I’m AJ.

 
 
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My name is Anthony Joseph Bellabona — I go by AJ. I am 16 years old.  If you are reading this, maybe it is because you are interested in my story.  How a 16 year boy, who plays hockey, can also be designing and making your diamond necklace.  My story starts with a struggle.  A struggle beginning in school.  For me, the traditional school setting … reading, writing, math, has always been a challenge. I am a dyslexic learner. I use the right side of my brain to read and write.  To keep it simple, I attached a Ted Talk below from a good friend of mine, Dean Bragonier, explaining dyslexia.  Dean started a charity, NoticeAbility, to help dyslexic learners like myself (I plan to pay it forward to him too). For as long as I can remember my summers were spent in summer school, working to keep up with the rest of my class. School was tough — but it was a unit in school “shop” that lead me to this. I began learning how to melt and mold pewter. I was 12 years old at the time and I was really good at it! I found confidence in that classroom. For me, I would rather be in a shop class, melting pewter than sitting at a desk.

Here I am in Sedona. The photos on this website were taken by me on this trip with my family.

Here I am in Sedona. The photos on this website were taken by me on this trip with my family.

I enjoyed it so much my parents found me a silversmith (and a tutor). Pewter then lead to .925 silver, and eventually 14 karat gold, rose gold, and precious stones.  People started asking to buy what I was creating. With the help of my parents, I formed a business, AJ Made LLC. I was becoming an entrepreneur.  From there, I created a brand and logo which embraces my dyslexic advantage.  The “j” is reversed to raise awareness, plus it looks cool.  In 2017, I was featured on NH chronicle as a Kid Entrepreneur. So far, on this journey, I have had the opportunity to meet mentors in the industry and do some pretty cool stuff.  When I was 13 years old, I made my first wedding band.  I have made pieces for charity events in New Hampshire, including Big Brother’s Big Sister’s, JDRF, the SPCA and will continue to donate my work. I have also pledged to give all proceeds of every hat sale back to NoticeAbility.  I have made countless sentimental pieces.  What used to be a struggle is now a strength.  Fast forward from when I was 12 to now, in between hockey and school, you will find me in the studio. I am proud to say I am an entrepreneur who has officially launched a website of my own. My BIG news is I now hold a Registered US Trademark for my logo and I proudly stamp each piece of jewelry with my brand mark. I am very thankful for my family, instructors and mentors who have helped me along the way. Most of all, I am thankful for you, my customers!

 
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All proceeds of every hat sale will be donated back to NoticeAbility, Inc. NoticeAbility is a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping students with dyslexia identify their unique strengths and build self-esteem.  NoticeAbility incorporates the neuroscience of dyslexia, the best practice of special education, and the power of EDTech to construct learning enrichment curricula and teacher training programs for global distribution. 

 
 
 
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Me + My US Trademark

Some photos of me — at Landmark summer school, my first days working with my instructor, doing humanitarian work in Haiti, adventuring with my Dad, meeting mentors with my Mom, my dog Babe, My little brothers + Hockey, my favorite thing, MILK.