hidden gem

Sarah's latest design 'La Belle et La Bete'

beenalabella.com had the delight of conversing with Ohio Jewelry designer ‘Sarah Jess’, creator of ‘Navare Jewelry’. I met Sarah through the ‘Fashion Industry Network’. I was absolutely blown away by her vintage flair and enchanting aura. Her designs have such a magical touch, with a sprinkle of modern daintiness. While most look to the future, Sarah looks to the past for her epoch muse.

BLB: When did you start making jewelry?
SJ: I have made jewelry out of odds and ends since I was a child, when I made beads from clay and painting them. As a teenager, I could never find jewelry that I liked, so I would create my own by taking other pieces apart and reworking them.

BLB: What inspired you?
SJ: What inspires me is the past; old movie stars, old fairy tales, biographies of kings and queens from centuries long ago, and other cultures.

BLB: Are you a native of Ohio and what city do you reside in?
SJ: Yes, I am a native of Ohio, and while I have lived in Columbus for quite a few years since college, I currently live in the small city of Piqua.

BLB: How is it living in Ohio and working in the fashion industry, when most consider New York as the fashion capitol?
SJ: After college I always thought I would end up in NYC out of necessity, but the internet, television, and fashion magazines have made it possible, I think, to live elsewhere, and still be in touch with the fashion world. I think there are fashion jobs hidden around the country in other cities, too, but on a smaller scale.

BLB: What is your biggest accomplishment within your business?
SJ: My biggest accomplishment so far, since I officially opened my shop last year, is building the courage to put my work out there, for sale. It's painful! You hope that people will love your work, since you put so much of yourself into it, and every time I ship a piece to a customer, I feel a boost of confidence, but also the pain of letting go of something that I have created and named and described and photographed.

BLB: What did the name ‘Navare’ stem from?
SJ: Navarre is an ancient kingdom between France and Spain. I used to read obsessively about Richard the Lionhearted and his Queen, Berengaria, who came from Navarre. I can't wait to visit there someday!

BLB: What are your plans for the near future?
SJ: For the near future I just want to increase the traffic to my shop, to be able to hire my sister as my first employee, and then open a boutique.

BLB: What type of materials do you use to create your pieces?
SJ: Right now I use primarily vintage items and some new beads to create my jewelry. This includes vintage rosary beads, old door hardware, lots of rhinestone brooches, antique crackerjack charms, and odds and ends that look like they have a history and a soul.

BLB: Did you attend any classes (meaning in college ) or was this a hidden gift that turned into a profession?
SJ: I have a Bachelor of Arts in fashion, an Associate of Arts in visual communications, and have taken a few jewelry classes over the years.

BLB: What is your favorite color and how would you describe your style?
SJ: My favorite color is green. My style is ever-changing, and inspired by the past. I prefer classic and quirky to trendy. I'd rather invest in a well-made cardigan with jeweled buttons or an elegant blouse, than this season's skinny jeans.

BLB: Which one of your pieces would you say is your favorite?
SJ: I am leaning towards La Belle et La Bete. I tend to fall in love with a new item every week, and I really need to stop raiding my inventory!

BLB: How would you describe your pieces?
SJ: My customers have described my pieces as whimsical, unique, classic, eye-catching, chic, and beautiful. Or as one customer said, "a nice mix of vintage with a little modern twist".

BLB: What type of female (style wise) would appreciate your jewelry as the ultimate accessory?
SJ: I believe I have something for just about everyone! I have some dainty pieces, and some larger pieces, some simple, and some elaborate.

BLB: What is your perspective on life?
SJ: I think it is important to dream big and to never give up. Try something, and if it doesn't work, examine the situation, and find another way to approach it. We can all accomplish so much if we stay focused!

below are some sample pieces of 'Navare Jewelry'

'Rima' Necklace

'Anemone' Earrings

'Mademoiselle' Necklace

'Bangladesh Bangles' -1933

If you would like to view more of Sarah Jess's Jewelry designs,visit www.navare.etsy.com


Anonymous said...

Beena La Bella you continue to amaze me with your unique eye to show us your readers amazing beauty. Sarah Jess stuff is wonderful and different in so many ways.

Anonymous said...


I thank you so much for taking the time to explore Navare Jewelry, and for your beautiful article about me and my jewelry on your blog. I couldn't be more pleased!

Sarah Jess - Navare Jewelry

♥ fashion chalet said...

lovely, as in Sarah Jessica Parker perhaps? ;)


Ms. Kipora said...

Sarah Jess's Pieces are beautiful. I think this was a great questionaire on her, and her works. Great Stuff! -Ms Kipora

Anonymous said...

luv, luv, luv it...u have a wonderful writing ability beena n the jewelry is girlie yet unique.

Anonymous said...

I love the jewelry this post is very nice.