There is nothing more elegant than the art of handmade jewelry. Here are the five best places in Minnesota where you can be assured your jewelry purchase is truly handmade by a skilled artisan.
The Grand Hand Gallery
619 Grand Ave.
St. Paul, MN 55102
The Grand Hand features the finest art by the best local artisans. In just a quick trip to this convenient location at the corner of Grand and Dale, you can discover more than 40 outstanding Minnesota jewelry artists. Each artist has a unique skill, such as Jody Freij-Tonder, who makes beautiful jewelry of reclaimed glass by cutting, firing in a kiln or processing in a rock tumbler. Another shop favorite is Margaret Dittrich, skilled at creating elegant jewelry from a wide variety of gemstones with her trademark clean lines.
Lowell Lundeen Jewelry
430 1st Ave. N
Minneapolis, MN 55401
Lowell Lundeen focuses on handmade jewelry and promotes the work of about a dozen local artists in addition to national artists. A Minnesota institution, Lowell Lundeen opened a small shop in Dinkytown next to the Varsity Theater in 1965. He still has a small jewelry shop but in the warehouse district’s Kickernick Building, having been there now for 26 years, he says. Customer service of the utmost importance to Lundeen and it’s clear to see with every visit.
i like you
501 1st Ave. N.E.
Minneapolis, MN 55413
For very affordable funky jewelry by local artists, go to the Northeast Minneapolis Arts District. One of the many shops in this district, i like you, has collaborated with over 200 artists, many of whom are local jewelry artists. Sarah Sweet and Angela Lessman saw the need for a fun space where local and independent artists can showcase their wares. Shoppers delight in exploring what has been called “the cutest shop in Minneapolis,” where creative works of jewelry are crammed together with other works of art, pennants, folderol, bits and pieces.
Larissa Loden Jewelry
Larissa Loden works at her studio, which is also her home. You may go online to see Loden’s unique creations but you must go to aforementioned i like you or any of a score of other local shops to admire these extraordinary creations in person. Vintage meets modern with Loden’s collection. Imagine an old and aged map, cameo, locket or even a switchblade recreated, restaged, remounted and presented in a way that is absolutely grabbing.
Quench Jewelry Arts
681 17th Ave. N.E., Studio 100
Minneapolis, MN 55413
Anyone thinking about seizing the opportunity to design jewelry themselves should check out Quench. Sarah Michaela Sitarz, a trained jewelry artist, has established a specialty studio with an artistic ambience but with all of the traditional metal-smithing capabilities. Newbies can enroll in classes to learn the art of jewelry-making or seasoned artists can rent a studio or a bench.
Related: Best Local Modern Jewelry Artists
Robin Johnson was born in Annandale, Minn. and graduated from Richfield High School and then the University of Minnesota where he studied Political Science, Business and Industrial Relations. A writer for Examiner.com, he also consults with a variety of organizations and individuals helping them develop and grow. His work can be found at Examiner.com.