“Jewelry and other forms of personal expression should not be gender specific.
Everyone should be able to wear jewelry that brings them joy. That is why we talk about our jewelry in non-gendered terms and choose labels like commitment jewelry over bridal jewelry.
We have a responsibility to one another and the world we all share. Based on this, our custom work and most of the work crafted by the artists is created with recycled and ethically sourced materials.
Education is a key component to understanding and appreciating any art form. Whether it is meeting with us to discuss certain metals for a custom design or learning about the origins of gemstones, or even taking a metalsmithing class with us to learn about the techniques and processes, education is an important part of the value we bring.”
Owner of Balefire Goods
Jamie Hollier discovered her love for metalwork as a child. She helped her grandfather, a machinist, and often visited her Great Aunt Tettie’s antique store. She frequented artisan craft fairs all over Houston with her mother, and then moved to Colorado to pursue Art History and Metalsmithing. In October of 2017, Jamie opened her studio, and forty-five days later, opened the doors to her very own artisan jewelry store in Olde Town Arvada: Balefire Goods.
Jamie is honored to work alongside individuals who share the same excitement and passion for this work: “We see jewelry as wearable art, so the work we create and carry are unique, artisan made pieces. Along with this, we provide transparency into the creators/artists behind the pieces we sell to highlight the craftspeople that make the pieces.”
Jamie confirms that working with others to select and create the perfect pieces that carry meaning, represent milestones, and/or celebrate significant moments is what makes this industry most satisfying; “This means you are trusted with being a part of these memorable and often life changing moments, which is so humbling.”
She shares two such memorable moments:
One of my favorite moments was when we made wedding bands for a couple, and they had both secretly emailed us to add engraving to the inside of their partner's ring. When they came to pick them up, they both looked at what the other wrote inside and burst into tears followed by an embrace and kiss. There wasn't a dry eye in the gallery.
Another moment I will never forget was when we remade a wedding ring, from a customer who had been widowed, into a new bracelet. There was so much symbolism in taking something still loved and cherished but that was now full of complex emotions, and creating a new piece that represented a step forward in healing and creating a new life.
Balefire Goods in Olde Town Arvada is built around community and equality, and it is this mission, along with the one-of-a-kind pieces of jewelry, that make the business-consumer relationship unique and lasting.
Owner Jamie Hollier loves working and creating in the studio and feels fortunate to be inspired by a diversity of gifted artists; building bridges and fostering community are foundational at Balefire Goods, which is why this business carries the work of artists from both the local community and across the globe. Each month, one or more artists are invited to share their work through Jamie’s store in order to further art appreciation and the creative industry in Colorado. Additionally, 5% of Balefire’s sales go to community non-profits. Jamie and her team regularly donate to and host events for local non-profits, for they believe they have to support the needs of the community to truly be a part of it. Many of the non-profits they support center around human rights, women's rights, and animal rights. These organizations provide safety and empowerment to the communities they serve, and thus Balefire prioritizes their partnership.
Balefire Goods is respected and recognized for their positive impact and worldwide partnerships and is equally highlighted for their unique and quality creations. They help individuals and families figure out ways to get more out of items they already own, including repairing or refreshing personal favorites. They introduce diamond-seekers to colored stones like spinel, beryl, and sapphires, which Jamie points out, “...come in every color. Not only do these stones often come in gorgeous colors and can have more unique cuts, they can often be sourced locally, like sapphires from Montana.” They help couples create the just-right engagement or wedding band, and they guide those looking to surprise a friend or purchase for a special occasion, to a meaningful gift. Jamie received The Best Artisan Jeweler in Westword’s Best of Denver 2020; America’s Coolest Store by InStore Magazine in 2019; A-List Top 5 for Best Designer Jewelry Store in Denver and Arvada in 2018.
Behind the scenes, Jamie is busy photographing new pieces, meeting with clients, recruiting new talent, preparing the metalsmithing classroom, hanging art for featured artists, and managing the inventory and accounting. Jamie admits the demands of being both a business owner and an artist are challenging, but she is happy, fulfilled, and eager to continue this journey.
Rethink Your Jewelry Collection
1. Redo and repair existing jewelry: If you are thinking about a new piece of jewelry, start by looking in your jewelry box. Reuse the stones and metals from jewelry you already own to give new life to your collection.
2. Don’t be intimidated: Many people think custom jewelry is really expensive; however, we can make custom pieces to fit nearly all budgets. Custom work is a great way to get exactly what you want, and it doesn't need to break the bank.
3. Buy platinum: Historically, platinum has been one of the most expensive options for jewelry, but as prices for gold continue to go up, platinum has stayed steady and has even dropped, making it similar and sometimes lower in price than gold.
4. Rethink diamonds: While diamonds are a classic and beautiful option for jewelry, there are tons of other stones out there that should not be overlooked. Look into spinel, beryl, or sapphires.