Shine bright like a...

Imagine the luxury of the festive season if you were so organised that you could completely avoid the nightmare that is shopping at any point past the start of December!

This year I am also making a big effort to buy Irish and in particular buy local where possible. We have so many amazing designers and creators in Cork alone that there really is no excuse. I love to give and receive jewellery as a gift and for the bling lovers in your life look no further than Cork based Izzabee Jewellery. The business is based in Cork county. It is a small, handmade, crystal jewellery business owned and run by Andy.

From a very young age Andy has loved sparkly jewellery but never did she think she would be making and selling it in her fifties. She says: “My professional background is in education and mental health, however, I am a big advocate of following your dreams and passions and my passion for crystal jewellery has led me here. I am not an artist, goldsmith or a jeweller. I am a self-taught creator, who enjoys collaborating with customers to make something beautiful for them and often with them.

“I have ready-made jewellery available on my website but I am increasingly contacted by customers to make something unique for a special occasion outfit. Together we consider the style and colours until the customer is happy. This aspect of the creative process gives me a lot of satisfaction and pleasure.”

Andy always loved shopping for special crystal pieces on Etsy but with added custom taxes and postal costs she was forced to get creative and so in December 2021 she decided to try and make her own crystal jewellery.

“I sourced the bases, crystals and tools online, completed YouTube tutorials and the rest was trial and error. I gifted my homemade necklace and earring sets to my two sisters-in-law for Christmas and the feedback was very positive. In fact, they couldn’t believe I had made the jewellery and suggested that there may be a market for what I was making.

"So, I recruited my husband to make a basic website, I researched suppliers for everything from crystals to gift boxes and set up a business account on Instagram. The brand name IzzaBee comes from my family, it is my husband’s pet name for my daughter Isabel.”

Crystals always add glamour and sparkle to your look and if you’re someone who may not necessarily like a sequin then wearing a simple black dress or block colour dress can be elevated with the addition of even a simple necklace or pair of earrings.

For the maximalists amongst us then you can go crazy and layer necklaces of different colours or colour tones to create a fabulous and fun look and I love how Andy can make the perfect piece to compliment your outfit. The After The Rain in their rainbow brights are so cheery and would really pop over a simple t-shirt. Remember a crystal is not just for nighttime so have some fun and incorporate them into your day to day wardrobe.