Name: Whitney Oliver Designs; EDEN Soap & Candle Co.
Location: Glitz Fine Clothing, 306 E. Main St.; Re.Treat Salon and Spa, 310 E. Main St., Suite M
Hours of Operation: Glitz Fine Clothing, 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday; Re.Treat Salon and Spa, hours vary
Contact: By email for orders at firstname.lastname@example.org
History of Business: After a successful domestic and international modeling career, young entrepreneur Whitney Davis returned to her hometown of Turlock to begin her own line of unique, handmade jewelry made of precious stones and metals. Aside from her line of jewelry, named Whitney Oliver Designs, Davis has also created her own line of organic artisan soaps, candles, body lotions and scrubs – all beautifully packaged by the creative businesswoman herself.
“I modeled regularly for designers such as Oscar De La Renta, Giorgio Armani, Versace, Ralph Lauren, Chanel, Zak Posen, Carolina Hererra and Monique Lhuillier, to name a few,” said Davis of her modeling days. “This only fueled the creative fire and I believe it was this season where my taste and visual palette were fine tuned.”
Davis, who is also a licensed esthetician, has always found a passion in creating unique items for her customers, having local showcases displaying her work throughout the year in Turlock and other cities, including Santa Cruz and Los Angeles.
“I have been making jewelry since junior high and high school, but turned it into a business just a few years ago,” said Davis. “Some of my fondest memories include heaps of metal scraps, piles of beads and sitting down for hours with my friend Anne Kapor, who now owns Birch Jewelry, watching chick flicks and making absurd, sparkly messes. We’ve definitely honed our skills from the days of pucca shells and Michael’s hardware, but I’d say that is where the passion started and the realization that I was rather intrigued by what could be created by one’s own two hands.”
Many of her customers find Davis’ items to be unique, as custom-made jewelry items are available with initials, names and words being hammered into the gold by Davis.
“After numerous requests from friends and family members for jewelry pieces, I was inspired to take the next step by making it into a business,” said Davis. “At the time I was running an organic spa goods company that I had started in Los Angeles, EDEN Soap & Candle Co., prior to moving back to Turlock. I worked out of a studio from home making cold processed, aromatherapy soaps, body creams, sea salt scrubs and pure soy candles, where people could shop by appointment only. Expanding to jewelry was an easy and complimentary transition.”
At the 2012 Breast Cancer Awareness event put on by Emanuel Cancer Center, Davis was tasked with creating a custom-made pendant necklace for guest speaker and television personality Giuliana Rancic of Entertainment Television’s “Fashion Police.” The necklace featured Rancic’s son’s name, Duke, stamped into the back of the pendant.
“I’m very selective in the materials I use, no cheap plating or coating, all high-quality metals and fine gemstones,” said Davis. “I do not budge with this. It is important to me that Whitney Oliver Designs maintain its integrity as high quality, artisan jewelry. Using only the purest materials and traditional craftsmanship ensures this. Every piece is one of a kind because every strike of the hammer is different; every form from the hand is unique. No piece, not even the ear hooks, are purchased and then fastened together or machine textured. Every element of each of my pieces is hand forged and hand constructed by designer from start to finish.”
Davis has recently made strides in her business ventures, even opening her own design studio in the Mercantile Building located at 202 West Main St. in Downtown Turlock.
Being completely hand forged and unique, Davis’ items are easy to recognize as her own, as she brings out her own personal style and flair in each piece created.
“My taste across the board is pretty organic and raw,” said Davis. “I’m not a frilly girl. So the simple hammered textures and natural stones sat well next to the recycled glass and label-free esthetic of the spa goods. Luxury spa goods and jewelry was a successful pairing and allowed me to switch gears creatively so as never to tire from one or the other.”
Many of her gemstone earrings, hand forged pendants and precious metal items can be found in the area, including at The Boutique at Salon Salon in Modesto, Glitz Fine Clothing in Turlock, Re.Treat Salon and Spa in Turlock, and Fina in Stockton. Whitney Oliver Designs can also be found in Berkeley, Santa Cruz, Carmel, Placerville, Sonora, Lodi, Redding, and in Oregon and Washington. Items from Whitney Oliver Designs can also be purchased online at www.whitneyoliverdesigns.etsy.com
“I couldn’t love what I do more,” said Davis. “It is fulfilling and exciting and interesting and challenging, and I’m very proud of the company that I created and the pieces that I produce.”
Business Specialty: Hand forged gemstone earrings, cuffs and pendant necklaces, custom metal stamping, hand stamped necklaces and bracelets.