Homegrown Business: Yulee Harris of Hunter & Trove Jewelry

Explore the exquisite world of Hunter & Trove Jewelry, a Vancouver-based business meticulously curated by Yulee Harris. This collection is a celebration of minimalist jewelry, blending beautiful gold, silver, gemstones, and pearls into timeless pieces. Beyond the metals and stones, Yulee believes that jewelry carries profound meaning. Each piece is a golden symbol, encapsulating beautiful moments, personal stories, and cherished connections. We spoke with Yulee Harris, the founder of Hunter & Trove Jewelry, to discuss the designs that bear the mark of her craftsmanship.

Hunter & Trove Jewelry

What is your business called and what does it do?

Hunter & Trove Jewelry is a collection of minimalist jewelry pieces made from beautiful gold, silver, gemstones and pearls. For me, jewelry is not just about metal and stone, but it’s about the meaning that can be held within. It’s a golden symbol we hold close, reminding us of beautiful moments, our story, and those we love.

I handmake many of our designs here in my seaside studio, and there is an element of care and thoughtfulness I put into each piece. My hope is that the recipients can feel this every time they open a Hunter & Trove jewelry box.

What made you want to do this work?

When I look back at my story, there are so many memories that illustrate how being an artist, an entrepreneur, is truly what I’m meant to be doing. My overwhelming love of the creative process, my 9-year-old self starting a business selling origami (not a success), my 19-year-old self launching a clothing line from my university dorm room (more of a success), and to where I am today, sharing my jewelry creations with so very many people across the globe.

I appreciate the meaning that jewelry can hold, the stories and memories being made, and being a small part of these stories. Stringing pearls for the necklace someone will wear on their wedding day, or making a heart necklace and handwriting a love note filled with beautiful words. It makes my work feel very meaningful.

What problem did you want to solve with the business?

I wanted to create beauty, something that makes others feel loved, and special. I wanted to create a collection that can be a part of someone’s daily ritual – the quiet mornings when we put on our favourite earrings: an act of self-care. I also wanted to create a collection at a price point that made beautiful, high-quality pieces accessible to many people.

Who are your clientele/demographics?

My customers are primarily women, and often women who are buying jewelry for themselves, which I love. My pieces are also often purchased as gifts by both men and women for the special people in their lives. I see all the notes customers write with their orders, and it’s wonderful that they take the time to connect with me as an artist, share their kind words, or a bit of their own story and where this jewelry piece fits into it.

Customers will take the time to email me their wedding photos, capturing the delight of the day, and excitedly writing “Yulee! Look, I’m wearing your pearl earrings!”.

How does your business make money? How does it work?

I share my work online, on Etsy.com, and on Amazon.ca. It’s a wonderful way to reach out to many different customers across Canada, the US, and globally. Through these online shops, I am able to share my work directly to my community.

I also now have my collection in many retail stores across Canada and the USA. One of my larger goals has been to share my work within beautiful boutiques so customers can see Hunter & Trove pieces in person. I launched my wholesale program in August 2023 and the growth has been amazing, with boutiques as far as Hawaii now carrying Hunter & Trove jewelry.

Where in the city can we find your profession?

Hunter & Trove can be found online at the following websites, with free shipping across Canada, the US, and many countries globally.

Website | Etsy | Amazon | Faire

In Vancouver, Hunter & Trove can be found at Dream Apparel (Granville Island) and Ikhaya Boutique (Gibsons) with more retail partners launching soon.

What is the best question a prospective customer could ask a member of your profession when comparing services? Give the answer as well.

I think understanding the differences between jewelry materials is very important to know, as it can really impact the longevity of the piece and its care requirements.

What is the difference between 14K Gold, 14K Gold Fill, Gold Vermeil, and Gold Plating?

14K gold is heirloom quality made of solid 14K gold, and a higher price point.

14K gold fill is one step down from 14K gold, and has a very thick layer of 14K solid gold bonded to a brass core. Many Hunter & Trove pieces are made with 14K gold fill as it’s an excellent blend of durability and value. It can look great for years because of the thick gold layer, even with everyday wear.

Gold Vermeil is a gold plating on a sterling silver base. The thickness of plating can vary a lot between brands, so it’s good to note that not all gold-plated pieces are made equal, and you can ask how thick the plating is.

Gold Plated pieces – These can have varying metals as a base, with gold electroplated on top. It’s great for affordability, but less durable as the gold will fade with wear.

What is the best part about what you do? What is the worst part?

I get to play with sparkly gemstones and gold all day long, and call it work. Pretty nice if you ask me! But in all seriousness, I appreciate being able to create and share my work with others, and the connection that comes from this. As I’ve gained a lot of insights along my business journey, I’m now really enjoying sharing my knowledge and experience with other entrepreneurs.

The hardest part can be having so many projects, and finding the time and capacity to work on them. I’m at an expansion point in my business where I am now building the team to scale with growth, and really looking forward to the next stage.

What is your favourite joke about your own profession?

I lost my mood ring, but I don’t know how I feel about it.

Where can we follow you?

Hunter & Trove can be found on Instagram and TikTok. My goal is to share more behind-the-scenes stories and would love to connect!

PAY IT FORWARD: What is another local business that you love?

Dream Apparel on Granville Island. When I was 19 and launched my clothing line, Dream’s founder, Wendy de Kruyff was such a mentor to me. She carries a vast array of fantastic local Vancouver clothing and accessory designers, and is well worth a visit. Dream boutique can be found in the Net Loft on Granville Island.

 

About Emilea Semancik 97 Articles
Emilea Semancik was born in North Vancouver. Emilea has always always wanted to work as a freelance writer and currently writes for the Vancouver Guardian. Taking influence from journalism culture surrounding the great and late Anthony Bourdain, she is a recipe author working towards publishing her own series of books. You can find her food blog on Instagram: