Excerpt from an interview with Local Eclectic:
When did you start your line and what motivated that decision?
I started Merewif in 2012 after moving back to the little beach town I grew up in. I had been designing footwear in New York and Los Angeles for several years and needed a change. Unfortunately, my fashion degree didn’t afford me many opportunities in a small town, so I decided to explore a craft that I could produce on my own… jewelry.
How would you define your personal style?
In my dreams: Jane Birkin’s outlaw sister.
What inspires you on a daily basis? And how do you think that’s reflected in your work?
Merewif actually translates to sea witch in Old English; an ode to my lifelong admiration of the ocean. Nature’s texture and movement is endlessly inspiring to me.
What’s the largest challenge you have faced or continue to face in your work?
I have a love/hate relationship with working from home in solitude. For the most part, it’s wonderful, but I do miss the collaborative design environment at times. It’s really easy to get sucked into working at all times. Shoutout to my husband for nudging me out of the office and into nature.
What’s one thing you wish you’d known before starting your own line?
I started Merewif with very little knowledge of the jewelry industry and having taken only one class on jewelry making, which led to a lot of self-teaching. I think it worked out to have learned without influence, though.
If you could create a custom piece for anyone, living or dead, who would it be and why?
Oh man! That’s a tough one. I’d love to make a badass signet ring for Townes Van Zandt or a talisman for Patti Smith. The nostalgia she carries with the few items she’s able to hold onto in her stories of life in New York during the 60s and 70s really resonates with me. (I’m currently listening to her narration of Just Kids on Audible, so good!)
If you weren’t a jewelry designer, what would you be doing?
I would be happy doing anything centered around creativity, especially in tactile form. The thing I love about running Merewif is that I can indulge a range of other creative interests like graphic and web design, even furniture making for tradeshow displays.
Where do you see yourself and your line in 5 years?
The goal is to be able to design jewelry and sustain a modest life.
A little more about Merewif:
Merewif derives its name from an Old English term for sea witch. It is an innovative yet wearable collection of handmade jewelry, taking a strong influence from the alchemistic elements of sea. Every piece is designed by Savannah in her hometown on the Southeast coast of North Carolina and handcrafted in the United States.