These Hands belong to one of our talented jewellers, Maria. A quiet creative with a drive to learn and build her skills, Maria is extremely dedicated to her craft. Alongside her brilliant sense of humour and honest approach, Maria is usually one of the first to create our new collection pieces. Get to know Maria below...
Who do these hands belong to?
What is your role at Natalie Marie Jewellery and how long have you been on the team?
I am a benchie (bench jeweller) and a part of the wholesale team which means I get to make the newest collections before they launch.
When did you first some across Natalie Marie Jewellery?
I was looking for work as a bench jeweller as hand-making is my biggest passion and Natalie reached out to me. I visited the workshop and fell in love with how airy it is. Panoramic windows, lit by sun, fresh and relaxing. The place you don't want to leave.
Describe a typical day for you?
I get up at 6am and prepare meals for whole family and lunchboxes for my two little angels. Then I kiss them goodbye and off I go. At the workshop we giggle and crack jokes while making our beautiful pieces. The team is wonderful and time flies. When I am back I spend time with my kids, put them to bed and do some more work until midnight.
What is your most treasured piece of jewellery?
The promise ring I made for myself. I engraved my partner's last name inside and set paraiba tourmalines my gemologist friend generously gifted to me. All three of us were embracing rough times and I created that ring as a grounding piece. It is a piece of art and always in my heart.
What is your favourite Natalie Marie piece?
Where would we find you on the weekend? How you do unwind?
Well I spend most weekends working. When it is really bad we go to the beach and chill looking at waves. To me ocean symbolises perpetual rhythm of life and being around it cleanses and replenishes energy.
Coffee or tea? How do you take it?
Coffee. The biggest mug I can find.
Beach, city or mountains?
City and beach - I love to be on borderline, observing both sides. Feeling energized by fast paced CBD and relaxed by remote solitude of the ocean.
What inspires you?
Fantasy worlds of Tolkien, Witcher, Skyrim, ancient Greek culture and medieval trade arts. When I was a teenager I used to be a gamer escaping from reality to medieval based RPG worlds, now I prefer to spend my time transmitting those words to reality through making jewellery.
If you could live anywhere else, apart from Sydney, where would it be?
It definitely would be Seattle. I lived there for half a year and adored the city. Breathtaking woods, wild grey beaches, stone buildings and rain, rain, rain.
If you were not working at NMJ, what would you be doing?
I'd still be working on making jewellery.
What are you currently reading?
Last anthology of Darkover.
Describe your perfect day...
Any day is perfect if I don't have to get up at 6am. Parents will feel me.
Describe yourself in 5 words...
Nerdy, logical, inspired, observing, patient.
What kind of challenges do you like to set yourself in life?
Eat less chocolate.
What is your favourite daily ritual?
Impossible to choose between seeing my partner's face first thing in the morning and snuggling with my boys before bed.
What are you most grateful for?
For the ability to learn from life lessons.
What is the best piece of advice you've been given?
"It will pass"
What is your least known talent?
Even I don't know about it!
What is on your wishlist right now?
A new micromotor.
What is your favourite gemstone?