Jewelry

Wisconsin woman makes jewelry seen on ‘This Is Us,’ other TV shows

A pair of heirloom earrings played a significant role in the recent season five finale of the hit NBC show “This Is Us.”

When a main character was a child, her mother — before she left the family — gave her the striking gold and blue earrings to wear on her wedding day. They made three appearances and served as a catalyst for a major decision in that character’s life.

The maker behind the meaningful piece of jewelry that helped tell the story is none other than Kim Jakum of Elkhart Lake.

Since 2012, Jakum has made jewelry for about 20 TV shows and movies, including “The Vampire Diaries,” “The Young and the Restless,” “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit,” “Jane the Virgin” and “Bones.”

“It’s pretty amazing when you think about it — to think that somebody from Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin, can have their stuff worn on television and films,” she said. 

It all started about three decades ago when Jakum, a Plymouth High School graduate, worked for a phone company and was “intrigued” by the colored copper wire found in telephone cables. 

This ring made by Kim Jakum of Elkhart Lake was worn by Lorenzo "Enzo" St. John on "The Vampire Diaries" in the last episode of season seven and all of season eight.

Jakum’s jewelry journey 

While Jakum was a service technician and cable splicer for Plymouth’s Verizon (previously General Telephone & Electronics Corporation), she would “play around” with little leftover pieces of cable. 

“I’m inspired by color,” said Jakum, a Sheboygan native. 

From there, she got into beadwork. She gave a lot of her beaded jewelry away, and put some for sale in the women’s lounge at the phone company.