A Conversation With the Heart and Soul of Lotus & Bay
Interview led by: Olivia Revoredo | @bbgpaperco
Today, we are excited to introduce you to Tori Lovegrove, the heart and soul behind Lotus & Bay Jewellery. She is a local maker from Toronto, who grew up in the beauty of Collingwood, but has found her way down to the big city. Her pieces continuously inspire and connect with women all over Ontario and beyond. Tori and I were first coworkers a few years ago, and we have been inseparable ever since. Her positivity is infectious and her intentions are pure - and those are very special gifts.
Hello Tori! Thank you for taking part in our Embrace The Blues initiative. Tell us about yourself and Lotus & Bay!
My name is Tori Lovegrove. I like my days short, nights long, music loud, coffee black, skies pink, and love strong. I am the face behind Lotus & Bay Jewellery. I am currently a fourth year Psychology/Sociology student at Ryerson University in downtown Toronto. My passions lie within the 4 walls of women's studies, counselling, therapy through yoga and of course, jewellery making. When I create with my own 2 hands, I feel an immediate and deep sense of ease. Making jewellery has become less of a career but more so, a lifestyle of artistic expression and pleasure.
When you say that Lotus & Bay creates “intentional” pieces, what does that mean to you, and how do you want people to feel when they wear your jewellery?
I cannot stress enough how deeply I aspire Lotus & Bay Jewellery to embody less of a material item, but rather the beauty of intention. By this, I believe in each piece of jewellery as solely an expression of a mental devotion that we make to ourselves, upon purchase. Everyday, we set goals. Come January of every year, we set resolutions. These visions that we create for ourselves exist only in the future that we fail to ultimately reach. By setting an intention, as opposed to setting a resolution or a goal, we live in the present, without discussion regarding what the future may hold for us. Each piece of jewellery is made entirely out of 925 Sterling Silver and authentic crystal. When we pair authentic intention with authentically made jewellery, it becomes effortless for an intention to gain truth when our jewellery has no expiry date. My dream is to find my pieces worn by women who refer to their jewellery as a reminder of their intention, rather than an accessory. For women to feel secure within themselves and to be able to say I've Got This is simply all that I could ever ask for.
Can you tell us more about how Collingwood uniquely inspires your creations?
I spent my first 18 years on earth living smack in between the hill and the bay. I climbed trees, hit the ski slopes by age 2 and more often than not, ran around with sand in my bikini bottoms. It was here just West of Collingwood at the base of Blue Mountain, that my endless love for nature began. My mom and I would spend our days at Northwinds Beach walking the shore and collecting various pieces of beach glass, stones and shells. My obsession for earth's elements grew out of those days, along with my fascination towards the idea that earth offers such beautiful gifts naturally, like a snowflake from the sky or a rainbow post-storm.
How do you get inspired in both places when they are so different? How do you find solace and peace in Toronto? How do you find diversity and difference in Collingwood?
My heart quite literally belongs in both places at once. From a young age, I knew by visiting Toronto that I would choose to study there. Little did I know however, how much knowledge I would gain outside of the university walls. By studying Sociology, I am able to observe all aspects of society within the fast pace of Toronto, while making comparisons and drawing connections to the slow pace of Collingwood. Nothing inspires me more than the people of Toronto. Honestly, I have never experienced such a driven population of individuals who are so unique from one another, yet share the same value towards authenticity, artistic expression, individualism and passion. It is here that I have truly gained a thirst for what is not dry in this world. When in Collingwood, inspiration seems to lie within the flow of rivers, dense forestry, fresh water and pure air. It is here that I find peace within the untouched. Collingwood has the ability to express the authenticity of Toronto individuals, through the genuine authenticity of nature itself. Both persist in the most raw of ways, and as a team they complete the inspiration behind Lotus & Bay.
I love how you incorporate raw stones and their energetic properties into your pieces. Is there a stone that you always gravitate towards? What elements of it make you so connected to it?
Head to toe, I am Aquamarine. As a person, I am calm and easy going, with a vast and ever growing urge to dive deeper. I go with the flow and I take things as they are. I was born on July 4th, and therefore represent that of a water sign, Cancer. I naturally gravitate towards crystals of blue and 9/10 times, that blue crystal is Aquamarine. I cannot explain precisely how this crystal makes me feel, but I know that it is responsible for both the aesthetic of my business and the soul in all that I do.
Are there ever times that you feel so connected to a piece that it’s hard to let go of?
Absolutely. Often this connection is dependant on the context of how the piece has come into my life. Jewellery travels until it finds a forever home. I have always looked at jewellery as if it has a mind and soul of it's own, often reminding loved ones that if a piece of their jewellery has gone missing, it means that they must no longer need the energetic assistance of that piece, and that it has moved on to nourish another soul. I mean this when I say, do not ignore this connection, as your new piece of jewellery is not meant to fill space in your jewellery box as a material item, but it is in contrast, trying to fill an empty space in your heart.
I love how you incorporate female empowerment and your educational experiences into your everyday mentality. How does this directly effect your creation process and your pieces?
I love this question. I tend to shape a lifestyle around how I choose to fill my time. Whether I am making jewellery, studying social science or practicing yoga, I live by fulfilling all elements of each, while taking part in each activity. When passionate about something, I believe in the importance of nourishing that passion by investing time into it. When I make jewellery, I solely create in a positive atmosphere and at this time, is when the creative juices truly start to flow.
From your visual story on social media, it’s really clear that you gravitate towards hues of blue. What about this colour makes you so connected to it?
For myself, the colour blue means happiness. Blue supplies a sense of calm and release. Blues, in any tone, have always brought deep relaxation and flow. When looking at a painting of mixed blue tones, I feel an alleviation of pain, and an induction of peace. Blue is emotional for me. It demands to be felt and I surrender to the feeling every single time I encounter it.
Has the colour taken on any other meaningful attributes or memories throughout your life?
Every morning until age 18, I would wake up and directly gaze out my bedroom window at Georgian Bay. The tone of blue water would shift daily and by the hour. There was a strong sense of security in knowing that every day, the bay would be there. For that reason and that reason only, blue means bay and therefore, blue means home.