Cindy Silva

Jewelry Artist

Jewelry Artist Cindy Silva considers herself a true apple knocker, having grown up on a farm in Baroda, MI. Perhaps a childhood spent outdoors inspired her relocation to the U.P. in 1987. With West Ishpeming’s scenic wilderness as her backyard for more than 30 years, and as the place in which she raised her three kids, Silva never lacks the natural materials required to create her jewelry pieces. And like many artists, Silva’s passion for her craft is inspired by her long career in a seemingly unrelated field. Silva proves that her work as a rehab tech goes hand in hand with creativity. In fact, her work – she’s experienced PT, OT, TR and Peds – has directly influenced her own creativity, as she’s witnessed first hand the internal healing power of creativity, of using one’s hands and mind to bring something to fruition. It is this natural pairing of therapy and creativity, the vast natural resources lain before her and the uninhibited, unending ideas of her nine grandchildren that provide Silva a constant stream of motivation. In fact, Silva’s grandchildren stand behind her life philosophy: view the grandeur of life from a child’s eye. Her youthful outlook and humble character lend themselves effortlessly to Silva’s vintage jewelry. Above all, Silva, in work and in craft, strives to make people feel good and important.

Silva’s pieces begin with natural materials – gemstones, birch bark, Lake Superior agates, recycled wine corks. For her birch bark barrettes, Silva looks for firewood piles. Once she’s collected the dry pieces of bark, she washes it and cuts the bark wet to fit the barrette clip. Silva calls on a special family friend, and rock hound, when she’s in need of agates. Finding some too special to put on a barrette, Silva showcases these unique ones as a necklace focal point.

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