February Featured Designer: Julie Leininger, Saratoga Jewels
Saratoga-based designer Julie Leininger has been making jewelry for over a decade, creating timeless designs inspired by her love of nature. In 2012, she left a successful career as a consultant in Environmental Engineering to pursue a relatively newly discovered passion for jewelry design full-time and launch Saratoga Jewels. Her handmade creations are now for sale in upstate galleries, jewelry stores, and specialty gift retailers, including N. Fox Jewelers, located in the heart of downtown Saratoga Springs New York. As an associate for N. Fox, Julie enjoys connecting in person with clientele.
Julie is N. Fox Jewelers featured designer for February and was kind enough to talk about her journey, jewelry design, and much more.
Julie has a deep appreciation and love for nature evident in her designs, having grown up in Newcomb, nestled with-in New York State Adirondack Mountains, Julie currently has eight collections, all inspired by natural elements. "Most jewelry designs are inspired by nature. Water, fire, vegetation. Nature never clashes," said Julie
Before getting into metalworking, Julie was obsessed with gardening. Her collections, Tendrils, and Dew Drops are complementary, each culminating in these delicate spirals. Dew Drops goes a step further and implements shimmering beads meant to represent the tender but mighty droplets hanging on tightly through the suns' beautiful rise.
Julie joined N. Fox Jewelers in the summer of 2020 after traveling with a family of artists and participating in more than 25 large showcases annually throughout the east coast for more than eight years. "I loved my artist community and my customers but, even pre-covid wanted to spend less time away from my home and studio," said Julie. She says she found the perfect compromise. "My customers and fellow artists were my extended family, I knew I wanted to work within a family-owned business like N. Fox Jewelers, with strong community ties," said Julie.
N. Fox Jewelers displays select pieces from each of Saratoga Jewel's eight collections. Julie shared her heart designs from her Dew Drop collection in time for Valentine's Day.
When asked what's in store for 2021, Julie says she plans to offer more custom design services to N. Fox clientele. "I love the connection I'm able to have with customers as an N. Fox Jewelers associate," said Julie.