Jessica Weiss Jewelry
How many other Etsy vendors list their favorite working material as "gold"? A professional metalsmith, Weiss creates custom-made jewelry such as this wraparound ring with its turquoise, emerald, peridot, and chrysophrase. Though she ditched her marine biology studies for fine arts study after "three hard years" of classes, all Weiss' jewelry has semi-precious and precious natural stones and many are the blues and greens of the sea. And river rock set in 18K gold inspired her earrings, a triple-strand necklace, and a stunning but simple diamond ring. A Penland School of Craft devotee, Weiss considers it the ultimate compliment when customers say a piece looks like it came from a shipwreck. She says her idea of a beautiful piece of jewelry is "that which is very simple, wearable, and has some unique details." For those of us lucky enough to live in Knoxville, Weiss and her work can also be viewed at her Kingston Pike showroom, where she'll consider melting down old jewelry to create new pieces. As for her preferred metal, Weiss does make some less expensive gold-plated pieces (including the ring pictured), and urges customers to treat them like, well, gold. "You should be very gentle and take care not to wash your hands or change your oil while wearing it," she jokes. If it does fade, Weiss will redo the plating for a cool $20.