MEET YOUR MAKER
KRISTIN MEIN | CHARLESTON, SC
I have always had the desire to create beautiful, wearable art. As my skills progressed from braided friendship bracelets, to assembling jewelry using wire, chain and pre-fab components, I eventually landed on my true passion: working with metal. I love the feeling that with the right tools and inspiration, you can take a simple piece of silver and create virtually limitless designs branching in infinite directions. I create my jewelry designs by sawing, filing, forging, soldering, melting and casting silver, brass and gold. Attention to detail and process are crucial to the successful execution of a piece of quality jewelry and I truly enjoy the challenge of figuring out the best method to construct a new, complicated piece by drawing on the knowledge I have gained from working on past designs. My work is constantly evolving as I continue to explore, learn and master new skills.
The inspiration for my work draws from my passion as a collector. While I collect many things, my love for stones and fossils are the strongest influences in my jewelry. I am fascinated by the incredible rainbow of specimens that exist on our earth and I especially enjoy the seemingly magical transformation of a rough stone into a polished, jewelry-ready gem. I am especially drawn to opals with their prismatic displays, and turquoise which offers a rich array of colors and patterns that vary from mine to mine around the world. My collection of gemstones is always growing and every single stone that is used in my work has been hand selected and placed into a setting made to honor the stone. My use of shark teeth in my designs stems from my obsession with collecting fossilized shark teeth from the shores and river bottoms of Charleston. There is a special energy that comes along with finding an incredible specimen and I choose my absolute favorite finds to immortalize in metal in the hopes that some of that excitement is passed on to the wearer. I use a combination of lost wax and sand casting to create solid metal replicas of the original tooth which are then incorporated into my jewelry designs. By incorporating the elements in nature that bring me the most joy and fascination, it is my hope that I am able to pass my admiration for natural beauty on to all that own a piece of my work.