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Welcome to Open Studio, a Racked feature where we explore the workspaces and showrooms of some of the city's most talented, up-and-coming designers.
- “I bought a vintage Barbie on eBay and I took both of the arms and made molds of them. I had them cast in brass and I cut the shoulders off and soldered them together. It was the hardest thing i’ve ever made in my life. The metal is so thick and I had to
- Rebecca's studio assistant, Oli.
- “Normally dollar signs are seen on such big, chunky pieces of jewelry. You wear dollar sign jewelry to tell people you have a lot of money, which is an interesting concept to begin with. I thought it would be funny to take that idea and make it really tin
- Rebecca soldering an earring.
- "I used to shop on eBay a lot for baby rings because they’re a lot cheaper than normal gold rings, and I would just size them up to fit me. I found this baby ring that actually said 'baby'—it was handwritten and super wonky, and kind of creepy. But it was
- 14 karat gold "Pound" stud, $66; 14 karat gold "Yen" stud, $66; 14 karat gold "Euro" stud,
- The Winden tool wall.
“They’re cast from Barbie ears and Barbie lips. I cut them off. It was really creepy to see the Barbie at the end of this—no ears, no lips, no arms. My favorite is the one with the stones because you’re wearing earrings that are wearing earrings.”
- “I’m working on another line that’s fine but not necessarily ceremonial. This is the first idea. It’s inspired by a Victorian ring I found two years ago—the bars slide.”
- "Best Bud" necklace, $185
- "Sometimes you just want to make stuff that’s really pretty. I think that there is a hole in the market for affordable engagement rings—a lot of people are looking for something unique. The main idea behind my ceremonial line was to use a nontraditional s
- Rebecca models her "Baby" necklace.
- An "Embrace" cuff gets its finishing touches.
- The taking care of business corner of Winden's studio.
- "Clark" ring in rose gold, $1,330; "Laidley" ring in yellow gold, $2,475
Winden's Rebecca Mapes may craft her jewelry from serious materials—14 karat gold, sterling silver, champagne diamonds—but her ultra-delicate designs double as answers to the question, "Wouldn't it be funny if…" The line's microscopic Euro and Yen earrings—which, according to Rebecca's friends, telegraph, "I like money…but just a little bit."—are the designer's take on gold chains loaded down with dollar sign pendants, while diamond-dotted ear-shaped studs (cast from a vintage Barbie's ears) came about as a way to wear earrings wearing earrings.
The In God We Trust alum started off making dainty pieces as a way to keep fine jewelry affordable—prices start at $25 for sterling silver studs—and that same budget-consciousness extends to her new bridal line. "I think that there is a hole in the market for affordable engagement rings—a lot of people are looking for something unique," Rebecca told us. "The main idea behind my ceremonial line was to use a nontraditional stone as the center stone to bring the price down, but to still have the glittery diamonds surrounding it."
See those showstoppers, the designer's workspace—where Winden creations get their final touches before heading off to local favorites like Catbird, Steven Alan, and The Rising States—and her furry studio assistant Oli, this way.