Local jewelry designer Jodi Lawrence is giving vintage jewelry a second life with her brilliantly bedazzled statement necklaces. Working with thrift store finds and items from customers' personal collections, Lawrence crafts heirloom quality pieces that are truly one of a kind.
How did you get into jewelry making?
I didn't have a job at the time and it was getting a little frustrating looking for one. In my perfect world, I graduated with a job, so when that didn't happen, it was a little shocking. I really needed an outlet that I could sit down and work on for hours. After filling out job application after job application, I needed something that would be mindless in a way where I could not think so much about something and just create.
Where do you source your estate jewelry pieces to make necklaces?
I've found a few little gem places where I like to go, and I go to estate sales. It's sort of my weekend project sometimes. I had the greatest day yesterday. I went into a thrift store and found two pair of earrings for $1. It was amazing.
How long does it take for you to create one of your pieces?
It depends. Sometimes I sit down and it feels very organic, and I can do a piece in 3-4 hours if things are flowing together smoothly. Other times I'm putting pieces together, and it can take me three hours to place them in an arrangement that I like. You want it to fit together, and I always try to make sure it has stand-out shapes and a new cool silhouette all of its own. It just depends. There are pieces I have had to ponder over for a week. I feel like the key to creativity is to know when not to force it; when you need to take a step back and come back to it later with a fresh perspective.
What inspires you?
Where can our readers shop your designs?
I encourage people to follow me on my Tumblr (joleighdesigns.tumblr.com) to see photos of my current stock.
I've always loved the look of vintage things, and I used to wear my mom's and my grandmother's jewelry when I was young. I've always been into fashion. The look of all the cluttered with the sparkle is very me.
Describe your personal style.
Hodgepodge. I like a lot of different things. Some days I'll put on an outfit that's really bohemian and then I'll put on a headband that's preppy and just wear them together because I think it works and that is all that matters. I'm also a very situational dresser. I'm going to a gallery opening this Friday, so I'll want to wear something that feels creative. I have characters in my brain almost. When I had roommates in college, they'd be like, 'Please can you get dressed already,' and I'm like, 'I want to feel nautical tonight and nothing I'm putting on feels nautical.' Or 'I want to be like a hippie tonight, and nothing's making me feel like a flower child, so you're just going to have to hold on for a minute.'