One of the things I've loved about my blog is the freedom to be as creative as I want, so talking with other passionate creative types is always an exciting experience for me. Laurel Hill of Laurel Hill Jewelry knows a thing or two about creativity. The Georgia-based designer's life-long love of jewelry comes through in her necklaces, bracelets and rings. Read on for her shopping tips and some awesome jewelry trends! xoxo
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Tell me about Laurel Hill Jewelry. What's the inspiration behind its launch?
I've been making jewelry since I was a little kid. My mom and I would spend hours at Beadworks by Shoshonna, a bead store in Atlanta. My interests were always pretty varied, and I'm very lucky to have supportive parents who encouraged them, but I never found anything I was truly passionate about until I took a metal working class in college. It was the first time I found something that I could happily spend all day doing. It's always new and exciting; there's always a different idea or process to explore. The business has grown organically over the years. I started doing local craft shows after I graduated, then added a few pieces on Etsy, then built a website, and slowly, it has become my full-time job. Owning my own business is a ton of work, and it can be hard to step back and take a breath sometimes, but I can't imagine doing anything else. I love spending my days in the studio with my animals, creating jewelry that will be meaningful to someone, somewhere.
What are some trends we're seeing as we move into winter?
I try not to pay too much attention to trends and just focus on what I like. I like the idea of something lasting beyond a season, and I try to make jewelry that you can wear 5, 10, 20 years from now. I'm always drawn to very, very old jewelry; it's something that influences my work, and I think that's a very popular theme these days. People appreciate a connection to the past -- something that's meaningful beyond just being an awesome accessory.
What are some things people should keep in mind when shopping for jewelry?
The source and the intention. Buying local or buying from small businesses feels more meaningful than buying from giant chains. Small-scale artists make jewelry because they love it, as opposed to manufacturing something solely for profit, so when you support them, you're supporting that idea AND getting something that was made with love.
What are some ways that people can still look chic for less?
My favorite: Thrift stores!!! It takes a little longer to come across gems, but it's so satisfying to find something really great because nobody else will have it and it will probably cost you a dollar. I'm also into quality over quantity. I wear my shoes for years and years and beat them up pretty badly, so I usually spend a little more to get something that will last. I think I end up saving money in the long run by paying more for something that will last forever versus having to replace my shoes all the time. Ebay is also a great place to find quality pieces for less. I got some awesome barely worn Dansko clogs for $16 last month. I may be biased, but jewelry is another great way to add something new without spending a ton of money. I wear pretty much the same thing all the time -- jeans and a t-shirt and jewelry is an easy way to get a little dressed up.
Tough question!!! I really don't have one...or I do, but it changes all the time. Lately I've been wearing these hoops constantly. I always love whatever the newest piece is, and I love the gemstone pieces because of the shapes and colors. And the crescents and banners are really great classics that I always come back to.