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McClain Made jewelry comes to North Shore

It’s not often that someone makes something beautiful out of a banana peel, but local jeweler Laura Jones often does just that.

A popular piece of jewelry she sells in her newly opened North Shore shop, McClain Made, is a gold-plated cuff bracelet — the texture of which was cast from a banana peel.

Jones knows how to use surrounding resources to make her jewelry creations beautiful, utilizing the unique and unlikely textures of crushed rose petals, popped bubble wrap and even concrete.

“I’ve always been artistic in the three-dimensional sense,” Jones said, explaining that her skills extend into pottery and sculpting as well as jewelry making.

She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Georgia, specializing in jewelry and metalwork. She not only creates her pieces out of uniquely textured metal, natural raw stones are often the focus of many of her creations.

She initially started a wholesale jewelry business with cousin Marian Jones called McGowan and McClain, the two cousins’ middle names. When Marian recently married and relocated elsewhere, Jones said she considered closing the business.

Instead she decided to rent space on North Market Street as a studio, soon realizing its potential as a storefront.

“I decided to keep going, and I realized I was in the perfect spot for a retail shop,” Jones said. “I liked the idea of having my studio in the back where customers can see where everything is made.

“It’s an open studio,” she added. “I’d be happy to tour [customers] around and show them the process. That’s what makes it special; this is where [the jewelry is] made.”

Her storefront is filled with her own creations as well as some from other artists.

“Everything in here is handmade by different artists,” said Jones. “It makes it special when you have something you know someone has put love and time into.”

McClain Made is located at 105 N. Market St., Suite 131, and can be reached at 648-2290. For more information visit mcclainmade.com.