Known as “the place down the street and down the stairs” from L.L. Bean in Freeport, Earrings and Company on Mechanic Street is “not just an ordinary jewelry store,” said owner Carrie McBride. “We’re much more than earrings.” On display in the colorful shop, jewelry enthusiasts can find earrings, necklaces, bracelets, charms, beads and brooches ranging from everyday wear to statement pieces for special occasions. Many of the items are handmade one-of-a-kind pieces made by artisans from near and far.
“We have over 40 lines that are made in Maine,” said McBride. “We feel strongly about supporting the work of American artists.” Whenever possible, McBride and her staff provide information about a line’s origin so that customers know exactly where each piece comes from. Signage guides customers to lines that are made in Maine and denote the artisan's hometowns as well. Along with a variety of Maine-made jewelry, Earrings and Company also carries Chamilia, which is an American-owned bead line similar to Pandora. McBride said that the Chamilia charms are some of the most popular items in the store.
Two elements that keep customers coming back are the variety of options available and the uniqueness of the jewelry in the store. “It can be a very positive experience for a woman to have something no one else has,” McBride said. “People will come in and say they were here last summer and bought something and all their friends were jealous and wanted to know where they got it. We try to get pieces that no one else has in the area, and 90 percent of it is handmade.”
Next year, Earrings and Company will celebrate its 20th anniversary. “We’ve been in the same place for 20 years and we’re proud to be celebrating our 20th,” said McBride. “Look for lots of special promotions next year.” In the meantime, there remains a vast selection of jewelry for all age groups. There’s even a new line of charms for younger girls on the way, at a very affordable price point.
“We like pretty things,” said McBride. “Women of all ages who like pretty things can find something here to love!”