Today we’d like to introduce you to Nicole “Niko” Pritzker.
Nicole, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I started making jewelry in my early 20s as a hobby back when I lived in Chicago. I was working several odd jobs, such as bartending, working at a salon, and working as a personal assistant. I felt like I was helping everyone else with their dreams and career goals but not pursuing any of my own. I had no idea what I was doing, but for some reason, people wanted to buy my designs. A couple of classes at an art center and a move to LA later, and here I am.
I learned the basics of metalsmithing at Lillstreet Art Center in Chicago and was fortunate enough to have access to a studio at Barnsdall Art Park here in Los Angeles, where I had an instructor and other seasoned jewelers to guide me if I had questions.
Fast-forward to today, I have a fully functional studio in my garage. The type of work I’m doing now is primarily self-taught and includes a lot of trial and error, long frustrating nights, and sometimes lack of sleep. I wouldn’t have it any other way.
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
It hasn’t, and honestly I hope it continues to be rocky. Mistakes and speed bumps are how we learn. I look at my work from a year ago, things I was really proud of, and often times I cringe. I’m proud of the strides I’ve made but I do hope I continue to look back on today’s work in a year with the same attitude.
It sounds silly, but it’s how I measure my progress as an artist. Nothing is ever finished, nothing is ever good enough. It’s what pushes me to keep trying and honing my skill.
It’s very easy to look at well-established brands and artists with envy, especially when it seems like they just became successful overnight. That’s rarely the case; but even if it were, I don’t like that narrative. The climb is the best part.
So, as you know, we’re impressed with Niko Beth Jewelry – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
I handmake jewelry. Future heirlooms, if you will. I specialize in silver and turquoise, but I work with a variety of different gemstones. I ethically source all of my materials, and I like to know exactly where they’re coming from.
I don’t like to make a piece of jewelry without knowing where the stone came from, how it was mined, it’s geological properties of the mineral along with any metaphysical meaning it may have. I think having that sort of knowledge about your product draws people in.
So, what’s next? Any big plans?
I recently bought a vintage RV, and I have a plan in 2020 to travel across the United States with my two canine sidekicks to source my own stones and make jewelry from the road. It’s an ambitious idea, but with the right planning and preparation I think it will all be worth the memories and the story. I’m mostly excited to take my dogs on hikes and sleep under the stars. The inspiration that will come from it is just a bonus.
- Website: www.nikobethjewelry.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @niko.beth.jewelry