“It is something that freaks people out at first.”
Gina Iacovelli’s artistic medium is a bit out of the ordinary in this day and age—it’s human hair.
Gina and her jewelry business, Copperelegy, are the latest focus in our Living High Vibe video series [see the video at the bottom of this post!]. The videos are all about inspiring individuals and their unique business ventures! You can learn more about the series or sign up here.
*Check out our GIVEAWAY with Copperelegy at the bottom of this post!*
When I first discovered Gina's work, I couldn't help but be curious about how one gets into hair jewelry...
“Why does society feel that hair is so beautiful when it’s on our head, but the second it disconnects from the body it’s considered disgusting or weird?” asks Iacovelli.
Good question! That is something I hadn’t thought about until I sat down with Gina to watch her create keepsake jewelry pieces with human hair.
“I want to challenge society’s norms,” says Iacovelli. “Things that are out of the ordinary are the only things that can really change your perspective.”
Gina is reviving Victorian hairwork patterns “one strand at a time” with her jewelry business, Copperelegy.
So how did she get involved with this ornate tradition?
“I got my dream job two years ago with an architecture firm,” says Iacovelli. “I had been working my whole life to get to this job, but it was not quite what my heart was telling me to do.”
She needed more human interaction than sitting behind a computer; she needed something to do with her hands.
“Coming to terms with my mortality has helped me see what I need to do with life - life is short, stop being an admirer, stop putzing around.”
In order to supplement her creative side, Gina started creating jewelry with horse hair, but found it to be too thick and difficult to work with. When Gina began creating pieces with human hair, she realized it was not only calming for her mentally, but the keepsake aspect of it also brought her a great sense of joy.
“I know it’s something that’s going to help people heal whether they lost something, or to connect with something in the future. There’s meaning and depth to it. It’s a conversation piece.”
Living keepsake pieces are a huge part of Gina’s work, which surprised me at first. But thinking about the possibilities: baby’s first haircut...why not make a bracelet from it?
For anyone interested in hairwork and wondering how to get started, Gina recommends researching Victorian mourning traditions and see what you connect with: “It takes practice and a natural creative ability to be able to see hair as a work of art,” she explains.
It’s about seeing the simple things in a new light.
“The whole point of my art is to get people to question something as simple as hair.”
Watch Living High Vibe Episode 2 —
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