Katie Bly of Bly Design
Here is another talented Charlottean that you must get to know…
via– check out her whole FAB house here…
What is your training?
I am a classically trained pianist (graduate from UNCC) I also took a lot of fine arts classes in college. After I finished my degree in music, I became curious about jewelry design and decided to pursue private lessons from local artisans here in my hometown of Charlotte, NC. I spent a lot of time shadowing their work, and learning a lot of techniques along the way. Of course, I have always been a trial and error learner, so there's a lot of experimenting on my own that goes into my work. I like the freedom in doing things my own way.
What inspires you and your designs?
I'm not sure I could pin point where my inspiration comes from exactly. I am constantly surrounding myself with art and music. I believe this is a big source of inspiration. I usually get an idea for a design while I'm sleeping (somewhere between being awake, and almost asleep). This involves me waking up in a panic to jot it down before I forget. Needless to say, there are a lot of sleepless nights when I am at a creative peak, haha.
What is your favorite piece?
My favorite piece from my latest collection are my leather and druzy quartz cuffs. I really like the juxtaposition of the soft leather, clear icy-like resin clock, and sparkling quartz stone. The design is something I am really proud of. It has definitely evolved over time, and I feel like it has settled into something spectacular.
How has the south influenced your work?
I live in a very creative neighborhood (plaza midwood), and spend a lot of time in the NODA arts district. These areas are bursting with talent, musically and artistically. It's so exciting to be among so many artists who un-apologetically create what they love. It definitely rubs off on me, and I can't see myself ever wanting to live far from a place like this.
What is your favorite restaurant in Charlotte?
Soul Gastrolounge in Plaza Midwood. It has a lounge atmosphere, and the music is always on point too (a live DJ every night of the week spinning ambient beats to set a relaxing vibe). The food is delicious. It's all tapas, so you get to try a lot of different things. The restaurant is on the 2nd story of a building facing downtown, so it is a gorgeous place to sip a fancy cocktail and watch the sun set on the Charlotte skyline.
What is your favorite cocktail?
Lately, I have been enjoying whipped cream vodka and cream soda (on the rocks). If I'm feeling extra sassy, I might throw an orange wedge in there too. 😉
How do you balance personal life and work?
That's something I am actually still trying to figure out. I work from home, so it is easy to get lost in a project. Once I have an idea in mind for a design, it consumes me completely until is is realized. I can spend hours and hours working on it; the kind of creative flow where I can forget to eat, or any other number of things that should be easy to remember. That said, someone once told me (during my music undergrad) that it is important to step away from your art, in order for it to have room to breathe and grow. I'm working on setting work hours for myself, and sticking to it. It's a work in progress 🙂
I would like to drive out west and spend some time at the beautiful, state parks in Utah, Colorado, Arizona etc., and then make my way over to California and drive the coast visiting all of the cute cities and vineyards.
Making a one-of-a-kind cuff for Gwen Stefani would do (she is such a bad ass, I mean really…)
Your favorite hostess gift?
bake me something and I will love you forever.
Who is your style icon?
Gwen Stefani. She isn't afraid to take risks with her style. I always love her look.
Your favorite up and coming artist/designer/ jewelry designer?
There is a local artist here in Charlotte, NC by the name of Kelly Keith. Her paintings are fantastic.
What is your most treasured possession?
I have a portrait Kelly Keith painted of my boyfriend. It is so special. It's interesting to see a painting of someone you know so well. I can almost tell by the painting what my boyfriend was feeling at that moment, which is a testament to how truly talented Kelly is.
What are you reading?
Bossypants. Life is serious, I really like a book to slap me across the face with humor. This book does the trick.
What are you listening to?
Favorite Fashion / Design Blogs?
Just discovered Color me Nana
and Cherry blossom blog. Fair warning; both are highly addicting.
Blydesign has been featured in Vogue, Shape and several Charlotte publications. The line is currently for sale in stores and boutiques in the Southeast, as well as online.
Here are my personal favorites…