I am big into supporting local businesses, as I know many of you are as well! I so often hear people sharing their favorite businesses with their friends and family and thought that sharing some of mine with you throughout the year would be fun 🙂 First up…Brittany Leigh Jewelry! Be sure to read to the end…there’s a fun surprise for you there! You can find Brittany here.
Do you have any formal schooling/training in jewelry making? How did you come upon your talent?
I do! I attended Savannah College of Art and Design, which is only about 4 hours away from where I grew up – Charlotte, NC. I started there thinking I would major in fashion design, because I loved to sew. But it just didn’t resonate with me. So I took a jewelry course and fell in love! It was something that just felt right, I knew this is what I should be doing.
And after college I moved to Rochester for a job as a goldsmith with a local jewelry designer, Barbara Heinrich. Her work is a lot different than what I do, but it gave me a lot of technical practice and I learned a lot from her. I was able to really perfect my craft.
What do you love the most about creating jewelry?
Creating something from scratch, start to finish, is so rewarding and even meditative. And as you work through the process, step by step, you’re watching a simple piece of metal become meaningful. But more than making the jewelry, I really love the connections I get to make with people. It feels really wonderful to know that this little piece of jewelry is going to make someone smile, and bring someone a little bit of joy.
Who are your clients and why do you think they come to you?
A lot of my clients are young women in their 20s and 30s, who are just starting to settle into family life. Their mom is still their best friend, and most of the orders I make are gifts for mom. They want to give her something really special and memorable. They find me online from all over the country, and I think they are drawn to the personal connection I offer. Placing an order with Brittany Leigh Jewelry is usually a really personalized process, and I enjoy hearing their stories and creating a really heartfelt piece of jewelry for them.
What inspires you creatively?
It sounds cheesy but love inspires me. Pretty much all of my designs came about because of something or someone I loved. For instance, my date necklace came about because I love my parents and I wanted a piece of jewelry to symbolize that. So I found a unique way to display their wedding anniversary. And sometimes I make new designs based on a unique idea a customer has. So I once made a necklace based on a photograph of a dog and a cat. Why? Because my customer loved his girlfriend, and she freaking loved her dog and cat.
What is your favorite piece of jewelry to create and why?
My handwriting jewelry is my favorite by far, because it’s such a simple idea but the meaning and the story behind every piece is SO different. There’s a completely one of a kind emotional connection in each one of those pieces, and they make people so happy, that it’s really a joy to be a part of that.
What do you do for fun in your spare time?
I love to be outside. I just spent 3 weeks in New Zealand to do just that, and it was a complete recharging of my batteries. There’s nothing better than sunshine and fresh air, and I am just itching for this Rochester summer to finally roll around. And I’m not picky – I’m just as happy climbing a mountain as I am parking my butt on a beach all day.
Where can we follow you on social media?
I am on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, and Tumblr. But Instagram is my favorite, so if you only choose one, follow me there. 🙂
When you walk into Starbucks you’re ordering a ….. Passion fruit iced tea, because I don’t like coffee! I never really acquired the taste for it and then after seeing so many of my friends develop coffee/caffeine addictions I decided to actively avoid it. I don’t want to rely on a drink to get me through the day!
And because Brittany is so awesome, she is offering a discount to those of you who are on my newsletter list (Sign Up HERE)! Mothers Day is coming… just saying! Big thanks to Brittany for chatting with me and collaborating on these photos xo