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Artist Spotlight: Bella Vita Jewelry

Bella Vita Jewelry was started in 2008 at local art fairs and retail craft shows by artist Brandy Thomason McNair as a way to showcase her unique talent as an artist and jewelry designer. The business quickly flourished and has been going strong for seven…

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Bella Vita Jewelry was started in 2008 at local art fairs and retail craft shows by artist Brandy Thomason McNair as a way to showcase her unique talent as an artist and jewelry designer. The business quickly flourished and has been going strong for seven years. Now Bella Vita Jewelry can be found at 100+ brick-and-mortar stores across the US and in her new retail shop in Little Rock, Arkansas.

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Brandy lives and works in downtown Little Rock, Arkansas. All of her jewelry is made by hand in the Bella Vita Studio, which is housed in a beautifully restored century-old building and the jewelry is known for being made in small batches and one of a kind runs. It has built a reputation as being a fantastic choice for personalized & hand stamped charms, natural stones, hand cast bronze & sterling pendants, and vintage baubles.

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When she isn’t tending to her growing small business, Brandy enjoys spending time in the great outdoors with her husband, perusing local flea markets, drinks and dinners out with friends, and cuddling with her 13 year old lab mix, Arlo.

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While it may be simple, Bella Vita Jewelry has an infinite combination of charms and jewels so much that it makes the perfect gift for any lovely lady in your life.

At home COB

Stop in to Artfully Elegant or find it on our website and find the perfect selection of letter and jewel combinations for anyone with a part of the alphabet that is special to them and wants it close to their heart.

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Artist Spotlight: Oré Originals

Founded by Lisa Lowe, Oré Originals has a bright and colorful history. Lisa grew up in a loving family surrounded by creativity and function, so the concept of colors, prints, and patterns was part of everyday life for her. So, with a focus on useful…

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Founded by Lisa Lowe, Oré Originals has a bright and colorful history. Lisa grew up in a loving family surrounded by creativity and function, so the concept of colors, prints, and patterns was part of everyday life for her. So, with a focus on useful products with a fun and creative edge, Oré Originals was started in her small Southern California garage in 1989, and it grew from there!

Founder Lisa Lowe as a child (left) and as a thriving business owner (right)

Now Oré has grown into a dedicated team that works hard together and makes things happen! They are always on the hunt for new functional product ideas that will put a smile on your face. Due to these facts, Oré Originals considers itself a design-driven company as unique as the items that it makes. So it’s no surprise that the products in their collection are sweet, quirky, and always comes in handy for the task it was made for.

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The team at Oré Originals

Beyond creative aspects, Oré Originals takes pride in their products from start to finish assuring that customers have a quality item that always arrives in perfect condition. Since they are based in California, they are heavily involved in many charitable events and causes throughout the communities of Southern California, and even donate products, give directly, and assist in charity benefits.

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The company is community oriented, helping out local Southern California charities and organizations.

So the next time you’re in Artfully Elegant, check out our amazing fun collection of Oré Original products like the Cuppa Mugs. Not only will you sip your coffee or tea in one of the most adorable pieces in your cupboard, but you’ll be supporting an amazing company whose products we couldn’t be more proud to carry.

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A fun selection of Cuppa Cups at Artfully Elegant

All Oré Original photos courtesy of oreoriginals.com

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Artist Spotlight: Chris Ploof Designs

When one thinks of fine jewelry, precious metals and stones typically come to mind. Platinum, gold, diamonds, silver, and other glittering colorful stones that mirror every color of the rainbow quickly materialize in our imaginations. While these are indeed amazing materials used in most jewelry, there…

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When one thinks of fine jewelry, precious metals and stones typically come to mind. Platinum, gold, diamonds, silver, and other glittering colorful stones that mirror every color of the rainbow quickly materialize in our imaginations. While these are indeed amazing materials used in most jewelry, there are other materials that are just as incredible that emit a strong, powerful, and masculine vibe.

Chris Ploof Designs, located in Massachusetts, works with other quality materials to create amazing pieces. Everything from stainless steel damascus to mokume gane, which is a traditional Japanese method of mixing metals to replicate a wood grain pattern. From these materials, Chris and his team make amazing quality jewelry that will last for ages.

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Damascus Ring made of Stainless Steel

One unique material his team also works with is meteorite. The galactic rock that has potentially traveled light years in space and thrust onto our planet can be crafted into amazing pieces of jewelry for any occasion. Chris’s meteorite pieces are exclusively made from the Gibeon Meteorite in Namibia, a meteorite that is estimated to have landed on the planet 30,000 years ago and is estimated to be about four billion years old.

However, not all pieces of the meteorite are all usable due to varying metal content, elemental wear, and natural imperfections. Chris’s team takes it a step further and for every piece that is suitable for jewelry, Chris Ploof Designs rejects an average of 20 for every one that they choose.
From there, the ancient material is combined with platinum, gold or mokume gane to form an extremely strong and durable ring. The Gibeon meteorite also contains nickel so it’s naturally stain and rust resistant.

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Gibeon Meteorite Ring with Gold Lining

According to their website: “Each ring begins with Chris in the design process, and every single item he designs also passes a review by our skilled artisans. As a team, we make sure that, in addition to being beautiful, the design will stand the test of time.”

So if you or a loved one are looking for a beautiful piece of jewelry, head on over to Artfully Elegant or www.artfullyelegant.com, we’re the only official carrier of Chris Ploof Designs in the entire state of Pennsylvania. Not only do we carry an amazing selection, but we can help you get a custom piece that is just right for you! See more designs here!

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Damascus Wood Grain Ring made of Stainless Steel

 

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Artist Spotlight: Zpots

cup of might

If you've ever checked out the wares here at Artfully Elegant, you've probably noticed the perky little pieces of pottery spattered with inspirational quotes and sayings. These little art pieces are more than just cute and inspiring, the artists behind them make each piece with…

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If you’ve ever checked out the wares here at Artfully Elegant, you’ve probably noticed the perky little pieces of pottery spattered with inspirational quotes and sayings. These little art pieces are more than just cute and inspiring, the artists behind them make each piece with a purpose.

Zpots, handcrafted in the Zpots Studio in Vermont, are individually made by husband and wife artists Eric Hendrick and Noelle Van Hendrick.

peace bucket

Each piece starts with a chocolate clay body and is hand thrown before being treated with a variety of techniques to give each one it’s distinct and one-of-a-kind look. Noelle then incorporates her own poetry into each piece, and hand writes her words onto each one.

When fired in the electric kiln, which is powered by Vermont Cow Power by electricity generated from surrounding farmlands, the studio keeps a renewable future in mind. “We make choices within our production and daily lives to benefit the mission of living in harmony with our planet.”

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The colors used represent the elements of water, earth, and forest, and stay the same throughout each piece, while the lines are more varied and sporadic.

Eric and Noelle look at each piece as an individual that’s part of a whole collection, a family so to speak, making each one both individualized yet related in it’s method of creation and overall look.

While Zpots are available at galleries and boutiques across the country, each one is as unique and personally individual as the person who chooses to display one. Check out Artfully Elegant and choose the Zpot that speaks to you.

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Artist Spotlight: Jerry Rhodes

Jerry Rhodes, of Colorado Springs, Colorado, is a ceramic artist who creates unique wares through a variety of techniques. His work has been featured in galleries in Colorado, New Mexico, South Carolina, New York, and of course here in Pennsylvania. Beyond that, his pieces belong…

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Jerry Rhodes, of Colorado Springs, Colorado, is a ceramic artist who creates unique wares through a variety of techniques. His work has been featured in galleries in Colorado, New Mexico, South Carolina, New York, and of course here in Pennsylvania.

Beyond that, his pieces belong in many private collections throughout the world.

Jerry has never had formal training, and he attributes it to his unique ways that he acquires his craft.

“I’m not limited by what I’m supposed to know, nor do I feel obligated to follow any well-established procedures,” he said.

By using both traditional and nontraditional methods, such as using horse hair or steel wool during the firing process, and by finishing some pieces with African Porcupine Quills, a dramatic, elegant, and one-of-a-kind piece is created. The artist does admit, “Sometimes the results are dramatically bad, but you’ll never see the bad ones!”

Rhodes has an Electrical Engineering degree from Penn State University, is a former Air Force officer, and currently serves as the Joint Staff Air and Missile Defense Liaison to the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD).

Seize your opportunity to own a piece from an amazing artist, exclusively in PA, at Artfully Elegant.

jerry non qulls

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Artist Spotlight: Angela Duffin

Angela Duffin is a Philadelphia jewelry maker with a background in textile design (B.S. from Philadelphia College of Textiles and Sciences). Duffin creates unique hand-fabricated sterling silver and mixed-metal jewelry with semi precious stones. Her designs are inspired by a background in textile design as as…

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Angela Duffin is a Philadelphia jewelry maker with a background in textile design (B.S. from Philadelphia College of Textiles and Sciences). Duffin creates unique hand-fabricated sterling silver and mixed-metal jewelry with semi precious stones.

Her designs are inspired by a background in textile design as as well as organic forms found in nature. She incorporates the intricacies of fibers into her metalwork by using organic designs with much texture and detail, often interweaving and mixing the metals.

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The interweaving of metal and color combine to create intricate and wearable works of art. The metal is highly polished and with a patina finish to further add depth and color. Color is added with the use of semi-precious stones. She creates one-of-a-kind pieces that are highly polished and oxidized with a patina to show more color and depth. The jewelry tends to have movement and is made to be comfortable and fun.
Each piece is handmade and one-of-a-kind.

Duffin is affiliated with the PA Guild of Craftsmen, Haverford Guild of Craftsmen, PA Society of Goldsmiths, and Main Line Art Center.

Shop more of her styles at Artfully Elegant.

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