Working with sterling silver, semi-precious beads and Swarovski crystal, Nancy creates jewellery that is high-quality but affordable. "No two pieces ever turn out the same, and that is exactly how I want it to be," she says. "I strive to make pieces that are both elegant and casual, something that can be worn with jeans, to the office or out on the town."
Nancy says she was born with a passion for jewellery, having been raised in a family of creative and talented women. "I knew at an early age that jewellery would figure prominently in my life. Around the age of 10, I was given an old book that showcased Queen Mary's jewellery. I spent many hours studying each picture."
Nancy's first job was in a fine jewellery store, where she spent as much time as possible watching the goldsmith. "I soon learned the correct way of restringing a strand of pearls and then couldn't wait to get started when a strand was brought in for repair."
She began making her own jewellery four years ago when she saw a bracelet that was absolutely gorgeous but way over her budget. "So," says Nancy, "I decided I would make one. I sourced the semi-precious beads and sterling silver wire, purchased a set of tools and set up my own bench. Suddenly I felt complete. This was my destiny!
"I made the bracelet and then someone wanted one like it. Using leftover beads I made earrings. They sold almost immediately."
Nancy now sells her creations under the Gracie Jewellery brand and has many satisfied customers in Canada, the US, Mexico, Australia, France, England, Ireland and Sweden.
Currently taking a metalworking course, Nancy plans to expand her line to include handmade sterling silver components and chains. "I enjoy the whole jewellery making process, from choosing each bead, designing and constructing, to watching someone discover my work for the first time."
Nancy lives in Welland with her husband and son, who, she says, are very supportive but not afraid to offer their opinions.
Join us on Thursday, April 29, at the Wildflower Market Restaurant to meet Nancy and see her latest creations in the Gracie Jewellery line.