The great thing about Sarah Brockman’s jewelry is that her pieces can be worn anywhere: hiking, running, rock climbing, on vacation, or to the dinner table. This versatility is intentional, as Brockman’s own outdoorsy lifestyle fuels her creativity.

”I’ve always been a big adventurer,” she says. “And so I was making things that I could put on and leave on and wear for six months while swimming, hiking, running—all of it.”

Photo courtesy of Jo Bird Jewelry

As Jo Bird Jewelry, Brockman crafts earrings, necklaces, and bracelets from a wide range of materials. Her style could be described as boho, soft and subtle, or even beachy, and everything that she creates is crafted to last.

Brockman has been in business as Jo Bird Jewelry for 15 years, although she’s been creating jewelry since she was a little kid. Both her parents were artists, and her mother is also a jewelry designer in Whatcom County. For a time period, Brockman experimented with other mediums while helping her mother make jewelry, but found starting her own business felt like “going back to her roots.” She named it Jo Bird Jewelry after her own nickname, and the rest was history.

“I started out with a little Christmas bazaar, with a 6-foot table, and, like, four or five different styles of jewelry,” Brockman says. “And I think that’s what’s so cool about this medium: You can start small.”

Photo courtesy of Jo Bird Jewelry

More than a decade later, however, Brockman’s output is anything but small. Jo Bird Jewelry is a full-time business with a devoted client base, especially at the Bellingham Farmers Market. Brockman’s work spans a range of styles and mediums, and she’s often told that Jo Bird has something for everybody. Rather than focusing solely on silversmithing or beadwork, for example, she incorporates a variety of materials. This includes everything from mixed metals to freshwater pearls and leather.

“It’s very eclectic,” Brockman says. “You know, I use shells that I find on the beach in the Caribbean. I use a lot of glass from the Czech Republic.”

Brockman balances running her business with being a mom to a 10- and 7-year-old, and she “absolutely loves” the flexibility that her profession affords her. Most of her work is made in her home studio while the kids are at school, but she’s also been known to make jewelry in less conventional places. This includes the beaches of Mexico and even deep in the wilderness of Idaho. 

“Something that I think that’s special about my jewelry is that I make it everywhere I go,” she says. “So when I go to Mexico, I make like 200 necklaces. I bring bead kits and trays, and I’m bringing them to the pool with me. I’m doing [work] on my bed when I wake up in my hotel room. That’s kind of special because a lot of jewelry artists can only make their work in their studio.”

Photo courtesy of Jo Bird Jewelry

You can find Jo Bird Jewelry online, at the Bellingham Farmers Market, and at select stores in Bellingham (including A Lot of Flowers in Fairhaven and Statement Apparel in Barkley Village). Brockman’s pieces make excellent gifts for fashionable yet adventurous folks, and moreover, each one is a reflection of her passion for her craft.

With artists, you might think they’re working on their product most of the time—but probably like 10 to 15% of my time is actually making jewelry. The rest of it is … all of the bookkeeping, all the elements of running a business,” she says. “And I enjoy all of that—but making the jewelry is definitely the cherry on the cake. It’s the most relaxing, enjoyable part of my day.” Bellingham,

"Something that I think that’s special about my jewelry is that I make it everywhere I go. - Sarah Brockman, owner of Jo Bird Jewelry"