Mariele Ivy spent the last five years working for herself, honing her craft of ceramics and wood jewelry in a small studio in the Bay Area for her line, Young in the Mountains. Originally from Montana and Colorado, the 27-year-old was pretty set her in skills—and then she went to Ghost Ranch.
A 21,000-acre retreat and education center in north central New Mexico, Ghost Ranch is best known for being a source of inspiration for Georgia O’Keefe. It turned out to be a game-changer for Mariele, too.
“I went to a weeklong class for lapidary (stone cutting), and I blew the teacher away. I was a natural at it and immediately fell in love with the art,” she says. “I realized that everything I had been doing led me to stone cutting.”
After one week at the ranch, Mariele was already planning a return trip. The powers of the universe worked in her favor, and she was awarded a scholarship for a two-week lapidary retreat at Ghost Ranch.
“I turned the two weeks into a monthlong trip, driving from San Francisco through the Four Corners,” she says. “It really felt like a sabbatical—being from a more rural place, I find myself a little uncomfortable in big cities; I fit in better in the wide-open spaces.”
The month away paired with a new understanding of stone cutting changed the way Mariele makes her pieces.
“It’s been two months since I’ve been back, and I’ve already built a lapidary studio and transitioned my work from wood jewelry to stone,” she says. “I really hope to do something crazy and take it to a level that no one has seen.”
Take a peek at some of our favorites from the Young in the Mountains shop below. To see even more of Mariele’s work, click here.