We love quirky jewelry as much as the next girl—a funky heirloom, a pair of vintage fish earring, a throwback puka shell choker circa 1998—but the downside to all these pieces is they don’t quite have the little touch of luxury that we look for in our jewelry today. They’re cool for sure, but sometimes we want to feel a little more glamorous than some of our older pieces can offer, and that’s when we turn to contemporary designers. Capturing the fun of our youth with the beauty of precious metals and glittering stones, gives us a combination that’s perfect for our everyday uniforms. Originally designing funky animal jewelry for herself, Beth Yorn of Elisabeth Bell Jewelry now creates a line of luxurious pieces that we (and celebrities) love.
While working as a model in New York City, Beth Yorn spent her spare time in the Egyptian Wing of the Metropolitan Museum of Art perusing the jewelry and falling in love with its intricate detail. Making the leap from model to designer she attended classes at the Jewelry and Arts Institute in NYC to learn metal-smithing as a way to recreate the ancient designs for herself. Soon Yorn began to incorporate her own aesthetic and turned to her love of animals for inspiration. Volunteering at the Audubon Society and taking care of orphaned wildlife since her early teens it was an easy transition and one she was passionate about.
Now Yorn’s jewelry showcases ruby-eyed wolves, sterling silver bear claws and golden bird’s eggs and has a signature aesthetic known for its unique and raw design. Elisabeth Bell is even worn by celebrity fans that include Cameron Diaz, Reese Witherspoon, Sandra Bullock, Gwyneth Paltrow, Mimi Rogers, Maria Menounos and Rose McGowan just to name a few. And not that we need to emulate Paltrow’s every fashion move (we do), but we sort of love the idea of twinning with Gwynnie.
Handcrafted in Yorn’s Los Angeles studio, the collection is rife with precious materials including 14 karat yellow, rose and white gold, black oxidized sterling silver, platinum, rubies, opals, prehistoric mammoth tusk, pave diamonds, and naturally shed deer antler. (We told you it was a quirky collection.) Many pieces are cast from bones such as fossilized Tyrannosaurs rex teeth, quail bones, stingray barbs and petrified ammonites which will definitely give your accessories a bit of a back story. “Oh this old thing? Just a golden fossilized Tyrannosaurs rex tooth. No big deal.”
Elisabeth Bell Jewelry is available online and priced from $475-$5,200.