Our Story

Creativity, personal expression and global cultures have always inspired HandPicked. A New Orleans native, founder Melanie Mauldin grew up as a child of the world; rather than going away to camp each summer, Melanie and her family piled into the station wagon and drove to Cuernavaca, Mexico. There, Melanie fell in love with the land and people.


Years later, Melanie brought the culture of Mexico back to the United States. She befriended local artisan families, buying colorful crafts and handmade sterling silver jewelry. Back in the United States, she began hosting home shows. Realizing the immense popularity of Mexican sterling silver, Melanie's shows evolved into larger events. Soon, HandPicked was born.


The first HandPicked store was established in Columbia, South Carolina, in 1986. Today, the company has 15 shops in five states: South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, Kentucky and Tennessee. While each store is distinct, each location is crisp and well-organized, with carefully designed displays and a welcoming feel. The spirit of HandPicked is perceptible in each store, which Melanie describes as having the qualities of a best friend: inviting, trustworthy and fun.


Now, as the company continues to grow, Melanie likewise continues to foster relationships with the artisan families—many of whom have been working with HandPicked for three generations—and she still travels to Mexico at least twice a year to meet with them. She also collaborates with a team of talented designers to create original jewelry pieces, inspired by anything from the shape of a leaf to a wrought-iron gate to handmade Turkish fabrics.


Along with the company’s signature artisan jewelry from Mexico, Turkey, India and Thailand, the HandPicked collection includes handbags, wallets, pashminas, home décor and a huge collection of monogram gifts. And while HandPicked continually evolves, one constant remains: Melanie’s dedication to providing unique, high-quality accessories that enable women to express who they are. 


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