Born and raised in rustic central Pennsylvania, Desiree spent much of her adult life in Colorado, New Mexico, Texas and the beautiful Hawaiian island of Maui. Her life experiences have shaped her deep appreciation for different cultures as well as the beauty and grandeur of Nature, which reflects in her wearable art pieces.
Her “Couture Cuffs” and “Story Cuffs” are created onto a vintage “Barrera for Avon” hammered brass hinged cuff bracelet. This stunning vintage bracelet was one of Jose Barrera’s designs for Avon and his Corinthian Collection was inspired by the gold jewelry of ancient Greece. The cuff, alone, makes a statement, recalling the dramatic jewels of antiquity in their hammered gold-tones. Massive in scale with a bold design this wonderful, hand-hammered look, with two great swirls that meet in the center, makes it look like a Grecian artifact and is the perfect shape and composition for her artwork.
These one-of-a-kind pieces require approximately 20 – 40 hours and has anywhere from 200 to 600 Swarovski crystal rhinestones as well as gem and semi-precious gemstones, charms, miniatures, carefully selected seashells and beach glass from the beaches of Hawaii, as well as vintage and designer jewelry pieces. Each item is applied with painstaking care and precision.
Each “Story Cuff” has a theme and can pay tribute to people and icon, past and present, which have inspired and delighted millions. Some feature fantasy creatures such as mermaids and fairies, which tell stories and even put a new twist to old tales.
“It all started as a gift”, Desiree explains. “I wanted to create something special for my sister and, in doing so, made the first of many cuffs.”
“Soon all my friends wanted one! It was wonderful being able to create and give as gifts what people so treasured. Once an idea is formed, I research items to find the perfect touch to each piece. Every miniature, piece of jewelry or charm is chosen because of its’ meaning and pertinence to the theme. The best compliment given is that when my jewelry is worn, the joy that I feel in making it is transferred to the wearer. When that happens, then I have accomplished my goal.”
It wasn’t long before Desiree branched out from Couture Cuffs to many other types of jewelry. Beaded bracelets, grand “wreath” necklaces, petite Couture Cuffs, and unique earrings soon followed.
Desiree’s art in known worldwide; from Japan to Great Britain; Germany to Australia. Living on Maui afforded her the opportunity to chat with people from all over the globe. “I am proud to say that world-travelers have often commented that my style is so unique that they have never seen anything like it. That being said, it is one of the major drawing points. NO ONE will have anything exactly like the one you choose and wear.”
It seems that the piece chooses the wearer rather than the wearer chooses the piece. Each jewelry item she makes is one-of-a-kind and will not be duplicated. Rest assured that any item you purchase will be a well-researched and totally unique wearable masterpiece.