A little bit of creativity and wire has turned into a successful side business for one SFA student who decided to design and create gold- plated earrings.
Bailey Crow, a senior photography major from Cypress, first got the idea when she saw a pair of wire earrings on Pinterest. She was immediately inspired and began to practice and work with wire. Crow made her first pair of earrings, posted a photo on Instagram and people began to message her, wanting to buy them.
“I saw it on Pinterest and thought, why buy it for $20 on Etsy when I could make it?” Crow said. “So, when I taught myself the process of sculpting wire, I posted them just because they were cute—they weren’t for sale. I had people message me asking me how much they were. It was random honestly. It just took off.”
She decided she would sell her earrings at $15 a pair. While she has an Etsy shop, Crow realized that most of her business can be found on campus. A girl in Germany contacted Crow about having a pair shipped to her, but the shipping expenses surpassed the product’s value, so it couldn’t be done.
Crow’s earrings feature designs such as a woman’s face, hands, a banana and a leaf. She has also been practicing on personalizing the faces she designs in her earrings. Crow said that a lot of the designs are made for women.
“They’re all a feminist statement,” Crow said. “I made them with women in mind, but if a man had his ears pierced and wanted to wear my product, more power to him.”
According to Crow, the business is also important to her because it helps her pay for things she needs for her classes.
“What I’m making stands for goodness and femininity in that this business is helping me pay for school supplies,” Crow said.
As an art student, Crow is taking a metals class as an elective. The class is open to anyone on campus and is three credit hours. She said this class has definitely helped her when it comes to making earrings.
While other brands have the typical cookie cutter jewelry and look the same, Crow said this won’t be the case with her product. Each pair is handmade, so they will each look a little different.
“I think that it’s so empowering and so very hard to be an artist. The fact that I’m capable of making something out of nothing versus just wrapping around some nails. It gives a handmade quality to it,” Crow said.
Stina Herrera, adjunct art professor and 2008 and 2011 SFA graduate, teaches the metals class where Crow found her passion.
“Anyone can take the intro metals class. There are no prerequisites,” Herrera said. “That’s one of my favorite things. We get people from all over campus, not just art majors. The skills you learn in metals are very specific.”
Herrera said she first met Crow in the intro to metals class and was impressed when she found out about her side hobby of making earrings.
“I think it’s awesome for our students to use their skills to help support themselves; it’s great,” Herrera said. “I have noticed that she doesn’t play it safe. She uses complex designs.”
Lauren Walker, a sophomore art major from Fort Worth, is one of Crow’s customers.
She said she always tries to follow local artists and heard about Crow through Twitter.
“I wanted to buy a pair to support and because they’re so cute and simplistic,” Walker said.
“Art is the root of everything. Happiness, sadness, pain. Art can be made in any state of mind, and it’s such an important outlet to express those emotions.”
Crow said that in the future, she also hopes to begin making necklaces and personalizing her jewelry at her customer’s requests.