Barb Nahwegahbow is an Ojibway woman, born and raised on the Whitefish River First Nation, Manitoulin Island in northern Ontario. She began designing jewellery several years ago and is largely self-taught. Having lived in Toronto for many years, her designs are influenced both by the urban environment and the more natural environment in which she grew up.
Barb loves to both wear and design bold and unique pieces that combine unexpected components. In her designs, she uses semi-precious and precious gemstones and combines them with wood, nuts and seeds, or porcelain, hand-felted or metal accent pieces. She also uses gold, silver, brass and copper as well as vintage finds from flea markets. The artistry in her use of materials results in unique pieces that are wearable art.
Her work has been featured in several fashion shows in the GTA. She loves showcasing and selling her jewellery at high-end shows in the city, and she’s also a firm believer in creating her own marketing opportunities. With a couple of artist friends, she founded Indigenous & Ingenious show – a place where discerning Toronto shoppers could buy authentic, original, Aboriginal art and her handmade one of a kind jewellery. In May 2015, Barb hosted her own month-long Blue Dawn Jewellery Pop-Up Shop. More of these in the works.