Conversations with Courtney McClure - Voyage ATL Magazine (2024)

Conversations with Courtney McClure - Voyage ATL Magazine (1)

Today we’d like to introduce you to Courtney McClure.

Hi Courtney, please kick things off for us with an introduction to yourself and your story.
I grew up very influenced by my grandmother, aka Meme. She was the most creative person I’ve ever known and could do just about anything–painting, drawing, beadwork, sewing, needlepoint, you name it! She and I would spend hours together sewing costumes and outfits and making jewelry. I must have been about 8 when she bought me a loom for bead weaving. My mother has also been a creative influence in my life! She was always making things pretty in our house and did lots of sewing. She also made scarves that she sold at craft fairs. So it always came very naturally to me to be creating things.

As I got older, I continued to love making jewelry. When I was a teenager, my mom and some of her friends would host jewelry parties at their houses where I would sell my jewelry, mostly bracelets back then, in exchange for hostess gifts. I got married when I was 20 and had my first child at 22. I did a few arts and crafts shows when my children were young, but jewelry-making became more of a hobby as I was busy raising my family. Within the last five years or so, I’ve started focusing on jewelry making more and more. Last year I really started doing more art shows and truly love these events. I love the hustle and bustle and getting to meet my customers in person! Once both of our kids are off to college, my husband and I hope to travel the country in our camper while participating in art shows. It’s been a long-time dream to turn my jewelry-making venture into an actual income and so exciting to be working towards the future! I feel very blessed to be able to do what I love for a living!

We all face challenges, but looking back would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?
I guess I would have to say that it’s been a long road! I’ve always been a creator, but just within the last several years have actually had the time to invest to make it a business rather than a hobby. I am first and foremost a mom. It’s my favorite title! My oldest is about to graduate high school and start college at The University of Pennsylvania this fall and my youngest is a rising junior in high school. Now that they are older and more independent, I’ve been able to spend more time not only creating jewelry but traveling to art shows and festivals to peddle my wares! It’s been a lot of fun and hard work!

Thanks – so what else should our readers know about your work and what you’re currently focused on?
I create unique, handcrafted jewelry with a boho flair! My grandmother (Meme) loved to use the term “wearable art” and it is definitely a goal of mine for everything I make to be a piece of wearable art rather than just jewelry. I never exactly replicate anything I make–each piece is a true one-of-a-kind! Although I’m always trying new ideas, I would say that I have a few signature collections, including my beaded fringe earrings, feather earrings, hammered brass and gemstone earrings, my Boho Bangle bracelets, and jewelry cut from vintage tins. I love to combine interesting textures and unexpected color combinations. I also love using textiles in my jewelry. I have a lot of people tell me that wearing my jewelry just makes them happy, and that is what I’m most proud of! To make something that makes someone else feel happy and beautiful is an amazing feeling!

We’d be interested to hear your thoughts on luck and what role, if any, you feel it’s played for you?
I don’t really believe in luck, good or bad. I have faith that what is meant for me will be. It’s brought a lot of peace and comfort to my life to know that God’s plans are bigger than my own and there is nothing I can do to mess them up. I work hard and try to put my best effort into all that I do. When I do experience what seems to be a setback, or if things don’t work out as I had hoped for, I try to take a step back and realize that there must be a reason for it. Perhaps there is something better just around the corner! It all works out in the end.

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Conversations with Courtney McClure - Voyage ATL Magazine (2024)
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