At Scout we are inspired by people who create. We recently scouted ceramic artist and jewelry designer Melissa Pavlovic (who will be showing her work at Got Craft in a few short weeks from now) and we tracked her down to ask her a few questions.
Melissa is behind Poodlebreath – a contemporary line of porcelain jewelry, sculptures and tableware. She recently obtained her Visual Arts Dergree from Emily Carr University of Art and Design, and went on to start a ceramic business from her home studio in Vancouver. Inspired by nature, Melissa’s work combines her love of animals and antiquities to create eye-catching porcelain heirlooms.
Three things about your neighborhood that make you want to live there: I live in East Van, near the industrial water front. I love the smell of the ocean in my neighborhood and the tree-lined streets blooming with cherry blossoms in the spring. But most of all I love living within such a creative grassroots community- full of artists, designers and musicians.
Vancouver shop that carries your wares: I have an etsy shop and can be found locally in Gastown at NouvelleNouvelle and Dream, also at the new Dream location on Granville Island in the Net Loft, and Twigg & Hottie on Main Street.
Where do you enjoy shopping in Vancouver: (For supplies?) In the summer I love riding my bike through East Van and browsing random Garage Sales. I also frequent Dressew and A Bakers Dozen on Main St. (For clothing?) I love to support hand-made clothing which I find at local craft fairs. A few of my favourite stores are Front, Spank, Eugene Choo and Twigg&Hottie on Main St., and NouvelleNouvelle, Hunt&Gather and Dream in Gas Town. (For jewelry?) I can’t resist buying jewelry from craft shows, where I can meet the designers and learn something about the story behind each piece. I also collect rare pieces from small antiques stores, and love driving to small towns to find undiscovered treasures.
Is there a local designer who you admire? I have a growing collection of little houses clothing made by one of my most talented friends, Shanah Lewis. Shanah and I started our etsy stores together and have supported each-other along the way. I am constantly inspired by her creative drive and positive outlook.
What inspires you? I am endlessly inspired by nature, animals, antiques, my dog, Jim Hensen, taxidermy, Folklore, Canadiana, road trips, travel, movies, memories of childhood and nostalgia.
Tell us about your favourite space to work: I work in the second bedroom of my apartment which opens on to a patio with a view of the ocean. I have surrounded myself with images and objects of inspiration, so that my studio feels like a giant sketchbook.
What is your favourite Poodlebreath design right now? I am most fond of my Sinking Fairy Tale Pendant. I think it is probably the most unique thing I have made so far. When you wear it, it looks as though a little ghostly hand is reaching out from your chest.
What sort of music do you listen to when you are working? Lately I’ve been listening to Belle Orchestra, Beirut, Frank Black, Arcade Fire, Songs: Ohia, Phosphorescent, Iron and Wine, and Nico.
Is there an upcoming Vancouver event that you look forward to attending or taking part in? I’m really looking forward to the Gotcraft event coming up on May 3rd, it will be the first time I show my work there.
Why is Vancouver a good city for indie design? I think a lot of the design in Vancouver is influenced by our proximity to nature. I didn’t really notice it until I travelled to other major cities, but there is definitly a laid back West Coast eco feel to much of the work here, especially in fashion.
What are your future plans for Poodlebreath? My plan for poodlebreath is to keep it small and intuitive and find more time to create original sculptures.
What gives with the name “Poodlebreath” ?
I have a nine year old chocolate lab named Chai. She is a princess, who is convinced she is human, but she also loves to eat garbage. Due to these inherent contradictions in her personality I started calling her poodlebreath. When I was trying to think of a name for my etsy store, my boyfriend- who is a hugely talented songwriter and musician- suggested that I call it poodlebreath. I complied at first in a joking manner, and was forced to stand behind my bad sense of humor once I started handing out business cards and approaching stores as poodlebreath.
If you were to choose one of your creations to send to the queen, which one would you choose? I would definitely have to say a white porcelain teapot brooch.