Patrice Collins of Honolulu, designer of Art on a Wing jewelry, is a social worker by profession and a designer by passion. At one time or another she has designed clothing, drapery, pillows and now jewelry. She simply doesn’t feel complete unless she is working with her hands.
Collins, who hails from Hilo, lived in the Bay Area from 1994 to 2000. “My whole life was creating things,” Patrice said. She began crafting jewelry “While running a homeless shelter,” she explained. “The job paid for me to buy materials to do my jewelry.”
Working in a multitude of media introduced Collins to the concept of mixed media artistry. In her latest collection, called ARTifacts, she employs a combination of leather, upholstery cord and velvet cord in place of plain ribbon, cord or chain. Another unusual combination is black wire mesh and velvet.
Each of her one-of-a-kind pieces is hand painted with acrylics, lacquer and enamel. “I scrape the paint off the higher surfaces to reveal the raised bronze image,” Collins explained. Many of the new necklaces are reversible, painted in different colors on each side, such as the scenes above, with ocean colors on one side and floral colors on the other.
While Art on a Wing’s cultural influences may vary (this collection has some African-inspired patterns combined with Polynesian cowry shell), an Asian vibe is a constant. “I use lots of Asian stones and many pieces begin with Asian stones,” Collins said.
The Trump Tower shop and Magnolia in Kahala Mall were the first retailers to include Art on a Wing in their merchandise mix. Now the line has been introduced at Island Edge in Ala Moana Center. “The collection is a great fit for Island Edge because I am a local artist and Island Edge is committed to supporting local artists. The designs that are sold at the store and my designs compliment one another,” Collins said. Indeed. Art on a Wing would add pizzaz to Roberta Oaks, Martinique, Mamo and, hey, why not add a little Asian drama to Trina Turk?
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– Paula Rath