8/30/11

Leighelena Jewelry: Creative Fusion


Fusing metal and glass in a kiln is an ancient practice used by artist, Leigh Navarro, to create enamel jewelry with a modern vibe.  Before the firing stage, pigments and glass fragments are arranged on the metal into a design that will be transformed into artwork that resembles gemstones and abstract flowers.  By fusing creativity and intuition, Ms. Navarro has diversified her jewelry line to include circular pendants, belts, rings, and signature buckle bracelets.  


Enamel Pendants & Cuffs
Inside Ms. Navarro’s store, Leighelena, in Austin, the display of Enamel Pendants suspended from a rod is a kaleidoscope of rich colors and organic shapes.  The pendants are lightly textured and have a glossy finish that reflects light and accentuates the depth of colors. Each pendant has a unique personality that invites you to look beneath the surface. I became better acquainted with a turquoise pendant that reminded me of the mineral deposits found in spring-fed pools in central Texas.
As if to ensure a special delivery to the lucky recipient, Ms. Navarro adheres a stamp from her beloved family collection to the backside of the larger pendants.  My pendant is sealed with a stamp from Malaysia with a picture of Hevea brasiliensis, commonly known as a rubber tree.  Perhaps I’ll be adding another stamp to my passport soon.


Leighelena’s Enamel Cuffs are accented with a smaller enamel piece attached to a wide  strap.  This eye-catching accessory is ideal for wearing with a sleeveless blouse or tank top.  There’s a variety of leather colors and enamel finishes available to express your adventurous side, but if you don’t see the combination you desire, a custom bracelet can be ordered.  

Wide Buckle Bracelets

Like a firm handshake, Leighelena’s Wide Buckle Bracelets make a good first impression. The bracelet is appropriate to wear when negotiating deals or dance moves.  The interlocking buckle, in your choice of silver, gold, or gun metal, is a bold accent on the wide leather strap.  Janelle, one of Leighelena’s enthusiastic salespeople, explained that the buckle bracelets “work with anyone’s style” from “edgy” to “sophisticated.”  I was instantly attracted to the tray of bracelets made with stingray skins. The saturated colors of yellow, orange, and cranberry enhance the tiny pebbled texture that employee, Cayley, aptly described when she said, “it almost looks like beadwork.” 1 

Be Aware:  The Wide Buckle Bracelets aren’t for the timid!
The authenticity of Leighelena jewelry is apparent in the whimsical effects that are ignited in the kiln and the quality of materials used to make the straps.  If you’re looking for a new way to mix leather into your wardrobe, try on a Leighelena cuff that flaunts your emerging style.  You’ll appreciate how genuine leather conforms to fit you perfectly.
Leighelena is Made in USA. 








Sources:

1  August 6, 2011 visit to Leighelena in Austin, Texas.

Photos used with permission from Leighelena.