No look is complete without a few handmade, glass-beaded accents. And when it comes to hanging a necklace, bracelet or watch, you probably defer to tastemakers in Milan or New York. Not. So. Fast. Chicago has some of the industry's most promising young talent and we're here to give them the
credit shine they deserve.
Laura Lombardi, a relatively new but extremely talented and passionate designer, may not have foreseen that jewelry-making would be her career, but she's certainly making the most of it now. Based in Chicago, she lends a refreshing edge to the Midwest's fashion scene.
Her jewelry looks like it could be from another time and place - pounded metal sheets, sharp geometric shapes and angles, and feminine chain that drapes and layers. It evokes primitive strength, mythology, and modern functionality all at once. Lombardi's jewelry collections are handcrafted from unique vintage and repurposed materials.
Valiant women is the underlying focus of Ashley Scott's jewelry line, Drapes. Drawing influence from classic and modern art, her designs are a juxtaposition of innovation and culture. Scott's collection includes clever convertible pieces, like a necklace that becomes a headpiece. Fringe, tassels, and natural elements are combined with metals for handmade jewelry that has hip hop influences and international flair.
Dollybird is a Chicago-based brand owned by Katie Johansson. The jewelry is carefully made by hand to preserve quality and to produce unique, genuine designs. Each piece has a story which makes the rare materials used -- from petrified wood to spiderwebs -- even more meaningful.
With the birth of e-commerce sites like Etsy, anyone can become an instant business owner. It's getting harder and harder to stand apart from the crowd. Dollybird jewelry not only manages to do so, but makes it look like a piece of cake.
E by Elyse Marie Vieni's jewelry is not for the meek. Combining gemstones, pearls, vintage finds, and metals, each design is a unique reflection of Vieni's sensibilities and style. She finds inspiration in the materials she uses and in confident women. The Illinois native is self-taught and self-made in the jewelry industry, and every piece is created with care by hand.
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