Metalworker Uses Dental Tools to Create Jewelry

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When you look at the exquisite designs of BAD NOLA each ring, earring and pendant is inspired by the nature and culture of Louisiana.  They’re all forged on the North Shore by Tom and Cheryl Steigler.

Tom Stiegler explains why he puts so much care into each piece. “You know, jewelry is an emotional thing.  We get wedding bands when we get married and it’s a memory peg to a special event.”

Cheryl Stiegler says they work together to create almost everything. “I think that’s another thing that makes our jewelry so unique is that it’s so much a part of the two of us.”

However, the Siegler’s journey was a long and tumultuous one.  For decades, Tom worked in dental laboratory creating fillings and crowns, until his home, business and family were destroyed by Hurricane Katrina.  Tom says “When Katrina hit….I’m sorry.  It turned our world upside down….I’m sorry.”

That didn’t slow them down.  The couple used Tom’s training, his tools and his passion for art to transition to an entirely different career.  It’s a second chance reflected in the company’s name: Born Again designs or BAD NOLA.  Cheryl says, “It was really a God thing.  You know, it was God turning around what was meant for evil and he turned it into good for us.”

Today, BAD NOLA features a full line of handcrafted jewelry and from non-profit donations to inspirational designs, the deeply religious couple hopes their creations will provide a sense of hope to others in the same way they did for them.


To see more of their jewelry, visit

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