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Made in St. Louis

CHELSIE HELLIGE

Age • 30

Home • Dogtown

Family • Husband, Ekkachai; and a shepherd mix, Sputnik

What she makes? • Chelsie makes Bohemian jewelry and accessories and is the owner of Fable and Lore. To view her items, visit fableandlore.etsy.com. View her items at The Heirloom Room, 2116 Cherokee St.; K. Hall Designs, 8416 Manchester Rd.; Parsimonia Vintage, 3194 South Grand; and at the Foundrie, 265 Chesterfield Center.

Tell us about yourself. • I’m an only child and also a St. Louis native. I love to travel. I love going to a different city or a different country and being startled by the simplest of things. My goal in life is pretty much to be startled all the time. Professionally, I have a journalism degree from Mizzou, and worked in advertising as a copywriter for several years, hopping agencies and freelancing until I landed on doing Fable & Lore. I’ve always been “spazzy-creative,” which means I’ve usually got my hands in lots of different projects. And that’s the way I like it.

How do you feel about what you make? • To be honest, I hate the words “jewelry” and “accessories.” They sound hollow. I prefer to think of what I make as power totems, because what you wear on your body is a very personal and powerful thing. It reflects how you feel and affects how you project yourself. And that’s pretty awesome.

What mediums do you use in your jewelry and why? • I work a lot with raw minerals, sheet metal, wood and vintage dead-stock findings. I’m drawn to things that are imperfect and a little rough around the edges. I don’t like anything too shiny and neat. If it’s an old metal piece with spots on it, that’s perfect. If it’s a new metal piece, let’s bang it up a little. I like my pieces to show evidence of being made by hand. I also love a mix of shapes and textures. Something rough and organic paired with something shiny and smooth is kind of my jam.

How (and when) did you get started making these products? I started making jewelry three or four years ago as a creative outlet while working an unfulfilling corporate job.

Where do you find inspiration? • Some people have a really deep answer to the inspiration question, but not me. I just make stuff that resonates with me. I guess being a feral creative for a living, I’m generally inspired by anything bohemian, free-spirited or irreverent. I recently went to Austin, and that inspired me to make things with a Southwestern feel. Also, the past few months I’ve been learning metalsmithing. Those new skills are an inspiration unto themselves. I just kind of let myself loose with a tool in my hand and see what happens.

How much for your pieces? • They range from $15 to $75.