Eastern Shore Originals

Meredith Lusk and Moonrise Jewelry

December 18, 2022

If some of Cape Charles’ most inspiring views are its sunsets, one of its most intriguing could be Moonrise in its gorgeous, newly renovated historic storefront.

It’s almost impossible to walk by Moonrise Jewelry at 325 Mason Avenue without stopping to take in the view. The sleek, navy storefront lined with fine golden accents and classic brass lanterns are a lot like a work of art. Walk through the grand wooden front door and you’ll feel as if you’re in a jewel box. It is a vision realized for artist and Eastern Shore native, Meredith Lusk.

Artisan Jewelry in Historic Cape Charles

Moonrise is a delightful blend of shimmering jewels, sophisticated designs, hospitality, and good conversation. It’s a resident and visitor favorite for bespoke jewelry with unique Shore- centric designs. At Moonrise, you’ll see things you’ve never seen before—and that’s part of the magic…new, innovative jewelry pieces that are inspired by the rich history and culture of the Eastern Shore. Meredith embraces the individualism and quirkiness of the Shore, too. You can see it in her acclaimed fish leather cuff bracelets and in her newest bracelet adorned with a historic map of the Eastern Shore.  A thriving business in Cape Charles for more than a decade, Moonrise Jewelry is now in a luxe, new storefront on Mason Avenue. It is both a work of art and a piece of Cape Charles history. The building is more than 100 years old, and housed the ‘Saks Variety Store’ from the 1920’s to 1957.  It was owned by Russian immigrant, Louis Aaron Saks and his wife, Fannie Ida Kellam. They lived on Monroe Avenue and their daughter graduated from Cape Charles High School.

Meredith’s complete renovation of the space for Moonrise was a major undertaking. But the creative powerhouse who regularly travels to Iceland to source sustainable fish leather for her signature bracelets was up for the challenge.  It’s one of the latest jewels of renovation and renewal in Cape Charles, which has firmly reclaimed its glory as a dynamic, thriving town.

A Generational Connection

“My family has lived in Northampton County for at least seven generations,” Meredith explains. “I grew up hearing my grandmother tell stories of her youth and the heyday of Cape Charles back in the 1920s and 30s. It was so different from what I saw as a child growing up in the 80s and 90s.”

Wanting to see life outside her small town, Meredith left for university at Tulane. “I didn’t major in jewelry or business, or anything remotely related to what I do now,” she laughs. The Spanish and anthropology major traveled extensively through South America and returned to the Shore after graduation. She turned to jewelry as a hobby, making pieces for family and friends, and it began to grow.  Now, more than 15 years later, Meredith is part of the modern heyday of Cape Charles. “We’re excited to be part of keeping the legacy alive,” she smiles. “It’s been great to be able to bring this historic location back to life.”

Keeping It On The Shore
Meredith has structured Moonrise as a sustainable enterprise that offers opportunities for her rural, Eastern Shore community. Each piece of Moonrise Jewelry is handmade in the Mason Avenue studio by talented local women. They’re gracious, engaging, and know everything about the area. Cape Charles couldn’t have wished for a better group of ambassadors!

Meredith’s clientele is wonderfully loyal, with many guests coming back year after year to soak in the creativity and choose another a wearable piece of Eastern Shore art to take home.

Inspired Jewelry

Meredith’s use of fish leather in her pieces has garnered a lot of attention. “The fish leather is beautiful, and it resonates with people in a coastal area like this, where fishing is a part of our everyday life,” says Meredith. “It’s a luxurious leather with a range of colors and it’s eco-friendly. It’s been a signature element of Moonrise for years. People come in to see the fish leather jewelry and then discover other kinds of pieces,” she adds.  Meredith does a lot of customized work, from bridesmaid and brides’ jewelry to fish leather bow ties. She works with freshwater pearls, semi-precious stones, Swarovski crystals, sterling silver, and is expanding to offer fine jewelry, and unique estate jewelry, too. Moonrise has also recently partnered with a master jeweler to provide full jewelry and watch repair services, the only offering of its kind in Cape Charles.

A Welcoming Store and Artist’s Studio

When you visit, prepare to be wowed. You can see the artists in-studio hand-creating Meredith’s designs, and the many racks of colorful fish leather. There’s also a large and engaging wall display of fish leather swatches, perfect for choosing the colors of your next custom creation.  “People think you can’t drive up in your golf cart and walk in a jewelry store in your flip fops and cover up. But you can here!” Meredith laughs.  “It’s an approachable, unintimidating place. We have fine custom pieces, but we also have things starting at $20, we have things for little girls. You can have things customized and tailored to your own needs and wishes, too.”

For the Love of ‘Local’

“We’re trying to create an inclusive, artistic, creative space, and we have so much local support,” says Meredith. “That’s one of the things that makes the Eastern Shore a special place. There are a lot of artists and entrepreneurs here. I have this business because of the support of my local customers.”

“There’s a real sense of connection and family and community here,” she adds. “That’s not true of every place you go. When we give gifts to others, we like it to be something that’s unique to this area. It’s a way to share a little piece of the Eastern Shore.”

Plan a trip to Moonrise, meet Meredith and her team, and take home your own beautiful piece of Eastern Shore-inspired jewelry and art.

325 Mason Avenue
Cape Charles, VA 23310
Call or text 757.678.0055 MoonriseJewelry.com

TOLL-FREE 844.620.2900

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