Jewelry Showcase: Artists Share the Inspiration Behind Their Successful Lines

Jewelry Showcase: Artists Share the Inspiration Behind Their Successful Lines
by Jackie Adamany

Courtesy of Handmade Business

Susan Davis Grandmother's Buttons
It's been 30 years since Susan Davis had the idea of transforming her elderly grandmother's collection of buttons into one-of-a-kind pieces of jewelry. Today, Grandmother's Buttons pieces are sold in over 500 stores throughout the U.S. and Canada, as well as in the company's own stores in St. Francisville and New Orleans, La. Davis still designs with authentic antique buttons circa 1880 to 1920, making mostly one-of-a-kind pieces. All jewelry is handmade in the second-floor studio of the 1905 bank building the company calls home.
Susan Davis Grandmother

Dodie Eisenhauer and Jenny Turner Village Designs
''As a mother and daughter team, we have many good reasons to unite and create together. We are able to bounce ideas off each other and design products that span generations,'' explains Dodie Eisenhauer, who has been creating wire mesh and springy wire designs since 1989. Jenny Turner brought fresh energy to the business in 2010 with the introduction of jewelry. The two have united the jewelry idea and the springy wire designs into their product line called the Springerlee Collection.

Dodie Eisenhauer and Jenny Turner Village Designs Dodie Eisenhauer and Jenny Turner Village Designs

Olive Parker Montana Leather Designs
Olive Parker has enjoyed working with leather for 35 years. She carves, burns, paints, and stitches leather to make one-of-a-kind art pieces. Her repertoire includes carved and painted leather jewelry, home accent pieces, and painted leather art. The 2012 recipient of the People's Choice Award at the Western Design Conference in Jackson, Wyo., her work has been seen in Cowboys and Indians and Mountain Living magazines. Her most recent work is a series of leather panels installed at the Silver Dollar Bar in the Wort Hotel in Jackson, Wyo. She resides in Stevensville, Mont.

Leather Earrings Leather Pendant

Janet Schroeder Ann Carol Designs
Janet Schroeder has been designing jewelry for over a decade. She studied under the artist Carol Baretz and now works from her studio in Bound Brook, N.J. Schroeder finds inspiration from the natural world and from the master classical artists. The three words she uses to describe her artwork are “elegant, intricate, and radiant.”

Pendant Cuff Bracelet

Natasha Justice Natasha J. Collection
Natasha J. Collection is located in Loveland, Ohio, where each piece of jewelry is handcrafted by Natasha Justice. Her passion is to design and create earthy jewelry with a feminine touch. Mainly drawing inspiration from textures in nature and the sea, she puts creativity and detail into each handcrafted ceramic piece, ensuring each customer will receive a well-crafted piece of work. Justice shares, ''I create every ceramic piece used in my jewelry. I hand-stamp and hand-cut each piece from earthenware clay. I use hand-building techniques to create my slabs, where I stamp and cut out each piece.''

Ring and Bracelets Bracelet

Morgan Lane-Tanner and Josh Astern Lane Tanner Designs
Lane Tanner Jewelry Design is a labor of love created by the husband and wife design team of Morgan Lane-Tanner (jewelry designer) and Josh Astern (photographer). Lane-Tanner’s most recent collection was born out of Astern’s exploration in photography as a weekend hobby. The jewelry collection celebrates Hawaii’s stunning beauty through images of the Hawaiian Islands and complementary design. The results are wearable pieces of photographic art.
Earrings Ring Bracelets
Amy Pfaffman Amy Pfaffman Jewelry
With an architect father and interior designer mother, Amy Pfaffman was exposed to design from the very beginning, but her degree in industrial design from Rhode Island School of Design in 1990 cemented her appreciation for functional objects. Passionate about sustainability, she transforms functional objects, including salvaged, vintage, and recycled materials. She shares her vision: ''As jewelry, the ordinary becomes ornament, and we look at it in an entirely different way. I hope to inspire others to appreciate the beauty in everyday objects and reconsider how we discard what we no longer use.''

Pfaffman started selling her work nationally in 1996, and now sells online and in shops and museum stores across the country. Originally from Birmingham, Ala., she currently lives and works in Marin County, Calif.

Rings Earrings Necklace