Libby Ward is a contemporary jewellery designer and maker based in the creative hub of Middleport Pottery, West Midlands. Having worked in ceramics, woods, plastics and metals, Libby’s pieces look at preserving natural and organic sources into beautiful, wearable objects.
Libby’s collections start off with physical experimentation. Taking existing elements of nature or even things that are consumable – her most recent collection even has toasted marshmallows in it. Libby sources her precious metals from Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter. As for other materials, Libby finds them online, silicon and resin she uses Polycraft. Libby’s favourite materials and processes are naturally changing all the time, but she often chooses patination.
“I tend to use my own recipes. I really like copper nitrates to get some beautiful blues by heating them gently or even oxidise naturally. Baking soda is also a good one, salt and ammonia.”
Out of all her pieces, Libby’s favourite is The Yersin Collection.
“It was inspired by the bacteria that caused the Bubonic Plague, Yersinia pestis. I started by taking the micro image of the bacteria and etching it onto some metal and then patination on top of that. These pieces have subtle links to Buboe. The latex is representing skin, you can stretch it and see the textures on the top – this is the toasted marshmallow.”
Libby’s journey to create pieces that focus on interaction alongside her organic inspiration, set her apart from the crowd and allow her to make truly creative and experimental work.