The Designer and Maker
Victoria (Vika) Bulgakova is internationally exhibiting award winning artist, jewelry designer, and metalsmith. Originally from Ukraine, a New Yorker for 22 years, and currently based in Detroit. Visit this site to see the larger scale conceptual works in bronze, copper, and brass.
Process and Materials
I make my jewelry pieces by hand, employing methods such as lost wax casting and fabricating directly in precious metals. All jewelry on this website is made in Detroit and New York.
Now, while something can be made in one place, most of the time the materials for making are obtained and prepared elsewhere. And nowadays, "elsewhere" is literally, the entire planet. Just like the piece of clothes we wear that is a composite of fabric, color pigments, and labor that come from various parts of the world, the jewelry is also a composite of metal alloys, metal elements (findings), stones, and labor that often come from places which couldn't be further apart.
It is very important to me that the materials I use are either recycled or responsibly sourced, and fully traceable. So, I make it a point to obtain them from vendors with proper certifications and full transparency (my list of vendors is available upon request). It is also extremely important to me to employ only local help, ensure that people work in great conditions, and are being very fairly compensated for their efforts. All of these inevitably result in higher costs and prices. But I simply cannot run a business otherwise. My product is for people who care as much as I do.
Being environmentally conscious is another commitment I strongly adhere to. I repurpose all my materials and tools, responsibly dispose of my production waste, and turn to more natural and environmentally friendly alternatives to harsh chemicals conventionally used in jewelry making process.
I personally hand pick the stones for each piece and work with lapidary directly when the stone needs to be custom cut.