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Meet Chrissy Liu

Today we’d like to introduce you to Chrissy Liu.

Chrissy, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I left my career as an oncology healthcare administrator to become a stay at home mom in 2017. While I never regretted my decision to leave the professional work environment, the transition was challenging at times. In search of a creative outlet, I took my first metalsmithing class in 2018 and was instantly hooked. I have always been an avid lover of jewelry, so I continued to take as many classes as I could to learn new skills. My family moved from Seattle to Colorado in September 2018, and I was lucky enough to have some space in our new home to set up a studio. When I ran out of fingers and earlobes for all the jewelry I had made, my husband asked if I was going to start to sell my work. As the daughter of two parents who owned their own businesses, I knew being an entrepreneur was in my blood. So, in October 2018, I took a leap of faith, and Chrissy Liu Jewelry was created.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
I think the most challenging part has been finding the time to be a one-woman business owner and creator as well as a stay at home mom. When I was in the professional work environment, I didn’t shy away from long hours at work, and I feel this is just another version of that type of schedule. I find time to take pictures of my pieces while my daughter is playing or hit the studio after she goes to bed at night. At the end of the day, I just have to remind myself that she is my first priority right now at this young age, so my business gets attention when her needs are met.

Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Chrissy Liu Jewelry – what should we know?
I am the owner and creator of Chrissy Liu Jewelry. I work in silver, gemstones, man-made stones and gold. I have never been one to shy away from big bold jewelry, so that was a natural space for me to fill. The community in Colorado has been very welcoming and my work in Fordite was something that got me noticed. Fordite is not actually a natural stone. It is a man-made material from car paint. As a native of Pittsburgh, PA, I grew up in a city that had deep industrial roots. It was by chance that I discovered the “stone” called Fordite and quickly fell in love with its history and significance. The paint originally came from the assembly lines at the Ford Motor Company. Before the car painting process was automated like it is now, cars were painted by hand on long production lines. The vehicles’ paint would drip off and dry on the equipment used to move the automotive bodies. This enamel paint would then get baked onto the rack and solidify. After this process is repeated hundreds or thousands of times, the deposits can grow to be several inches thick. The Fordite in my collection comes from several Corvette factories across the county.

Any shoutouts? Who else deserves credit in this story – who has played a meaningful role?
My biggest cheerleader and supporter has been my husband. Since we started dating, we have always discussed being entrepreneurs because our parents all owned their own businesses. From day one, he has lent his unwavering support and encouragement. My mom is also a big supporter. She and I have different styles so I value her opinion knowing her taste and mine are very different.

The Colorado community has been a huge supporter and cheerleader for my work. I am a member of the Boulder Metalsmithing Association and they have afforded me unbelievable opportunities to showcase my pieces in two art galleries in the area. I have a small collection currently being sold at Period 6 in Golden, and I am so grateful to Kiley Handy, the owner, for seeing something in my work and taking the chance on me. I have also been invited to art installations and a holiday market in the area so I am very humbled for the exposure I have had here in Colorado.

Lastly, I have a great network of friends who are constantly lending their support and encouragement. When I launched my initial shop, I had two friends who made purchases not even 5 minutes after I went live. It is so nice to know that I make pieces that people are responding to.

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