. In 2016, I made the choice to go to university and study Contemporary Art, which equipped me with the confidence to share my passion and talent with the world. Since graduating in December of 2018, I was very lucky to have been accepted into the Associate Program at JamFactory, which is an amazing creative business incubator. It has allowed me to focus on my jewellery full time and empowered me to truly believe in my work.
Tema: What made you focus on jewellery in particular?
Emma: Whilst ELC has been active since 2012. It wasn’t always exclusively a jewellery label. In fact, in the early days, ELC was my creative outlet as a painter, sewer and jewellery maker. It wasn’t until my university studies that I fell in love with the capabilities of jewellery as an art form.
Tema: What is the creative process like?
Emma: My creative process involves a lot of experimentation and happy accidents. I enjoy playing with colour, shape and new mediums, arranging and rearranging until something works. I like to incorporate traditional jewellery and metalsmithing techniques with alternative, contemporary media.
Tema: I see that you’ve done collections such as “Collecting Memories”, “Plastic Fantastic”, “Stamped”, and “Found on the Ground”. What motivates you to come up with the themes of your collections – how do you create the new and fresh looks of your products?
Emma: A common theme throughout most of my pieces is that they’re somehow derived from found objects. I am a passionate recycler and am always trying to come up with new ways to accessorise sustainably.
Tema: How would you describe your style of jewellery to someone who is new to your product range?
Emma: My jewellery range can be split into two distinct groups. Under my name Emma Cuppleditch, I produce and exhibit a range of unique, one of a kind wearables and under the guise of ELC Studio I create vibrant, playful and unique contemporary jewellery.
Tema: How do you decide on what color combinations would work best, when creating your beautiful jewellery?
Emma: My colour combos tend to be quite haphazard and lively, appealing to the colour lovers, while I also create a number of elegant neutral pieces, which can be paired with any outfit. I think it’s important to consider the wearer and recognise that different things appeal to different people!
Tema: Do you primarily run an online store or do you have a physical shopfront / stockists around Adelaide / SA?
Emma: The majority of my work is sold through my fantastic retailers – The Fleurieu Arthouse and The Hahndorf Academy. I aim to expand my list of retailers in the near future to include JamFactory and other Australian Design specialists. My online store, while still in its infancy, has seen my jewellery sent all over the world, including France and Canada. Occasionally, I offer one-of-a-kind pieces for sale through exhibitions and details of these events can be found on my website.
Tema: How did you get involved with the Bowerbird Market? Is this your first time participating? If so, what are you anticipating from the market space?
Emma: I have frequented Bowerbird for several years as a customer, but this is the first time I will be a stall holder. I had heard nothing but good things from previous stall holders and so I was motivated to participate. I hope the event will help me to spread joy through accessorising!
Tema: Are there any other markets that you make a regular appearance at? If so, can you highlight some of them? If not, are you hoping to get involved with any in the near future?
Emma: I currently do not frequent any other markets. However, I aim to travel interstate for Finders Keepers some time in the future and I hope to be back at Bowerbird in November.
Tema: What do you think helps your business stand out from the rest in your industry?
Emma: I believe it is important not to copy other creative makers. Therefore, I put a lot of time and effort into ensuring my products are truly unique, whilst still appealing to current trends in fashion and art.
Tema: Is there anything else that you’d like your customers to know about you and your business?
Emma: I am holding a solo exhibition – FOUND – at the Art Centre Port Noarlunga, which is launching on Friday May 31 at 6pm (all are welcome) and running until July 1. My full range of jewellery with ELC Studio will be available all weekend at Stall 3, Bowerbird Market 3-5 May (just inside the front door!).
Book tickets to Emma’s Resin Jewellery workshop at Bowerbird Market here.
With thanks to neon moose for the interview opportunity
Images supplied by Emma Cuppleditch