Eva Saunders


Courtesy the artist

Eva Saunders is an up-and-coming beader who was born in Kuujjuaq, Nunavik, QC, and is currently living in Montreal, QC. Saunders loves to create and experiment with detailed beadwork, such as beaded earrings, slippers, and beaded tongues. She began selling her beadwork through local Facebook groups and now has started her own small online business where she shares and sells her work on her Instagram page titled “xBEvADx”

Highschool culture class is what sparked the beginning of her inspirational creations. At first Saunders began with embroidery and was introduced to the art of embroidering mittens. She experimented with that medium before finding her true passion in beading. She began with creating earrings with a friend in 2010 and this was the start of her beautiful journey. Beyond earrings, Saunders began trying her hand at beaded tongues during her college years at LaSalle College, which she attended to pursue her Diploma of College Studies in Fashion design.  

What Saunders loves most about creating beaded tongues is that you can do anything with them. “I’ve had customers make kamiik and add the beaded tongue on the top,” she says. “Some people have bought my beaded tongues and framed them.” [1] 

Saunders' attention to detail leads her to create delicately executed flowers, as seen in her matching qallinik for a mother and daughter. “Flowers are supposed to be uneven and natural,” says Saunders. “But when you look at my work, it’s not. Being the perfectionist that I am, I like my flowers to be mirrored exactly.” 

Saunders’ beadwork has been worn by Shina Novalinga, who commissioned a traditional sealskin tattoo Qaumiutak (Man eater), which is worn by women while throat singing. This particular creation was worn by the throat singer for a feature in Elle Canada Magazine and is also on the cover for her 2021 album Mother and Daughter Throat singing.

Aside from her talent in beading, Saunders’ sewing skills have also landed her unique opportunities, such as sewing dresses for the movie Restless River (2019), which was filmed in her home community of Kuujjuaq. “The dress styles were from the ’50s and ’60s, so I took apart a really old design and used that pattern to create and sew nine dresses to be featured in the film,” says Saunders. Her dresses received such a good response that she was also asked to be a part of the movie as an extra. 

Saunders looks forward to continuing with her art of beadwork and pushing herself out of her comfort zone by experimenting new techniques and colors.  

 

About Eva Saunders

Medium:

Beading, Beadwork, Fabric, Seal Skin, Textile

Artistic Community:

Kuujjuaq, QC