Colour Theory at NYC Jewelry Week

November 17 - 20, 2023 | Industry City Makers Guild in Brooklyn, NY

Co-Adorn asked its members to explore Colour Theory for its sixth annual exhibition. The exhibition posed the question to Canadian jewellery artists: What does colour theory mean to you? What role does colour theory play in your work?

Pendants were the jewellery form of choice for the 33 participating artists but this year there was an extra requirement … all participants had to use the same natural cotton cord as a starting point. The results were polychromatic, "exploring the visual language of colour".


Cotton and hibiscus dye necklace. Made by Victoria Sanchez


Hand Laboratory was pleased to be invited to participate. My choice was to produce a piece that consisted of solely the cotton provided, rearranged by braiding the thin cotton strands.

After considering the ways in which I could alter the colour of the cotton directly, I  decided to utilize the subtle colours given to us by nature, specifically the light pink from Hibiscus flowers. I also used fire to alter the material and add depth to the colour.

While deciding how to approach the theme of colour, several topics emerged for me. Natural vs artificial, presence and absence of colour, my lived experience as person of colour, reflection and absorption, and historical sources like this beautiful 1821 guidebook of colour. Colour Theory provided me with an exhibition opportunity and new ideas worth exploring.

Title: Sit back, relax.
Year: 2022
Material: Cotton, Hibiscus natural dye


Established in 2017, Co-Adorn Art Jewellery has grown to be a thriving, innovative, membership-based network of Canadian jewellery artists working to build community through social events, workshops, and exhibition opportunities.