Nicole Camphaug: Through sealskin footwear and fine jewellery, this artist pays homage to the innovative beauty of Inuit culture
Nicole Camphaug is the Owner of ENB Artisan and belongs to a generation of Inuit artists transforming the seal product industry in Nunavut. As a young child, Nicole learned to sew from her mother and aunt, who sewed for their families, and her grandmother, who beaded and made eiderdown clothing. In addition to laying an important technical foundation for Nicole’s future designs, these talented Inuit seamstresses modelled the importance of attention to detail and continuous learning, attributes Nicole continues to apply to her creative work.
Nicole has a wide variety of skills in the arts that enable her to use traditional designs and materials in the creation of modern, sophisticated products. Nicole hand-makes parkas, sealskin mitts, hats and a variety of other crafts. She (along with her husband) designs and makes exquisite traditional and contemporary ivory, muskox boss, and caribou antler jewellery. Nicole is perhaps best known, however, for her line of sealskin footwear, which includes flats, boots, men’s shoes and stilettos. The success of this line, which demonstrates Nicole’s ability to offer a sophisticated and modern take on traditional designs, is also evidence of her business savvy.
Hailing originally from Rankin Inlet, Nicole now lives and works in Iqaluit. Her husband, Edgardo, is also her creative design partner. They have one child, a daughter named Barree. Nicole speaks Inuktitut and English, and she has competencies in French and Spanish.