Kelsey from ELLAPhant designs has some awesome repurposed t-shirt bracelets, hair accessories, brooches and floral pom-pom key chains. Her business is environmentally friendly, she is launching a “Keepsake Collection”, and she donates bracelets to our local Children’s Hospital. I absolutely love what she is doing with her business and I absolutely love the bracelet I ordered from her shop.
I will let Kelsey introduce herself. Welcome Kelsey!
I have always been a creative and crafty person. My family is full of architects, jewelry designers, quilters, weavers, advertising professionals, art teachers and the like. As a child, my mom always had fun projects for us to paint, draw or build and the love for designing and creating has stayed with me as an adult.
I received my bachelor’s degree in Interior Design from Kent State University (Go Flashes!), and worked as a designer for the S Rose Company in Cleveland for 5 years. Upon having my daughter, Ella, I was given the wonderful opportunity to work from home and devote more of my time to being a mom!
Soon after, I received the gift of knitting lessons. I was hooked on the hobby, but did not have the time to devote to larger projects and began to seek out smaller crafts to make with my newfound skill. This is how I arrived at making bracelets and accessories. For months, I experimented with different yarn weights and textures, but was not happy with the weight, elasticity and longevity of anything I tried. T-Shirt yarn was something I’d come across, but never used, and thought I would give it a shot!
I had a stash of worn out clothing to be donated and tossed, and I began to cut up the shirts and hand stretch them into yarn. It was perfect! It created a durable knit that held its shape, was eco-friendly and unique. I now make all of my yarn by hand from unwanted shirts and knit them into the beautiful bracelets you see in my shop. The remaining portions of the shirt are used to make floral hair accessories, brooches and key chains. No waste!
The inspiration for the name “Ellaphant Designs” came from my daughter, Ella. Elephants were the first animal she loved, and the name came together from there.
In 2013, Ellaphant Designs initiated a few new ideas. The first was in an effort to give back in more of a way than just being environmentally friendly. So for every classic style bracelet purchased, a complementary bracelet made from the same material will be donated to Akron Children’s Hospital along with a ‘make your own bracelet’ kit and a small bundle of t-shirt yarn. So each customer is ‘sharing’ a smile with a patient as they wear their new accessory!
The second initiative was to promote the idea of making my jewelry more personal for the customer by launching the ‘Keepsake Collection’. The Keepsake Collection is not really a collection, but what the customer makes of it. They send in their own shirt, or the shirt of a loved one, and I memorialize it for them into a collection of accessories. Whether they want one bracelet with a little charm on it, or for me to utilize the whole shirt – it’s up to them! One large T-Shirt typically yields 2-3 adult bracelets, 2-3 child sized bracelets and either 2 floral hair accessories or brooches, or 1 floral pom-pom key chain. So you really get a lot from just one shirt! It’s a unique way to remember a loved one, and is much more affordable than many of the other keepsake gifts out there. Prices range from approximately $10-$150 for one t-shirt depending on the quantity of accessories wanted.
I’m having a lot of fun designing and creating new styles while sharing my days with my little “Ella-phant” and hope to continue making unique jewelry and keepsakes for years to come!
Kelsey will be giving away one of her bracelets, like this one in teal.
She is going to let the lucky winner pick the color of the bracelet from her Etsy shop. The color choices are shown in the listing, the colors are endless.
Please stop and say Hello!
Please click HERE to enter to win this awesome bracelet from ELLAPhant designs.
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