About Pauline's Jewelry Box

Who is Mary and how does she work?

Mary NelsonI started Pauline's Jewelry Box in 2012 in Des Moines, Iowa. I chose the name Pauline's Jewelry Box because my mother's name was Pauline & I have many fond memories of looking through her jewelry box & playing with her jewelry.

I sell my jewelry through art shows, local businesses, trunk shows and online. Businesses that carry my jewelry include Beaverdale Books (2629 Beaver Ave #1 in Des Moines, Iowa) and Five Monkeys Inc. (4211 Chamberlain Dr. in Des Moines, Iowa or check out the website at https://www.fivemonkeysinc.com/).

I also do custom work and can design a piece using elements you have or from my own collection or a combination. Please contact me if you are interested in either a trunk show or a custom piece.

I have always loved vintage, so it was natural when I started making jewelry that I was drawn towards using vintage elements and designing jewelry that has a vintage feel.

I especially like working with found objects, jewelry odds & ends, charms, old photos, watch parts & chains of different texture, size & color. I get my inspiration from the symbolic meanings of the materials I use, the vintage objects themselves, & nature. My husband Steve is a great source of feedback.

I pick up broken jewelry, Cracker Jack/gumball charms & other found objects at garage sales, antique shops, flea markets, "junk" shows & on eBay. Friends have also given me their odds & ends, which makes a piece even more special.  Techniques include wire-wrapping, cold connections, texturing, soldering, riveting, stamping,& etching.

My works vary from romantic to playful to edgy, but have a common theme of re-purposing & celebrating vintage. I like imagining the stories & memories that belong to each object I work with. Each piece of jewelry I design comes with a narrative that tells a story about the meaning &/or origin of its components.

To learn more about what inspires me & how I create my jewelry, feel free to explore my blog.  Feel free to contact me at any time if you have questions or comments.