Today we’d like to introduce you to Melanie Terra.
Melanie, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I first fell in love with a piece of jewelry when I was a little girl. My grandfather designed a necklace for my grandmother. I always loved it, and when she passed, she gave it to me. I wear it every day, as she did.
My first venture into the jewelry world was working for another company in DTLA. I did mostly online work. I ordered office supplies, started an Etsy, Instagram, and Pinterest.
One day my boss handed me two matching stones and asked me what I would make with them. I created a pair of earrings. That was my first design for them. I then began designing many things for them. They were to be sold solely under the company name.
When I discovered they were wholesaling my original designs to many other companies, I realized my work was more valuable than they ever led me to believe, and they had violated my trust by going back on their word. It was time to work for someone I could trust, and who knew what they were doing. ME.
Has it been a smooth road?
Starting a small business is not easy! It really has to be your passion! My main struggle is staying focused when the creative juices are flowing, but the money is not. I stay positive knowing I made the right decision for me, and the universe has put me where I am because I love what I do, and I don’t lose sight of that, in times I so easily can.
My clients, family, and friends keep me going, and when someone appreciates my work, it lights my fire again. I can bring myself to where I brought the large company I worked for. I just need to stay focused, diligent, passionate, and TRUE to those around me. Success WILL follow.
So, as you know, we’re impressed with Bella Terra Jewels – tell our readers more, for example, what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
Bella Terra Jewels is my labor of love. I love colored stones, it’s what I work with most. I particularly love sapphire. It comes in every color of the rainbow (except red, as a red sapphire is technically a ruby, though both are corondum). I love mixing colors and shapes. One of my favorite clients calls me the “color palette queen.”
This is one of the highest compliments! I love my jewelry to be different… to juxtapose unexpected but harmonious colors and shapes together into cluster rings. What I love about this is it makes each ring truly one of a kind. I can replicate them closely, but everyone’s piece is truly one of a kind.
Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
I love the energy of Los Angeles. The different cultures and ethnicities. The creativeness that flows through its veins, down to the street art and graffiti artists.
The old bank buildings and theatres, and new high rises, just block from each other. My only complaint is the smell of urine in the alley I take as a shortcut to the subway… haha… other than that, I am good to go!
- Instagram: @bellaterrajewels