Someone You Should Know: Jeweler Creates Custom Keepsakes
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – If a photo is worth a thousand words, how do you quantify the handwriting or fingerprint of a loved one who is no longer here?
A woman in Sioux Falls is making those mementos last forever using raw metal and her own two hands.
“I was always thinking about how I could make more gifts, and how I could touch more lives with these keepsakes?”
Ten years ago, Stephanie Wilde was making jewelry from her kitchen table.
She’s since upgraded to her own downtown shop, called “Say Anything… Jewelry by Stephanie Wilde” on Phillips Avenue.
The pieces she makes are more than just pendants; they’re keepsakes.
“They have so much meaning behind it, because she will never be this age again, this will never be her writing two times,” she says, holding a piece with a young girl’s fingerprint and handwritten name.
In her ten years doing this, she’s made tens of thousands of pieces, each with its own story.
Wilde makes the pieces with her graphic designer, Carla.
One piece can take up to ten hours to make and is hand crafted each step of the way.
The detail means each piece is different and each piece is unique to the person that ordered it.
“The keepsakes that we make are truly one of a kind. And they’re so unique because many times they are someone’s fingerprint. Or they are someone’s love letter that was written or a note from their mom that was written inside the front of a book that was given to them as a child. There’s just so many stories that go with every single keepsake that we make. That’s the special part to us.”
Making these pieces, she says, is her calling.
“It’s so meaningful to us. We’ve had a few people lately tell us that what we do is a ministry. And I definitely feel that way, it’s so special to us and I know that this is why I’m here.”
There’s an attachment to every piece that passes through her hands.
“These pieces to me are priceless. They are priceless to me to make and they are priceless to the people that get them.”
Whether it’s at her kitchen table or in her store-front studio, there’s nothing else she’d rather do.
“I always say that if I won the lottery, I would still do this work. It means that much to me.”
More information on Wilde’s jewelry can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/sayanythingbystephanie/