Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Feature of the Day #57: The North Way Studio

Today's feature goes to The North Way Studio, aka, Maria and her fine jewelry. 
All of the jewelry Maria makes is inspired by nature, from designs to materials and colors; all with a little whimsy thrown in. Every piece has been hand crafted with the focus on simplicity and adding a bit of beauty into someone's life. As Maria says, "all the products in The North Way Studio are the results of too much coffee and a never-ending, compulsive drive to hoard fondle everything soft or shiny." She finds inspiration from staring out the passenger window at her beloved Upper Peninsula (Michigan), a place she describes as stunning but desolate.
Maria and her fiance live right on the shores of the vast fresh-water lake: Lake Superior. A lot of the jewelry she creates is a reflection of the North woods and life there, such as, "apple blossoms, the ruggedness of the area, and the rich history of the mining towns." Having personally spent many summers in the U.P. (Upper Peninsula), I can also attest to the muse of nature everywhere you look in the North Woods. From the agates hidden on the beaches to the long abandoned copper mines, or the overwhelming power of a storm brewing over the lake or the skies filled with the ethereal Northern Lights. Even the scent of unpolluted air and the sound of waves has been enough to inspire many artists in the past, and will surely do so for untold years to come. 
Sapphire Cluster Earrings with 14k Gold, Lemon Quartz and Pearls. Yellow Gemstone Earrings. Nautical Something Blue. Free Shipping,
The Elle Earrings
When Maria creates her jewelry, she treads the line between extravagance and everyday wear. As she says, "You can do a lot of amazing things with wire, but at some point, it just becomes too extravagant to wear and enjoy on a daily basis. So I wanted to keep it simple, really trying to highlight the beauty of the stones rather than bury it." 
Each stone is carefully hand picked through the process of hours spent online searching for the perfect piece, and the separation between the right gem and nearly perfect gem makes all the difference in the world. For example, in The Cora Earrings (pictured top right of page), a "delicious bouquet of honey hues, golden amber and gilded caramel," dangle together in perfect unity. Their colors enhance each other without taking away. The gentle hues of the amber make the deep purples and light pinks stand out all the more. Tiny gold beads here and there are reminiscent of shimmering dew sitting lightly on a surface. The cluster itself echoes a handful of Lake Superior pebbles freshly plucked from the lake; they shine as though water is still dripping off them. They're elegant without being over-the-top and fun while maintaining an air of dignity. The piece is, "complete with an extravagant 32 Carats of faceted Citrine covered in tendrils of raspberry Garnets, pink Tourmaline, Hessonite Garnite, 14k Gold, bronze Keshi Pearls, and Champagne Citrine rondelles. A lovely hive of honey, all tucked under stunning 24k Gold vermeil rose ear hooks."
London Blue Topaz Necklace with Champagne Quartz. Cluster Necklace with 14k Gold, Spinel and Garnet. Statement Necklace. Free Shipping.
The Serafina Necklace
Each beautiful piece of jewelry Maria makes is as unique as the North Woods from which they were inspired. Some are more lavish and some are quite simple, but it's clear to see that Maria has put a bit of herself into every single one.

What inspires you?

Make sure to stop by Maria's Etsy store here: www.etsy.com/shop/theNorthWayStudio

Be Creative today!
~Squirrel Creek Creations
Our Etsy store: www.etsy.com/shop/squirrelcrkcreations
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Bridesmaid Jewelry Gifts. Black Diamond Bracelets with 14k Gold. Set of 3. Free Shipping. Diamond Wedding Jewelry.
The Alette Bracelet

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