Since 1981, we at Holly Yashi have been making quality, handcrafted artisan jewelry in our Redwood Coast design studio in Arcata, California. For nearly 35 years, our signature style of colorful and lightweight niobium metal is still what makes Holly Yashi jewelry unique and irresistible. Featuring an array of inspiring materials, including Swarovski crystal pearls, Bohemian and dichroic glass, and hypo-allergenic metals, all our jewelry is crafted by hand in small, high quality batches, one piece at a time.
In this short video, co-founders Holly Hosterman and Paul “Yashi” Lubitz share a few words about the history of their partnership and the craft behind Holly Yashi jewelry. Designed and handcrafted in Arcata, California, a small town nestled between the redwood forest and the ruggedly beautiful Pacific coastline, this video explores the sources of inspiration from which Holly Yashi's unique designs emerge. Learn more about the rare metal niobium and how its unusual properties have driven innovation at Holly Yashi for over three decades.
In 1981, recent college graduates Holly Hosterman and Paul “Yashi” Lubitz were searching for creative ways to use their degrees. Holly, who majored in studio art with an emphasis in jewelry making, and Paul, who graduated with a double degree in industrial technology and music, knew they wanted to work together. Combining their talents to lay the foundation for what would quickly become a successful jewelry business, they transformed their one-car garage into a design studio and started their lifelong career with Holly Yashi.
Holly’s first designs were hand-cut animal earrings made of brass and silver. Within months they had a loyal following, and soon after Holly and Paul discovered the magic within a seemingly dull gray metal called niobium. Through an expedited oxidation process, niobium is dipped into a bath of electrically charged water which turns the metal into hues of rich, permanent color. The beautiful result is a look that has become the signature style of Holly Yashi for over thirty years.
Holly and her creative team craft new designs every day and currently maintain a portfolio of over 1,000 styles, all available through the company's retail website, direct mail catalogs, retail stores across the country, and their flagship retail store located in Arcata, California. Holly Yashi has been featured in magazines such as Vogue, Good Housekeeping, and Modern Jeweler, as well as on a number of television series; Holly Yashi has also been worn by many well-known women, as seen on musician Bonnie Raitt and on actress Sandra Oh in the feature film Sideways. Holly has created custom designs for both nonprofit organizations as well as notable fashion retailers like Sundance and Anthropologie.
In 2016, Holly Yashi will proudly celebrate its 35th anniversary of creating “jewelry as art” with new designs and expansions to its flagship store. Holly Yashi’s vibrant handcrafted jewelry has been enjoyed by loyal customers, longtime collectors, and enthusiastic new fans. Holly and Paul are grateful for the support of the Holly Yashi community, and look forward to continuing to provide jewelry lovers everywhere with wearable expressions of art and beauty.