I love a good statement earring, and if you do too, look no further than T. Marie Designs. Atlanta based jewelry artist Tiffany Custard creates all of her one (or two) of a kind designs herself using only the finest materials. She recently released her latest line just in time for the autumn season featuring a neutral palette that will blend with all of your dresses throughout the upcoming season.
In this interview Tiffany shares about her earliest designs, the materials she frequently works with and an inside look at her recent collaboration with watercolor artist Riley Sheehey.
You first became interested in the art of jewelry design while in Florence, Italy. Tell me about how your love of the architecture and fashion history of the city inspired some of your earliest designs?
Florence is such a beautiful and charming city and is so special and dear to me from my time spent there during my summer abroad in college. It is so full of history, beautiful architecture, and incredible fashion houses, that there is inspiration truly around every corner. During the time I was living there and making jewelry, fashion trends were very bright and vibrant which translated in to brighter colors in my earliest designs. While I love those initial pieces, I believe that you are always evolving as a creative and now my pieces are more neutral and full of pastels.
What was one of the most important lessons you learned during your jewelry making lessons abroad?
To be patient with your creations – designs and ideas take time, and if its not working (which still happens), get out of the studio and do something that sparks creativity and joy!
Tell me about the process of creating a new piece.
I source a lot of the individual components I love and think will be beautiful as earrings. Once they arrive, I lay them out on the studio table and start playing with stones and pieces that go together…normally an earring will go through 2 or 3 different combinations before it gets put on the site.
Where do you source some of the materials that you use to create your earrings?
From all over the world! I have some local shops I work with, but also have developed relationships with vendors in India and South America where I source a lot of my stones and pieces.
What are some of the materials that you work with the most?
I mostly work with semi precious stones, mother of pearl, natural shell, and vermeil gold. My autumn collection that just launched is full of natural and neutral elements to pair with all things Fall!
In addition to earrings, you also create necklaces and bracelets. What are some of the pieces that you’ve created that are a part of your own jewelry collection?
I wear my designs throughout each season, but only have a handful of pieces I have kept over the years. Right now I love a good statement earring, so I keep my other jewelry minimal and simple.
You make all of the pieces featured in your shop and at various retailers yourself. Out of all of the pieces that you’ve made, which one has been the most time intensive to create?
Most recently, the most time intensive piece to create was our earring we collaborated on with Riley Sheehey. From the design, to finding the right manufacturer, to making sure it was made with the highest quality materials – and then added on top was covid shipping and customs delays – it by far was the most time intensive, but worth it – one of my favorite pieces I’ve ever done!
T Marie Designs x Riley Sheehey
You recently collaborated with watercolor artist Riley Sheehey to create the most beautiful earrings. Tell me about how you met Riley and what you enjoyed the most about the collaboration project.
I bought one of her beautiful alphabunny prints for my sons play room and have always admired her talent and work. She posted a hollyhock design to instagram and I thought that they would be the most beautiful earrings, so I reached out to her about a collaboration and thats how the conversation started. Riley was truly with me every step of the way in brining these earrings to life and it turned into a lovely friendship. I was so honored to work with her, she is as kind as she is talented and I know big things are ahead for her!
What is the best part about seeing how customers style their T. Marie Designs jewelry on their Instagram accounts?
I love seeing how our customers style and make each piece their own. My favorite is seeing our earrings incorporated in special moments like an engagement shoot, a wedding, or a newborn shoot – there is nothing that makes me happier!