Location: Victoria, BC
Member Since: 2021
Christine Rio is Canadian jewelry designer based on the West Coast in Victoria, BC. Launching Slate Jewelry in 2016, she handcrafts small batch metalwork pieces of wearable art that strike a balance between classic minimalism and luxurious details. Outside of the usual jewelry categories of “fine” or “fashion,” Christine’s contemporary work stands on its own, giving voice to her organic “modern relic,” style, blending modern lines with a sense of found objects.
After several years of exploring different themes and techniques in jewelry making, I launched Slate Jewelry in 2016 at Vancouver Fashion Week. The name Slate Jewelry comes from the beginning process of creating. A blank slate – whether it be a blank sheet of paper to sketch out the logistics of a piece that I have been imagining, or the actual blank piece of sheet metal that I am ready to cut and shape. Each piece is drawn and cut by hand. I do not have die-cutters or a hydraulic press. I texture and form everything through hammering, annealing, forging. Each piece is an individual. I use simple tools. I believe my clientele recognizes and appreciates my attention to detail and time-honoured techniques. They know that they are buying something that is made with passion. It is important for me to infuse each design with a sense of movement, a myriad of details and a hearkening back to history. With a degree in Classical Studies, and a love for ancient artisans, I like my work to evoke a vintage aura or celebrate an old-style technique, but this is coupled with a clean and modern sense of design. Simple and striking silhouettes, minimalist structures can be coupled with lush gemstones and burnished tones. I call this style, “modern relic.” This combination can present quite a dichotomy in the pieces, but I feel that these unexpected couplings create a unique perspective that is both artful and timeless. I am not interested in making accessories to suit a fashion trend. I want my work to last.