Jill Zaleski

One of a Kind Jewelry

Posts tagged ‘vintage’

Bonnie Hill…

Once in a lifetime… One in a million… Like no other… So cliché.  I know.  Sometimes however… a good resinating cliché is what you choose in order to express a deep love of, or an excitement for.  That is how I fee whenever I receive a new, beautiful image from one of my most beloved photographers Bonnie Hill.  I call her the creator of whimsey… Even her name “Bonnie Hill” sounds like a fairy tale…

When looking for a photographer to shoot my 2013 holiday collection “After Midnight”  I was on the search for someone new, as one of my go to photographers just moved to NYC and the other was busy with new baby.  Thankfully one of my models suggested a young photographer who may be interested in our project but mainly shot weddings and family.  I had seen a few of her images that really struck me and thought WOW.. she is so talented!  Finding out she was interested in collaborating with us, and also wanted to try something new and different on her side we set things up to meet for the first time the day of shoot.  I got really lucky that day…  That was the day I met Bonnie Hill.


Since the day of the after midnight shoot we have worked together on many more campaigns. I Love Lucy  “Valentines campaign”, a few mini sessions, a campaign for JenDaisy women’s clothing boutique, and my favorite of all… “FREEDOM ~ A Gypsy Summer.  My final campaign in Chattanooga.   Shortly after my freedom shoot I found out I was moving across the country to Napa CA.  I knew it would be an exciting adventure, but also knew I would be leaving so many talented people that I adored working with behind.  Bonnie was at the top of that list.

Thankfully her and I have found ways to still do projects together even after my move.  Not that there are no talented photographers in my new location.  There are plenty.   Its more of the comfortability factor.  Them knowing what you want and you knowing what they want.  Bonnie and I have that times a million. Not to mention her gift to direct even the shyest of muses into a VOGUE inspired pose is fascinating to see.

Just recently I sent her a collection of “Game of Thrones” inspired pieces saying “do your magic” and that is exactly what she did.  What I really love about this collection of photos is that it is the exact same pieces on three VERY different models.  Looking at these photos in particular really shows you the talent behind the lens, and how a vision can change drastically with the right photographer and a new muse.

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When I see the first captivating image of HMUA Jill Clark I think Marilyn Monroe all the way… Then as I scroll down to beautiful Lauren Flatt I picture Lord of the Rings mystical elf queen Galadriel.  Continuing on Nadine Korp captures Game of Thrones Sansa Stark in all of her dark and mid-evil glory.

When spending as much time as I do creating pieces with a purpose of you imagining an existence outside our world.  You can only hope to have someone that also sees what you see.  Someone that brings another layer of romanticism. A photographer that has a gift for creating a world beyond our own through digital and making us believe.

Finding gifts in others is something to celebrate.  The ones that make what you do look more spectacular than it ever could have without them.  For this reason.  I celebrate Bonnie Hill and the beauty that she captures.  Thank you for always understanding my vision and always delivering something new and more spectacular than the last. …XO


Bonnie McGhee Photography 

Bonnie McGhee Facebook

My Etsy Shop

If you are a photographer, HMUA, fashion, or lifestyle blogger looking to collaborate, please send request to jillzaleski@gmail.com


An Artful Collaboration

Another holiday season is upon us which means a new holiday collection and artful collaboration.


Moving across the country a year ago came with a huge set of challenges for me.  One of which was moving away from my very artistic collaborative partners.  I had such an amazing group of artists that I worked with weekly living in Chattanooga.  They would all come together to help me pull off a large project for a new collection.  Likewise when my HMUA’s, models, and photographer friends needed me to create something for them, style them for one of their up coming performances, or needed some of my jewels for an editorial they were working on I was always on board with a willingness, and a want to help create something truly special.  That is just how we did things… Kindness breeds kindness..

Since moving to CA I knew I wanted to rebuild a new collaborative network of artists.  But how would I do this… It took years to gather such a talented group that understood my wants and needs and me theirs.  It all starts with a conversation really…

I met Laurie Nigliazzo through our children who are in first grade together.  Laurie is a floral artist and has a flowers and events business sweetly named “Posy Studios“.  After discussing our two talents we decided we wanted to incorporate both into a beautiful collaborative project.  Now that we have an idea… it’s time to build a beautiful, artful team.


Laurie Nigliazzo – Not only is Laurie an amazing floral artist she is a wedding and events planner, and finds artistic expression in painting. She is an incredibly dedicated individual and in-between her many projects she finds time to help out with local charities, and fundraisers that benefit our community. She describes her daughter as “very kind with a big heart”. The same can be said about Laurie.


A few of Posy Studios beautiful floral creations (crowns, wristlets, and floral collars)  that were used in collaborative project.

The next step was to get a photographer on board that wanted to shoot something other than their everyday… When you’re building a collaborative team you need to think of what you have to offer others that will be participating..  After all… they are giving up their time for you.  Laurie had a friend that just finished shooting a wedding she provided flowers for.  Kassidy’s typical everyday is weddings, so joining our group would give her a new creative outlet and allow her to photograph something completely outside of her everyday.   That is how we found Kassidy Love Photography.


Kassidy Mefford ~ Kassidy Love Photography


Kassidy with kids from the village in which her non-profit organization is based in Playa Gigante, Nicaragua

Kassidy is such a kind and loving soul.  Not only does she photograph life for a living she is Owner/Operator of Dale Dagger Surf tours Nicaragua, and founder of a very special charity called the Sweet Water Fund.  The Sweet Water Fund is a grass roots foundation dedicated to inspiring a Nicaraguan village and empowering the local women through job opportunities, a healthy lifestyle and the arts. I am thankful I had the chance to meet and get to know her.  If you would like to find out more about Kassidy or her non profit organization Sweet Water Fund please follow links provided. 

Next on the collaborative agenda was finding a HMUA team (hair and makeup) and some willing models to be our living dolls for a day.. 


Jessica Tahsler – I have had a passion for the hair and beauty industry most of my adult life. I have been licensed for eleven years. In that time I have mastered a wide range of techniques. My specialty and passion is in education. I have been an educator since 2005. Helping others obtain their goals of succeeding has always fueled my passion and inspires me to stay updated on all the latest trends, so in turn I can inspire others!

I knew another mom from my son’s school that teaches students HMUA at a the Marinello Schools of Beauty here in Napa CA.  I knew immediately I had to reach out to her to be part of this project.  Not because Jessica has a ton of experience doing this type of thing, but because of the kind of person she is.  Regardless of experience I find it equally important to request those who you feel comfortable around, have a kind and gentle presence, and work well with others.  Jessica is all of those things and has taught students HMUA  for 10+ years.   Jessica selected some of her top students to assist her in project, and arrived to location excited to showcase their work!   Her team included Giosifa Cavalli Taufa, Ariel Cook, and Holly Matfield.  

For their very first rodeo of this kind they did an amazing job!


Left to right: Ariel Cook, Giosifa Cavalli Taufa, Holly Matfield, Jessica Tahsler 


HMUA doing what they do BEST!

With everything in place I just needed to select the models and we would be on our way to the start of what will become “DOVEY” My 2015 Holiday collection.

Knowing I had several pieces to shoot it made sense to have 3 or 4 models so that the shoot would flow, and we could continue to photograph while HMUA changes were being done.

I have never used Model Mayhem, but know several artist friends that have.  Since being new to the area and wishing for models with some experience I created my first casting call.  I received several inquiries and selected one model from MM.  I also created a post on “The Bay Area Actors, Models, Photographers, and mua’s Network.  It is a good source to use if you have a network like this in your area as it creates a wonderful creative forum for people in your profession to connect. I was able to find one more lovely girl using this network.  We had two other beauties in our circle of friends and a little 7 year old doll by the name of Alexi!  We were ready.


Alexi Nigliazzo-Ruxton and her dog Jax – The sweetest thing…  She loves fashion.  Has since the day she was born.  Her mother (Laurie Nigliazzo and Floral Artist) says she has never been able to pick out her outfits because she is very passionate about her own personal style… Alexi is a very kind child with a huge heart.

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Niba Nirmal – “I am currently a third year undergraduate student studying Genetics and Genomics, as well as Environmental Toxicology and Asian American Studies. I started modeling a few years ago, and absolutely love the beautiful people she has met and images that have been made as a result. I can’t wait to see where it will lead me to next!”

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Chante Lanuza – “Free Spirit” is definitely a perfect descriptive for Chante… “I am an artist and currently going to school for welding to fabricate mixed medium sculptures.  Born and raised in Napa CA.


Grace Bartlett – Studies at the University of Colorado Boulder, and is signed with Clear Talent Group. – “What inspires me often is the world around me. Understanding that everything has a ripple effect off of each other, and that in the grand scheme of things, we are one. Thoughts like that are what drew me to becoming a vegetarian! I try to be vegan often but I can’t fully call myself one. My sister, also inspires me every day because of her dedication to bettering our world. She is one of my biggest influences with how I view life in general!”


Hatice Erdec – I am from Turkey. I used to play basketball professionally. I came to USA to study MBA. I am currently working as a junior project manager and model. I’ve always been a huge fan of modeling. What inspires me? A few of my model and photographer friends have been so kind to help point me in the right direction, and wanted me to start modeling. Then l found myself in the fashion shows. After that I got very good feedback from photographers and designers, and they started to book me for photo-shoots and fashion shows, in which I became a more experienced model . They are the ones that inspire me! I love my job. It was so fun.

The shoot took approximately 5 hours.  We pressed on through dusk and would have continued for a few more wardrobe changes, but unfortunately we were running out of daylight.  We were shooting the campaign outside where natural light was a must.  Even through this we got some lovely artistic photos of Hatice from the glow of the pool.  It was a wonderful idea on Kassidy’s part to use the beautiful pool lighting as a background for one last photo.

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I would like to extend a special thank you to Betty’s Girl Boutique for providing us with some beautiful vintage wardrobe options.

If you are looking for a vintage wedding gown or something customized to your own personal taste and style Kim Northrop is a talented seamstress and owner of Betty’s Girl Boutique on Pearl Street Napa CA.  Kim will be happy to assist you with all of your vintage wardrobe needs.


A beautiful selection of vintage finds provided by Betty’s Girl Napa

It was a truly special day with a wonderful team of artists.  I am very thankful to all that gave up their time and came out to be a part of this project.

If you are a photographer, HMUA, model, or visual artist and would like to do a collaborative project with me, please message me the details of your project to jillzaleski@gmail.com.  I am always looking for new, talented individuals that inspire me with their creativity.

 “DOVEY” Holiday 2015 Look Book

Where to purchase  > DOVEY



Shootout Event- Dayton, TN

Shootout Event Pocket Wilderness… This event was the first of it’s kind for me but was anxious to try something new and meet some amazing creative people!~ This sunny day was so special filled with so much talent throughout the majestic Pocket!
If I were to guess I would say close to 50 models, photographers, and creative people showed for this even in the middle of nowhere!~ It was quite a spectacle… I had one hiker look at me and say “what on earth is going on here”!
I believe I was the only designer which was a dream as so many beautiful models were adorned in my pieces and several photographers had captured some truly amazing images!~ I am thankful for the creative work that both Rae Marshall and Bonnie Hill were able to capture incorporating my designs. I could not be happier with the images I have seen..
I hope to collaborate with all of these amazing individuals in the very near future!~
Enjoy this very special blog post by Rae Marshall on the Pocket Wilderness shootout event! …XO

Rae Marshall Photography Blog

I had the pleasure of being invited to a Shootout Event in Dayton, TN this past weekend at Pocket Wilderness. The event was set up by Adrienne McNellis Photography, a great photographer in the area and many photographers and models, as well as stylists and designers attended. Here are some of the highlights from the images we all made! I just loved everyone’s set ups and outfits, and the location was amazing!

Shootout-98FShootout-2 Jewelry: Jill ZaleskiShootout-2Shootout-6Shootout-7 Model: Cali GloverShootout-9Shootout-10Shootout-15 Model: Tiffany MerrimanShootout-20Shootout-18Shootout-21Shootout-23Shootout-24Shootout-26 Model: April Phipps-McCuistionShootout-27Shootout-31Shootout-37 Models: Lexi and KayliShootout-34Shootout-35Shootout-39DFShootout-41Shootout-61Shootout-64Shootout-48 Model: Jessica Eubanks

Jewelry: Jill ZaleskiShootout-50Shootout-59Shootout-69 Model: Nadine PrathersShootout-70Shootout-71Shootout-68Shootout-96Shootout-95Shootout-79Shootout-85Shootout-84Shootout-89

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It is time to begin anew which means time to let go of the past..
2 times a year I do a closet cleaning at Jill Zaleski ~ One of a Kind Jewelry in order to create a fresh start/clean slate…
You can pick up several beautiful handmade, and one of a kind items for 35% by following the link provided, or visiting my Etsy shop.


Jill Zaleski ~ One of a Kind Jewelry – Semi Annual Sale begins today!~

What – 35% off select items
When – March 1st through April 1st 2014
Where – On-line
SALE Link – https://www.etsy.com/shop/jillzaleski?section_id=13355796

I L.O.V.E. Lucy ~ Valentines 2014

This collection will be full of vibrant KISSABLE fuchsias, reds, and bright golds, RoCKin chandeliers, fun and playful charm bracelets, and of course lots of SWAROVSKI SPARKLE! “I Love Lucy” will be a playful, casual, everyday wear collection ❤ Available for purchase “Thursday February 6th” by visiting my Etsy shop!~ http://www.etsy.com/shop/jillzaleski

“A Fairies Tale” by Jill Zaleski ~ One of a Kind Jewlery

COMING SOON… A Fairies Tale will take you away to far off land filled with magical tree princesses, night walkers, and a touch of pixie dust… Close your eyes and imagine escaping to a mythical land of beauty, mystical forests, and hidden gems…
Come join me Wednesday at noon as I introduce you to Evenstar the mythical tree princess, Fleur Delacour, Evenstar’s adversary, and the little pixies Katie Bell, and Lavender Brown who keep the peace in the land of Dunn ♥

Evenstar ~ Mythical tree princess and guardian of the forest… She is the gate keeper to the the Amethyst Gardens and Dewberry Caves!~ Evenstar’s purpose is to protect the gardens and keep her Evil Adversary Fleur Delecour out of the land of Dunn

Katie Bell ~ The sweeter of the two pixies and serves as Evenstar's messenger.. Don't let her gentle beauty fool you.  She may be small but she is mighty

Katie Bell ~ The sweeter of the two pixies. Her duties are to advise and serve as Evenstar’s messenger.. Don’t let her gentle beauty fool you. She may be small but she is mighty and will turn you into a butterfly with a dash of her pixie dust!~

Lavender Brown ~ She is soft and delicate and strikingly beautiful. She is very kind, humorous with a touch of mischievousness..! Don’t let this one catch you causing trouble in the land of Dunn or she will cast you out of Neverland with one wave of her magic wand

Fleur Delcour ~ Evenstar’s Adversary and the evil queen of the Onyx City. She is a night walker who turns light to darkness, and feeds off the nectar of the Amethyst Gardens.. She will just as easily turn you to stone if you get in her way…

 Won’t you join me on my little adventure  Jill Zaleski ~ One of a Kind Jewelry

Model: Shireen Sandoval
Designer/Stylist: Jill Zaleski-Johnson
Photographer: Jason Dunn assisted by Allie Clarke
Hair: Tootsie Von Comare and Heather Mock
Makeup: Jessica Eubanks 

LOVELY ~ Valentines 2013

LOVELY ~ Valentines 2013 ~ Jill Zaleski ~ One of a Kind Jewelry

♥ INTRODUCING….. LOVELY Valentines 2013. This sweet little collection is full of limited addition Swarovski crystal hearts that are paired with some of my favorite styles and color stories. Show off your favorite CRYSTAL HEARTS lariat this Valentines Day for your Valentine and find your own way to wear ♥

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♥ Every Bride ~ Has a Unique Story ♥

♥ What does every bride to be hope for when she starts the planning process?  Speaking from my own experience I know that all I truly wished for was for it to be special, unique, and to include some personal touches that exhibit my personal style on this very special day of L.O.V.E…..!


Rachael Stiefel Roden

Meet Rachael ~ A Chattanooga bride I had the privilege to create custom brides maids jewelry for that she gave to her girls as their gifts!~  I have many brides come to me for their jewelry but not as many brides maids requests!~   Having a custom design where the bride  takes part in the creative process is always much more impactful and well received than a bag of Bath and Body Works any day!~  Just ask your brides maids!~


What I truly love about these brides maids custom pieces is that each cuff bracelet is a bit different so each girl gets a one of a kind piece all their own to remember this very special day ♥


There are so many small but impactful ways to show off your personal style, and leave your girls with something very special to remember the time they shared with you on your WEDDING DAY ♥


Rachael Stiefel Roden


Amanda Winters Kling

Amanda ~ This gorgeous bride not only had some custom crystal drop earrings made to match her grandmothers vintage pendant she went all the way and had custom pieces created for her brides maids, and flower girls!~


Custom Swarovski Crystal Drops for Amanda Winters Kling


 Amanda was part of the creative process all the way through selecting the color of metal, sending photo swatches of brides maids dresses so that we could color match the Swarovski pearl embellishments ♥  Do you think these girls liked their custom brides maids jewels?!  I think so…!




Hair bows and custom Swarovski crystal and Fresh Water pearl bracelets for these sweet little flower girls!~  Something I am sure their mother/sister of the bride will treasure forever ♥


We matched the sash on the brides dress to coordinate matching champaign chiffon hair bows for the flower girls.  Sizes can be customized for even the smallest little peanut ♥


April Dorris Corbett

Not only did April have custom bridal jewelry maid for her big day she had two sets created for when she had her gown change!~  L.O.V.E. that…!

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I have to say that Mrs. April was by far the easiest bride I have ever had as she gave me the color story and gave me free reign from there…!  I encouraged her away from a necklace considering the neckline of the dress and embellishments at the waist.  We decided April would go with custom Swarovski crystal cuff bracelets and matching earrings designed to match her brides maids gorgeous silver gowns ♥




My dear Renee!~  This bride has become a very good friend since the day we first spoke about custom pieces for her wedding day.  I spent several days over the course of 6 weeks collaborating with Renee on what she was truly hoping for.  She knew she wanted vintage but was not 100% sure as to the style we would eventually go with!~  We worked with different colors of filigree, beading options, and hair accessory ideas before we decided on the “Renee Bridle” set that walked her down the isle ♥



Renee Bridle Collection


What makes Renee’s walk down the isle so special and anticipated was that it happened a year after the set date of her wedding to Bryan.  You see… Renee and Bryan made arrangements to get married on Hatteras Island North Carolina. The day before she was to leave for her destination wedding Hurricane Irene hit and made the outer banks where she was to be married in accessible.  You would think this girl would have her head in her hands in tears and inconsolable but not Renee!~  My guess is she was probably thanking God that she was not there when the hurricane hit!~  Never the less she married her love this year and had the ceremony in a vintage movie theater turned jazz club with only 40 guests and in Renee’s own words “I ended up liking the wedding we had much better as it was much more unique and personal!~

Perfect example of why you should just ROLL WITH THE PUNCHES…!


Renee Bridle Wilkinson

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My Gorgeous Bride Jamie Webb was having a destination wedding in Mexico and wanted something a bit more tropical for herself, her brides maids and YES the groom too!~  We knew we wanted to use a bright fuchsia that mimicked the Orchids on her invitation for her brides maids.  It took a little convincing but I encouraged Jamie to add a bit of color to her piece as well.

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She was wearing this very special Chiffon gown that was perfect for a beach wedding and wanted something feminine but not to over the top dressy.  We decided to do a simple strand of large white Swarovski pearls and tie in some gorgeous fuchsia and chiffon flowers that would sit delicately on the side of her neck with some baby pearl button earrings.  It could not have looked more perfect together for this romantic little beach wedding…!


Jamie Webb Smith

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Jaime had asked me If I could create a boutonniere for her groom.  Her description of him consisted of manly, surfer, and he likes skulls…!  Knowing this I knew I had to be VERY careful when creating this piece as if it were to look feminine in any way it would be a no go.  WE decided to go with a small willow branch and create some cream chiffon buds (as to not look to flower like) and add a silver skull with cross bones.  We wanted to tie just a touch of fuchsia in there somewhere so we decided to go with inset fuchsia Swarovski crystal eyes ♥


I first met Erin when she was searching for a vintage wedding band on-line.  Even though I did not have what she was looking for in wedding bands I sent her a few options from some dealers I felt had what she was looking for.  She ended up finding the perfect wedding band locally but came back to have some custom wedding jewelry created.


After chatting with Erin to find out what direction we would go I get this sweet story about her wedding gown.  She begins to tell me that her family had pulled out this old trunk that belonged to her grandmother with this GORGEOUS ivory taffeta material inside fully embroidered along with some vintage lace!~  There was enough material to construct her entire wedding gown along with enough for me to incorporate in her head piece so that is what we did ♥  It is always so special when a loved one is no longer with us for these momentous occasions they can still be part of our special day in the most subtle way, or in this case part of the main event!~


Erin Lobb Szarka


Jennifer Knew what she wanted from there very start.  She had seen the “Myles” necklace on my site and loved it but wanted the colors tweaked to go along with her peacock themed wedding!~  We decided we would create the vintage broach to correspond with that color story.  Originally Jennifer wanted her hair accessory to have peacock feathers tied into it in some way.  I fiddled with the idea then encouraged her to create something that could appear peacock feather “like” without the feathers.  I felt that feathers would not go with the style of the necklace so we created this beautiful filigree head piece with all the glorious colors you would see in a gorgeous peacock!~  The head piece ended up being my favorite part of this set and I think Jennifers too ♥                                                        

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I gave her a little bit of what she wanted “Under the Dress” and created this custom garter for her to show off when the leg pops out and the dress comes up..!  For the garter toss of course…!


Jennifer Ross Van Ness


Last but most certainly not least my gorgeous bride Jenny Russell.  This was for a 20 year renewal ceremony for her and her husband to restate their love for each other a second time ♥   Jenny told me it would be their 20 year renewal.  I could not believe it but Jenny and her love got married and are still sweet little love birds going out on dates and surprising each on the daily!~  Thank you for being such an amazing example of  TRUE LOVE “the soul mate kind” it is beautiful to see ♥♥♥


Jenny Poe Russell

Since this was the second time to state her love to Tony she wanted to make it more casual, more fun, and a little boho chic just like her!~  I created this gorgeous sterling silver pendant and embellished it with turquoise and brown iris crystal. We made the necklace adjustable from short to long so that after the even she would have many ways to wear. A perfect set for any Bohemian Bride ♥

Lastly a proposal for the ages!~  I hope you enjoy this sweet little short film on the most creative engagement I have ever seen!~  With the exception of my proposal over DUNKIN DONUTS of course ♥  Isaac and Amy’s Proposal Enjoy ♥

Shireen Sandoval wearing one of my creations on Deco Drive TONIGHT….!

MY Fredericka Cocktail Ring from “Little Darling Dreamer” will be warn by Shireen Sandoval on Miami’s Deco Drive TONIGHT!!! I CANNOT wait ♥ ♥
Fredericka ring
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