J.Yaffa began life in 2009 as my etsy shop called singleBbeautiful. When I first opened in 2009, I was so inexperienced! When I look back on it I can't believe that I made it work. It was a super steep learning curve for the first couple of years. All I was aiming for was supporting myself by my art, I wasn't really thinking of my future jewelry empire (haha). As my business evolved, I decided my business name needed to evolve as well. The J stands for Justine (that's me!), and Yaffa is my middle name.
I love precious metals and stones. Not only because they are precious, but because they are beautiful and hard wearing. I try to make jewelry that will last as close to forever as a piece of well loved jewelry can. I want my pieces to be passed on to grandchildren. Perhaps to be taken apart and reset to suit the fashion of the times (what will popular jewelry look like in 50 years? I predict that halo settings and micro pavé will be just as ubiquitous). But maybe not! So that is what I am aiming for. Pieces that a future granddaughter will be as excited to wear as her nana was back in the day. And I want the construction of my work to last that long too, not just the designs.
I can't take myself that seriously though, I don't want to go on and on about my design process or influences. Ideas come into my mind, I attempt to make them in metal and then I make them again and again until they are perfect. I don't have enough time (or resources!) to make all of the things that I think of, but nothing is more satisfying than when I finish a new piece. Except, perhaps, when I make something new and people like it as much as I do. I avoid making things that I wouldn't wear myself, mostly because I despise having to work on something that doesn't appeal to me aesthetically.
I try to value each piece individually, give it my full attention, and not let routine take over. I love it when my customers let me know a little about themselves (of course, I also value those who just want to buy something and don't need a lot of backstory or hand holding!). And I REALLY love getting engagement or wedding photos after my work has been put into action.