Most people probably are not aware of it but jewelers and jewelry makers contribute a lot to their communities. There is the economic aspect where these folks build their business on a local (and national, thanks in part to the internet) and contribute to the state’s economy. There is also the creative contribution to the overall jewelry industry since many introduce their own styles and designs that may influence future jewelry designers. And, surprisingly, many also make personal contributions to their community through commitments to local causes.

When it comes to up and coming jewelry artists, our AZ jewelry appraisal is always pleased to hear of Arizona artists who not only create beautiful pieces for generations to enjoy but who also make contributions to their community. It seems that most people in our industry who are profiled in the media hail from fashion centers like New York or Los Angeles, leaving little time to talk about rising stars in other areas of the country. That is why this AZ jewelry appraisal was pleased to see a recent article profiling Tucson resident, jeweler, and jewelry designer Lizzie Mead featured in the Arizona Daily Star last month. Her unique designs and personality add a lot to both Tucson and Arizona so read on to find out more.

According to the article, Mead got her start in the jewelry business by designing, creating, and selling unique pieces in elementary school with used telephone wire. She continued on this path with an internship with a jeweler at the Arizona Renaissance Fair and eventually began working at a small mall kiosk that would later become her storefront, Silver Sea Jewelry.

Our AZ jewelry appraisal learned that in her store, Mead sells and occasionally designs ocean-inspired jewelry, though she also designs and sells items for various costumed roleplaying events around the state, such as the Renaissance Fair or steampunk conventions. Mead’s unique style in these pieces ranges from simple, minimalist designs to conventional jewelry that would appeal to a wide range of consumers to the fantastical that would probably only be worn with roleplaying costumes.

However, this AZ jewelry appraisal believes that what makes Mead’s work impactful to Tucson’s economy is how she and her work are so entwined in her local community, specifically to its four-legged members. Mead, who operates a small jewelry store on Fourth Avenue called Silver Sea Jewelry, uses her business to assist animal causes and charities within Tucson as well as on a national level.

Following an accident that left her with $14,000 in veterinary bills, she and a group of jeweler friends created Beading Divas to the Rescue to raise funds for this and other causes. In addition to that, Mead also conducts outreach to homeless teens by connecting them to resources to get them and their pets off the streets.

Overall, this AZ jewelry appraisal is pleased to hear of the difference Mead is creating in her community and we look forward to seeing more of her work in the future.