Inspiration often arises from unexpected sources and these bold, colorful earrings and brooches are no exception: I create them from upcycled coffee pods, and then enhance them with freshwater pearls, handblown Italian glass beads, and fine artisan crystals.  Unique and lightweight, with sterling silver or gold plated findings, I have elevated the ubiquitous, humble coffee pod to a lofty new status.

From a young age I travelled the world and have always been fascinated with the unique materials people use to adorn themselves.  Although trained as an anthropologist, I launched my first company, Via Mia Design from a dinner table while on vacation in Rome, and was soon marketing my jewelry lines to museum shops and boutiques across the United States.

But it was the combination of the Covid pandemic and a dedication to recycling that inspired me to reconsider omnipresent coffee pods, with their vivid colors and unusual surfaces, as an ingenious material. Like everyone else, I was stuck at home for such long stretches, drinking endless cups of coffee and feeling terrible about all the waste.  One day, I took out my jewelers' tools and assembled a pair of earrings as a lark, and soon embellished updated versions for friends and family. As I received ever more requests for the distinctive baubles, I went into production mode and Modd Podd Jewelry was born.

Daily admirers rarely guess but are delighted that the pieces originated as coffee pods. I am asked so often where I got my earrings that I decided to sell them, sometimes even as I'm wearing them.  Totally unexpectedly, they have become great conversation starters.

Splitting my time between Palm Springs, Chicago, and other destinations, I am grateful that the pandemic inspired a new creative direction, one that makes my daily coffee intake less guilt inducing, thanks to Modd Podd Jewelry.