Monday, April 28, 2014


Ivory Acrylic and Brass Anto Lope Pendant Necklace
Ireland’s oldest city, Waterford, is a destination replete with activities for everyone.

The beach lover can enjoy the golden sands of Dunmore East Beach while the art buff will enjoy the municipal art collection at Waterford City Hall.

Ireland is also home to featured jewelry designer Niamh Spain.

Spain’s three-and-a-half year old brand of handmade jewelry fashioned from sterling silver, gilded silver and laser cut acrylic is a showcase of the jeweler’s playful approach to varied materials.  Her fertile mind breaks down complex structures into simpler details bringing those elements to life in her classic yet quirky creations.

Her clear-cut aesthetic pays homage to isosceles triangles, birds, antelope and deer.  The animal-inspired acrylic work is particularly festive with its multi-colored “birdies” rings and earrings, and the wonderful, detailed brass textures of deer and antelope horns.

The native of Kildare pursued studies and a career in jewelry making when she realized office work was not for her.  By 2010 she launched her artistic works, including jewelry that spans wall pieces, limited edition jewelry and custom jewelry.

“I studied metal design at the National College of Art and Design.  I thought that I would do printmaking until I took that course in metals,” she recalls.  

Gilded Silver Isosceles Charm Pendant Necklace
“I had never worked with metal and felt an instant connection to it.  I made my first ring with a topaz gemstone and I was hooked!

I love the vibrant color of my Birdie Collection.  I am awful at naming pieces of jewelry so I put a call out to my Facebook followers to suggest some names.  I was overwhelmed at the response!” she enthuses.

“My work is inspired by contemporary architecture, geometric shapes and color!  The most rewarding part of jewelry making is designing bespoke pieces. I take inspiration from the things my clients love and a little bit of my interests thrown in. 

Sometimes it isn’t always easy to incorporate my own style and something my client has an affinity for.  In the end I am excited to see how people will respond to my designs.”

Black Acrylic & Gilded Silver Betty Birdie Ring (top): and
Blue Acrylic and Sterling Silver Tobias Birdie Earrings
2014 Jewelry Trend AlertSpain’s Birdie Collection highlights blue, yellow and orange.  Color, whether vibrant or subdued, is on trend for the New Year.
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