I’m Bernadette Suski-Harding, and I love creating jewelry.
Before I get into the how and why, I’m going to answer the first question I almost always get when I meet someone new: Where did you get the name, Penelope Plum Designs?
I started selling my handcrafted designs when our daughter, Penelope, was little. And, I like alliteration, so after some trial and error, I settled on ‘plum’. I love what the word brings to mind: sweet, juicy fruit, or something superior and very desirable.
My goal always is to create handcrafted indulgences that are classic and timeless,
but with a playful twist; eye-catching statement pieces that are comfortable to wear; and pieces that are equally at home with everything from jeans to formal wear.
I love working with unexpected elements: Indian saris torn into colorful ribbon or spun into yarn, hand-painted silk ribbon, artisan-dyed fleece. I find inspiration in their colors and textures, by the landscapes they call to mind, by the artistry and industry of the women who created them. Their unique textures inspire me, and bright colors make me smile. When I can combine the two in unusual ways, I’m a happy designer.
I handcraft all of my pieces in my studio in Hunterdon County, NJ. The feeling I get when I succeed in transforming what I saw in my mind -- and which no doubt kept me up the night before -- is indescribable, even for me, even still.
If you have any questions, please reach out. I would love to hear from you!
One of my first designs: the Marie necklace, featuring cultured freshwater pearls and peridot chips knitted into a rectangular pendant.