Willa Wirth, 42, of Portland, owns a small shop on Munjoy Hill where she creates her own jewelry by forging, soldering and forming sterling silver wire.

Wirth took a class on a whim after seeing a listing for a Maine College of Art course, “How to Make a Ring.”

Ever since, she has been creating designs inspired by her love of nature, particularly the ocean.

She gathers inspiration to design sterling silver bracelets, rings and necklaces during early-morning walks on the beach with her golden retriever, Oli, or paddling on rivers.

Her studio is in the back of her small shop at 99 Congress St. The open area allows customers to watch her at her work while they peruse her retail pieces.

“I really like to connect with people,” says Wirth.

She especially enjoys custom work for clients.

“It is really rewarding” she says. “You become a part of their world.”

The one part of her job that she struggles with is adhering to the store hours.

“I struggle to be inside,” she says.

Wirth has been making jewelry for over 10 years and has owned the store for the last seven. Her pieces are mostly priced from $200 to $500.