A Day in the Life” with Vancouver jewelry designer Chi Cheng Lee

My wife, Chi Cheng Lee, delights in bringing happiness to all who wear her jewelry. She continually dreams of different images and forms, and I am accustomed to finding her drawings scattered all over our home, eventually to become fabricated pieces I recognize some weeks later. Chi first developed her sensibilities for jewelry at New York’s Parsons School of Design and thereafter established her industry credentials working with 5th Avenue luxury jeweler Harry Winston.

Chi draws her artistic inspiration from many sources. Among them are the natural elements of mountains, oceans, rain, fog and snow that we experience in abundance here on Vancouver’s verdant North Shore. On a recent buying trip, she was introduced to the dendritic opal, a stone made of fossilized tree roots that evokes scenes of nature reminiscent of her Dad’s Chinese watercolour paintings in black and white. This served as the motivation for the one-of-a-kind creations in her Sea to Sky collection.

During COVID, Chi focused her time working with clients on repurposing their old unworn jewelry. She feels tremendously privileged to be a part of a process that creates new family legacies and to see her clients’ stories of renewal expressed though her contemporary designs.

-Emil Fung (spouse of 36 years)

Chi Cheng Lee - Cleveland Dam, North Vancouver
Cleveland Dam, North Vancouver
Chi Cheng Lee - Morning walk in the hood
Morning walk in the hood
My world, my studio in the woods!
My world, my studio in the woods!
Happy Girl Friend Rings
Happy Girl Friend Rings
Happy Customer
Happy Customer
Chi Cheng Lee - Working in the studio designing
Working in the studio designing
new Sea to Sky necklaces and rings with my favourite stones
new Sea to Sky necklaces and rings with my favourite stones
Chi Cheng Lee - In my happy place
In my happy place

Which ‘hood are you in?

We moved to Vancouver over 18 years ago and fell in love with the North Shore. We now live in West Vancouver and I’m so fortunate to have my own Studio-in-the-Woods in the backyard. I am surrounded by beautiful mountains, the seashore and the sounds and smell of nature.

What do you do?

I’m a wife, Mom and art lover! My job is to make people happy which, in turn, brings me much joy. Share the love!

What are you currently working on?

I always work on multiple projects on my bench. Right now, I’m working on repurposing a wedding ring from Mom into new legacy stacking rings for two sisters. So gratifying to see the sisters affirm their family memories through my designs. I’m also picking out the next lucky stone to create my next one-of-a-kind Sea to Sky necklace.

Where can we find your work?

You can find my work on my website www.chiscreations.com, on Instagram at @chiscreations and at the Audain Art Museum (Whistler), Circle Craft Co-op and Craft Council of BC on Granville Island, as well as selected art and craft galleries in Victoria and across BC’s Lower Mainland.