"Jewelry has a way of telling a story like nothing else we put on each day," says Katherine Bly Cromer. And she should know. The UNC-Charlotte grad and piano teacher uses her spare time to craft one-of-a-kind pieces for her jewelry line, Blydesign. She converts cracked antiques and her customers’ cherished collectibles into original concepts. "I believe all women should be head over heels for the jewelry they wear," says Cromer, who got the idea after creating a sparkling chain from one of her grandmother’s crystal chandeliers.
Among Cromer’s offerings you’ll find statement pieces like brass cuffs with stone appliqués and bedazzled cocktail rings, as well as subdued staples, such as charm bracelets and simple earrings. Or, for a unique look, have your own favorite vintage item recycled into one of her fresh designs. Prices start at $30, and designs can be found at Luxe Home Couture and blydesign.com.