Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes ofwebsite accessibilityLocal Jewelry Designer Wins Two Grants, Makes Plans to Scale | Cincinnati Refined
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Dawn Grady, the founder and designer behind Junebug Jewelry Designs
Dawn Grady, the founder and designer behind Junebug Jewelry Designs
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Local Jewelry Designer Wins Two Grants, Makes Plans to Scale

Dawn Grady, the owner and designer behind Junebug Jewelry Designs, is not only attracting lots of new shoppers to her new boutique in OTR, but also grants to take her brand to the next level.

As many did over the pandemic, Grady decided to leave her day job and make her passion a profession instead. "I've been designing jewelry for over a decade, and realized it was time. Life's too short," Grady says. "I haven't looked back since. Things just took off."

She describes her designs as Bohemian but sophisticated, modern but earthy, and all about embracing and empowering the unique person you are meant to be. Grady says that at Junebug, she likes to keep things original, creating only one-of-a-kind and limited-edition pieces. "This ensures that customers never see their unique accessories on anyone else," she adds.

Not only are her customers encouraging and supporting, but the business community is too. In fact, she was a winner of the Women’s Jewelry Association Foundation’s Carelle Grant as well as the Reimagine Maine Street Back Black Business Cash Grant.

“What an amazing honor to have been selected for these two awards,” Grady said. “This much-needed funding will serve as a post-pandemic catalyst to take my business to the next level. I will be able to elevate my skills and expand my reach. I couldn’t be more grateful.”

The Women’s Jewelry Association Member Grant is awarded to one jewelry designer every year, and as the winner of this year’s grant, Grady will be able to expand her online presence and Junebug’s eCommerce platform. Additionally, the Reimagine Main Street Backing Black Business Cash Grant will help her with scaling operations, increasing inventory, and broadening its customer base.

The Carelle Grant was established a decade ago in honor of Brooke Tivol McGrath, an innovative leader in the jewelry industry. The grant is $7,500 and helps to support an established jewelry professional in innovative their business through technological advancements, such as e-commerce. This grant will be beneficial to Grady as she is mostly self-taught and finds great pride in creating mixed-metal jewelry using ancient and modern metal smithing techniques. She works primarily with copper, Agentium silver, and semi-precious gemstones for a signature look you can’t quite find anywhere else.

Each piece Grady creates for Junebug has a story behind it, and she aims to make a statement with her wearable art.

You can learn more about Junebug Jewelry Designs and Grady at or by visiting her store in OTR, located at 1327 Vine St.

“There’s nothing like having that face-to-face time with my customers to explain the vision behind each piece,” she says. “A picture online can only do so much. It really makes a difference to be able to offer customers a chance to touch the pieces and try them on. They can see the extra care that has been taken to not only make a beautiful piece, but also one that is comfortable to wear.”

You can also follow Junebug on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest.