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Meet the Maker: Aerow

Meet Lexie of Aerow this month below!  There’s also bunch of ways to catch her work and learn from the master, too, in person!  She will be reppin’ as our Corks & Canvas artist with her beautiful jewelry line as a pop up shop on Thursday, June 9 5-9pm.  You’ll also catch her teaching our upcoming Tassel and Brass Stamped Jewelry workshop on Tues, June 7 and our next Kids’ Make It Club: Stone Jewelry on Sat, June 11.  Lexie has also been on our Unglued Crew where you’ll see her some mornings at the shop, teaching at our adult summer camp, or dreaming up the next sweet workshop project for you and your kids!

Tell us a bit about yourself:

Hey there! My name is Lexie, owner and operator of Aerow, lover of pour-over coffee, mornings, and naps. I grew up in the small town of Pelican Rapids, Minnesota with my art teacher Mom, fix-it Father and two older sisters, who are also artists. I love teaching people new skills through the workshops I teach at Unglued, and I also lead an art studio for adults with Traumatic Brain Injuries! I love road-trips,  camping, hunting for rocks on hikes, and am slightly obsessed with audiobooks and true crime/ladyboss podcasts.

Describe your handmade business:

I have always loved making my own accessories, and was inspired to set up an Etsy shop in 2011, when co-workers asked where they could buy my creations. I work with gemstones and recycled metal to create one of a kind, wearable art/jewelry through a process called electroforming, in which electricity is pulsed through a piece of recycled metal and transfers teeny tiny atoms one at a time onto the conductive surface of my jewelry. This can take anywhere from 6-12 hours. I LOVE making statement pieces, but also really enjoy making dainty works that can compliment any outfit and style.

What is one of your most favorite items you have made?

Some of my favorites can actually be seen on season four of Grace and Frankie being worn by the amazing Lily Tomlin! I made a chunky citrine necklace on a kumihimo, a hand-braided cord, as well as some super fun chunky rings. This opportunity really inspired me to continue to make larger statement pieces.

What are your most essential tools?

I have so many fun tools on my bench that I consider essential! But my top 3 are:

Dremel – I use my dremel almost every day to clean sharp edges and sand and shine every piece to ensure the most comfortable wear.

Butane Torch – I wouldn’t be able to solder without my trusty torch!

Chopsticks! -This one is a little weird, but I use chopsticks to sculpt and smooth the edges of my pieces, and I also use them to suspend my jewelry in the electroforming process. (They also give me an amazing excuse to order Thai when my supply runs low 🙂 )

How has your business evolved over the years since beginning?

When I first started selling on Etsy as Salvaged Design, I was making jewelry that is way different from what I make today. I was mostly making pieces out of feathers, copper and all sorts of found objects. After selling on Etsy for about a year, a motivational speaker hired me to create a line of jewelry that complimented her work. I was frying out on making pieces in mass quantities, so I took a tiny break from selling online and focused on creating pieces that really resonated with me. When I re-opened shop, I had a whole new line of jewelry made from recycled copper and resin. Right after I got married, I stumbled across a photo of a copper electroformed ring and became obsessed with the idea of making just one ring. HA! Over the past 4 years, over many late nights and trial and error, I taught myself how to electroform and have created over 3,000 pieces! A lot has changed, but I have always used copper in my designs.

You recently launched an heirloom collection – tell us how this came to be!

I recently launched an heirloom collection made with 24k Gold and Rose Gold! My desire to work with precious metals stemmed from having several couples use my copper rings as engagement rings, and I also wanted to create jewelry that could stand the test of time and could be seen as precious enough to pass down to a loved one. I was sitting on this idea for a few months, and just decided to take a risk one day and do it!

What is a word that best describes you?

Effervescent!

What advice would you have given yourself 5 years ago?

Listen to your intuition and take more risks!

Any super random tidbit about yourself?

I once made a swimsuit out of dish gloves, and a skirt made out of neckties.

How can we stay in touch?

www.aerowhandmade.com

https://www.instagram.com/aerowhandmade

Ahhh this was so fun and interesting, Lexie!!  Thanks for sharing your background, inspiration, and process with us!  You’ll catch Aerow soon on our Instagram stories takeover, too!

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