Without jewelry, pearls would be nothing but oyster gallstones and treasure chests would contain nothing but dirty back issues of The Economist. Embrace the power of bling with today’s Groupon to Ayla’s Originals in Evanston. Choose between the following options:
- For $29, you get a 90-minute jewelry-making class including materials (a $60 value), valid for one of the following sessions:
- Basic Stringing
- Memory-Wire Cuff
- Organic Woven-Leather Cuff Bracelet
- Wire Wrapping
- For $40, you get $100 worth of owner-designed jewelry.
Owner Ayla Phillips Pizzo stocks Ayla’s Originals with bead-laden accessories of her own design, and fills inquiring minds with the know-how to assemble their own embellishments during 90-minute classes. In Basic Stringing classes, up to five students absorb straightforward techniques before crafting a 16-inch-long necklace, great for complementing an evening gown or binding the hands of a mall security guard. Memory-Wire Cuff classes teach a technique that produces a colorful claspless bracelet, Knotting classes impart techniques wielded by professional jewelry-makers to adorn wrists, and the popular Organic Woven-Leather Cuff Bracelet classes combine cross-weaving bead work with a soft leather cord to create a casual yet delicate bangle.
Ayla’s Originals also carries a wide variety of accessories designed by Ayla herself. Gussy up wrists with a Swarovsky crystal-studded, 14-karat gold bracelet ($54) or accent an outfit with a biwa-pearl and silver necklace ($79), which strings together the treasures of the sea without having to barter with a clam.
After the art of beading wrapped up Ayla Phillips Pizzo in its colorful embrace, she followed her passion to open Ayla's Originals, eventually creating her own line of jewelry, Ayla's Own, which has been featured in the Field Museum. On the walls of Ayla's shop, strings of Czech glass beads, gemstones, shells, and African beads boast enough colors to represent a rainbow or pay homage to a crayon collection. Filling the shop's floor space, cases brim with marcasite silver, oblong chunks of turquoise, and polished emeralds and sapphires. Bauble-stringing beginners can participate in regular classes taught by talented and worldly jewelry smiths that concentrate on various curricula, from creating dewdrop bracelets to wire wrapping the hands of a diamond-store security guard.
1511 Sherman Ave.
Evanston, Illinois 60201