In her contemporary jewelry designs, Virginia native Austin Titus is influenced by old world textures and details.
The company/studio: Austin Titus Studio, based in Richmond, started in 2005. The artist has a private studio in an old Victorian house with tall windows and great light in the historic neighborhood of Church Hill.
The artist: The Richmond native, grew up a crafty kid, making and selling items like barrettes with ribbons, earrings, rope friendship bracelets and fishing lure jewelry.
After high school, she attended Virginia Commonwealth University for a few years. Too distracted to study, she left and followed the Grateful Dead, the rock band, around the country, selling her beaded jewelry at shows.
She ended up on San Juan Islands in the Pacific Northwest, where she lived and worked in restaurants for nine years, making her jewelry on the side for friends, and, then for a local boutique. At 31, with a young son, she returned to her hometown to set up shop.
The goods & materials: Handcrafted jewelry using silver, gold, and array of semi-precious stones selected for color character and even imperfections.
“I find beauty in the imperfect, tactile nature of an object that has been handmade,” said Titus.” … in the raw edges and the hammer and file marks that are the signature of the maker.”
What’s popular: Pieces in the Cusp Collection, arguably her signature collection that she is still expanding on 15 years later. Within the Cusp collection, the Birch earrings (starting at $132) have been a favorite from the beginning. Titus’ personal favorite: the square moonstone cusp earrings ($595)
Other favorites: Earrings in the Rim Collection, which uses a Korean technique call Keum-boo around stone settings. The Fold earrings with post ($194) sold well when people were wearing masks. Also the bigger Ripple Rim earrings (starting at $255).
Her style: Delicate with an edge.
Inspirations: Art nouveau, art deco, architecture, plus the arts and crafts movement.
Any fun, special or unusual requests: Rework older or unworn jewelry into something more wearable for some clients.
What’s new: Expanding her cusp collection to include a line of non-traditional engagement rings.
- Exhibiting in the contemporary crafts gallery at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival on the weekends of Oct. 8 and Oct. 15.
- Exhibiting at the Craft + Design show in Richmond (visarts.org)http://visarts.org or Nov. 19-21.
Where to buy: austintitusstudio.com
Get social at:
- Instagram: Austin Titus Studio