Montgomery Blair alumna’s jewelry going to the Oscars -- Gazette.Net


Jane Makransky grew up in Silver Spring and graduated from Montgomery Blair High School.

She’s also a lawyer and jewelry designer whose handmade pieces will be included in the swag bags given out at the Academcy Awards presentation March 2 in Beverly Hills, Calif.

The self-described “crafty person” has been painting, drawing and even sewing since she was a girl.

“I am self-taught, although I credit my father with passing along an artistic gene,” Makransky said.

Ten years ago she decided to become serious about her jewelry hobby, but kept practicing law.

Then last year, while selling necklaces at Etsy Store — a website where people can buy or sell handmade and vintage items — a woman from Los Angeles contacted Makransky to ask about a “beachy”-style necklace.

“It incorporated tiny shells that I had hand gold-leafed, along with quartz and other stones. She was hosting an event in Los Angeles for celebrity moms-to-be, and asked me to make necklaces to include in their gift baskets,” Makransky said.

Among those attending were Jessica Simpson, Penelope Cruz, Fergie, Malin Ackerman, Hilaria Baldwin and Kim Kardashian.

After that Makransky, discovered leather.

“I had always been inspired by different fabrics, trims and ribbon, and leather was my latest passion,” she said.

The cuffs Makransky makes are crafted with leather from Portugal, Spain, Greece and Italy.

“I enjoy wrapping the leather to form shapes, and embellishing the cuffs with Swarovski crystals, charms, vintage bead, ribbon and other components,” she said.

Makransky said the cuffs have been “really taking off.” They are now sold in 12 stores in Maryland, Delaware and Pennsylvania.

It’s hard to say how long it takes to make the cuffs, she said, as they are made in stages over a period of days.

“I make each and every one, and it is a painstaking process. Yet I love the process of designing and seeing my ideas come to fruition,” Makransky said.

Makransky, who spent years practicing family law, attended Villanova University School of Law and now lives in Philadelphia with her family, although she still has relatives in Potomac.

For more about her designs, visit