10 Years of Melanie AuldBack to MAJ Journal
Celebrating milestones, big and small, throughout the last decade in the world of Melanie Auld.
What a whirlwind the last decade has been! From the smallest moments to some major milestones – Melanie Auld Jewelry wouldn’t be here today without the amazing community and team members who have shaped and guided our mission of storytelling and human connection. I hope you enjoy this walk down memory lane as I recount some moments and milestones of our last 10 years together.
I took metalsmithing classes back in 2005 and started creating jewelry as an artform from there. When my husband retired from playing hockey professionally in 2013 we settled down in Vancouver and Melanie Auld Jewelry was born! For the first year I would work in a small shared studio and Alex would hand deliver orders to Canada Post with our 2 year old daughter in her stroller. It was exciting and scary not knowing how it would work out and if we could create the business we dreamt of. Looking back, I am so proud we took that leap and chose to create this company.
Over the following years, MAJ pieces started gaining recognition in the press, being featured in magazines such as Elle, Instyle, Fashion and even Oprah wore us on the cover of her namesake magazine! I was constantly attending wholesale trade shows trying to get stores to take notice of my designs. Luckily, we had some very supportive local boutiques that believed in the line. Stephanie Vogler of The Cross Design was one of the first stores to pick up MAJ and Nancy Hill who founded Blue Ruby was also a major support from the beginning. Having well known and respected stores carrying the line gave me confidence and created brand awareness with customers. Eventually stores like Intermix, Anthropologie and Nordstrom picked up the line and we were able to grow the MAJ team.
In 2018, we started working with some amazing factories in Vicenza Italy that we continue to work with to this day! My great grandparents were born in a little town in northern Italy (Pordenone) not far from Vicenza, so working with gold and silversmiths from this area is full circle for me. When I am in Italy I feel a sense of peace & home that I hope is felt through our jewelry.
We first partnered with Jillian Harris in 2016 and launched the Summer of Love collection, shortly after that we designed Adorned, our most successful and well-known collection to date. This collection prompted so many customers to share their stories with us. It was then and remains still so special to me that customers choose our jewelry to mark special moments in their lives.
This is a big one! In June of 2019 we opened our very first boutique in Vancouver, BC – and hired our first retail team members! It was during this time that we also launched our fine jewelry, it was important to give our customers somewhere that they were able to try on and check out these pieces IRL. Interiors and how they make people feel have always been very important to me and so a great emphasis is placed on the aesthetics of our boutiques and making our customers feel like they are on a jewelry vacation 😊
In December of 2021 we opened our second retail location in the Ossington area of Toronto. This location was pivotal to the brand as it was the first to house our experiences! We offer welding, engraving and piercing all under one roof. Connecting our customers to their people and stories. We designed this store with local interior designer Montana Labelle. It is important to us that when we enter a community, we support local talent.
We were so honored to be named 2022- CAFA Accessory Designer of the Year!! This award was so special. To be recognized by the Canadian fashion community was such a “pinch me” moment. So proud of my team and what we have built!
Our new Vancouver flagship store opened its doors in December of 2022, on 4th Ave in Kitsilano. It felt really special to open our Kits boutique. This was the street I always dreamed of having a store on. It’s close to my home, my friends, my community, it’s where I live and where we are raising our kids. We designed the store with Gillian Segal. An AMAZINGLY talented Vancouver based interior designer who took the store to a whole other level.
Reliving these moments only makes me that much more excited for what’s to come – thank you for being part of this amazing journey, I’m so looking forward to the next 10 years!
Lots of love, Mel.