Croatian designer, Ivana Kuna Raguž, may call her store JunkieJ or Junk Jewellery but her work is anything but. Her contemporary rope jewelry features dots and stripes, all of which are meticulously designed and created. If you've ever tried to wrap thread around thick rope, you will realize it's not that easy to maintain the evenness and neatness!

I also love her play with colors and patterns all of which comes together with precision. My favorites are her polka dot designs where she used beads to add the little pops of color.  The polka dots are most striking when used in color blocks. 

She explained how her store came about:
I started making jewelry back in 2009 after I noticed it was getting ever so difficult to find pieces of jewelry that would suit my quirky fashion style. In the beginning, I used mainly fimo or other types of clay which I combined with acrylic colors, but there were times when I used some everyday things if I saw they had fashion potential, hence the "junk" in the name. However, today I use mostly natural materials such as cotton, wood or leather, but I do use synthetic materials as well.
Other than making jewelry, I paint and re-design vintage clothes and I have sewn a thing or two. I'm also a big fan of DIY projects and I constantly work on something. I work as a teacher and the kids at my school have recognized the joy and beauty of creating so I run a class where we try to recycle household items and reuse them in a different way or even make jewelry out of them. See, I'm never bored. :)

These are the words of a true creative!  See more on her Instagram | Facebook

Of Polka Dots and Polka Dances

Did you know the polka dot was connected with the dance itself? The polka was wildly popular from the 1840's to the 1860's in Europe and America.  It was lively, relatively easy and fun to dance.  Young people who desperately wanted to do a close couple dance like the "scandalous" waltz but couldn't, found they were allowed to polka. The waltz was viewed in some circles as the dirty dancing of its day.

It grew to be such a fad, savvy 19th century marketeers called everything they were hawking as polka items - polka pudding, polka curtains, polka hats, shoes etc - but only the polka dot remains today. 

Two women in polka dot dresses in Frédéric Bazille's 1867 painting Family Reunion

One of the most delightful and popular 19th century polkas is the Romany Polka danced here by the Academy of Danse Libre, at the Stanford Fall Ball.

Before You Go:


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Original Post by THE BEADING GEM