Photo: Patiri Photography
Tiffany Blue created her first pair of polymer clay earrings in the fall of 2009 after she became disappointed by the high prices of jewelry for stretched ears in local stores. Like any girl, Blue wanted a variety of options to hang from her stretched lobes, but at approximately $100 per pair, it just didn’t seem realistic. Shortly after purchasing a pair of wood spirals for her ears, a visit to her mother’s house set things in motion. “[My mom] uses polymer to make little clay figurines. One of them had a door that looked like wood. She said it was made from polymer,” says Blue. After that, Blue began researching the toxicity levels of polymer and how it was certified to make sure that it would be earlobe friendly.
Blue opened her Etsy shop in October 2010 and has since seen her business skyrocket. “I was working my full-time job during the day and then coming home and working 8-10 hours at night,” says Blue. This past June, Blue quit her day job. Blue currently focuses full-time on creating one-of-a-kind pieces for both stretched and normal-sized lobes. Her designs run the gamut from simple spirals to decadent dangles that curl in and out in a dizzying manner. The majority of Blue’s pieces fall between $20-$35 per pair, although Blue says a really intricate custom piece can run as much as $85. Although the prices run lower than some other materials, Blue warns that Peach Treats are not to be stretched with. “[Polymer] is porous like wood or bone. Only people with healed lobes should wear it.”
Blue’s pieces can be found locally at SLCitizen, Iris Body Piercing, Awakening Heart, Healing Mountain Crystal Company, Signed & Numbered and Underground Ink. She also has portions of her line in Denver, London, New York, Chicago and New Mexico. She attributes her enormous growth to the awesome craft community in Salt Lake City. “A big part of it is just the kindness of people who live in Salt Lake City,” says Blue. She cites photographer and SLUG marketing coordinator Bethany Fischer, Craft Sabbath founder Meg Griggs and those who have modeled for her as huge assets to her success. “They have really pushed my business and told people about me and I’m really grateful for it,” says Blue.