Last Thursday, I—along with 95 percent of the city’s population, or so it seemed—checked out Fête Chicago’s nighttime food and design market. Through the sea of movers and shakers, I stole a glimpse of Chicago-based metalsmith Leah Ball's tableful of shiny baubles and beelined over for a closer examination.

These curious creations are unlike anything I’ve seen before—bronze beauties crafted by Ball herself, who became enamored with the hardened byproducts of molten metal while apprenticing at a bronze foundry.

The illustrator/sculptor/graphic designer fashions these drippings into a collection of elegant accessories, including my current obsession: these eye-catching gnarled hoops. Brilliant.

$65 at Eskell, 1509 N. Milwaukee Ave., 773-486-0830