Artists ~ Melissa Murray ~ Woonsocket

Artist’s name: Melissa Murray
Business name: The Opulent Squid
Location: Le Moulin Artisan Market, 68 South Main St, Woonsocket RI 02895
Etsy shop:
Google Plus:

1. Tell us about your work
I love creating extravagant and quirky one a kind statement jewelry. Glass beads, wire and vintage components have always been the staples for my jewelry making but over the last several months I have started experimenting with wood, paper, ink and vintage images.

2. How did you come to be a professional artist/crafter?
I come from an entire family of artists and artisans and I've always been creative. As I worked the daily grind just trying to get by with the many unfulfilling jobs I had over the years I somehow lost touch with my creative side. I discovered jewelry making a few years ago and I fell in love with it. I started selling on Etsy as for fun and over the past three years it has grown from a hobby into my full time job!

3. Where do you draw your inspiration?
Science definitely influences my art. Biology and zoology and mythology are often the basis for my work but I also love using vintage components and interesting medals and charms. My shop is in this really great space in an old mill in Woonsocket that doubles as my studio. I love working in in the natural light from the huge old windows surrounded by old beams and exposed brick. It's easy to get creative when I'm in such a beautiful space.

Sacred OHM charm earrings

4. What’s your favorite item to make?
My paper ephemera necklaces featuring vintage animal images on bright patterned paper are my new obsession. I've also started stamping on paper and wood and I have a line of 80's inspired necklaces that are super fun to make. I love just rocking out to my 80's station on Pandora and coming up with really fun song titles for my pieces.

Playtpus ephemera necklace

5. What’s your best seller?
My best selling items on Etsy are definitely my bronze triquetra necklaces and my St Benedict bracelets. At my brick and mortar shop I've been selling a lot of my Woonsocket Rocket necklaces since I first debuted them a month ago. Of course, my shop is in Woonsocket!

Woonsocket Rocket necklace

6. How long have you been in Rhode Island?
I'm Lil Rhody born and raised but I moved away for about 14 years. I've lived all over the country and moved back to RI a little over two years ago and couldn't be happier to be back. I just love it here. It's home.

7. What do you {heart} about Rhode Island?
Oh, so many things! I missed the ocean for so many years so I try to get to the beach as often as possible to make up for lost time! Once you get me in the water I never want to come out. But I also missed the little things that you can't get anywhere else; clam cakes, Del's, coffee milk. The little stuff I took for granted as a kid. We have some of the best restaurants in the country here. You never, ever have to eat at a chain restaurant for lack of choice like you do in a lot of other places in this country. And of course, there's my family and my two longtime bff's. They're the reasons I moved back. I just couldn't live away from them anymore.


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