KALISPELL – This Montana Made segment takes us to the small studio of metal smith jewelry artist Allison Kallaway-Young who cuts, bends and hammers metals to create one-of-a-kind jewelry.
Every artist has some inspiration and for Kallaway-Young, it’s her travels across the world from Africa to Italy.
“I make one-of-a-kind sterling silver fabricated jewelry with a little bit of gold and gemstones. That work I sell at art shows, so I’ve got a retail art business. I travel all over the country, and then I started up a wholesale collection which I took to the Made in Montana show. But now that’s growing so I have a retail business and now I’m working on a big large wholesale collection,” Kallaway-Young said.
Kallaway-Young’s smithing skills and passion for the craft began developing in high school, but she got serious in 2006 with a two-year gold-smithing apprenticeship.
“Well, there are lots of different ways to make jewelry. The easiest way is to buy pieces and parts that other people have made and assemble them. So beads and findings pieces of metal that have already been fabricated,” Kallaway-Young said.
“So what I do is I build everything. I use sheet metal and wire to build everything. So I cut everything out of sheets and I put the prongs in and I solder an ear wire and I bend and hammer texture and stamp everything. So that is kind of the category that I fit into is fabricated jewelry,” Kallaway-Young said. “So each piece is hand-made by me and a lot of it is one-of-a-kind.”
Kallaway-Young embraces materials like sterling silver jewelry with gemstones, gold and fossils to develop her unique style of modern industrial jewelry.
“It’s — to me — my jewelry looks a little medieval. There’s a lot of African influence from my 12 years living over there. It’s industrial but it’s urban, a little bit gritty — definitely appeals to people that have an inner rock star,” Kallaway-Young said.
Kallaway-Young’s Jewelry is carried in five Montana locations — Sage and Cedar in Whitefish and Kalispell, Cello in Bozeman, Trove West in Big Sky and Obsidian in Livingston. Her work will also be featured in the Made in Montana Trade Show in Helena in March as well as the Whitefish Arts Festival in July.
Click here for more information on Allison Kallaway Jewelry.
MTN’s Nicole Miller