A brief story of what you do and why you do it?
I did a year of service in Denver at a preschool shortly after I finished my undergrad. I decided to do it because it looked good on a resume, even though it had literally nothing to do with my degree (Political Science). I wasn't all that excited to live in poverty and work long, grueling hours.
But what happened next changed my life forever. The preschool I worked at was inclusive, meaning that the school enrolled typically developing children and special needs children. I was tasked with focusing on a few Autistic children. I absolutely fell in love with them, and I can't imagine my life without them. Since I've left Denver, I think about them every day. They inspired me to work with other Autistic children and make a small difference in the world!
How did you get into jewelry design?
During my year in Denver, I learned yet another thing about myself. I made $75 a month, so it was very difficult to enjoy luxuries that I did when I was younger. I came across a beautiful pair of handmade wire earrings, and me being the creative mind that I am decided that I could totally do that! I started using cheap materials but making really cool designs. My friends and family really liked my work, and I was able to get my work in a few jewelry shops. My love of sharing my designs with the world was born, which lead me to where I'm at today!
What makes your collection unique?
My collection is unique because my style is unique. When I originally named my designs, I called them “Katie's Whimsical Wonders.” I always try to be fun, whimsical and inspiring, while staying classy and vintage.
What are your inspirations?
My grandmother is probably my biggest inspiration. She's such a strong woman, and I base a lot of life decisions on her advice. She also has provided me with countless vintage buttons, which is one of my favorite materials to work with!
How are you making a difference in your life?
Besides working with Autistic children, I always try to help the less fortunate. I realize I can't change the world but if I can put a smile on a child's face I know I've had a worthy day. I do the Minnesota Aids Walk every year, and other benefits. I also try to spend as much time as possible with my family whom I love dearly.
What's something unusual about you that makes you “you”?
Until recently, I was convinced the phrase “Nip it in the bud” was actually “Nip it in the butt.” I spent over 20 years saying “Nip it in the butt” and no one corrected me!
What's the biggest struggle in running your jewelry business like a business?
Running a website is really hard! Marketing is so demanding, and you do a lot of work to get a few people to view your website. I've found that selling items at art shows or consignment shops is much less stressful than trying to sell online!
My name is Katie Rose, and I really enjoy making jewelry! I'm currently working towards my Masters at St. Thomas University in St. Paul in Special Education. My two passions in life are jewelry making and Autistic children.