Local jeweler offers customized pieces with meaning

By: Kurt Buesching | November 22, 2011

Most people choose a bracelet because the colors match their clothes or because they like the way it looks. But sometimes jewelry can have deeper meaning. It can be a tribute to something or someone, a reminder of something or a statement.

With this in mind, Farmington Hills resident Kim Shaieb created Tribute Jewelry, LLC, a home-based business that offers customized bracelets, necklaces and earrings with meaning behind them. “My whole point was creating jewelry that had meaning behind it – not just an accessory you wear,” Shaieb said.

In 2009, Shaieb, a stay-at-home mother of two, put the jewelry skills her aunt taught her to work in creating custom pieces for family, friends and friends of friends. People might see a neighbor’s beaded bracelet, dedicated to her husband in the military, and ask for a similar one with different colored beads for someone they know. Or that breast cancer awareness bracelet might be just what they want – only with crystals instead of pearls.

The bulk of Shaieb’s work is customized. Customers choose the elements, colors and even sizes of their pieces, so they can have something created just for them. “People like to personalize things,” she said.  

Shaieb’s top sellers fall into a category she calls “awareness jewelry” – pieces with the breast cancer awareness symbol, Down Syndrome symbols, miscarriage awareness ribbons or other meaningful symbols. They offer a way for women to remember loved ones or simply show their support for a cause.

Birthstone and monogrammed jewelry are other hot sellers. Shaieb can create bracelets with the birthstones of everyone in the family, or other pieces with special birthstones or monograms in them.

Shaieb also makes rosary bracelets and other religious jewelry, bridal jewelry and everyday accessories with sterling silver, Murano glass, crystal, pearls, and other gems and beads. Prices average $25 to $35 for bracelets, which make up the bulk of Tribute’s designs.

Tribute Breast Cancer

In keeping with Shaieb’s “jewelry with meaning” theme, she often donates jewelry to auction off at fundraisers for cancer and other diseases. She creates awareness pieces that not only raise money for the cause, but keep the cause top-of-mind for those who wear and see them.

While most of Shaieb’s sales are local, she’s sold items from her Web site and Facebook account to people as far away as the East Coast. She’s also looking to expand her business beyond friends and family by placing a few items in local boutiques and bridal salons, which would balance her business more, since the bulk of her sales are around the holidays and Mother’s Day.

For now, Shaieb enjoys her niche of creating jewelry with meaning. “I enjoy making things that have meaning behind them,” she said.

To see more of Tribute Jewelry’s offerings, learn more or place an order, visit www.mytributejewelry.com.