Hello BBB Friends!
I have a strong love and great appreciation for beautiful, well-made keepsakes. Our friends at Beehive Kitchenware make things that fit that description perfectly. From exquisite ornaments to heirloom-quality baby spoons – Beehive does unique work and does it so well.
Hi there! First things first: What’s your name, what’s your business name, where are you from, and where are you currently located/crafting?
Sandra Bonazoli and Jim Dowd from Beehive Kitchenware. We live in Rhode Island, but work out an old mill in Fall River Ma.
What inspires you the most to create?
We try to gather as much visual inspiration as we can get our eyes on; we look at design trends, folk patterns, vintage kitchenware, etc. Then we filter that through the parameters of our process and ideas for things we want to make. We go from a sketch, to a mechanical drawing to the jeweler’s bench. Usually we build a quick prototype before we get to work on the original model. The decision making process while making the prototype is where the ‘art’ process happens; responding the weight, look, feel and balance of the actual piece. This more than any other step in the process informs the final outcome.
What are your favorite materials to work with?
Metal. Gold is best, but who can afford. So we work with brass and copper.
Do you have a favorite color palette?
Earthy, fall colors.
Who are some of your favorite indie artist/crafters and why do you love them?
One canoe two letterpress, dbo home, xenia taler, girls can tell. We love graphics with handmade spirit, and ceramics with beautiful glazes. Also love the organic loveliness of dbo home.
Any exciting future plans or developments in the works for your business? (Nothing TOP-SECRET, of course!)
Pretty much doing the same thing, as we kind of love working for ourselves and creating cool things. It would be nice to be doing it in a studio that was a bit warmer in the winter, and have more fun tools. We love metal, but we have lots of ideas for non-metal things that we want to make, so branching out into new materials is on the list. Also, selling your own work takes a lot of time, which requires a lot of administration – I think we would both rather be doing more creating and less bookkeeping in the near future.
What are some other things you like to do when you are not busy making awesome stuff?
We used to spend way, way too much time fixing up our house. But now we’d rather sit on the porch and have a beer & some snacks. We both like to ride our bikes (Jim races mtb & cyclocross, and Sandra says rides so she can eat more cheese without feeling guilty). Sandra still makes jewelry for fun and Jim’s restoring a 1985 Honda scooter. Which, now that we think about it, is still metalworking…
We also like going to flea-markets to get inspired by cool, strange, and beautiful old tools and kitchen gadgets.
What are the top 3 reasons someone shopping at the BBB 2012 should be sure to stop by your table?
How many other people are actual metalsmiths in the 21st century other than us? Our stuff is modern, but still has a nice vintage appeal. Pretty timeless stuff really. And people love it, they really do. Your gift recipient will be truly happy and appreciative.
What is your favorite background noise to listen to while working?
The credit card machine batching out. Kidding. Pretty much anything on NRP.
Where do you (craft) work?
Our 3000 sq foot studio in Fall Rivah, Ma
What advice would you give to a new vendor selling at the BBB for the first time?
Bring snacks, lots of change, and don’t make boring stuff. Be skilled at what you do.