Feature Designer

Bridal jewelry is quite different from other types of adornment. Firstly, bridal jewelry is all about glamour for a single special day. Designing such jewelry also confines the designer to a limited colour palette. A bride is the focus of attention on her special day so she wants to look her best and I dare say, is willing to pay for it.

Lonni Tanksley of Philadelphia, USA is one such specialist artisan who demonstrates considerable artistic expression in her creations. Her early passion for dance (ballet) and theatre plus a music degree has given her the edge on the "drama" part of bridal adornment.

Lonni's Bridal Headpiece and Assessories line took a while to get going. Her initial efforts with beaded flower jewelry got her nowhere until she crafted a bridal looking comb and choker which was her eureka moment. It is her combs which caught my eye. These beautiful beaded confections are perfect for updos worn by brides. Not everyone is enamoured of tiaras, full headpieces and veils.

She crafted the "Wildflowers" (left) comb from Miyuki Delica beads, complete with a crystal bow beneath. The butterfly and delicate wire stalks are lovely touches. Calla lilies are often carried by brides so I was equally charmed by her take on this classic wedding flower in the comb on the right. She used not just Miyuki Delica beads but also freshwater stick pearls in cascades of Swarovski crystals.

Her main clientele are the upscale shops and bridal salons in her home city. But you can see some of her designs on her Etsy site. Photos with kind permission from Lonni.

Beautiful bridal jewelry from other parts of the world :

The Sanggul Lintang of Traditional Malay Brides These elaborate headpieces are worn by Malay brides from South East Asia along with their traditional dresses.

Indian Bridal Jewelry The unique pieces are made from gold and real gemstones and adorn Indian brides literally from head to foot.
The Beading Gem's Journal