Artisan makes fashion statement with unique earrings


Mia Folkers

OH BABY!: Senior Chloe Bluemel inserts a hot safety pin into the figures head. Bluemel handcrafts her own earrings, which includes a tiny baby figurine to dangle from the ends.

Sammie Thompson, Dispatch Reporter

Miniature plastic babies, while commonly used as decorations at baby showers, are not typical in the world of jewelry. However, senior Chloe Bluemel combined these items to create her own style of jewelry.

Since the beginning of this school year, Bluemel has been handcrafting her own “baby earrings,” each complete with a tiny baby figurine dangling from the end. The process of creating each earring is straightforward, and does not require any complex materials.

“It’s gonna sound kinda morbid,” Bluemel explained. “But I get a safety pin and I heat it up with a lighter and then I stick it through the head [of the figurine]. Then I get these little screws and hooks, I screw it in through the hole, and I attach the earring to it.”

The inspiration for these unique pieces of jewelry came to Bluemel, who is a member of the Bowie band, after she participated in a band activity.

“It started out as just an on-a-whim type of thing. We got a bunch of these little plastic babies for a hat we make for band, for our littles, and I had some left over,” Bluemel said. “I didn’t know what to do with all the plastic babies I had left, so I just started turning them into earrings and they caught on.”

Bluemel’s idea gained the attention of many people. Despite the “morbid” nature of the earring’s creation, the uniqueness of their execution is what initially drew some students in.

“I think they’re pretty cool,” sophomore Coline Moutard said. “I’ve never seen baby earrings before.”

Other students credited the growing popularity of the earrings within the band to their overall success among the general school population.

“[The earrings] are definitely very odd and weird but they are sort of like a tradition or trend in the band now, so I am definitely all for [them],” junior Bryce Pence said.

The earrings not only intrigued students, but also teachers as well. Band director Jennifer Hanford was drawn to the creativity that Bluemel exhibited through her earrings.

“I love the earrings,” Hanford said. “I think they are weird, creative and hilarious.”

Regardless of the “trend” that they are now, the earrings weren’t necessarily a booming success from the start. They originally were only a thing in a specific group of people.

“I think it used to only be flutes that had the earrings, but it then spread,” Moutard said. “My friend started making them and it became a band thing.”

Bluemel worked hard to showcase her creation to everyone she could. She initially gave out pairs of her earrings for people to wear, which is what encouraged their growth at the start.

“I started wearing them and I gave a pair to my friend so people saw us wearing them, and they were kind of giving us odd looks,” Bluemel said.“I gave one to my band director, Ms. Hanford, and then everybody wanted them.”

Many students started to wear their earrings on Friday to football games and other Band events. This tradition was noticed by Hanford, who went along with the trend.

“I do have a pair of earrings and wear them on Fridays’ like some of the students do. People usually laugh when they see them and ask why I have them,” Hanford said.

Due to the growing interest of students, Bluemel started to sell her jewelry at school. The earrings are available to anyone and are fairly inexpensive.

“I do sell them at Bowie,” Bluemel said. “They’re around five bucks for a pair and anyone can have them.”

Despite the increase in demand for the earrings that quickly developed, many people are still not aware that they are a thing. People who own a pair of earrings are familiar with the reactions of people who do not understand the trend.

“I do have a pair of earrings that I have only worn once and the reaction that non-band people usually give is just staring at you,” Pence shared. “In the hallways it feels like you’re always being looked at.”

The “weirdness” of the earrings is an aspect of Bluemel’s creativity in creating them, which is admired and encouraged by teachers.

“I love the creative and funny minds of the students at Bowie. I always encourage creativity even if that means making tiny baby earrings,” Hanford said. “Chloe made them very randomly, and I think they were just something funny and unique that students bought into as an unusual trend.”

In the long run, the spur-of-the-moment idea paid off and the  earrings are something that can be enjoyed by everyone in the Bowie community, according to Bluemel.

“I kind of think it’s just a random thing that everybody can relate to,” Bluemel said. “ It can be a cute accessory and you’ll get compliments.”