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Liza Jayne Jewelry

Liza Jayne Jewelry

A Jill of All Trades Designs Wearable Art

Liza Jayne JewelryLiza Jayne Jewelry is elegant and fine jewelry which is also undoubtedly whimsical.  “I do not believe that jewelry has to be too serious to be precious to you,” she shares. Her grandmother taught her that if she loved a piece of jewelry no matter what it “seems” appropriate for, to just wear it and wear it often and everywhere.  Jewelry is meant to be worn and Liza creates pieces that are meant to be worn, not stashed away in a jewelry box waiting to make an appearance.   Her style is elegant, whimsical, and day-to-night.  They are also definite conversation pieces.  Liza is also someone who works and she assumes many of her customers are working women as well.  “I want my jewelry to go with them from their morning meeting to a nightly cocktail party, and be appropriate—and sometimes conversation starters!—wherever they are,” she exclaims.

Liza Jayne JewelryLiza has always been creative as she took sewing classes in high school with hopes of becoming a costume designer.  She had a knack for building patterns and above all else, ball gowns.  Her innate talent eventually landed her a job restoring vintage gowns.  From her La Principessa Collection, we selected the Princess Necklace for its enormous gemstone made of solid silver which is a perfect day to night transition piece.  The large rectangular cut gemstone made of silver is heavy and undoubtedly a statement piece as it draws attention in a regal way.  The ring and necklace in this collection were inspired by history’s most majestic monarchs, but are practical enough to wear on a daily basis, unlike the Crown Jewels.

Her first encounter with making jewelry was when she was nine year old, and saw a girl at her summer camp with a pair of great big, plastic green bug earrings.  Liza decided she had to have them and when she asked where the girl got them, she gave her step-by-step instructions on how to make them herself.  Liza comes from a very industrious household as her father is an extremely talented metalsmith.  By the time she has discovered the bug earrings, he had already taught her how to use every tool imaginable to make anything she desired.  When she returned home from camp, she began twisting everything around thin wires and attaching it to earring hooks and made some pretty absurd, fantastic earrings.  From there she moved onto lariats and some simple yet creative beading.  Throughout high school, she studied painting and sculpture at the Massachusetts College of Art and continued to study painting as an undergraduate.  Liza majored in English Dramatic Literature at Wheaton College in Massachusetts and earned a Master of Fine Arts in Theatre with a concentration in Playwriting from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale.  Her exposure to theater’s history and extravagance has had a direct affect on her jewelry design.

Liza Jayne JewelryWe selected the Gold Shell Pasta Necklace and Gold Gemelli Pasta Necklace as our Editor’s Picks from the Italia L’ Amo collection, which has whimsical pendants cast from petite pastas to elegant orecchini cast from a genuine olive leaf.  The Gold Shell Pasta Necklace features a familiar pasta shell cast in 18k gold vermeil that is anything but plain.  The transformation is stunning and to the naked eye, this simply appears as a seashell from Liza Jayne Jewelrythe ocean.  Liza also loves this collection because her pendants turned out to be a tremendous surprise.  What started as casting pasta out of pure curiosity resulted in something beautiful and unique.  She never counted on them being so lovely but they are a fun and wonderful way to celebrate her Italian heritage.  The Gold Gemelli Pasta Necklace also looks more like a modern design piece rather than a type of pasta as it exudes much elegance when emblazoned in gold.  This gemelli pasta is fun to wear but simple enough to pair with a blazer or t-shirt.  This collection allows everyone to embrace their inner Italia and gives tribute to the country that inspired them. 

As an adult, her main career has been as a writer.  She holds two degrees in theater (one in playwriting) and has a writing career, including journalism, which is quite constant.  After moving to New York City, she specialized as a wedding makeup artist but found herself making wedding jewelry for her clients as well because of her lifetime jewelry making Liza Jayne Jewelryexperience.  Liza also owns her own photography business and focuses on mainly portraits.  All her different outlets of creativity is storytelling in a whole different medium. “Somehow, it all makes sense that I would be making jewelry.  It is fashion which requires a patient eye for detail, and looking at my collections, you can see there are many, many stories in there,” Liza says.  Most people would agree that some of her jewelry is quite theatrical too.  Keys on a necklace are all the craze at the moment but Liza’s version is unadorned and simple.  The Key Collection is comprised of a Key Brooch and Key Necklace, cast in sterling silver from antique skeleton keys.  The Key Necklace looks antique without being ornate and overdone and ages over time with its silver patina.  The key is the universal symbol representing knowledge, guardianship, and the opening of possibilities. 

One of her favorite items is the Urchin Ring, because it redefines the cocktail ring on its own and is cast from an actual urchin she found in the Bahamas.  The silver allows for an entirely different perspective on the sea’s natural, inherent exquisiteness.  She also loves big rings and personally says the bigger the better.  She was afraid this ring would be too large for some people, but it has proven to be a best seller.  Liza created the Boy and Girl Silhouette Pendants when she found out her favorite cousin was having a baby.  Since her cousin did not know at that time what she would be having, Liza knew she wanted to make something special just for her.  Silhouette pendants are not uncommon, but hers are different from most of their kind.  They are hand carved with a slightly weathered look and are not mass produced or cookie cutter.  She thinks her Bur Earrings and Pendants are fantastic because they are cast from actual burs and their angular, organic shape gives them a certain decadence in every season.  The Moon Rock Necklace (aka lava rock) is something she wears all the time as she considers it perfect for every day or with a little black dress.  The Winter Leaf Pendant is different from other leaves she has cast because the subject was so dried out that she was not sure it was going to work.  But it resulted in a beautifully delicate, textured leaf that embodies the personality of winter.

One of her greatest artistic influences came from her three and a half years working for the late, great godfather of modern architecture, Philip Johnson.  “It was through this remarkable genius that I learned that design has to be as daring as it does personal.  I also learned that design can be eclectic; it’s allowed to combine traditional with off-the-wall influences,” she says.  Philip Johnson saw his buildings as sculpted works of art and Liza likes to think of jewelry as miniature architectural structures.  Her other greatest influence is her father for teaching her everything about building a quality piece of work.  When she was a small girl, he taught her the intricacies of wood carving, which made wax carving for her jewelry a piece of cake.

Her ideas for her designs date back to her childhood as she grew up in a family where heritage and customs embodied her culture.  This history plays a direct result in Liza’s jewelry design.  An example is her current collection of promise rings inspired by a fusion of some of history’s most romantic traditions.  These pieces may appear non-traditional to the modern eye, but in reality are directly influenced by time-honored symbols of commitment.  Anyone can see that many of her pieces, especially those in her Beyond the Sea Collection, are a direct result of her travels.  Dry land also proves to be quite an inspiration as evident in her many woodland pieces.  But more than anything, she is influenced by the remarkable women of various cultures and personalities she meets daily. 

Liza Jayne JewelryWe adore her Marina Collection for its whimsical designs and creativity.  The Love Knot Ring has a universal heart shaped knot in the center of the ring and is durable for everyday as it is made of sturdy sterling silver.  This ring makes for a great gift in showing your love without spending a fortune or going overboard.  Liza’s inspiration behind this collection was to confirm that the beckoning sea is never as far away as it feels.  Liza also adores her Fish Hook Necklace because it is the perfect combination of elegance and bad-ass.  She wanted to cast a vintage fish hook, but since they were all either too thin or dangerous, she made one herself out of wax and it came out exactly like she wanted it to after some very extensive research. 

Liza Jayne JewelryWe find the Fishhook Necklace unlike anything seen before as it is both captivating and fun.  A definite conversation starter, this necklace is for the modern gal who wants to accessorize without the bells and whistles.  Great for throwing on over a t-shirt or sweats, this necklace will have you hooked.  “I created the fishhook pendant to honor fisherwomen of the world -- like me,” Liza shares.  It is a little known fact that Liza can hold her own when it comes to deep sea fishing, as her dad taught her when she was very young how to bait her own hook and clean a fish.  Liza says, “Fishing was always something very special we did, just the two of us.”  As she has gone deep sea fishing with some genuine pros, she ended up catching the first, most, and biggest fish.  All pieces are available in both silver and 18k gold vermeil.     

Her personal favorite jewelry designer is Digby & Iona for their creative moxie as they take jewelry to a whole other level. In her spare time, she runs a charity for children called Elephant Ensemble Theater (elephanttheater.com), which tours hospitals in the New York City area.  This is a real passion of hers and helps her keep perspective on all life matters.  When she is not working and running her charity, she enjoys daydreaming at her house in rural Pennsylvania, hand feeding deer and discovering new woodland artifacts to cast and make into jewelry – “courtesy of Mother Nature.” 

Liza Jayne Jewelry is sold at Walden Spa & Resort in Ohio, Tutto Bene in Brideghampton, and to a number of loyal, private clients.  She freely adds and subtracts pieces regularly depending on her creative instincts.  Liza Jayne Jewelry can be purchased from The Shops at Funky Finds funkyfinds.us/theshops/Liza-Jayne-Jewelry.html.  Liza creates, designs, and sells without the help of an assistant or design team.  She loves working with silver and playing with varied finished in addition to collecting gemstones such as sapphires, rubies, and emeralds to enhance existing designs. Her complete collection can be viewed at liza-jayne.com

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