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April 2012

Earth Girl Designs

A Tupper Laker’s nature-inspired jewelry

Photograph by Matt Paul

Rachel King says her earrings “aren’t funky, loud or look-at-me, but elegant, earthy and humble.” Just how one might describe the 27-year-old Tupper Laker, who has found her creative groove by crafting and selling pretty pieces that reflect her favorite turf. “I’m inspired by the Adirondacks,” she says, “and I’m falling more and more in love with it.”

When King’s not in class (she’s wrapping up a teaching degree at the State University of New York at Potsdam) or showcasing her jewelry at craft fairs or the Keene farmers’ market, she’s at Lake Placid’s John Brown Farm or Cobble Hill—places she describes as “beautiful and overwhelming.” These are spots where she brings her journal and makes sketches for her Earth Girl Designs—earrings that, she says, “reflect the balance and peace that nature brings us.”

King favors neutrals, greens and purples, so uses turquoise, labradorite, moonstone and lots of Czech glass in her work. She says the glass’s fire-polished finish gives each bead special shapes and colors, “like little Picassos or Monets.” She uses sterling silver and, as an alternative to gold, copper, which is lead- and nickel-free and fine for sensitive skin. Online craft mecca www.etsy.com is where King buys most of her supplies and maintains a virtual storefront (www.etsy.com/shop/EarthGirlDesigns). That way, she explains, she supports artists like her. King’s Earth Girl De­signs can also be found at SoulRoots Studio, in Lake Placid’s Alpine Mall, or in Saranac Lake at the new Community Store, Eco Living or, occasionally, at Left Bank Café.

And the cost of these accessories that are, as King plugs them, “Made in the Adirondacks by an Adirondack Girl”? All in the $18–$26 range. She says, “I want people to be able to have them if they want them.”

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