There’s a saying in life that goes: ‘What’s meant for you will find you.’ And in Tanya’s case that certainly seems true when it comes to her brooching journey. A long-time Erstwildian (who admittedly found us by accident!) Tanya epitomises all the reasons why we do what we do, collecting pieces that spark joy for both her and those around her, along with connecting and giving back to the beautiful community of fellow like-minded broochies that exist online and in real life.
Read on to learn more about how Tanya discovered her first brooch, her favourite designs, and her heartwarming Erstwilder journey to date.
1) Which design was your first Erstwilder piece?
My first-ever piece was a bit of an accident. I had a hard time at work one random day in 2012 and decided to go and peruse a small gift shop near the office before heading home. I became transfixed by this small bird brooch in a pretty box. She was red and cream and had a beautiful script on her body, Anouk’s Lost Letter! Never having worn a brooch before, I almost felt silly buying it; little did I know it would spark a passion that ramped up around 2017 and has continued ever since.
2) Which piece is your absolute favourite and why?
Oh, this is a hard one. I would probably say Pebbles the Pug, because even though she is a girl, she reminds me so much of my pug boy Rolly, who has brought the greatest abundance of love, snuggles and happiness to my house.
3) Which design sparks joy?
Probably Chaz the Chinchilla. I think him to be the most underrated brooch in all Erstwilder history, yet it is the one that makes me smile the most when I peek into my brooch drawers. He is purple, he has a hat, he is ready to party. What’s not to love?!
4) Which design gets complimented the most?
I am almost hesitant to say this, because the answer isn’t a brooch, but a rather fun pair of earrings. The Cherry Kiss earrings from the Mimsy collab have attracted more than their fair share of comments and compliments. Usually, the comments come from random strangers which makes me giggle. They are just so infinitely wearable, and I love that the cherries are hearts./
5) Which design do you wear the most?
Going to be a pain and not entirely commit here. My faves to wear are your bugs: Nature's Nocturne, Melodic Moments Cicada, the Summer Songstress Cicada earrings, and I also think the Reticulated Rebel snail design in both small and large is such a wearable brooch. Can I also add that I am a huge fan of ALL Erstwilder floral pieces?
6) Why do you like to wear brooches?
Originally it was a way to get excited about getting dressed for work. I had a job I was very unhappy in and planning my outfits ahead of time with a focus on matching a brooch really helped. I also love how your pieces are conversation starters and smile makers. When I wear a brooch out shopping, I can always count on someone asking, 'Where did I get that pretty badge?' I usually let the 'badge' bit slide, but I am always quick to tell them ERSTWILDER!
7) Anything else you’d like to mention?
My very favourite part of brooching is the online community of broochies I have luckily found. Real life and online friendships have been forged purely through the love of brooching! I have had people I have never met raise me up at times when I needed it the most, had online friends assist in finding ISO (in search of) pieces, and even been gifted a couple of brooches that are virtually impossible to buy. I can only hope that I have repaid my share of love and kindness back to the community I so enjoy being a part of.
8) Top 10 EW brooches of all time?
I sneakily snuck a necklace in there, purely because it is a sentimental one for me and reminds me of my grandparents, who had a statue of two pears that sat in their kitchen window all my childhood. It now sits in mine as a reminder of love and unity.
Pebbles the Pug
Reticulated Rebel Brooc
Chaz the Chinchilla Brooch
Heartfelt Hydrangea Brooch
Moe the Monkey Lover Brooch
Hum of the Gum Brooch
Compare the Pear Statement Necklace
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