Laurel O'Brien

Laurel O'Brien

I am a professional jeweler and metal-smith.  I grew up in the Finger Lakes area and returned to live in Ithaca after graduating with a BFA in Fine Art from SUNY New Paltz.  Drawing, sculpture and other art mediums have always interested me and I like to incorporate these in jewelry when I can.  You can see this in my hand drawn and sawn out designs. I also use surface textures and hand forming to create sculptural elements in many pieces.  

Choosing metal and jewelry as an art form allows me to use a wide variety of traditional techniques. These include hand sawing, hammering, forging, riveting, soldering, filing, forming and more! Because each piece is handcrafted every bracelet, necklace and hairpin will be unique in subtle or substantial ways.

The collection I make includes bracelets, rings, necklaces, earrings and hairpins. Once in a while I make a small metal hammered piece such as a bowl or candle holder.  Materials in my work include sterling silver, yellow & rose gold, gold-fill, copper, brass and gemstones.  

Stylistically my work is often minimalist and I hope it is elegant and versatile. Nature is a big inspiration for me and I am lucky to live surrounded by woods, fields and water. I have always been a plant lover and you can see botanical designs in my hand cutout pieces and in other flora and fauna inspired forms. Surface texture is often informed by tree bark, a water's surface or a fossil I find.


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