A native of Ghana, West Africa, Rita Akweley Agyemang comes by her love of beads naturally. Raised in a culture where tradition and fashion mix in a vibrant display of color and pattern, Rita has translated her design aesthetic into a line of handcrafted jewelry. Her inspiration comes from the variety, textures and color available in the Ghanaian markets and the irreplaceable beauty of the semi-precious stones. African trade beads, women’s waist-beads, antique glass beads, pearls, semi precious stone, brass and silver are all part of the landscape in which Rita creates one of a kind jewelry.
Rita Lives in Lincoln Vermont, and spends time during the winter months in Ghana.
Roots in Silver
Allison Korn of Roots in Silver is a metalsmith in Brattleboro, Vermont. She is a self-taught artist originally from Washington, D.C., and spent 10 years in Ecuador before eventually moving to Vermont. She draws inspiration from her life experiences, the Andes Mountains and the Green Mountains. While studying for her masters in anthropology she felt a deep pull of wanting something more. She had always been creative throughout her life but seemed to push these passions aside in pursuit of academia. Between finishing her masters and having two young children, she managed to teach herself in her spare time how to make jewelry. Upon moving to Vermont she had decided jewelry was her true path and turned it into her full time goal.
What goes into each piece of jewelry
"I find inspiration in the everyday world that surrounds me - in the slow process of bark cracking as a tree grows too big for its skin; in the curves, wrinkles, rolls, and openings of our bodies; in people's resilience as they move through the pain of trauma and the power of healing; in the beautiful and life-changing process of pregnancy and birth; in the emotional journey that is parenthood; and in a leaf's perfect map of lines and ridges."
"After walking (and continuing to walk!) a winding path, I have found that this art allows me to bring my inner creativity to life and help others on their own journeys. My intention is to give back to life by creating wearable pieces of art that carry the light, the struggles, and the joys of life – wearable stories that help take you where you need to go. "
"With each piece of jewelry comes a dose of gratitude – gratitude for each moment that life gives us and for the lessons learned and to come, all of which make us who we are."
Antonia Kontos is a beadwork artist in Hyde Park, Vermont. She works mainly with the peyote stitch, also known as the gourd stitch, which is an off loom bead weaving technique in which a single seed bead is stitched one at a time. It has been used in cultures around the world - found in artifacts from ancient Egypt to Native American beadwork. She first learned her craft 25 years ago while on the road seeing live music and vending her crafts along the way. Antonia recently started working with a loom to create wrap bracelets, belts and hatbands. In addition to beadweaving, Antonia draws, paints, does woodcut prints and is an avid vegetable and flower gardener.
She's also one of our own Northwood Gallery associates!
Bella Bueno is a jewelry artist in Burlington, Vermont.
She was born and raised in Stockholm, Sweden. In 1997, she moved to the United States to study at the North Bennet Street School in Boston, where she received her degree in Jewelry Design. Her Swedish background provides her greatest inspiration for the jewelry she designs. Bella weaves Swedish design traditions throughout all her work. She is also half Spanish, with her father coming from Madrid. Ultimately, her jewelry seeks to mirror her two selves: the energy and flair of Spain, and the elegant design of Sweden
Geneva Wilkin is a jewelry artist in Waterbury, Vermont.
Gina Petteys Design
Gina Petteys is a jewelry artist in Morristown, Vermont. Gina strives for unique designs giving the blank metal canvas new texture, color and form with an organic feel. Each one-of-a-kind piece is a pure work of art, as unique as the woman who wears it. Gina Petteys Design jewelry can be described as having a rustic elegance and is made for the strong and feminine woman. Gina is inspired by her everyday life and the abundance of natural beauty that is the Green Mountains.
Helen Rosenblum is a jewelry artist in Hyde Park, Vermont.
Inanna Tomlinson is a jewelry artist in Hyde Park, Vermont. She grew up in Vermont and is deeply inspired by the mountains and scenery. She works mainly with sterling silver and copper to create organic designs with a bohemian flair. She graduated from Johnson State College with a BA in fine arts. Inanna is also a skilled painter and illustrator.
Jessica Dudley of Jeshali Designs is a jewelry artist in Burlington, Vermont.
Each wrap bracelet is unique in its own way. The leather, beads, thread and charms are all different from one another so you know you will end up with a one of a kind piece, 100% hand made.
Directions for wrap bracelets: Wrap your bracelet around your wrist until the knotted loops at one end meet the button at the other end. Push the button through which ever loop fits you best. There you have it!
If there is extra leather from your bracelet that hangs off you can either cut it off with scissors (make sure not to cut the knot off before the loop that fits you!) or you can tuck it under the whole wrap bracelet and wrap the extra leather around.
All That Glitters
June Mendell of All That Glitters is a jewelry artist in Elmore, Vermont. She works in sterling silver, copper and gemstones.
"I have been making jewelry for over 25 years. I work by myself, by hand in a variety of mediums, including but not limited to beadwork, micro-macramé, copper, wire wrapping, silver, polymer clays and casting. I make bezels and set stones. I love creative projects. I majored in sculpture and ceramics. I am more than happy to work on your custom designs. I do my engraving by hand."
Lochlin Smith Designs
"I was born in 1947 and grew up in the lovely countryside of northern Westchester County, New York. I was inspired as a young boy by visiting the great art museums in New York City, and spent many hours in the Egyptian wing of the Metropolitan Museum of Art looking at the gold jewelry.
Both my parents were artists, so I knew it was possible to make a living in the arts. After high school, I moved into the City, where I attended classes at the School of Visual Arts to study abstract painting.
In 1972, I traded NYC for a mountaintop in Vermont. I set up a studio space in an old barn and began painting and sculpting and designing art jewelry. After much twisting, torching and pounding, my jewelry took on a distinctive look and feel. I am most grateful that for over thirty years it has been the sole means of my support.
I now live in Montpelier, Vermont with my wife, Marietta, and one of my sons, Julian. My daughter Zea lives right down the street with her husband and 2 children. Two more kids round out our family - Tessa in San Francisco and Stephan in New Jersey.
As a business owner, I am privileged to work with others. I turn to my wife, Marietta Rhyne, for help, all the time. She is our Creative Director because she is a fount of good ideas and common sense. The women I work with on the production side of things in the shop have always become very close friends and I love them all, past and present.
When I go to work, I just walk out my kitchen door, down a spiral staircase and into my shop. It is a magical space overlooking the city of Montpelier and the hills beyond. Here I make bronze jewelry as well as larger pieces such as clocks, mobiles and garden sculpture.
I have been blessed in my life to be able to express my creativity every day. One of my greatest joys is to know that so many people wear my jewelry as a way to express themselves."
Silvio Mazzarese is a jewelry artist in Jeffersonville, VT. He is a third-generation gold and silversmith. Mazzarese is originally from Nice, France, where he learned his craft in jewelry school and continued his trade by working at a family jewelry business in Kansas City, Missouri. He later moved to Santa Fe, New Mexico where he met and lived happily with Teresa Bobel. In 2008 they decided to move to Vermont, raising their two daughters who are now learning the craft of their parents. Silvio and Teresa started Vermont Jewelry School, and offer personalized instruction and group workshops.
Ted Ryan of T.C.Ryan Designs is a jewelry artist in Montpelier, Vermont.
Vault 14 Designs
Stephanie Petrarca of Vault 14 Designs is a jewelry artist in Middlesex, Vermont.
"We are all inspired by something. I was inspired to design and create jewelry that looks good with almost any outfit or mood but is also affordable. It's been fulfilling and challenging but most of all fun. Vault 14 Designs comes from a place of passion to create and make beautiful and affordable jewelry. I'm a one woman show here in Vermont. I put my heart and soul into all of my creations. Think of my style as bohemian with an edge."