For the month of August, the Reboli Center for Art and History in Stony Brook Village is showcasing the work of beach glass and jewelry designer Jeanette Leonard.
It is not surprising that Leonard, who grew up on the North Shore in Lloyd Harbor and now resides on the South Shore in Blue Point, has found a passion in designing jewelry from nature’s beach glass.
A graduate of FIT, Leonard received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Fashion Design and focused on women’s tailoring (coats and suits) and knitwear. She spent a semester in England studying knitwear. Jeanette worked in Manhattan for ten years as a technical designer and then as a fashion designer. During this time, she would design and embellish tops for women. She frequented the bead stores and started making jewelry.
Leonard began wire-wrapping sea glass after a friend found a piece of sea glass and asked her to make a piece of jewelry for his girlfriend. After a period of trial and error, she successfully mastered the art of wire wrapping beach glass into jewelry.
“I am inspired by the ocean and the treasures found there. I find natural things most beautiful just the way they are in their natural state. To create pieces from fresh water pearl, genuine sea glass, beach pottery, shells and coral gives me an easy jumping off point for my designs. I love the colors that sea glass can be, I love the frosted look the ocean turns into, I love the iridescent luster that pearl and shells have. For me the imperfect is perfect,” she said.
Leonard sources her beach glass and pearls form some Long Island beaches, mostly brown, white and green, but the blue and other unusual colors are purchased online. The driftwood is also from Long Island beaches and some is bought in California.
“As an artist, it means a great deal to be on display at the Reboli Center and to be the Artist of the Month!”
Leonard is the founder of Blue Harbor Jewelry and, the Gallery Director at the Bay Area Friends of the Fine Arts (BAFA) in Sayville, where she arranges for artists or groups to exhibit their work each month. She also sells her jewelry at art shows.
“This is the first time that the Reboli Center is offering beach glass jewelry at the Design Shop and it is a perfect fit, as we are located on Stony Brook Harbor. Jeanette’s designs are beautiful and the pieces so exquisite, we are thrilled to exhibit her work during August,” said Lois Reboli, founder and president of the Reboli Center.
The Reboli Center for Art and History, located at 64 Main Street, Stony Brook, is open Tuesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from 1 p.m. until 5 p.m. Admission is free. For more information please call 631-752-7707 or visit www.rebolicenter.org.