Runik Jewellery was created out of Alexis Carter’s desire to bring her own vision to life. She began teaching herself metal work about three years ago. “I was working full-time during the day and was teaching myself at night by a lot of trial and error.” Using books and the internet, Carter successfully created jewellery that she herself wanted wear and found her preferred creative outlet. “What I like most about it is, there is so much to learn, so many techniques and methods to try. It’s a constant experiment and always exciting to see how a piece will turn out.”
Carter is a Queensland native, born near Surfer’s Paradise in Australia’s Gold Coast. But Carter prefers the country’s untouched woodland to the beach. Runik Jewellery’s Instagram account has a strong following, awaiting new photos of her creations with Victoria, Australia’s rural Gippsland in the background. She uses recycled materials, sterling silver, and a variety of gemstones to create pieces that are elegant and edgy. The jewellery showcases the natural beauty of minerals and the subtlety of hammering techniques. “Every design is natural, fairly straightforward and with subtle hints of my surroundings thrown in.” The Gippsland forest is awe-inspiring. “I am constantly trying to find ways to transfer organic textures into my pieces.” Carter collects natural materials from the forest floor, then transfers the pattern to her jewelry hammers to create the impression. Bark, eucalyptus leaves, agate, gum nuts, and moss are currently in her studio. Carter also has an affinity for runes, ancient symbols from the Germanic alphabet most often associated with Norse history. The mysterious symbols complement the gemstones and natural textures in Carter’s jewelry, and strikingly stand alone. Visually, the runes have a quality that rests between the organic and the constructed. The way that Carter approaches designing jewelry embodies this meeting of earthiness, freedom, and intent.
Prior to designing jewellery, Carter was in the Army for eight years. She returned from the Middle East in 2010 and began thinking about moving off the grid. Carter appreciates her military experience, but it also created the desire for solitude. “I think I had seen enough of what people are capable of and wanted to live in ignorant bliss…alone. This is not to say that I had a brutally negative experience over there, it just helped me realize what was really important to me and what wasn’t. So, when I got out of the Army, I bought a bush property in the middle of nowhere and started to prepare to go off grid. I think I live in pure luxury and I am so lucky that my dream is simple and inexpensive.” Carter’s Instagram photos paint a picture of an artisan who feels a connection to her surroundings. Her appreciation for the natural world is what makes Runik Jewellery so unique.