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Support a variety of local independent artists at Wild Things

There’s nothing like visiting a jewelry store to get in a festive mood and to affirm the cliché that good things come in small packages. This week, there is still time to find a gift that fits in a small package and brings delight to the recipient even before it is opened! I can personally attest to the experience.

To begin with, visiting a store full of sparkling gems and metals is like going to an art gallery. Then there is gifting the jewelry, witnessing the joy in opening the box, and of course, seeing the recipient try on the new item. In this way, small boxes give joy to both the giver and receiver.

In the Elmwood Village, there are several stores where you can purchase one of a kind handcrafted jewelry, but one of the oldest and ever-reliable, with an impressively wide selection, is Wild Things at 224 Lexington Avenue between Elmwood and Ashland.

Ring collection by @lostgirlmetal

When the store was on my dog-walking route, I admit to being unable to walk by without lingering to ooh over the displays. Everything that twinkles is eye-catching, especially this time of year when it gets dark so early.

An iconic store in the Elmwood village, Wild Things has been supporting local independent artists for more than 30 years. Now, community support is needed to keep its doors open.

Turquoise and moonstone/labradorite bracelets with Buffalo nickel clasps by @karolkirbergerjewelry

There are many artists featured in the store. Shop owner, Karol Kirberger’s vast jewelry collection stays current with trends while simultaneously setting trends. From signature wrap bracelets and vintage garden earrings to bold hammered metals, sterling Navajo beads and bezel-set geodes, Karol’s southwest heritage often shows up in her designs.

Edreys is a second generation metalsmith who brings unisex jewelry designs to the shop. Featuring leather bracelets with sterling clasps, hammered cuffs, pendant necklaces, rings, Buffalo tie tacks and cufflinks; you’ll sense the rhythms of hip-hop in everything he creates. Paintings by Edreys are also available for purchase.

Apatite Jewelry by Madelyn Feldman has everyday affordable favorites for the minimalist. Madelyn uses simple geometric and some organic elements often with a hint of asymmetry

Teal diamond on 14k white gold | Black diamonds on oxidized sterling silver | By @stephanierobbjewelry

Stephanie Robb brings the “fine” into fine artisan jewelry. This year’s diamond collection takes the guesswork out of what to get for that special someone. Necklaces and earrings in 14k gold or oxidized silver make her creations perfect for dress or casual attire. Just down the street at Lexington and Ashland, Stephanie Robb also offers clothing and accessories in Turnstyle Designs.

Looking for a pop of color, Donna Sturgess’s enamel jewelry is for you. Tasteful designs often accented with vintage Italian mosaics and gemstones give everyone a little lift.

According to Paula Connors of Noble Pathways, there are two basic ways to shop. One is to hunt for a gift on your own and the other is to appreciate the personal assistance offered at Wild Things. Either way, knowing what to expect in terms of the jewelry selection and Connors’ tips below will help you find the right gift.

Before shopping for jewelry, the first step is reconnaissance. In other words, consider the gift recipients’ aesthetic preferences. Take notice of how the recipient dresses. What style accessories do they reach for? Are they casual or dressy? Do they prefer silver or gold or both? Do they lean toward neutral tones or color? Understated or blingy?

Dendritic agate wrapped in sterling leaves by @sarahkiefferdesigns

Consider your budget, bear in mind how much you can spend, and let personnel guide you in your search for the gift you can afford. Wild Things has jewelry ranging in price from $18-$700, so something for everyone.

Wrap it up! Wild Things is known for its beautiful and creative gift-wrapping so plan on waiting a few extra minutes for us to do it up right. In a hurry? Run a few errands and come back to pick up your order. The good thing is that the small package can be concealed in a pocket ready to present whenever the time comes.

For your safety, Wild Things is limiting patron capacity to 10. We require face masks and ask you to maintain 6 ft physical distance from others. Also, please sanitize your hands upon entry to the store.

Store hours this week are Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday 11:00 to 6:00 p.m; Thursday (Christmas eve) 11:00 ‘til 4:00 and Saturday 11:00 until 6:00 p.m.

If you find an item on Instagram, call 716-882-3324 or email to purchase it. Both in store or curbside pick- up are available.

Lead image: Chrysoprase floral pendant by @lostgirlmetal | Miniature wonderland (3″h) by Melissa Reale | Photos by Paula Connors

Written by Judith Frizlen

Judith Frizlen

Judith Frizlen is the founder of the Rose Garden Early Childhood Center and author of Words for Parents, Words for Teachers and Caregivers and Unpacking Guilt, a Mother's Journey to Freedom. Books and blogposts are on her website at She is a fan of early childhood, urban architecture and the revitalization of Buffalo.

View All Articles by Judith Frizlen
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