Saturday, August 20, 2011

Artist Spotlight - Wendy Baker of Bendywho and Sleeping Dog Studio

Yay!  A new feature.  For now this feature will be monthly, but I hope to be able to expand to weekly as I learn more about all the wonderful jewelry and bead artists that are out there in the big, big world.
This month the Spotlight is on uber fabulous Wendy Baker. 

Many of you already know Wendy from her facebook fan page Bendywho by Wendy Baker and her Etsy shop Sleeping Dog Studio. Maybe you have even hopped by her blog Wednesday 3 o'clock where Wendy gives us peaks into her life at home, in the studio, and at shows.  

I want to take just a moment to thank Wendy for taking time out of her very busy and hectic life to answer these questions for me.
I had the opportunity to ask Wendy a few questions.  Here they are with her thought provoking answers.  Mixed in are photos of her awe-inspiring designs.  These and many many more can be found on her facebook fan page bendywho by Wendy Baker.

What do you love most about designing and creating your own jewerly? 
*i get to pick things that intrique me and then play with them until i either give up, get some kind of good or bad result, get bitten to keep working on some technical evolution, or just try to form something i saw in my mind's eye.  i also like wearing my creations to see if anyone else is as curious as i am.

What are some of you favorite materials to work with and create with?
*loads of influences both passive and actively have settled around me to shwo me how other artists express themselves. i always loved the wire and 3-d expressions that Alexander Calder could fabricate with a spool of wire and a pair of cutters.  he could travel anywhere and then create what he saw in his mind. so i love wire...a lot.
also, i have sewn since i was 12. the idea of taking something flat and creating functional 3d wearable art is so gratifying, i have been through a lot of different media, which i suspect is simply a result of materials available and interests evolving over time.

How did you get your start in jewelry designing and what have you learned over the course of being a designer?
* i grew up near beaches on long island. my friends were all lifeguards, so i would visit them while they worked and i tried to get a tan. i have always been a collector as well as someone who made stuff from other stuff. so being at the beaches and finding shells, as well as being a child of the sixties, i wound up macrameing necklaces with things i found and waxed linen string. i have always played with stuff i found and played with making other things from it. + my mother is a great gardener. i have 2 black thumbs. i have been able to play with the floral pieces i found to make my own version of lush gardens. i like trying stuff and looking at magazines. also the time before i fall asleep or as i am waking up is vital for my random connecting of dots in creative ideas floating through my mind.

What gives you the most pleasure in career as a jewelry designer? 
*since i am currently making jewelry, i am smitten with a person approaching me to comment on my jewelry out of the blue. this is often done while grocery shopping. this approach validates my sense of accomplishment. more importantly, i enjoy the beaming faces of ladies who try on my work. it seems to transform their expressions.  this is great to watch and feel responsible for!

Where do you get your inspiration for your designs from?
*i read magazines, look at art work, get out of the house to do some errands. it clears my mental cobwebs. this is a really great way to rejuvenate my system.

I really hope that you have all enjoyed this peak into the life of the wonderous Wendy Baker, I know that I have.

If you would like to be featured on the Artist Spotlight, please send me an email.  If you have any suggestions for other questions on future spotlights, please leave a comment.

Much Love,


  1. Wow, great idea! This is going to be an excellent feature addition to your blog.
    I love Wendy's work. I enjoyed reading her answers to your questions.

  2. Thanks Terry. I am excited to do this every month. It was so fun to read about what inspires Wendy and how her past has lead her to where she is today.

  3. Kindred spirit, I think. I have three sons, three degrees, very busy life and now all I want to do is make and sell jewelry. What are you planning to do with your MBA. I was a teacher and then professor in my recent past life. Check out my blog at and I have a small etsy shop and am featured on a website Best, Andrea

  4. Andrea, I am not sure what I will do with my MBA. What I mean by that is that I am not sure if I will still with my current company or start looking at other organizations for a managerial position. I am not sure if I want to manage people or just projects at this point. I think that eventually I would like to move over to project managment though. I will definitely check out your blog and etsy shop.