Artist, Rebecca Zemans, always understood that art is for everyone. Her path evolved while earning a joint degree in Anthropology and Metalsmithing from the University of Michigan. After college, she worked as a blacksmith, welder, and bronze foundry assistant at The Crucible in West Oakland, CA. When she returned home to Chicago in 2007 she taught art to children at the Hyde Park Art Center. It was then she became a studio artist at Lillstreet Art Center which sparked her jewelry career that continues to this day.
She draws from experiences as she designs work, honoring the tradition of metalsmithing as a universal artform while educating her customers about the processes and materials in order to sculpt small treasures that will be celebrated now and cherished always.
Throughout her years of designing jewelry and making art she realized what an incredible gift it is to help people create beautiful and meaningful pieces. Inspired by classic styles, she creates timeless jewelry with a twist. The end result is casually elegant, and easy to wear, always.
Rebecca honors and respects the commitment you make to your loved ones and are grateful to work with all people who want to express the joy of their love with handcrafted jewelry.
After making large sculptures for many years, Rebecca scaled down her work to a jewelry size. It allowed her to make art more accessible. Her designs derive from nature and the movement of metal. Specifically her fascination with the structural connection between biological cells and celestial bodies. Her jewelry is meant to be enjoyed now and always. Each piece tells its own story: with every blow of the hammer, bent curve of metal, and special stones Rebecca Zemans Jewelry is meticulously and lovingly crafted in Chicago.
The ancient forging and lost wax casting processes we use continue the history of metalsmithing, creating adornment for generations to come.
Rebecca strives to reduce her environmental impact throughout all of her business practices. All metals used in our designs are fair mined and recycled as well as utilizing conflict-free and lab-created gemstones. She specializes in repurposing the metals and stones from heirloom jewelry. Even the packaging used is made from recycled and fair mined materials.
The history of jewelry making dates back to antiquity where townspeople would work with their local metalsmith. Rebecca is proud to continue this tradition. Her passion is transforming your ideas into handmade pieces to enjoy forever.
The studio is located on the third floor of Lillstreet Art Center, a community of artists’ studios, workshops and classrooms. Lillstreet not only fosters creative inspiration from many artists, but the shared space helps us diminish wasteful practices of natural resources. As part of the Green Wedding Alliance membership, her studio undergoes a yearly review of it’s practices from recycling to shipping to energy use.