Angie Reyes of Franny & Metal’s delicate jewelry pieces are pretty enough to warrant a second glance and timeless enough for everyday wear. As an Austin resident by way of having gone to school in Hawaii and grown up in the Middle East, her pieces are influenced by the process of transformation caused by the immense heat of the desert in which she was raised. With such a diverse background, it only made sense that we reached out to Angie as part of our Gifting and receiving series to gain further insight into her life. Turns out, a labor of love from her father as a gift was just the impetus she needed to become a Maker herself. Read on for more!
What’s the best handmade gift you’ve ever given?
When I was a tiny tot, I had a stuffed bear that filled the space between my arms so perfectly that it comforted me enough to forget my fear of the dark and fall asleep at night. I loved it. When my niece was born two years ago, I wanted to give her something that would be to her what my bear was to me. I had never sewn a stuffed animal before, but I committed myself to creating a whale from patterns I found on various DIY blogs. So many mistakes and re-cuttings later, I had a humpback whale complete with cute, beady eyes and a curved, ribbed mouth. My sister-in-law sent me a picture a few weeks later of my niece clutching it while falling asleep. It warmed my heart.
What’s the most thoughtful gift you’ve ever received?
When I was in second grade, I remember seeing one of those classic red metal children’s wagons on a TV show and wanting one so badly. I approached my dad and begged him to buy me one. He responded, “Why buy one when you can make one?” He went into his toolshed and proceeded to pull wheels from old carts, and scraps of wood off of discarded projects until he had procured the necessary components for a homemade wagon. When he finally emerged a few hours later, he had built me a true one-of-a kind wagon, complete with mismatched wheels, contrasting wood, and tons of character. I was thrilled. I dragged it behind me all around my neighborhood, showing it off and hauling whatever I could load in it. To this day, I like to think that my father was responsible for my strong desire and will to attempt making things for myself.
If you were to gift a piece in your line to someone special, who would it be and why?
I studied sculpture during my undergrad and didn’t have my first introduction to small-scale metals and jewelry until the end of my second year, during a short summer course with an instructor named Carol. It was an intimate class with only four other students, and Carol was the epitome of a nurturing teacher. She taught me the value of workmanship, attention to detail, and taking the time to get something done right. If I could think of it, Carol would help me to figure out how to make it. I fell in love with small-scale metals in large part because of Carol that one summer, and I’m deeply grateful to her.
What BRIKA item tops your wish list?
I’m always on the lookout for a sturdy yet beautiful work apron, and this Chevron Denim + Leather Apron definitely fits the bill! I go weak-at-the-knees for denim, leather, and striking, geometric prints.