Chandler then uses those items to create eclectic and edgy pieces of jewelry — rings, necklaces, bracelets and rosaries that incorporate vintage objects in the most unusual settings to create one-of-a-kind, hand-made jewelry. And people are taking notice.
“I’ve been making jewelry for about 12 years now,” Chandler said. I’m primarily a metal smith. So I take vintage pieces and rework them into something modern, edgy and different.”
The inspiration, she said, came from the fact that when trying to find jewelry for herself, there wasn’t much on the market that appealed to her. And the jewelry that did was pricey and impractical. So she took matters into her own hands and the result is Ferd & Bird Jewelry.
For five years now, Chandler has been selling her jewelry online.
No two items are the same and each has a story to tell. She incorporates old keys, old rosary beads and other religious objects, dice, coins, old cameos, pins, brooches, medals and even pieces of broken porcelain. These pieces are arranged in scattered but beautiful ways with metal and beads to make the most unusual jewelry items.
“I like for everything to look really rustic and really unexpected,” Chandler said. “I like to put pieces together in a way that surprises people.”
In her garage studio, Chandler admits things are not as organized as they could be. But that’s part of the process. She says she has “jewelry A.D.D.,” with pieces sitting at her workstation for weeks at a time until the right combination of objects comes together.
“I don’t ever have a plan for what a piece will look like,” she said. “I’ll start with the pendant because that’s the biggest piece and then it’ll go from there. I make the body according to how I feel at that moment.”
At her website — ferdandbird.etsy.com — visitors will find all of her pieces on sale, from $10 earrings to $350 necklaces. But each is guaranteed to be hand-made and unique.
Big sellers have been rosaries, “Grace” bracelets and her “high roller” ring that incorporates a bright red die cut in half and set into a handmade metal bezel.
Her biggest online markets are Los Angeles, New York City where her pieces are sure to appeal to those with a decadent taste and a desire for jewelry that makes a statement. But Chandler’s work is catching on locally as well.
In Rome, Ferd & Bird Jewelry is sold exclusively at the Last Stop Gift Shop on Jackson Hill.
But the imagination cannot be contained for too long and Chandler is always thinking of different elements to add to her jewelry. At the moment she’s dreaming up a way of incorporating a tiny bird’s skull in resin into a necklace.
“My jewelry may not be for everyone,” Chandler said. “These are pieces that may not always be the most wearable, but they make a statement. I like surprises. I like the unexpected. That’s what these are. They’re unusual and totally different from what you’d expect in jewelry.”
For additional information, visit ferdandbird.etsy.com or search Ferd and Bird Spiritual Recovery Jewelry on Facebook.