I wanted a pair of earrings.
That’s how my journey in jewelry got started. I began designing jewelry because I wanted a pair of earrings. Since I didn’t like anything I saw in the store, I designed a pair for myself.
I made that first pair of earrings sitting on my in-laws’ couch. As my father-in-law watched me make my earrings, he said, “Michelle [that’s what he called me], you should sell those and go in business for yourself selling jewelry, cause you’re good at it.”
I said thanks and dismissed the idea. He died a few of years later, right around the time that I began searching for something to do with my hands.
I loved my career as a web content strategist, but I longed to do something different. I wanted to make pretty things. One day while searching for my next “thing”, I was struck with the memory of what my late father-in-law said to me. I’ve been making jewelry ever since.
Why I Love Making Jewelry
I’ve had many ventures during my lifetime. But only two have stuck…writing and jewelry design. I love making jewelry. For me, designing jewelry is like writing. With writing, there’s a journey you take as you go from a blank page to a complete idea. In jewelry making, a blank page becomes a sketch, and a sketch becomes jewelry. Both are forms of storytelling from beginning to end.
A Hard-earned Contemporary Jewelry Style Defined as Classic, Custom and Couture
My jewelry style has evolved over the years as I have grown as a designer. When I started making jewelry for sale, I didn’t have a clue. I was all over the place. So, my style has definitely changed and become more refined. I’ve found my jewelry falls into one or more of the three categories: classic, custom and couture.
Classic jewelry is timeless. Whether you wear it today and then not again for another two years, classic jewelry fits any season and outlasts any trend or passing fad.
Custom jewelry is fun because I get to work with my clients to design something special just for them. Usually this is for a holiday, gift or special event. I think custom jewelry is like a tattoo. In order for it to be really, really good, it should be a true representation of the wearer.
Couture jewelry forces me to step outside the box and create something truly spectacular…wearable art…a show piece. That’s my creative license. It keeps things interesting and my customers engaged.
My Favorite Materials: Wire and Gemstones
I love gemstones because of the gemology. I have loved gemstones since I was a child. Now I get to play with them as an adult. As my skills have developed, I enjoy wire wrapping and hammering for texture. I prefer working with 14kt gold-filled and sterling silver. Brass is my practice wire.
Crafting Your Perfect Finish
I strive to give my clients their perfect finish. If you’re happy and proud of the jewelry you’re wearing, I’ve done my job as a designer.