Founder and creative director of CeciliaJewel, Cecilia Fanning Mitchell, was raised in Newbridge, Co. Kildare in Ireland & moved to NYC. I was influenced by all sorts of artistic expression and jewelry. I can never remember a time when jewelry wasn’t a part of how I looked at the world. Jewelry connects us to the earth, it reminds us of all the beauty inside that has waited for discovery. It begins a journey, it is an integral part of us living our lives. Some jewelry is precious because of material used, but a lot of jewelry is precious because of the memories they hold. Looking at my jewelry you can see what has influenced my life!
Growing up in the small country of Ireland, we were immersed in a magnificent landscape that is steeped in history, faith, language and a tradition that is larger than life. A personality that has been shared throughout the world. I love my heritage that formed my humor and outlook. I now live in Rye NY, in a community with extraordinary people that are always generous with their energy and time.
Along with my world of jewelry, I’m very involved in many areas of our community. I believe in love generating love. When we share and give of ourselves we gain so much joy and become humbled, but also filled with a desire to do more for our homes, communities, and the world. Wherever possible I buy all materials from local US companies. I also love teaming up with other creative individuals and working with devoted experts to create beautiful pieces that truly express our love for jewelry.
Over the years I surrounded myself in all sorts of designing communities. My mother created all sorts of textiles and often had projects over the dining room table! My father was an engineer. My maternal grandmother was incredibly talented and would always have some creation in motion. Growing up with someone who was always trying something new was extremely influential to my creativity today. I taught myself how to do basic soldering, wire wrapping, and beading. I also learned various different methods of forming and texturing. I used many mixed mediums and loved the results I found.
I attended many boutique studios and found the Craft Student League (CSL) in NYC. I had the privilege to work with some truly gifted professional jewelers. My creativity awoke in me as desire to learn all I possibly could. Wax carving, stone setting, chains, I loved it all. I soaked up as much as I could learn. I studied in Alchimia, Florence, where the world of design was blown open. I learned so much about concept, modeling and perspective. I started in gold and I fell in love!
Back in NYC, I also fell in love with my husband, David, and soon we welcomed our first of four children. I started at the 92Y and worked in all areas of jewelry. I became enamored with engineering movable parts, secrets hidden in different places! I had so many fun times making personal jewelry!
My children grew up surrounded in jewelry. They were very creative from a young age. My husband and I spent a lot of time in the Brooklyn Museum. I opened a small school that taught younger children to be immersed in creative endeavors and had many talented teachers come through in the afternoons for the older children. I look back on this time with great warmth.
My aim is to create wearable, memorable, and timeless art that can be shared across generations.
My journey in jewelry has been a real joy. I created CeciliaJewel in 2016. I have sold to many boutiques and now mostly online. I have many amazing clients that I make specially commissioned jewelry for and other clients that come back, ordering more to add to collections or buy new collections.
As human beings, we all need to remember self worth and value. Jewelry can help embrace that, as well as empower our self expression. We need to express our internal beauty and our beliefs through our clothing as well as accessories. When we express ourselves, we can feel like our true selves and take charge to guide our destinies. Jewelry is an eternal story, will keep living in us and through us.
3 new photos by Cecilia Fanning Mitchell