By Chris Bavender
Erin Shultz regards herself as a “crafty gal who loves to create.” She started collecting bullet casings from her target practice thinking she could make “something neat with them one day.”
“My friend told me I should make earrings with them, so I decided to give it a shot – no pun intended,” said Shultz, 38. “Another friend of mine was getting married in Nashville, and she wanted a pair of earrings that would go along with the country theme. I made her a pair of earrings, and when she returned from Nashville, she ordered three more pairs for her friends.”
That’s when Shultz – who in 2015 moved from Hobart to Whitestown – decided to open an Etsy shop called Beauty and the Bullets. She cuts, cleans and handcrafts the .44 mag Hornady bullet stud earrings. The fired casings collected from her target practices have their own unique markings.
“Stud earrings have been my main focus, but I am currently working on a few different styles of dangle earrings, along with some other types,” Shultz said. “I offer different variations of stud earrings that include brass or nickel-plated brass, polished or unpolished, and with or without Swarovski crystals.”
The addition of crystals is new, Shultz said, and a way to add flair.
“I’ve had about a 50/50 mixture of customers who want the earrings plain versus with crystals. At first, I was just doing the clear crystals, and then I added mint alabaster, pearls and birthstones,” Shultz said. “I can do pretty much any color that is requested, and I am working on building my collection of crystals.”
Beauty and the Bullets offers an array of handgun calibers: .380, 9mm, .38, .357, .44 and .45. Shultz also offers rifle calibers that include .223 and 7.62.
“If a customer requests a specific caliber, I will do my best to get that for them, as I do take custom orders,” she said.
The price range for the stud earrings is between $20 to $25 per pair, depending if a customer wants to add Swarovski crystals. Prices vary for custom orders, and Shultz offers a discount for large orders.
As for the future, Shultz is working on new pieces such as bracelets, necklaces, rings and keychains and wants to soon have her collection in area boutiques and shops. For more, visit the Etsy shop at beautyandthebullets.etsy.com or her Facebook page at facebook.com/BeautyAndTheBullets.