Memory lane is Alta Drive for Mary Beth Heishman, whose delicate jewelry line, I Adorn U, is infused with pangs of Vegas-style nostalgia.
Fascinated by the city’s mid-century cinder block architectural elements? Mary Beth Heishman’s jewelry brings back the mod motifs.
Just off the Strip sits Alta Drive, a historic street dotted with charming mid-century modern homes. It’s where Mary Beth Heishman—art teacher by day, silversmith by night—grew up. “Homes just aren’t built like that anymore,” she says. “[They were] simple yet functional, with those cinderblocks and textural patterns.”
They’re what moved Heishman to create her own line of handcrafted jewelry called I Adorn U. Drawing inspiration from the airy breezeways and concrete designs of Vegas homes of the 1950s and ’60s, Heishman began designing her pieces, which she sold through a small Etsy shop and at First Fridays in Downtown’s Arts District. “I’ve always kind of tinkered with jewelry, and it was a way to do sculpture on a miniature scale,” she says.
Now, 12 years after its establishment, I Adorn U is giving Vegas visitors and residents a piece of the less-advertised—but arguably more beautiful—part of the city. Heishman points to her Palm Desert necklace, featuring a stunning picture jasper (sourced from Oregon) floating on a sterling silver “cinderblock wall shield,” as a particularly special piece. “The stone looks like a watercolor painting of the desert. It reminds me of the vacant desert that was behind us on Alta for years,” she says. That area is developed now, but wearing the piece can be the best way to keep the city’s history alive.