13 Questions for Mandy Carroll of Leiva Jewelry


The Shoreline is a veritable breeding ground for designers, makers, and artists. Just in time for Mother’s Day, we asked a few of our favorite local jewelry designers what inspires them (and a few other burning questions.

Here’s what Mandy of Leiva Jewelry had to say:

How long have you been making jewelry?

I used to make and sell jewelry as a teenager, but I don’t really count that, so from art school it would be 13 years now- time flies!!

What was the first piece you made? 

When I was in junior high I created a line of pins made from Sculpy clay in the shapes of balloons, shamrocks and palm trees! My first piece in art school was probably a simple ring band.


What inspires you? 


When you’re out of ideas, what do you do for inspiration?
I come into the studio and get out a bunch of stones and start playing with them and it doesn’t take long before I have some new ideas.


The favorite piece you’ve ever made and why?
I once spent about 24 full hours in art school creating a neck-piece that included a lot of forming and some cool gravity attachments. I had pulled my only all-nighter on it because the crit was the next day and amazingly, it came out great. My professor, Sharon Church, who I absolutely adored both because of her remarkable skill as a jeweler and metalsmith and because she was an outstanding educator, announced during the crit that she wished she had made that piece. I will never forget that moment because to me there was no higher praise than to have created something that she loved enough to say that about. Since then, in my professional career I’ve made many things that were hard to part with, but that piece will always be my favorite because of that memory.


What is your go-to piece from your own collection (if different from above). 
I think it’s the design that I currently wear every day – the modern mosaic pendant. It’s simple, elegant, wearable and looks great on everyone.


What’s your favorite piece for spring?
My bright green tourmaline and 18k gold dangle earrings.


Necklaces, bracelets, or rings (which is your comfort zone)?
I do think every jeweler has their favorite thing to make – mine is rings! I love rings!


Favorite gemstone or metal?
Tourmaline and 18k green gold.


Morning or evening person?


What can’t you live without (excluding your family)?
My dog Sunny and really good mint tea.


What’s something that’s always in your fridge?
Sweet potatoes.


Where can I buy your jewelry? 
 Locally at the Lori Warner Gallery in Chester and also at several other retail stores across the country and in the Bahamas. There are links on my website:  www.leivajewelry.com


Leiva Jewelry Rings
mandy carroll