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Rosengard, Susan

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2210 S. Halsted St.
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Website: Under the Wire Gallery

I started Sue Rosengard Jewelry Design, Ltd. in 1986 in New York City after I received a B.A. in French from the University of Illinois, including a year of study in Paris and Italy. My jewelry education is primarily self-taught. My first jewelry making class was in New York at the New School. It was a 2-week intensive course that met at night for 3 hours. I knew immediately I had found "my calling." I continued with classes at various adult-ed venues. Shortly thereafter I returned to my hometown of Chicago and started making jewelry full-time.

My studio is located in an industrial section of the Pilsen neighborhood of Chicago. Also referred to as the Chicago Arts District, it has been home to artistsÃ'Æ'¢Ã'¢â€...¡Ã‚¬Ã'¢â€...¾Ã‚¢ studios and lofts for over 35 years. My 2000 square foot studio occupies an entire 2 story building that is believed to have been built in the 1880s shortly after the Chicago Fire.

I have always tried to create affordable, well-crafted and well-designed jewelry that appeals to all ages. The contemporary geometric shapes are designed to flatter the face or lapel of the wearer while being lightweight and easy to wear Ã'Æ'¢Ã'¢â€...¡Ã‚¬Ã'¢â‚¬Ã...â€" and timeless. I suspect my inspiration partly comes from growing up in Chicago among the skyscrapers and Frank Lloyd Wright influences. The designers of the modernist era (1940-1960) have also been significant Ã'Æ'¢Ã'¢â€...¡Ã‚¬Ã'¢â‚¬Ã...â€" jewelers Margaret de Patta and Paul Lobel, sculptor Alexander Calder, and Russell Wright.

On the technical side, my line uses sterling, vermeil and a few plated components. The ear posts are sterling; ear wires and chains are sterling or gold-filled. I saw, cut, drill stamp and do a lot of wire forming by hand to achieve my designs. All of the wire forming is done by hand without the use of forms or jigs - just simple hand tools.

My goal is to have my customers wear a piece of jewelry that complements their own style and personality.
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