Located aloof alfresco of Denver, in the poetically alleged burghal of Olde Town Arvada, Balefire Appurtenances is a adornment abundance with a mission: to affix adornment lovers with artisan jewelers who specialize in what client Jamie Hollier calls “slow fashion,” aka handmade, heirloom-quality pieces.
Hollier, a 39-year-old adornment artisan and consecutive administrator who additionally co-owns two technology companies she cofounded in the accomplished decade, opened the bazaar in backward 2017 afterwards carefully pivoting abroad from the agenda startup activity and against designing and authoritative her own jewelry—skills she able in her adolescence and 20s.
At Balefire Goods, the adornment collections are rarely trendy, but they are acutely cool. You’ll acquisition glassy board earrings from Chicago’s Crosslyne, asperous argent bells bands categorical with ache copse by New Zealand–based adornment artisan Ash Hilton, and gold-fill ear affairs angled with clusters of argent assurance by Portland, Ore., cast YedOmi.
Many of the bespoke brands at Balefire are bogus with ethically sourced materials, which dovetails with the shop’s apriorism of overextension acceptable by affairs affection goods. Says Hollier: “The abstraction of alive in a amplitude breadth I feel we are abrogation a absolute appulse is actual abundant a allotment of who I am.”
How do you anticipate Balefire Appurtenances stands out from its competitors?You can buy adornment that starts at $30 but again goes all the way up to $1,000, and it has a altered feel from a acceptable adornment store. One of the best adulation I’ve gotten is that the abundance feels like a abiding artisan fair. I adulation that. I capital to advertise accomplished jewelry—stuff that will last, actuality that will become heirlooms. And I capital bodies to apperceive they could buy from a actuality who fabricated a thing—and that they could buy it at a agnate amount that they’d absorb on a banal brand. There are bodies who appetite to buy things online. That’s their affair and that’s fine. We advertise a little online, but I don’t see us actuality a big online retailer. We address to those bodies who appetite to affix with artists.
Whom would you accede to be your amount client?I consistently antic about this, but it’s fun, middle-aged women with blue hair! Women who accept an aesthetic streak, but they’re lawyers, doctors, teachers, a accomplished ambit of things. They all accept an absorption in actuality a little absolute and different.
How did you get into adornment initially?My undergraduate amount is in metalsmithing and art history. And I formed for a adornment abundance for a while afore alive as an art client for a publishing aggregation in the backward ’90s, aboriginal 2000s. Again I followed opportunities, and I concluded up aperture two technology companies. I still accept them—and it was abundant alive on them, but it wasn’t what I capital to be doing. When I traveled, I would appointment adornment stores. I consistently kept a little bit of an eye on the artisan adornment world. Aftermost year I said, “I’m accessible for a change,” and I told my bedmate I capital to do an art adornment store—there wasn’t absolutely one like that in the Denver area.
You afresh debuted a accumulating of bells and charge adornment awash at Balefire—tell me about that.The accumulating is alleged Kindle, and it’s ethically sourced and is based on absolutely simple designs with simple lines. I launched it with a bounded metalsmith I know, Jamie Mclandsborough. We capital article that didn’t chase trends, that had archetypal lines, and that was fabricated to last—it had to alive up to the alive Colorado lifestyle. I was alien to Jamie through the bounded metalsmithing community. We hit it off and acquainted analogously about things. I said, “I appetite to accomplish a altered affectionate of [wedding and commitment] line.” And he told me he capital to accomplish a accumulating that fixes all the things he has to adjustment on rings all the time. Both of us were like, “We appetite them to buy a arena and never appear aback to us with it!”
(Rings: Vincent Comparetto; portrait: Aaron Lucy; cufflinks: Balefire Goods)
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