Emily Hansel Designs bio picture
  • Hi y’all

    I'm Emily. I'm a Tar Heel born and bred and I love a good story. When I'm not adding chapters to my own with my sweet family, I'm working to transform stories of love and friendship into pieces of custom jewelry. Each piece is carefully crafted to enhance weddings and life's special moments. Follow along here to see my most recent work and a peek into the design process.

I’m in the (Little Black) Book!

I am thrilled to announce that Emily Hansel Designs has been chosen to be a member of Style Me Pretty’s Little Black Book. Style Me Pretty is a fantastic wedding blog, and their LBB is a great wedding planning resource for all you brides out there. It’s a great place to collect info on vendors and other wedding planning ideas all in one place with their helpful “Build A Board” feature. Check my listing out here!

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Bridal Market Inspiration Shoot with Heba Salama Photography

Happy October! Of the many wonderful things that happen each October, one of the most exciting is the Bridal Market in New York, where designers preview their newest gown designs.

I looove Bridal Market weekend! Last year, my new iPhone came just as Bridal Market weekend began, and I immediately set up Twitter and stayed glued to the #BridalMarket hashtag all weekend, soaking in all the beauties coming through from those lucky enough to attend the shows. This year, I’ll have to mostly rely on recaps, but many wonderful wedding blogs bring along professional photographers and get wonderful, detailed shots, so I’ll still be able to get a glimpse and will certainly pick a few favorites. I may sneak a few peaks once John’s asleep as well.

After last year I chose a few favorite dresses and designed some pieces inspired by them. I spent the first week of January creating them in preparation for a photoshoot with talented photographer and fellow Chapel Hill High alum Heba Salama, which we scheduled for January 10. Heba awoke that morning to an email from me explaining we’d need to reschedule with one of the very first pictures of John, who’d been born early that morning.

This summer we were finally able to meet at her studio and take some pictures. Here are the Bridal Market inspired pieces:


These earrings were inspired by the cascading ruffles in the first Anne Barge gown from this post



The teardrop shaped eyelet design of the Carolina Herrara in the same post would look wonderful with these earrings


This Lela Rose was the first dress I saw from last year’s Bridal Market. I was immediately drawn to scallops of lace along the neckline. The filigree bead caps in these gold and crystal earrings would complement that feature beautifully.


And finally, this Marchesa gown is a little different than what we often expect for a bridal gown. But I can see it in a ballroom wedding of an Art Deco era hotel, and these earrings with draping chains and labradorite stones are perfect for it!


Now I’m all aflutter with excitement for this year’s Market. Only a few more weeks!


Thanks so much for taking the time to capture these for me Heba, they look great!


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Samantha received a beautiful strand of pearls from her future mother-in-law to wear in the wedding, and gave me full artistic license to design something for her to wear at the reception that would draw on the design of her dress. What immediately struck me about her Pronovias gown was the draping at each side. She was adding a pearl belt by Amy Kuschel.



This was definitely the most challenging piece I’ve created so far. I knew what I wanted to see, but had to figure out how to make it work. For the first time ever, I created a prototype from cheap craft store beads to find out if it was even possible. And then, once I worked out all the kinks, I took tiny seed pearls and Swarovski crystals and created a necklace with a draping pattern on one side to mimic the draping in her dress.


Here she is, dancing with her sweet niece!


A huge thank you to Meredith Perdue for these pictures!

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Samantha’s Bridesmaids

Have you met Samantha and Graham of Graham Terhune Photography? The Hansels have had the pleasure of knowing Sam and Graham before they even were Sam and Graham (or Gramantha as they are lovingly known). We were beyond excited when they announced their engagement, and I was so flattered when Samantha asked me to design her jewelry.


Going into our first meeting, I knew her color scheme and a little bit about the style of the wedding. She had seven bridesmaids and wanted to do earrings for each of them. The bridesmaids would be wearing soft peach chiffon Ann Taylor dresses, and her matron of honor would be wearing a royal blue dress. She loved how each of my bridesmaids had a different piece of jewelry and wanted to do the same for hers.


My inspiration for the earrings came not so much from the dresses or the wedding, but Samantha herself. For the years I have known her, Samantha is rarely seen without a pair of gold and quartz earrings. I thought it would be wonderful (and complement both dresses nicely) to give her ladies their own gold and quartz earrings.

                                                         Thanks to the talented Meredith Perdue for all these lovely images!


Anni - September 20, 2012 - 2:59 pm

These are beautiful – and I just adore your redesign! Stunning.

admin - September 20, 2012 - 3:06 pm

Thanks Anni! I love your manifesto!

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Welcome to my new website! I’m so excited to finally show it off, it has been quite the labor of love.

The MOST exciting part is my new logo, courtesy of my triple threat graphic designer Shelly Moore (she’s also a photographer and musician, with a new album out soon!). I am obsessed with it, especially since I assumed on becoming a Hansel nearly two and a half years ago I’d be monogramming everything in sight, but haven’t gotten around to it yet. And now here’s a custom monogram just for me! And my name in script – love it, it’s so similar to my signature (but more legible!) I’m not drawn to the capital E and H in relation to my name, I relate more to the softer curves of the lower case versions.

This new site also has wonderful gallery options – The Gallery page under Jewelry is home to all the wonderful images of weddings I’ve designed from the wedding day photographer. I love being able to show off the pieces with the beautiful dresses. (And yes, that is my wedding collection in there too!)

Under Brides and Bridesmaids and Special Occasions I will be adding galleries of new pieces as they’re created (thanks to the fancy camera my boys gave me for my birthday!) to make a true portfolio. There’s a new category in the works too, to be revealed at a later date.

I’ve added quick link buttons to social media sites and RSS subscription services, so you can be up to date on all the happenings at Emily Hansel Designs and the Hansel House.

So take a look around, and check back tomorrow, there’s a lot planned for this week!

Samantha - September 19, 2012 - 9:27 pm

yay! so happy for you – this is a gorgeous site. can’t wait to see all that you have lined up! xoxo

Courtney - September 19, 2012 - 10:42 pm

Everything looks amazing!! Congrats! Your jewelry is beautiful!!

admin - September 19, 2012 - 10:46 pm

Thanks Sam!! You’ll be especially excited for the next two posts ;)

admin - September 19, 2012 - 10:47 pm

Thanks Courtney! Loving your new site too!!

Lynn Bledsoe - September 20, 2012 - 1:23 am


Lara - September 20, 2012 - 3:15 pm

I’m so proud of you! It’s so perfect!!!

kim - September 20, 2012 - 8:42 pm

WOW! What a lovely site. (I’m glad I didn’t peak.)

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