I came across Meadowbelle Market while scouting vendors for the Kansas City Wedding Hive. We were looking for local, indie businesses that made beautiful hand made goods for weddings. Erin and Andrea’s business fit the bill perfectly. They create jewelry, veils and fascinators, garters, boutonniere’s, and even bouquets, as well as selling mint condition vintage pieces. In other words everything you would need for your big day. They’re professional, creative, and incredibly sweet, and I’d recommend their work to a bride any day of the week. Here’s more about these two talented sisters, and their business:
Where do you work and live?
We both live and work in Kansas City, MO. Erin works from her midtown studio, which also happens to be a historic Hyde Park home; it’s a three story classic shirtwaist built in 1903. A lot of inspiration comes from just living in a house that’s over 100 years old. It’s fun to study intricate moldings put in by a master plasterer in the 20s, and to imagine the families that might have lived there over the years. Some vintage / antique furnishing serve as the backdrop for many of Meadowbelle’s photo shoots.
Aundrea lives in a mid-century ranch turned ongoing remodeling project. So far, almost every room has received an update of some sort. Currently, her favorite project was just completed by her husband Chris: A complete fireplace makeover, including wooden architectural details, hidden storage for electronics inside the mantle, and all those unsightly electronic cords concealed behind the wall. Topped off with a pair of sconces! Its like a movie theatre in our living room!
When did you start creating? Have you guys always been interested in craft, art, and design?
Much of our allowances as a kids went towards craft supplies for the latest art project we were working on at any particular time. There was a lot of collaboration going on between the two of us from a young age. I think we’ve always worked well together and built on each others’ ideas. Erin remembers authoring and illustrating a few books around age 7. Dolls had a mini closet full of hand-sewn dresses and quilts in our house. Summers were spent cramming in any type of art project we could possibly think up.
When did you become interested in jewelry?
We both played around with jewelry designs around age 11 or 12, and even ended up selling some on a small scale in a shop that agreed to carry our work the Parkville area. After a lapse of several years, Erin picked things back up during the college years, taking classes at a local collage and participating in some art shows.
When and why did you decide to start Meadowbelle Market?
Our family has a strong tradition of women entrepreneurs that reaches back several generations. And aside from the obvious – that we simply love anything that involves creativity – Aundrea designed almost everything for her own wedding (including her dress, which she had custom made). Then, when Erin was planning her own wedding a couple years ago, Meadowbelle Market was born. We love that our shop gives us the ability to combine our artistic skills and photography in one place. Although keeping up with real photo shoots for our products can be a challenge, we are able to not only make items, but have a way to present them to our customers. Our online customers are without the ability to hold our items in person, so we feel like the portrayal of our items is important to get a virtual perception of what they are purchasing. We love it when we get to design everything from the jewelry and hairpiece for the bride, to the boutonnieres for the groom and wedding party.
You create mostly wedding jewelry and accessories, what’s your favorite part of being involved with someone’s big day?
Our favorite part about a person’s wedding is knowing this day is going to be one of those ‘moments’ in their life that will be told and re-told to friends, family, and generations to come. Not only are memories created for a lifetime, but this is going to be one of their most cherished and photographed days of their life! There’s so much creativity and personalization that goes into a wedding. Every wedding is just as unique and inspiring as the story that brought the two together in the first place. It’s so easy to bond over sharing those details and helping someone’s vision become reality.
What words of advice would you offer to any bride looking for jewelry for herself or her bridesmaids?
Our advice to a bride looking for jewelry for herself or bridesmaids would be two part: First, find something for yourself! This is your day, and you want to feel beautiful–but we also know that there are a lot of little details when choosing a look, and sometimes that can be overwhelming. Know what pieces you naturally gravitate to every day. If you look for wedding jewelry that incorporates some of the qualities of your favorite pieces, you can’t go wrong.
For your bridesmaids, you definitely want to have some fun! Every girl will have her own personality and taste, so why not choose the colors and materials (pearls, crystals, metal, etc.) that you’d like your bridesmaids to wear, while choosing a slightly unique piece for each. That way, each girl will enjoy wearing her jewelry again, and it will add interest to your wedding party’s look. Jewelry made just for each girl also doubles as a really great gift!