Hand­crafted ear­rings with in­tri­cate beaded de­tail­ing

The Morning Bulletin - - HOME GROWN - VANESSA JAR­RETT Vanessa.Jar­[email protected]­news.com.au

A NEW la­bel is emerg­ing in Cen­tral Queens­land’s fash­ion scene.

Jade Howard-Smith has launched her own busi­ness, Two Green Stones, which stocks lux­ury state­ment jew­ellery that is hand­made and hand­crafted by her and her staff.

Based at an of­fice in Cus­toms House’s SmartHub on Quay St, Ms Howard-Smith is the face of her own home­grown busi­ness.

The Morn­ing Bul­letin’s Home Grown se­ries fea­tures the many faces be­hind the unique, hand­made, lo­cally grown busi­nesses in the Cen­tral Queens­land re­gion.

Ms Howard-Smith has been in the fash­ion in­dus­try for a long time, after study­ing fash­ion more than 10 years ago.

She has worked in the fash­ion in­dus­try for two chil­dren’s com­pa­nies in Bris­bane be­fore she and her hus­band moved to Rock­hamp­ton where they set­tled and built a house.

It was here she had her daugh­ter and took a break from the in­dus­try while she was rais­ing her.

Her love for all things fash­ion came from a young age. As a lit­tle girl she was al­ways draw­ing on her chalk­board, draw­ing out­fits.

She has al­ways been an art lover and of all cre­ative things.

She thought she would be con­tent tak­ing a break from the fash­ion world but she found she was miss­ing it.

“I just never stopped think­ing about it, I loved it so much, I missed it... I just wanted some­thing more and I keep go­ing back to the idea,” she said.

She didn’t know if start­ing up a la­bel in Rock­hamp­ton would work but the idea nig­gled at her.

“Up here I thought what could I do, the more I started to meet peo­ple, even lo­cally, there is a lot of women out there who are very fash­ion for­ward ... I thought why not,” she said.

“It doesn’t mat­ter where you are these days, there is al­ways a mar­ket for fash­ion.”’

Two Green Stones has launched with a col­lec­tion of lo­cally made time­less state­ment ear­rings in a bo­home­ets-chic aes­thetic.

The ear­rings have lux­u­ri­ous bead­ing, needle­work, leather­work, hand and ma­chine em­broi­deries, while also us­ing pre­dom­i­nantly nat­u­ral fi­bres, ma­te­ri­als and com­po­nents.

The fash­ion jew­ellery is as­sem­bled us­ing qual­ity leathers, semi-pre­cious and re­con­structed stones, glass beads, ster­ling sil­ver, gold ver­meil and stain­less steel com­po­nents.

The team at Two Green Stones care­fully cre­ate and as­sem­ble each piece by hand in the SmartHub stu­dio.

“My idea is I have al­ways been a very de­tailed per­son. I love bead­ing, I love dif­fer­ent fab­ri­ca­tions, I love nat­u­ral fi­bres, semi-pre­cious stones and I wanted to bring it all to­gether,” she said.

She took the leap to launch the busi­ness as she was ap-

proach­ing 40.

“If I don’t do some­thing now I will never do it,” she said.

Jew­ellery wasn’t the ini­tial idea, Ms Howard-Smith was look­ing at start­ing up a cloth­ing busi­ness.

She was mak­ing jew­ellery to go with the cloth­ing for the photo shoot.

As she faced prob­lem after prob­lem with the cloth­ing qual­ity, good friend and well­known stylist Penny Hunt, said ‘why don’t you start small and do jew­ellery and later evolve into cloth­ing?’

And so she did and the plan was flipped.

“I al­ways an­tic­i­pated to go into other ar­eas with jew­ellery and ac­ces­sories after the cloth­ing,” Ms Howard- Smith said.

The ear­rings are for sale at bou­tique Some­thing Dif­fer­ent in Al­len­stown and Yep­poon.

The owner, Kate Gor­don, was right be­hind the la­bel from the be­gin­ning.

“She ... mar­kets re­ally well and has the clien­tele that will buy it,” she said.

Ms Howard-Smith feels there is a au­di­ence in the re­gion based at the higher end of the mar­ket that is look­ing for that lux­u­ri­ous qual­ity.

“I don’t see that there is a prob­lem, there is a lot of women out there who are look­ing for some­thing hand­crafted but re­ally good qual­ity,” she said.

“And there is a lot of women in re­gional ar­eas who have the in­come or the means to be able to buy or some­thing like that.”

All in all, the prod­ucts are not be­ing made in mas­sive quan­ti­ties and are one of a kind.

“I want to pro­duce beau­ti­ful hand­crafted things that peo­ple will value and are will­ing to pay for that,” she said.

With a team of three peo­ple work­ing, Ms Howard-Smith has big plans for the fu­ture.

“Hope­fully, as de­mand picks up, we will have a big­ger team and have a big­ger work­shop and the rest of it,” she said.

Work­ing in the SmartHub has been a god­send, she said.

“They are fan­tas­tic ... not only the work­shops and things like that they pro­vide but the whole morale of ev­ery­body, they are all start­ing out, we all have our is­sues ... it’s nice just to stop in the hall­way and ask how things are go­ing,” she said.

“You say you are hav­ing a bad day and talk to an­other per­son ... even if it is an­other in­dus­try they are in, they can re­late.” There was no Home Grown edi­tion last week due to the CQ fire cov­er­age.

Photo: Al­lan Reinikka ROK281118a­jew­ellery1

CRE­ATIVE WORK: Jade Howard-Smith, owner of Two Green Stones jew­ellery la­bel.

Photo: Al­lan Reinikka ROK281118a­jew­ellery6

Bead­ing is a ma­jor de­tail of the jew­ellery.

Photo: Al­lan Reinikka ROK281118a­jew­ellery4

The fi­nal prod­uct in their pack­ag­ing.

Photo: Al­lan Reinikka ROK281118a­jew­ellery5

The ear­rings are hand­made and crafted.

Photo: Al­lan Reinikka ROK281118a­jew­ellery3

She also makes the ear­rings her­self.

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