Jewelry Makers: A little sparkle

Bringing a glimmer of beauty to the Island community.


The Island is known for summoning creatives. We’re surrounded by musicians, writers, dancers, actors, photographers, comedians, and visual artists who work in a variety of mediums. Recently, I had the pleasure of meeting with three jewelry makers to talk about their love for sparkle, texture, and design.

Carrie Peckar: Forever MV

Carrie Peckar has a history with the Island that dates back six generations; she has lived in Oak Bluffs year-round for the past six years. She started off as a Montessori teacher, and then fell into creating jewelry while working with another jeweler. “The artist showed me what they did every step of the way, and I also managed their biz for a while,” Peckar said. “I’d been making jewelry since I got out of college — kind of primitive, using wood and paper — but working with this artist was a great opportunity to learn to work with metals. I also took a few classes at Featherstone, and then learned from the ground up.”

Before too long, Peckar caught the jewelry-making bug, and wanted to create her own business. Forever MV was born. “Forever MV started off as my love letter to the Island,” she said. “I just feel so fortunate to call this place my home, and I wanted to share the experience of the Island and all the magic there is here. I wanted to create an experience for people to celebrate that.”

Handcrafted and permanent jewelry are Peckar’s focus. Permanent jewelry uses micro-welding, which is a process of welding delicate components together. Low heat combined with a specific spot size makes this an ideal process for jewelry pieces that are exceptionally small, thin, or thermally sensitive. “It’s so customizable. Each piece can be personalized to the wearer. They can add charms, their initials, birthstones, and tell their story through their jewelry. It’s a really fun thing to do with a friend, or as a gift for Mother’s Day.” Peckar is also creating exclusive Island designs — Island charms and town initial charms.

Though Peckar doesn’t have a brick-and-mortar store, she has done plenty of pop-ups around the Island at places such as Althea Designs, Miner Family Gallery, and Conrado. “I’ll continue to do pop-ups this coming year, and I also offer at-home jewelry parties. I’m also creating cubic zirconia pieces that people can add to the permanent jewelry, so they can mark where they live on the Island. Plus little quirky things about the Island, like being overrun with skunks, as well as your typical nautical aesthetic. If someone can dream it, I can make it.”

Peckar is currently working on a website, so for now people can visit her on Instagram @forevermvjewelry and on Facebook at

Nettie Kent: Nettie Kent Jewelry

Nettie Kent was raised in West Tisbury, and studied painting in college. Her father, Doug Kent, was a painter, and she spent so much time in his studio as a child, she just assumed she’d go into painting. “I actually wasn’t that good at it,” Kent laughed. “My dad being in the studio was so natural to me, I figured I’d have a studio life too.”

Moving into jewelry making was a twist of fate for Kent. “I moved to NYC after school, and freelanced as an artist-in-residence in schools, and did faux painting in incredible houses on the Upper East Side,” she said. “Freelance was tricky. I’d have a job for a month, then no job. I didn’t like the uncertainty of that, so I reached out to my fairy godmother — my dad’s oldest friend, and someone I’ve known my whole life — and told her I didn’t have enough work. She brought me to a jewelry store and said to the owner, ‘Nettie needs a job,’ and I was hired to be the person upstairs running the store.”

Although Kent liked working upstairs, she was drawn to the artisans who were working downstairs creating the jewelry. “I loved seeing how the pieces were made,” she said. Kent worked at the jewelry store for years, and as her interest in what they were doing downstairs grew, she began taking a few basic intro-to-jewelry classes at the 92nd Street Y.

Though Kent returned to the Vineyard after meeting her husband Colin, they returned to NYC for a few years. “Colin had never lived in New York, and I think he really wanted that experience, so we went back,” Kent said.

At this point, Kent was making one-of-a-kind pieces that she sold on Etsy, and her jewelry had also been picked up by a couple of stores. “Then I got into casting. I thought, if we’re going to live in NYC again, I’m going full-on into jewelry making. I got an internship with a famous jeweler, but there was no pay. I also got a job with another established jeweler,” Kent said. “And then the woman who’d hired me to work in the jewelry store years before called and asked me to help downstairs, which is where I always wanted to be.”

While juggling jobs and internships, Kent realized she wasn’t creating her own jewelry. “And that’s when I slowly started phasing everything out.” Eventually, Kent got a studio, and more stores became interested in her work. “I was doing really well. It was almost too much work. I did a couple of runways shows — Fashion Week, you know, the glamorous side of the work. I even met the editor of Vogue magazine. It was great for a while,” Kent said.

As she expanded, she wound up moving to a larger studio. “I hustled for a really long time. I was exhausted,” Kent said. “At the same time, Colin and I were also talking about having kids. One day, I met with this big PR firm, and they asked me, ‘Where do you want to bring your brand next?’ I left that meeting thinking, ‘I don’t want this.’ It was like a gut punch, and I started thinking maybe I wanted to scale down.”

Eventually Kent and her husband came back to the Island, a place that felt like home for them both, and opened Ruel Gallery in 2019 in Menemsha. Kent is still creating and selling her unique jewelry. She predominantly works in brass, silver, and gold, and creates leather cuff bracelets as well. “I don’t want my jewelry to look too smooth — machine-made. I like to have a lot of texture,” she said. Kent also loves making custom pieces, like wedding rings, or pieces with lapis and turquoise. “This coming summer, I plan to use more stones in my work. I’ve also been collecting bigger beads to incorporate, and I’ve been wanting to add more color,” she said.

Kent would also like to have Thursday wine and art stroll nights in Menemsha at some point in the future. “Colin and I really want to be community-focused,” she said. “We’ve had a number of pop-up sales for other Island artists, and will continue to do so. The one thing I miss about my studio space in NYC is being able to see people, and talk to other artists. Right now, my studio is a cottage in the woods. Though I love it, I do like to be around other creative people, so it’s great to have a gallery where we can talk to people and share other artists’ work with the community.”

You can find some of Kent’s work at Ruel Gallery, 31 Basin Road in Menemsha. Early summer hours are Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, 11 am to 5 pm. To learn more about Nettie Kent Jewelry and to see more of Kent’s work, visit

Stefanie Wolf: Stefanie Wolf Designs

Stefanie Wolf lived in Hawaii and San Francisco before moving to the Island permanently with her husband in 2009. Wolf’s husband grew up on the Island, and they met while Wolf was working summers here. “Ironically, I worked at a place called Wild Mango, which was right next door to my store now. I feel like I’ve come full circle.”

Stefanie Wolf Designs is located on Circuit Avenue in Oak Bluffs. This space is Wolf’s third location since beginning her jewelry career, and she couldn’t be happier. The location provides everything she was looking for as her business grew — a highly populated area, big windows, high visibility, and easy access. “Procuring this space was a long and challenging journey,” Wolf said. “It felt like divine intervention on many levels, and I’m so proud of the fact that I’ve grown my business from a box of beads to an establishment that can embody this big, beautiful location.”

As with many creatives, Wolf didn’t start out trying to make a living at jewelry making. She was originally studying psychotherapy. “I started creating jewelry in college. It was really more of a hobby,” Wolf said. “I bought some beads and wire, and sold a little at markets, pop-ups, and at friends’ houses.”

The training for psychotherapy was challenging. “I wasn’t making much money while I was training, and I still had five more years to go,” she said. “I decided to take a break from school for a year, and that was the turning point. I really doubled down and began focusing on jewelry making. I still use my degree, just not as a career.”

Wolf has a number of employees, including retail manager Cherish Harris; director of operations Kathryn Shertzer; Molly Kopp, who helps with the website, manages inventory, and assists with shipping and receiving; and Sam Cameron, who handles web fulfillment, occasionally strings jewelry, and as Wolf exclaimed, “Sam is a jill-of-all-trades!” Wolf also has a number of people who work from home, stringing pieces after Wolf has designed them.

Wolf’s work includes necklaces, earrings, bracelets, rings, and more. She incorporates pearls, gemstones, sterling silver, crystal mosaic pendants, and more. Her pieces are also sold wholesale to other stores, and are carried in a number of museums, including the Museum of Arts and Design in NYC, the M.V. Museum, and the Corning Museum of Glass.

“We also started doing permanent jewelry as well,” Wolf said. “People can choose from a selection of 14k gold fill or sterling silver chains, and personalize their piece with a variety of charms.”

Jewelry isn’t the only thing Wolf designs; she’s also created beaded purses, some of which have matching jewelry to accompany them, and carries other Island artisans’ and makers’ work, including MV Sea Salt, blessings paper art by Ingrid Goff-Maidoff (owner of Tending Joy), and Hawkhouse jewelry, to name a few. Other products for sale in the shop include home and living products, trinkets, pottery, soaps, clothing, and more.

Wolf is currently working on a new collection for this year that will include bright, bold colors, and is heading to a gem show in Tucson, Ariz., to get inspiration.

Stefanie Wolf Designs, 37 Circuit Ave., Oak Bluffs, is open year-round, Wednesday through Saturday, 10 am to 5:30 pm, Monday 10 am to 5:30 pm, and by appointment or chance on Tuesdays. The store is closed on Sunday. 774-549-9526. To learn more about Stefanie, visit her website at You can also find her on Instagram at, Facebook at, and Pinterest at