Just in time for Mother’s Day, meet 22 local artists showing and selling a fantastic selection of artisan jewelry, and sample Craftmade Toffee from local confectioner Steve Kippels.
All proceeds support the Walker’s artistic and educational programs.
Yen Chee, Minneapolis
Materials: sterling silver, quartz, and onyx
As the daughter of a world-renowned watercolor artist, Chee traveled to many art galleries as a young girl and was always drawn to the work of jewelry designers. Each of her clean, yet elegant designs has a unique story and source of inspiration ranging from the hand-carved moldings of Italy’s Uffizi Museum to her grandmother’s exotic gardens in Malaysia.
Chris Chookiatsirichai, Minneapolis
Materials: leather, beads, and natural stones
With a background in ceramics, printmaking, languages, and music, Chookiatsirichai draws inspiration from numerous sources and has always been fascinated by the rich history of beads and their role in creating textures and symbols. The backdrop of each unique and handmade piece includes a detail or story from the artist about its history.
Bridget Clark, Minneapolis
Materials: sterling silver, gold, pearls, and gemstones
Clark has been designing and creating jewelry since 1986. She hand crafts each piece using traditional techniques such as casting, forging, stone setting, and soldering to create pieces that are both fine jewelry and contemporary.
Susan Crow, Northfield
Materials: recycled gold and silver, lab-created or reclaimed diamonds and gemstones
Using fair-minded or recycled metal and gemstones, East Fourth Street produces luxury jewelry with a conscious. Crow was recently designated by CBS Minnesota as one of the state’s top reclaimed metal artists. “Previously good design employed function, great aesthetics, and innovation” she says. “My goal is to add a fourth, sustainability. This new reality is about designing smart by integrating sustainability into our jewelry development processes from the beginning.”
Brittany Foster, Minneapolis
Materials: sterling silver
With innumerable influences, from cephalopods to industrial debris and munitions, Foster has been drawn to working with her hands since childhood and the mysteries of creating intricate jewelry with simple, manual tools. She uses a standard jeweler’s saw to cut all the swirly lines by hand and also deploys the classic “hit it with a hammer” technique on her wrought pieces.
Gia Gifford, Minneapolis
Materials: sterling silver, vintage, and found objects
Gifford creates unique, unconventional, and playful jewelry inspired by modern art and design, elements found in nature, and architecture. Simple in design and free of complication are the most rewarding, yet challenging aspects of making jewelry for her. Her loves of both natural and urban landscapes also influence her designs.
Monica Hansmeyer, Turtle River, MN
Materials: sterling silver and stones
The youngest sister of seven, Hansmeyer named her Jewelry Line Seven Sister Design. Based in Turtle River, a quiet spot in northern Minnesota surrounded by lakes, rivers, and pines, she creates designs etched on metal then adds stones for color and beauty. She loves jewelry that has a combination of age-old metal techniques, creative expression, and adornment.
Laura Heiden, Minneapolis
Materials: sterling silver, gold and natural stones
In 2009, Heiden took a leap of faith and chased her creative dreams, leaving her corporate job in the Midwest to attend a six-month jewelry production course in San Francisco. After completing the intensive program, she returned to the Midwest and set up a studio in the Casket Arts Building. Her work is a reflection of her daily inspiration: rural landscapes, urban architecture, and the fence lines between them.
Grace Hogan, Bayfield, WI
Materials: sterling silver, handpicked rocks, and beach glass
Inspired by the things “we stomp over in our everyday lives,” Hogan creates wearable objects that combine sheet metal with elements and ideas from nature, such as rocks and beach glass.
Karin Jacobson, Minneapolis
Materials: sterling silver, palladium, lab-grown gems
Play is a central theme in Jacobson’s futuristic and fun work, which is inspired by science fiction, comic books, mechanical toys, and Japanese animation. Making bold statements, her designs incorporate big shapes, clean lines, and bright colors.
Betty Jäeger, Minneapolis
Materials: sterling silver; 18-karat, 22-karat, and 24-karat gold
Jäger was born and raised on the shores of the misty Puget Sound. Her current line of handmade jewelry finds inspiration in the interesting and organic textures of her past. Reflections of the simple curve of a wave or the bark on evergreen trees can be found in her organically crafted jewelry. These pieces exude the consistency of natural elements, imitating the deep texture and bold, voluminous forms, and finally relayed onto metal.
Annika Kaplan, Minneapolis
Materials: sterling silver and semiprecious gemstones
After studying jewelry design and fabrication at the Savannah College of Art and Design and the Minneapolis Community and Technical College, Kaplan set up shop in a small South Minneapolis studio. Influenced by nature and folk traditions, she produces highly wearable and unique jewelry made mostly from blackened sterling silver and semiprecious gems.
Britta Kauppila, Duluth
Materials: sterling silver, stone, gold, and pearls
Kauppila handforms each piece of jewelry by manipulating and shaping metal, producing extremely soft and delicate, but substantial designs. Often inspired by nature, she combines form, line, and texture to create movement, rhythm, and harmony and is drawn to the contradiction of the hard, immovable structure that metal offers to create her unique jewelry line.
Tia Keobounpheng, Minneapolis
Materials: wood, acrylic, and various metals
Keobounpheng has always been fascinated with how things are made. Making things with her hands and designing jewelry contrasts the time and scale involved in working through the architectural design process, adding considerable balance to her own creative process and drive. Color, texture, repetition, variation, light, and tactile quality are important considerations in her work.
Steve Kippels, Minneapolis
Toffee Sampling, 11 am–3 pm
Ever since learning his mother’s recipe at her side in the 1950s, Kippels has been refining his toffee-crafting skills through study, experimentation, and sampling. Initially, the toffee was a much anticipated holiday gift for friends, co-workers, business associates, and extended family members, but as the list of recipients grew past several hundred, it became necessary to move the process into commercial kitchen space and Craftmade Toffee LLC was formed. Remaining true to the handmade technique he learned early on, Kippels is still found at the stove on most days, crafting his small batch, artisanal product for toffee lovers everywhere.
Penny Larsen, Minneapolis
Materials: sterling silver and semi precious stones
Creative director Larsen loves jewelry of all kinds—and it shines through in the handcrafted details and clean, organic lines of her designs. Her penchant for travel and nature can be seen in her latest collection, simply titled “penny,” which consists of silver pendant charm choices.
Marisa Martinez, St. Paul
Materials: handmade glass beads, sterling and fine silver, semiprecious stones, and ancient findings
Martinez works with a wide variety of materials to create collages of wearable art. To produce beads from Moretti glass, she uses a mini torch followed by a kiln to anneal and fuse the glass. Designing unique pieces of jewelry allows her to combine her passions for color, cultural history, and art-making.
Jennifer Merchant, Eden Prairie
Materials: corian, acrylic, and gemstones
Merchant strives to blur the lines between art and fashion with her unique designs. She has been making jewelry for more than 11 years, and studied metalsmithing at the Savannah College of Art and Design, receiving a BFA in metals and jewelry in 2005. Lacking many of the tools and equipment needed to work in metals as per her training, she started working with corian and acrylic. Her work is handcrafted using techniques she developed after many years of experimenting with these materials.
Lauren Nicole, Minneapolis
Materials: sterling silver, gemstones, acrylic, stainless steel, and organic elements
A graphic designer and jewelry artist, Nicole is a graduate of the Minneapolis College of Art & Design. Her current collection embraces an old-world-meets-new flavor by combining a unique media mix with a touch of modernism and new technology.
Courtney Nielsen, Inner Grove Heights
Materials: sterling silver, wood, pearls, and agates
Nielsen’s love for jewelry design started with a college course in metalsmithing at Iowa State University. What she thought would be just a fun class turned into so much more—a passion for making jewelry. A graphic designer, she utilizes her computer illustration skills to render designs for her hand-pierced sterling-silver elements. Nature’s organic forms and the cities’ modern buildings inspire her work.
Elizabeth Oie, Burnsville
Materials: stones, pearls, leather, and sterling silver
Each of Oie’s pieces is handmade with fine attention to detail and quality. She gives traditional stones and pearls a contemporary feel by pairing them with leather or combining them in fresh and beautiful ways.
Helen Wang, Edina
Materials: semi-precious stones and mixed precious metals
Each of Wang’s one-of-a kind or limited-edition pieces is created with the person who will eventually wear it in mind. Whether it’s a druzy quartz marquis earring or the vintage luxury feel of a genuine Swarovski crystal bridal choker, the artist’s deftly designed jewelry reflects her singular vision.
Rebecca Wicklund, Edina
Materials: sterling silver, copper, glass, semiprecious stones
Wicklund has been creating jewelry since 2008 as a creative balance to her day job in the health care field. Color, clean lines, and simplicity drive her creative process, and her contemporary pieces express easy wearability.