Liberty Alumna Returns to Campus to Share Crafting Skills With Students

Looking for a unique gift for someone special in your life? Seed and Soil is a small, California-based company that specializes in handmade botanical jewelry. 

The owner of Seed and Soil, Whitney Pope, arrived at Liberty to lead a workshop  Nov. 4 on how to create botanical jewelry. Student activities organized the class.  Held in the LaHaye event space, the class consisted of 24 people, and each workstation was socially distanced. The small number of people allowed for adequate assistance to be given to each person and for students to help each other. Attendees were sorted into two groups to learn each component of the workshop. 

Pope gave a step-by-step process for making the jewelry, instructing students how to mix the resin, make the necklace chain and assemble other important components. She explained how resin, a two-part compound, must be mixed together in order to work, and she went around making sure all the guests were doing it well. 

Students were shown how to make the chain of the necklace, how to pour the resin and how to place the flowers in the resin to form  a pendant. 

Each step is part of Pope’s tried-and-true method rooted in experience, and she gave students the “tips and tricks” they needed to create beautiful jewelry, such as not allowing fingerprints to get on the tape, since any imperfections on the tape could be transferred to the jewelry.  

Coffee was served during the event, creating a cozy atmosphere of quiet concentration. 

Pope is a Lynchburg native and Liberty alumna. During her time at Liberty, Pope explained, she started making jewelry as a “creative outlet” while pursuing her degree in paralegal studies. 

“The paralegal studies were on the legal, analytical side of my brain. This is my creative outlet,” Pope said. “I started playing with resin and botanicals, and it led to me making a business out of it.” 

After graduating from college, Pope left for California, where she grew her business Seed and Soil. 

“Moving to California really helped to organically grow my business. It went from being my side gig to my main business,” Pope said.

Pope expressed her excitement over being back on campus, teaching something in the same place she graduated. She also held other events in Lynchburg, including other jewelry making workshops. 

Seed and Soil can be found on Facebook and Instagram @seedandsoil_shop.

Hynst is a feature writer.

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