Thursday, July 19, 2012

I really, really love what I do - Erin

Metalclayheads blog feature and giveaway - July 2012

Our featured Metal Clay artist this time is Erin of Heartsabustin, who grew up in the Smoky Mountains where Organic shapes and textures fascinate her. Her devotion to nature is expressed through many of her precious metal clay artwork. 

Why did you pick the name Heartsabustin?
Hearts-a-bustin' is a wildflower that grows in the mountains where I am from. It was my great-grandmother's favorite flower, and when my mom and I were looking for a name for our then-joint shop, we hit on heartsabustin.

When did you first become interested in Metal Clay? How long have you been designing jewelry using Metal Clay?
I was first intrigued by the fact that you could SO many things with metal clay about five years ago. I started actually working in metal clay about three years ago.

Sunflower Necklace by Heartsabustin

What was your first piece of Metal Clay jewelry?
A heart charm - I still wear it as one of my personal pieces.

Would you tell us your creative process?

I'll get an idea - I may or may not draw it out, although I find it helpful to do so. Then I go through the steps in my head of how I would complete the project - I try to work out the potential trouble spots ahead of time. This is merely academic - everyone knows that things pop up that you could never anticipate in the course of a project. I always learn something new from a project, whether it comes out the way I wanted it to or not!

What inspires you?
It may sound cliche, but I love nature. I grew up in the Smoky Mountains, and you can not grow up in an environment like that without it affecting you in some way. Organic shapes and textures fascinate me.

Why did you design the giveaway piece? What is special about your giveaway piece?
I love dogwoods - they are harbingers of spring in the mountains, and our property was covered with them when I was a kid. This was my first design with soldered ear wires, which I considered a huge step for me in my journey of jewelry making.

Dogwood Earrings by Heartsabustin

What are the major challenges when creating metal clay jewelry?
Most of the time, the clay doesn't do what I want it to. It can be very frustrating and enlightening all at the same time.

What do you enjoy most about working in Metal Clay?
The ability to create beautiful things out of silver without having to have a traditional casting set-up.

What is your greatest ambition as a Metal Clay artist?
To keep learning - I'll never know everything, but I'm going to try.

What is the biggest mistake you've ever made? What did you learn from it?
Not believing in myself. If I lose my belief in myself, I've lost everything else.

Basketweave Texture Necklace by Heartsabustin
Erin is giving away the Dogwood Earrings in Silver for a lucky winner! To win these beautiful, nature-inspired earrings, please follow these rules:

Every person is eligible to enter the blog giveaway with up to FOUR (4) entries. How can you get an entry? You can do any of the following and then let us know that by leaving a comment under this feature so we can keep track.

1. Follow our blog = 1 entry
2. Check out featured artist and post favorite piece on the blog = 1 entry
3. Heart featured artist’s shop = 1 entry
4. Follow featured artist on Facebook = 1 entry
5. Make a purchase = 2 entries
6. Refer a friend = 1 entry
7. Tweet about the giveaway using key word metalclayheads = 1 entry
8. Share the Metal Clay Heads blog giveaway link on FB (Go to and click Share) = 1 entry
9. If you voted and commented on our last challenge = 1 entry

The giveaway will run for two weeks. We will announce the winner on August 3rd. Good luck!


  1. Erin this is great! Good to learn more about you!

  2. Great blog post and what a wonderful giveaway!

  3. Great job, Erin! Lovely Sunflower Necklace.

  4. Who - where did mine go? I posted here like a week ago, in fact I believe I was Mrs number one!! Your sunflower necklace is just lovely Erin! Great blog! Hugs

  5. I've always loved those dogwoods Erin.

  6. Nice article! I love the dogwood earrings.

  7. love that basket weave texture necklace & the dogwood earrings are beautiful :)

  8. Wonderful necklace Erin! I didnot know that Heartsabustin is a flower!