· JO LA COLLAGE is made in New Jersey, under the direction of designer Ellen Kelly. Along with her assistants, they create each piece by hand. The metal components originate from a model that Ellen carves out of clay or metal. The model is then cast in pewter, finished in sterling silver, 14K gold, or copper, then treated with a stain, oxidized, or polished in order to create a range of textures. The metal pieces are then filled with crystals and other tiny embellishments. These parts are then assembled into earrings, bracelets, or necklaces. All ear wires are solid sterling silver or 14K gold filled. Posts are un-plated surgical steel. There is no plating or nickel in the ear wires.
Ellen started Jo La Collage after many years of formal and informal study. Her background includes textiles, painting, drawing, and pottery. What began as a colorful beaded jewelry collection grew into a mixed media metal line when Ellen fell in love with a concept and techniques of lost wax casting while taking a class at Art Guild in New Jersey. Since then she has been carving her own components from clay or metal. Each component can take as long as 20 hours to complete.
Many people ask what the name JO LA COLLAGE symbolizes. "JO" is derived from her son, Joseph, and "LA" from her daughter, Laura. Both are artists also - Joe in symphony, Laura, in interior design and merchandising. "Collage" represents the mixed media of color & form.