Valerie Madison takes modern elegance and designs pieces that are as unique as you and your loved one. Whether you’re looking for an engagement ring or unique keepsake, craft a one of kind piece of jewelry you’ll cherish for years to come with Valerie Madison Fine Jewelry.
We had the opportunity to chat with Valerie about what makes her pieces special.
BL: How would you describe your design style?
VM: Modern, minimal, and elegant are the words I would use to describe my work. Fresh and avant-garde, something that people haven’t seen everyday. Minimal and not overly designed are a cornerstone of my work, everything is intentional. Lastly, I want my pieces to feel timeless & enduring which is why I strive for perfection in every piece.
BL: Have you always had a passion for jewelry?
VM: Yes, although I would say my passion for jewelry stems from my love of nature. My early memories on the school playground include me digging around in the rocks looking for the prettiest and most unique ones. I’m a nature girl at heart and my early career ambitions included paleontologist or wildlife biologist. I also loved to craft as a little girl and I remember my mom bringing me to the craft store and allowing me to pick out beads to bring home and do what I like with them. My family members couldn’t afford to be avid jewelry collectors when I was younger so I wasn’t particularly interested in jewelry until I was older and could pursue it on my own.
BL: What made you decide to ultimately make this your career?
VM: I went to college locally at the University of Washington to study Environmental Science. I started making jewelry as a hobby between my classes and on weekends to de-stress. I was hungry for information about the jewelry industry, always daydreaming about possibly pursuing it one day. In my research I learned about the gold mining industry in particular and it’s terrible effects on the earth, as well as its habitats and communities. I realized I could apply environmental responsibility into jewelry making.
After college I continued making jewelry as a hobby and then I made the leap to become a full time designer and business owner in 2014. Ever since my first few attempts at making jewelry and holding a torch I saw that I had a knack for it and I knew that my passion could take me far. I wanted this career because I wanted to be my own boss and be able to do something really well and create beautiful inspirational jewelry.
Today I have the pleasure of designing one-of-a-kind diamond rings, working with clients around the country on custom engagement rings, and developing a collection of modern, minimal fine jewelry.
BL: What do you love most about making custom jewelry?
It’s been amazing to work with so many couples near and far. Being able to tell a client’s story by creating their dream ring has been such a truly rewarding experience. What I love most is knowing that I’m helping create an integral part of their love story that will be passed down for generations.
BL: Where do you find your inspiration?
I’m very inspired by clean, minimalist lines and design that has structure, balance, and elegance. I’ve not yet been able to pinpoint a single source that I draw inspiration from specifically because so far, it has all come from within. In the photo you can see an array of styles using uniquely shaped and colored diamonds. Each of these rings is one of a kind meaning that while we can attempt to recreate a ring with something similar we’ll never be able to make an exact copy. This is something that is so important to couples today who want something unique to represent their commitment. All of these rings are low-profile, minimal, and have a refined elegance that showcases the individuality of the stone.
BL: What’s the biggest obstacle you’ve overcome in your business and what did you learn from it?
VM: I always had ambitions to have a company like the one I have now but I didn’t initially know how I could make it happen. To scale quickly, you need to have the funds in place for hiring and a plethora of other costs associated with growing your business. Because I didn’t have any financial backers or additional personal funds to put into the business, I had to scale in a very slow and intentional way and use the limited resources that were available to me. But in doing so slowly, I’ve been able to really understand what works best for this small business and our customers. There’s nothing like bootstrapping and sweat equity to make you appreciate how far you’ve come and how much farther you could possibly go.
BL: What’s your process when designing a piece?
VM: Everything starts with a stone for me, the unique shape and angles of a rose cut diamond, the alluring color of a sapphire. Each of my designs is intended to highlight the uniqueness of a stone and show off the natural elements already present. You’ll see in my work that nothing is overly complicated or overdone with design elements. Claw prongs, a tapered band, it’s the minimal details that make a piece beautiful to me.