Copper in the Arts

February 2014

Karisma by Kara

By Jennifer Hetrick

ringAfter Etsy shared Karisma by Kara's bird nest ring photo last March, it received more than 30,000 likes on Facebook.
When Etsy posted a photograph in March 2013 of a copper-crafted bird nest ring with brightly hued robin’s eggs, artist Kara Mavar of Greenville, South Carolina had no idea what an impact it would have on her life and her business. The photograph went viral, reaching more than 32,000 likes on Facebook, catapulting Karisma by Kara into the limelight as orders rolled in, each custom-sized specifically to the finger of the customer.

Mavar has noticed a curious trend, too; Mothers who order the ring requested that number of robin’s eggs represented the number of children they had. Each ring was thoughtfully handcrafted by Mavar herself.  

“People say they get compliments every time they wear it,” Mavar says.

In addition to the Robin’s Nest ring, Mavar created nature-inspired necklace pendants of other birds, owls, horses, foxes, elephants, seahorses, snails, butterflies, bumblebees and even mermaids. Her other jewelry takes the form of bracelets and earrings.

The eloquently shaped lines in her copper jewelry stem from the keen curving efforts of Mavar as she works the wire and brings finished pieces into a highly smooth quality.

“I see a lot of jewelry where you can see the bends in the wire even after it’s polished,” Mavar says.

Mavar sources her copper wire from select sellers on Etsy and purchases other materials for her work from a bead store in her town.

Delving into beaded jewelry several years ago is how Mavar developed a curiosity for copper; she quickly became interested in the wiring aspects of beaded jewelry.

Her initial rings and custom orders for double initials shaped into rings are a second enthusiastically enjoyed shop item after her famed bird nest ring, and Mavar has also been crafting initial pendants for necklaces in recent months.

“I love the oxidation process,” Mavar says about part of her stylistic coloration labors for certain pieces of her jewelry where she wants a darker appearance in the copper. “Every time I polish it, it looks so beautiful.”

Her shipments have traveled to Canada, the U.K., Mexico, the Philippines, New Zealand, Australia and many states across the U.S.

“It’s soft and very easy to work with,” she admits about the copper wire she orders in spools. “The copper kind of holds its own—it holds its shape and is a quality piece then.”

Mavar's jewelry is on display at Daly Designs in Greenville and The Shoppes on Trade in Greer, South Carolina.


Karisma by Kara, Greenville, SC

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