July 10, 2013
There's a calm radiance and creative energy about Erin McNally, both of which are reflected in her line of handmade, organically designed jewelry. She's like the Frank Lloyd Wright of accessories--using the material itself to dictate the space the piece inhabits. Each angle of every earring is made to be looked at. True to her adventurous nature, she finds experimentation one of the best parts of the process. We've had the privilege of watching Erin's artistic evolution over the past few years. Her newest one-of-a-kind, intricately woven/patinaed/hammered pieces will make their debut on Friday, July 12th, at Ode.
How did you get started?
I was living on a small island off of mainland Puerto Rico. I started taking bike tubes and carving them into delicate feathers for earrings. I got some thicker tubes from a local bike rental place and started carving cuff bracelets that were reminiscent of black coral and sea fans. I collected shells for their clasps. My friend owns a carnival style wooden cart that is parked just over the historic drawbridge. I sold jewelry there and, sometimes, on the bus on the way to the beach…Since then I have been teaching myself how to manipulate and shape different materials including leather and metal.
What do you love about your job?
I love that there is always something new to learn. I also love that I get to contribute to how people express themselves. Even the simplest piece of jewelry expresses something about the wearer.
If I wasn’t doing this, I would be...
When was the last time you laughed so hard you cried?
Last Friday, it happens a lot. I have a lot of funny people in my life.
Where do you find inspiration?
Lately I’ve been spending a lot of time outside. I see a lot that inspires me in my garden, the woods and at the swimming holes I frequent. I also find a lot of indigenous jewelry making practices to be inspiring, in particular the ways that people adapt tools and techniques when modern technology is not available.