A few years ago I sat across from my friend at dinner and couldn’t stop staring at her necklace. It was a stunning silver chain with an oversized pendant made up of intertwining circles. She told me the designer lived right here in Maine, Willa Wirth of Willa Wirth Silver Design (willawirth.com), and I’ve been a superfan ever since.
Wirth started designing and creating jewelry over 15 years ago and was drawn to silver as “it was the most tangible way I could express nature-inspired designs.” Her inspiration comes from her love of nature and she says every single piece is “a tremendous metamorphosis,” as she handles the silver and turns it into a piece of jewelry women will have for a lifetime.
Over half of Wirth’s pieces are custom designs. She works directly with customers to create “timeless pieces of art with meaning.” You can find many pieces at her shop at 99 Congress Street in Portland.
It wasn’t long after that I was browsing in my favorite boutique on Maine street in Brunswick, Wyler Gallery, and saw the most beautiful gold cuff bracelet. It was shiny, engraved with numbers and I had to have it—it was like nothing I’d ever seen before. It was from another Maine-based jewelry designer, Watts in Maine (wattsinmaine.com). Owner and creator Kylie Watts started exploring Vinalhaven Island where her husband was born and raised. “It’s home to a large fishing community and coming into the harbor, you can’t help but be inspired,” Watts says.
The island was the inspiration behind the “Perfect Catch Cuff,” which is actually a brass lobster measuring gauge. Watts forms and polishes it into her signature bracelet. Her pieces can be purchased through wattsinmaine.com and at retailers throughout Maine. Watts says her mission is to “create pieces that represent our state.”
? WATTS IN MAINE ORIGINAL PERFECT CATCH CUFF
Made from the same brass tool used to determine if a lobster is a keeper or not, the “Perfect Catch Cuff” looks great solo, but my plan is to purchase a few more. We all love some nice arm candy, and this piece looks great stacked.
? WATTS IN MAINE STATE OF MAINE PENDANT
These pendants are cut from the stainless steel gauge used to measure a lobster in Maine. This is one of those delicate pieces you will find yourself wearing everyday.
? WILLA WIRTH SILVER DESIGN MOON SERIES NECKLACE
Pieces like this silver necklace from Willa Wirth are classic and make a huge statement whether you are wearing a great dress or your favorite denim and button-down. The oversized pendant is radiant—who needs diamonds when there are stunning pieces made from simple materials? Wirth has a knack for making large pieces feel delicate.
? WILLA WIRTH SILVER DESIGN RING
Every woman needs a signature ring that she buys for herself and you will have a hard time picking just one while exploring Willa Wirth’s pieces, like this silver design ring.
Katie Bingham-Smith is a writer, shoe addict and mother living in Bowdoinham. She pays her kids to rub her feet and never turns down anything with caffeine.