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Life and Work with Lauren N. Barelski

Today we’d like to introduce you to Lauren N. Barelski.

Lauren, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
I started making jewelry in 2013. A pair of my favorite earrings had broke. I studied how they were put together and tried to recreate them. In the process, I fell in love with the intricacies. I started going to a bead store my dad told me about. I’d spend hours picking out different stones and crystals. I sold a couple of things here and there but never really thought I was in a position to make it my career. Life happened and I eventually had to put my hobbies to the side, buckled down, worked as a server, went to school to be an aesthetician, and became a caregiver for my dad who had a stroke a couple years back. After his stroke, money got tight. I asked the universe what I could do to make more money to support us. One day, I opened up a fortune cookie that read “Make your talents work like a charm” and suddenly it clicked. I still had some old crystals from my previous jewelry making days so I got to work. I’m still in the beginning stages of my business but I’m so grateful I’m able to make jewelry that makes people feel beautiful.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Some days are better than others. Some days, I love everything I make and some days I have to step away, take a break, and come back. Whether it’s a few minutes, hours, or even days later. I give myself time to breathe. Nurture my creative juices and stay open to inspiration. I knew this is what I wanted but I was going to make it happen on my own terms. I took my time, stayed true to instincts, and made things that I loved at the end of the day. And I think people can recognize that.

Please tell us more about your work, what you are currently focused on and most proud of.
I make handmade jewelry. I specialize in crystal earrings and necklaces. I like to use a lot of little details and a lot a lot of gold. I love the feeling of royalty. When you put on some intricate pieces of jewelry I feel like you step into a whole new confidence. It’s my favorite part of the outfit.

Do you think there are structural or other barriers impeding the emergence of more female leaders?
Women are magical, intuitive, powerful beings. We are sensitive but I believe that’s where our power is rooted. We are not weak for feeling things deeply. We can channel that sensitivity into something creative, uplifting, and nurturing and we possess a power that most men do not have. The only barrier I see in female leadership is men not empowering us.

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