Introducing PhotoJewelry, How my Wearable Art Comes to Life

Wearable art also known as “Artwear” is a fusion between visual arts and fashion, each artist has his or her own particular niche, choosing to integrate in their fashion elements of nature, cinema, theatre or painting. 

At coolgemsjewelry my Artwear aligns on photography, most often but not exclusively photograph of nature or close-up of interesting materials. 

My personal process consist in interpreting photograph into jewelry, trying to capture the overall feel, composition and colours of the photograph. The resulting piece of jewelry is then posted here side by side with the photograph that inspired it. This type of Artwear will appeal to those looking for an unconventional and unique piece of jewelry that has a story to tell.

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Mossy tree Inspiration

Inspiration photo for the coolgems moss necklaces.

The Story

The beautiful frothy moss on the trees was the only green in the woods, striking against the branche’s brown. The closer I got the more intricate and delicately complex it looked. The path was icy and I carefully slip-slided to get the best possible shooting angle. I pointed my phone to one patch of green then another looking for a way to capture the light on the branches, I finally snapped some pictures in a rapid succession and I knew right there that this “mossy tree” would be my next necklace design project. little did I know that this photograph would inspire more than one design!

creative Process

Coming up with a new design is the most consuming part of the project. Once you have a somewhat clear idea of how you want to proceed, there is the search for the beads , spacers, clasp etc...This means long stretches of time rummaging in my bead storage as well as numerous back and forth trips between the work table and the supplies storage. 

This time having already worked out the theme and gathered all the items, it dawned on me that it would be more efficient to make more than one and to work the same theme in different styles: modern, classic and boho/ethnic.


For these necklaces and earrings, I chose to use rosewood beads to evoque the dark tones of the gree trunk and a combination of green period chips and green/yellow Jade both in beads and chips which nicely mimicked the color and texture of the moss.

I also decide to ise Tiger eye rectangular gemstones in the moder. Style necklace to lend a sense of modern geometrical lines.

“Mossy Tree” Necklaces -Variations on a Theme

Boho/Ethnic Style

Classic Style Version

Classic Style Version

Four strands boho/ethnic style necklace inspired by a photograph of moss. Peridot, jade, rosewood.

Classic Style Version

Classic Style Version

Classic Style Version

Three strands classic style necklace inspired by a photograph of moss Peridot, jade, rosewood.

Modern Style Version

Classic Style Version

Necklace details -side

Two strands modern style necklace inspired by a photograph of moss Peridot, jade, rosewood.

Necklace details -side

Necklace Details - Modern

Necklace details -side

Details, moss inspired necklace.

Necklace detail- Classic

Necklace Details - Modern

Necklace Details - Modern

Details, moss inpired necklace

Necklace Details - Modern

Necklace Details - Modern

Necklace Details - Modern

Moss inspired necklace, details

Spring Snow Necklace

Spring Snow Necklace white crackle crystal beads and peridot chips. Photojewelry

The story

I live in Edmonton, Alberta where the weather can be truly wild as we’ve seen snow in August! This snow though was a spring storm that hit us right at the beginning of spring when the grass was already green and trees were flowering. I found the contrast between the white snow and the green grass so pretty i had to snap a photo! Later reviewing my photos I thought that making a necklace to illustrate this would be fun; so here it is, a “Spring Snow” necklace ! I do hope you like this wearable snap shot of nature and the way it keeps surprising us.

Happy Shopping!

Creative Process

I find that what works best for me is to start by understanding the overall colours and compositions of the photograph, this allows me to select the beads based on the colours that most fit the subject. The white rock crystal beads were perfect to represent the snow so I went with these. For the grass along with colour i needed something that would also replicate the rough structure of grass poking thru the snow; chips beads in peridot and citrine did in my opinion a beautiful work of that.


  Snow” “Spring triple strand necklace with graduated white frosted rock quartz beads, Citrine and Peridot gemstones chips. 

 “Spring Snow” Necklace $199

“ A Walk in The Park” Necklace

bold  five rows statement necklace gemstones mix. Coolgems jewelry art wear design

The Story

A walk in the park with my dogs was the starting point for this necklace. It snowed that morning and the snow was still fluffy and bright. Although very familiar to me, this park always takes on a different feel at the beginning of winter. Coming upon a wild mountain ash tree , I noticed the beautiful clusters of red berries capped with snow and stopped to take a photograph. That photo inspired the “Walk in The Park” Necklace.

I like that this necklace is bold and has “substance”, even though it is a five rows necklace it is still very wearable but definitely not for the faint of heart! in my opinion it is not a “statement” piece but definitely a conversation one!

Creative Process

At first, I truly did not know where to start this project, I wanted to capture the snow, the berries, the branches, I wanted to get the whole scene! It took a while and the discipline to constantly go back to the photo, determine what was necessary and eliminate the details. Finally I learned to “clean my visual perception” and look at the photo from a perspective of lines, movement and light. 

The branches were almost horizontal, with the berries underneath, the tree trunk on the right was the one vertical dark zone and finally the snow was everywhere with an emphasis on the center of the picture. Et voila! I had the necklace structure in place. 

Gemstones & Wood

 note: I came to jewelry making after working with wood and as a testimony to my love of wood I found it fitting to cut and hand shape wood separators for this necklace. 

Gemstones: Matte frosted Agate, Montana Agates, Tiger Eye, Rock Crystal chips, faceted Red Garnet. 

Wood: The separators are hand cut in Wenge Hardwood.

I hope you like my “Walk in the Park” necklace.

“A Walk in the Park” necklace $288

Forget-Me-Not Necklace

Coolgems jewelry art wear genuine turquoise, mother of pearl periodt

The Story

Summer is such a short season here in Alberta and I await any flower bloom with high anticipation. Aside for being in love with gemstones, as a gardener I also look at these blooms as being very special gems, fleeting and fragile in contrast to gemstones. For that reason I felt that I needed to somehow fix in time the quaint beauty of the Forget-Me-Not blooms by creating this necklace. I find that even in gemstones it does convey their beauty and fragile presence. I do hope you like it.

Happy shopping!

Creative Process

For this project I wanted to reproduce the softness of the Forget-Me-Not flowers both in texture and color, after several trials, blue and white (white to reproduce the change in light and various hues) smooth Turquoise and Mother-Of-Pearl turned out to be the right choice. Green peridot chips for the leaves was in my opinion the obvious choice and worked nicely with the agate by creating a lush background to the blue and white. Finally a light sprinkling of purple amethyst chips brought some lu


Smooth Turquoise gemstones, Mother-Of-Pearl, Peridot and Amethyst chip beads

“Forget-Me-Not” necklace $99

“Thru The Grapevine” Necklace and Earrings

Coolgems jewelry art wear necklace green peridot and amethyst.

The Story

Should you ask, yes! grapevine does grow in Alberta, although not the lush fruit heavy type. Optimist as ever, I planted one a couple of years ago right at the back of my house on my neighbour’s advice to “find a sheltered sunny spot along a wall”. 

It did survive the first winter, died back on the second and the last time I checked at the end of this summer it is still alive and leafy but alas no grapes yet!

So this evocation of a grapevine is born from a trip to British Columbia, Canada where all fruits grow and wineries abound. 

This grapevine is the one the gardener in me resorted to “grow” in waiting for better (real) fruiting times! 

Creative Process

I wanted to evoke the plumpness of the fruits and the translucence of grapes at the peak of their sweetness. The necklace had to be in a “rope” shape to represent the roughness of the wine trunk and branches and as always Peridot chip beads never fails to nicely illustrate green leaves.


Green Peridot Chips, Amethyst and Tibetan Gold spacers.

“Thru the Grapevine” Necklace and Earrings: $99


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Cool Gems Jewelry

Edmonton, Alberta, Canada