Shopping in world-renowned jewelry districts can be great when you need a quick fix — a pair of earrings to match your dress for the staff party on the weekend, a cheap watch to replace the one you lost last night while you were fist pumping at a concert, or a little charm necklace to give your daughter-in-law for her birthday. Whatever the reason, we’re all guilty of wandering into stores and feeding our hard-earned cash into the bellies of giant corporations who mass produce merchandise for our convenience. But what do you do when you want to try and find something special (and preferably something that’s not already been bought by every Tom, Dick, and Harry in the neighborhood)?
Etsy is a creative hub for artists and crafters who design and sell their often idiosyncratic goods via individualized virtual stores. It’s the mecca for finding one-off cut stones, personalized charms, and quirky gifts. While it’s always great to support the world’s artists, navigating the vast site can be overwhelming, so we’ve taken it upon ourselves to highlight three unique and slightly unusual jewelry makers that will leave you questioning why the big guys in their field aren’t already copying them.
Danielle Rose Bean
Mother and crafter Danielle Rose Bean opened her Etsy store a little over a decade ago, and ever since, she’s been growing and developing her jewelry to reflect the unique style that her followers have come to adore her for. Utilizing stones like quartz and hand-hammering copper and gold into distressed-looking metal earrings, chains, charms, and bangles, Danielle has built quite the reputation for her quality designs inspired by celestial imagery.
Something that all visitors to Danielle’s store should check out is her uniquely-colored hammered metal hoop earrings. Danielle created these “fierce” rainbow accessories using 10 grams of solid copper, which, after being molded into circular shapes, was flame-painted with a torch and sealed with clear coat. Available in 11 different measurements, all her products are made to order out of recycled materials. These earrings are also available in a multitude of different styles, including ombre black and silver and sterling silver crystal encrusted.
Handmade using metals and stones, Chicago-based metalsmith and sculptor Therese Kuempel’s lighter cases are so ethereal that you’ll want to stick them on a chain and wear them around your neck — which, as it turns out, is pretty much exactly what you can do with them. Her cases are all made using onyx, opal, turquoise, quartz, and druzy. A big fan of the lost-wax casting method, Kuempel also designs and creates fashionable jewelry from quality metals and adorning stones, such as these brass-painted gold stud earrings and onyx and opal rings and charm pendants.
Israel-based goldsmith Sivan Sova has been designing and creating jewelry for over 10 years now, ever since she she graduated from the Shenkar College of Design and Engineering. She began by integrating miniatures into quality metal pendants, creating tiny magical realms within the casing of her handcrafted charms. Utilizing imagery that she believes to be universal in understanding (human experiences, journeys through nature, etc.), Sivan gives her all to imbue positive messages into her work. Her main objective is to churn out unique jewelry that will be worn and adored for a lifetime.
All of the pieces in Sivan’s “Little Boxes” collection bear a hefty price tag, but seeing as she only uses completely original designs and real gold and silver, it’s safe to say that they’re all pretty worth it. One of Sivan’s most iconic pieces is a 14k gold-and-blue topaz pendant, which depicts a female character rowing a wooden boat through a tropical paradise with palm trees and coconuts all around.