Unlike manufactured, mass-produced jewelry, handmade items are crafted with love and passion. Anything handmade will be hard to replicate, meaning the jewelry is unique and not saturating the market. Visit these DC stores to find your next treasured piece of handmade jewelry.
3319 Cady’s Alley N.W.
Washington, DC 20007
Jewelers’Werk Galerie is an art gallery for artist jewelers located in the design center of Georgetown. The gallery opened in 1984 and represents artist jewelers from Europe, Japan, Australia, New Zealand and the US, to name a few. A collection that is constantly evolving, the gallery holds eight to 10 exhibitions per year. Each exhibition lasts three weeks and the artist is usually present for the opening. The pieces are not fashion or costume jewelry, but rather multi-media (silver, gold, rubber, plastic etc) and sometimes avant-garde, stretching the viewers’ ideas about the forms jewelry can take.
933 F St. N.W.
Washington, DC 20004
Mia Gemma is an inviting gallery of fine artisan jewelry with something for every budget. “Mia Gemma was born out of my love for great design, a desire to offer style that reflects who we are and a desire to make women feel special,” said owner Irene Barbieri. Mia Gemma means “my gem” in Italian. The store features fine jewelry created in small batches or is one of a kind from about 30 different artists around the US, each with their own design aesthetic. The artists work in all kinds of precious metals and with many different gems (both precious and semi-precious). With a love for color, many different gems are featured: rubies, pearls, sapphires and tanzanite, to name a few, as well as champagne, black and white diamonds. Styles at Mia Gemma include contemporary, modern, organic, classic and antique – all very wearable. Barbieri says the uniqueness of each piece lets a woman explore who she is and how she wants herself reflected in the jewelry she wears, “We believe that jewelry should fit the same as our clothes – be well-tailored to your unique dimensions, skin tone, style and preference. The designs at Mia Gemma speak to the Washington woman who needs style, versatility and yet stays within the boundaries of what is acceptable to wear for work and/or play in this very image-conscious city.”
1368 Chain Bridge Road
McLean, VA 22101
The Artisans has a space in the Langley Shopping Center in Northern Virginia that is devoted to jewelry, clothing, accessories, gifts, greeting cards, home decor and tabletop, toiletries, seasonal decorations, baby gifts and Judaica. A large selection of handcrafted jewelry is at the core of the business, representing the majority of sales for the shop. The jewelry varies in style, material and price point, but most sells in the $25 to $100 range. “Customers count on us to have a sense of current fashion trends, but to expand beyond that into jewelry that is more unique, artistic and personal. By working directly with artists, we can offer jewelry made from precious metals and gemstones at prices comparable to what can be found at national mall retailers in plastic and base metals,” said co-owner Judy Harkins. Some of the handcrafted American jewelry lines carried include Holly Yashi who makes niobium, a hard and lightweight metal which is colored using electrical charges; Sue Rosengard who makes hand-formed, timeless geometric shapes from sterling silver and gold-filled wire with bead components; and Blue Palms Fiberworks that makes hand-painted silk textiles layered onto mat board and combined with wires and beads. New work enters the store almost every day.
The Irish Walk
415 King St.
Alexandria, VA 22314
The Irish Walk is like a miniature department store, offering a wide variety of goods, and has been serving the Alexandria community for four decades. Almost all of the jewelry is made in Ireland and some pieces are handmade from a few local Irish artists. One local artist, a retired woman of Irish decent, recently introduced a line of Celtic angels made with metal beads and holiday pins that are suitable for hats, blazers and coat lapels. The owners pick up wire and beaded necklaces on their buying trips to Ireland.
1614 17th St. N.W., Suite 805
Washington, DC 20009
Store owner Thomas Troy Dent creates all of the jewelry for sale. The goods are often designed on a custom basis to reflect the personality of each consumer. Dent travels often to many arts and craft shows and festivals throughout the year.
Related: Best Jewelry Stores In Washington DC