I tend to get a lot of compliments on the jewelry I wear, and I always try to pimp the artist who made whatever I'm wearing, so now I'm going to do that before you even ask. Below are some of my favorite jewelry artists from the Pittsburgh area.
1. Macabre Noir - I love, love, love the mechanical heart pendants she makes. The one I have has eyes! She sculpts and paints each one individually, by hand and puts a lot of time into all of her work. The dolls she makes are also hand-sculpted and hand-painted. No two items are ever alike and they all have a beautifully delicious darkness to them. In addition to being an amazing visual artist, Macabre Noir is also a performer and puts together the Atrocity event in Pittsburgh each year with her partner in crime, Doctor Morose.
2. Melissa Ciccocioppo - Now to the brightly-colored, cute end of the spectrum. Melissa is actually my next door neighbor, which is about as local as you can get. She makes absolutely adorable clay animal pendants and lovely feather hair clips. She made me a platypus. I do love platypi. Everything she makes, too, is hand-sculpted, and therefor one of a kind.
3. Jessica Rutherford - I actually met Jessica at a yard sale where she was selling some of her older work. Jessica is a glass-maker and jewelry designer. She makes much of her glass work from recycled glass (primarily panes of glass from old windows which, surprise, are not recycled in the city of Pittsburgh). There is a beautiful simplicity to the jewelry piece I bought from her. I wish I could find a photo of a pendant like the one of hers that I have, but alas.
4. Nicole Stemple - I went to college with Nicole, and happened to see her at a craft fair a couple of years ago selling her jewelry. Apparently I was her very first customer ever at a fair - yay! Nicole is now the woman behind the etsy shop Pretty Debonair and she makes the most amazing jewelry out of vintage beads and brooches, and has just started making jewelry from fishing lures, too (none are up at her shop yet, but she has them at the fairs she goes to in the Pittsburgh area and they are fantastic). I have a necklace she made using a tiny sword brooch. It makes me feel like a musketeer.