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About

Conflict-free US-mined gemstone & recycled metal heirlooms for the exuberant heart

Knot & Splice is USA-sourced handmade jewelry, textiles, and objects by Nicole Jo Melton, a Florida Everglades native, multi-disciplinary artist, and designer. Nicole has a background in goldsmithing, graphic design, photography and fiber art. She holds a BFA degree from the renowned School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC). 

Knot & Splice was founded in Chicago during the spring of 2012, with a firm belief in the values of handmade, quality American work. Early pieces included hand-beaded jewelry (inspired by Native American patterns) which quickly expanded to metalsmithed, hand-carved/cast, and U.S. stone pieces. After a serious spine surgery in 2014 (and chronic pain/autoimmune issues), Nicole began focusing on small thoughtful jewelry collections (that do not subscribe to a fashion calendar) and one-of-a-kind heirloom pieces.

Knot & Splice conscientiously sources ethically mined gemstones with unique characteristics for our one of a kind jewelry that is set apart in both high standards and beauty. We proudly use recycled metals that are milled by suppliers (and participate in metal recycling of all scraps from our studio with): Rio Grande in Albuquerque, MM and Stuller in Lafayette, LA. Our lost wax caster in NYC also uses recycled precious metals.

For several years we created jewelry for many wonderful small brick and mortar shops from around the world, but are currently focusing on working directly with our beloved customers. We had the unique opportunity to partner with Frye boots in 2016 in their “Meet Our Makers: Chicago” series (alongside Koval Distillery) where we were featured in Frye’s video and photography series and later honored at a private dinner at the Frye flagship store in downtown Chicago. We have also been published in Majestic Disorder and Ancestry Quarterly magazines.  

Nicole makes every Knot & Splice piece by hand in her home studio now located in the beautiful and artistically-vibrant Kansas City, MO. Her husband is both a talented musician and author of multi-published works. Nicole and Zechariah have two rescue dogs—one with an antenna ear named June, and one piglet-looking pup who loves to give hugs and “talk” named Nova. 

If you're wondering more about the backstory of Knot & Splice, Nicole was recently interviewed by Voyage Chicago here. In it, she answers how she got started, challenges she's faced being a working artist with chronic illness, and a quality she believes is essential to the success of Knot & Splice.

If you’d like to follow our process in the studio and day to day, follow our Stories on Instagram.

We have many goals and hopes for Knot & Splice in 2019. Nicole took an intensive stone setting course in early 2019 at the renowned New Approach School for Jewelers in Nashville, TN. She will be applying learned techniques to her work and expanding made to order and ceremonial offerings.

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Nicole with her husband and two rescue pups. [last 3 photos by: Shelby York Photography]