Colorful, vibrant and cultural describes Aye Shanti and her unique jewelry.
CGR: Who is Aye Shanti Designs?
Aye Shanti: I’m Shanti and I’m the creator of Aye Shanti Designs. I’ve been artistic from the age of ten and started creating jewelry, stationery and mixed media art on a larger scale since 2008.
CGR: How long have you been creating pieces?
Aye Shanti: I’ve been creating pieces since 2008
CGR: Do you have any formal training in design?
Aye Shanti: I’m partly self-taught and I’ve taken classes in jewelry design.
CGR: Your pieces are bright and vibrant. Do you have a favorite?
Aye Shanti: My favorite piece, thus far are the fabric necklaces, “Wrapped in Culture”. I designed these pieces in 2009 and wanted to find a way to use fabric as a wearable piece of art. I called it “Wrapped In Culture”, because it’s literally that, pieces of fabrics from around the world and fashioned into a necklace. I’ve recently included some of my hand printed fabrics, which includes custom hand lettering, another passion of mine.
CGR: What’s your favorite color and why?
Aye Shanti: I don’t have a favorite color but I do have a favorite color palette which is the combination of colors in a sunset. It’s a deep pink with hints of peach to mango like orange and vibrant purples. Oh wait, also GOLD! Gold brings me life!
CGR: Who inspires you?
Aye Shanti: My mother, Ruth Vincent, is my biggest inspiration. She has always been a woman of style and loves fashion. Even though she’s been a nurse all of her life, she’s always been creative from sewing, crocheting and taught my sister and our first creative skills.
CGR: What’s one word that best describes you?
Aye Shanti: Passionate
CGR: Has living in New York influenced you as a designer?
Aye Shanti: Living in New York has definitely influenced me as a designer from the eclectic communities and urban landscapes. New York city, especially Brooklyn is the mecca for art, culture and fashion. There’s a beautiful blending of the world right here, from the music, the aroma from the restaurants and street art. The streets are our museums and runways.
CGR: Do you have any fond memories of visiting Grenada?
Aye Shanti: Yes, I have fond memories of visiting Grenada and the Caribbean. My sister and I used to wonder why we didn’t travel to Disney World in the summer but my mother insisted on these trips “back home” as a way for us to learn more about our culture and to appreciate the connections to our grandparents. We would sometimes travel 3-4 times a year and it was magical. Being surrounded by the lush green life, visiting the rivers, lakes and ocean and kept me connected to my Caribbean culture. I played my first mas in Grenada, loved j’ouvert, shelling peas for granny, pounding lambi on the back porch, getting mangoes from the back yard and living a country life. I’m so thankful for those memories.
CGR: What is your favorite island dish?
Aye Shanti: I love OilDown!!