I had the pleasure of interviewing designer and founder of Rising Blue Jewelry, Mary Byrd. Mary is currently in the works of producing her first line of beautiful handmade jewelry and has begun a Kickstarter campaign as she makes her way to living her dream of owning her own business. Mary is a truly inspiring individual and I have had the pleasure of not only knowing her as a friend but as a colleague. Be sure to check out her Kickstarter campaign and help support! Her pieces are handmade, beautiful, unique, and something you’ll have to get your hands on.
About the Kickstarter:
Mary is running a kickstarter campaign for Rising Blue Jewelry to fund production costs. The project has been funded and will continue to run through March 19. She is offering 6 rad pieces for wholesale as the rewards.
Rising Blue Jewelry Instagram
Rising Blue Jewelry Blog
Here is a little insight into what inspires, challenges, and encourages Mary to continue her aspirations as a designer.
1. So, tell me about Mary Byrd, the girl behind Rising Blue Jewelry
I am an apparel designer turned metal entrepreneur. I live in cute Old Town Seal Beach in Southern California with my hubs in our 100 year old apartment above a pizza shop. I love to explore and turn strangers into friends. I love breakfast and coffee. I train Muay Thai, but am too scared to actually fight. I have long hair that’s been growing since I shaved it in college. And, most recently, I have successfully launched a Kickstarter campaign for Rising Blue! Check that one off the list!
2. How did Rising Blue Jewelry get it’s start?
I started Rising Blue Jewelry to create a product that will last for decades. I wanted to find my life’s work and build something little by little until I have a pile of jewels a pirate would be proud of.
3. What’s the inspiration behind the name?
I watched the changing tides during a thoughtful moment on the coast of Bali and fell in love with “Rising Blue.”
4. What is your biggest inspiration for your brand?
I live at the beach and love to stroll along the sand, taking photos of the waves, palms trees, and bikinis. I think this comes through in my tropical, clean aesthetic.
The biggest inspiration comes from the experiences and people I have met on my travels. For example, I was sitting in a cafe in Canggu, Bali. I had stones and chain spread out on the table while I sketched. Milly, the cafe’s owner, sat down and we chatted, generating tons of ideas. Some of those have come to life in the collection.
5. What was your biggest fear in starting your jewelry line and how did you overcome it?
To quote Frank Herbert, author of Dune, “I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it is gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing…only I will remain.”
6. Where was your favorite place you have traveled to?
One of my favorite places is Amed in Bali, Indonesia. It’s a beach at the base of Bali’s largest volcano, Mount Agung. There are no waves, but a stretch of rocky beach that has some of the world’s best snorkeling and diving. There is a sea sculpture garden and a Japanese shipwreck right off shore. Some locals took me out in a tiny catamaran to watch the sun set over the mountain. Stunning. Since Amed is mostly a fishing village, it’s the perfect place for delicious seafood curry.
7. What are your future goals for Rising Blue Jewelry and where do you hope it will take you?
I am passionate about supporting my artist friends. I want to collaborate with and support them as they grow, prosper, and create quality goods. This definitely includes the extended family I’ve found in Bali.
8. Where are you traveling next?
I will be in Bangkok, Thailand in April designing a collection of engagement rings, studying precious stones at the world-renowned gem school in Bangkok, and eating tons of street food. Follow me on my insta @risingbluejewelry and on my blog ShopRisingBlue.com
9. When will the full collection launch?
The collection will go into production in April, and launch on the ShopRisingBlue.com in May 2015! Sign up on the email list to be first to know when the collection goes live.