Artist Mindy Diaz has worked as a bench jeweler and goldsmith since 1980, though her love for gemstones and working with metals began long before then. She began collecting and studying crystals and stones at the age of 8 and cast her first piece of jewelry at the age of 12. After working almost 30 years as a bench jeweler in both the retail and trade aspects of the jewelry business, Mindy opened her own store in Rock Island, IL in November 2008.
As an artist Mindy finds jewelry making to be very creatively satisfying. Whether she is designing new pieces to fill the store’s cases, or creating a custom piece from a customer’s old jewelry, Mindy enjoys bringing a new piece to life:
“Most jewelry has a story behind it,” Mindy says. “I feel so fortunate to be able to play a small part in those stories…from marriage proposals to celebrating the birth of a new baby, to honoring another year of being a cancer survivor—I love being able to connect people to their life events through my work as a jeweler.”
Though she began creating her art using the lost wax casting method, Mindy later found hand fabrication to be more her style. Similar to metal sculpture, this method allows her to “stay in contact” with her work, from raw metal and gemstone to sparkling finished piece.
If traditional methods happens to be more your style, Inspiredesign Jewlery’s staff will happily order items from one of their vendors’ catalogs. “We don’t discriminate, “ she smiles. “It’s all about getting the customer what they are looking for.”
• Mindy is currently completing her Master Bench Jeweler Certification with JA
“Thank you so very much, Mindy, for the unique and exceptional work you did on restringing and transforming a pearl necklace into 3 bracelets. I love them! You are truly a master of your art!”
- Betty S. | Cedar Rapids, IA
"I want to thank you for doing such a great job on my mother's ring. To have the ring on my finger again is an incredible feeling of joy."
Barb H. | Milan, IL
"Hello! I just wanted to drop you a quick note letting you know that I am really pleased with the stone setting repair that you did on the ring my dad gave me years ago. The ring and stone are just brilliant in the light. You actually set the stone much better than when it was set when the ring was new. I will get a great deal of enjoyment from wearing this in the future. Thanks!"
- Gary A. | Galva, IL