Style Focus: Madstones of Mercie
If you had not yet realized it, I have a true devotion to the consistent activity of shopping. It’s ever more so of the truth during these winter holidays, for while I’m shopping for my friends and family constantly, I always seem to end up picking up something for myself. This past weekend held no exclusions as I found myself falling completely head over heels for a wonderful shop on Etsy known as Madstones of Mercie, which had just been set up by owner and designer, Mercedes Costelloe. For a bit of reference here, I loved what I saw so much at this particular store that I made my purchase within moments of the shop’s initial release announcement and I was even lucky enough to be the very first customer! So what is Madstones of Mercie, says ye? In my own opinion, it’s the best place you’ll find some of the loveliest jewelry handcrafted from precious stones. However, these aren’t just any stones; they are very precious, indeed.
More specifically, my completely enamored attitude for Madstones of Mercie was acquired at the precise moment that I found my amulet — or rather, my amulet found me. I purchased a “rough natural point smokey quartz wrapped amulet necklace” which seemed to almost draw me instantly. Now if you’re not particularly versed in precious stones and rocks, I must explain to you; like many other natural elements and aspects of our lovely universe, each has its own significance and meaning. In terms of smokey quartz, it is known to help raise your vibrations, enhance mediation, relieve fears and depression, eliminate nightmares, and aid in pain relief. In this sense, many precious stones have their own unique qualities and aspects, making them more suited towards individuals based on their needs; in my own regard, smokey quartz is ideal for me. It holds many of the positive aspects which I’d like to manifest in my life and my persona. For some time I have been interested in crystals and precious stones, but I’ve found the majority of them to be overpriced and lacking personal significance — and very rarely am I ever willing to wear jewelry that doesn’t have some sort of significance or personal meaning to me. Thankfully, Mercedes had handcrafted an amulet that just so happened to be my perfect match.
A quick look at the store provides a nice variety of different stones and jewelry options to choose from. There’s something for everyone – depending on what you like – including stones such as agate, turquoise, calcite, and apatite, just to name a few. Mercedes handpicks and cleanses each stone before crafting each design herself, wrapping them in wire to affix them to their bearings without calling too much attention away from the natural beauty of the stone itself. Of course, as we all know by now, simply purchasing the amulet is never enough for me — I had to know more about meaning and hard work is found behind Madstones of Mercie’s initial charm. Keeping that thought, I contacted Mercedes to let her know that I had purchased one of these beauties and asked her if I could interview her for my blog to get some more insight into what it’s like for her to create these uniquely visual little blessings.
When did you first become interested in designing jewelry?
I have always had a love for all things accessory, but I first started designing jewelry for fun with a friend about 4 years ago. My first designs were just for fun and consisted of mostly necklaces I pieced together from vintage jewelry that I kept to wear myself.
How long have you been designing for?
I have been designing pieces ever since then. My boyfriend at the time worked at a jewelry supply store and would bring me home extra beads and findings he had at his desk, which only motivated to create more! Not long after, I was going through a rough time and a good friend of mine gave me a rutilated quartz ring and told me the meaning behind it…I was inspired to read more into crystals and from there, it was love! I started visiting a local gemstone store and eventually had quite a collection. After wire wrapping a few stones for myself to wear, I started getting loads of compliments and requests for custom pieces. After making a few commission pieces and gifts for friends, I was inspired to start Madstones of Mercie.
What would you say the main message behind Madstones of Mercie is?
I believe Madstones of Mercie is about self expression, and the power of intent. Obviously these pieces are made to be beautiful and eye catching, but they’re also a constant reminder to think about the energy that you give off. I believe in manifesting your destiny, and that the power of positive though makes all the difference. To wear a stone that signifies the change you want to make in your life can be a great reminder to work toward your goal and propel you in the right direction.
How do you know so much great stuff about the positive and healing properties of these stones?
I have been lucky enough to have some great mentors in my life that have really opened me up spiritually and taught me so much about healing and energies. Once I was introduced to crystal healing, I took it upon myself to learn as much as I could. I have spent a good amount of time in a local gemstone store, and with my face buried in my growing book collection. I feel like I still have so much more to learn and share!
For a typical piece of jewelry, such as a ring or a necklace, how long does it take you to create each piece? Would you like to share the general creation process with the readers?
Depending on the piece of jewelry, it can take a few hours, or up to a few days for refinement. I prefer to stick to simple wire designs that won’t be too overbearing, or draw too much attention away from the stone itself. I always start with a hand picked crystal and see if there are any specific areas I would like to highlight. From that point on, I would say it is all intuition and working with the natural shape of the stone. Sometimes I love my first design and feel like it couldn’t have come out better; Other times, I waste a lot of wire trying to get it right! If that is the case, I set the stone aside for a few days and come back to it with a new approach until it feels right. With all my pieces, I like to take a fresh look days later to be sure the wire home suits the stone.
Do you have any specific pieces you’ve created that you would consider are your favorite?
Personally, I am a fan of any sort of rough crystal piece… but I don’t think I could pick a favorite! I started out making stone rings, so lately I’ve had a ton of fun creating necklaces and searching out funky chains for them to live on!
Every piece of jewelry from Madstones of Mercie comes individually packaged in a cute little mint green box and features a card explaining some of the main benefits and aspects about your crystal or stone of choice. Mercedes shared with me that she especially loves having the opportunity to handcraft and tailor each stone and its design to the individual who will be wearing it later on; for this reason, she’s always open to doing commission pieces and interacting with customers to create the ideal piece for them. Love her work but don’t see the stone of your dreams listed on her store’s site? Mercedes is even willing to take stone requests! After my purchase, she emailed me to ask if there was anything that I thought needed changing or altering; however, I informed her that my amulet was actually perfect. Her efforts to go out of her way to create something that will be truly precious to each and every customer really impressed me. On a gauge of the genuine, it’s easy to tell that Mercedes takes her work very seriously while still managing to do something she loves; she devotes herself fully to the design and creation of each piece while still managing to put her own ounce of love into the final result.
All of the opinions in the preceding post have been my own. Some photos appear courtesy of Mercedes and Madstones of Mercie. For more information about Madstones of Mercie or to get your own unique and one-of-a-kind piece, you can visit Mercedes store on Etsy.