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Designer Spotlight: bird+beau

I had a serendipitous moment recently, discovering that a friend of a friend is an awesome, independent jewelry designer. Kristin Austin is the creative force behind the brand bird+beau, and I asked her to tell me more about her story, her design inspiration and her hopes for the future.

L&L: What got you started in jewelry making?
B+B: I've made jewelry for as long as I can remember.  I used to make it for myself or as gifts until people started telling me I should sell it.  That was years ago, before Etsy was around, so I put a few items on Ebay, in local shops, and I did a few shows.  I enrolled in metalsmithing at school and worked a part time job at a bead store alongside a goldsmith and my passion for jewelry went from there. 

L&L: How did you come up with the name bird+beau?
B+B: The name bird+beau was inspired by my reason, me + my fella - and to save money for our wedding day, for our future.  It kind of just came to me one day, driving to work actually, and I knew it was a good one and perfect for what I wanted to do.  It was sweet and meaningful, and I thought it would apply well to how I envision my brand growing - to include small wedding day details for other birds and beaus!  

L&L: Where does your design inspiration come from?
B+B: I am all over the place with my interests - I love modern design, but I have a sweet spot for vintage stuff too.  I like girly things and simple things and nature and geometric shapes and color and texture and the list goes on.  Most recently, I have been creating a lot of faceted pieces, like in my POP collection, and modern geometrical flowery designs cut from brass.  I'm liking those a lot.  

L&L: What are your long term plans for your business?
B+B: My long term plans for bird+beau include handcrafted wedding day details. I love making jewelry and I am hoping to get my torch set back up this spring, so that will take my jewelry to a new level. I also hope to start incorporating more accessories- wedding day and every day. Good things are sure to come!

L&L: Where can people find your jewelry?
B+B: Currently, anyone can shop for my handmade wares online at  I have a calendar of events on my site that I keep updated, which includes shows mostly around Raleigh, but I have one coming up at the end of the month in Wilmington. Also, a great friend of mine has been wonderfully nudging me to get my wholesale pricing together, so I am working on that and hope to pitch to a few boutiques within the next couple of months.

Be sure to visit the bird+beau website to check out the entire collection of Kristin's jewelry! Also check out bird+beau on social media:


kristin austin said…
thank you so much for the feature, leena! you did a great job + it was a pleasure to work with you. xo