We Promise You're Going to Enjoy Rick Lindner, Creator of Boulder Based Arielle + Co.
Be inspired, share a laugh and be reminded how amazing things happen from curiosity, addressing basic needs and enjoying some good karma!
FF: How did you begin your handmade journey?
A+Co: There’s no real beginning, it’s just how I am. I’ve always been a curious tinkerer. As a toddler, I managed to disassemble my crib from the inside. And before you ask, nobody knows where I got the screwdriver, and yes, it did collapse while I was in it. ( FF: We'd love a photo of this! )
Working with my hands, creating, innovating, etc., are all an embodiment of that same curiosity and spirit.
FF: What lead you to your current line of goods?
A+Co: My friend and chiropractor while living in Chicago, Dr. Stephanie Maj, used to lovingly hound me because I carried a wallet in my back pocket. I finally took her advice and switched to a front pocket wallet (note: your spine and posture do not benefit from sitting on a fat wallet).
I immediately loved carrying a wallet in my front pocket, however I didn’t love the wallet itself. So I decided to make my own. That was my first foray into working with leather. It’s also why, after many iterations, the resulting wallet is called The Major—lovingly named after Dr. Stephanie Maj.
FF: What materials do you work with & why?
A+Co: I make goods for people to use every day. They leave my shop looking “beautiful” however I don’t think they are truly interesting until they’ve gained some well-deserved patina. Those scratches, nicks, smudges, etc., all tell a story, and I find the story more beautiful than a brand new piece of leather.
As such, I use leathers that are naturally beautiful but extremely resilient. For most items I use Horween Leather, specifically Chromexcel and Shell Cordovan, both of which are considered to be some of the finest leathers in the world. For wallet interiors or vegetable tanned pieces, I use Hermann Oak, another great US tannery that is known for their vegetable tanned leather.
For stitching, I use very specific waxed, braided, chord. I love a splash of color, and have been working on alternating colors within the same stitch line. A machine can’t replicate that stitch, which makes it all the more attractive.
FF: Inspiration comes from where?
A+Co: I am inspired by beautiful utility. I don’t know if I made that term up, but it precisely describes my source of inspiration.
FF: What excites you for the future?
A+Co: I am excited for the evolution of the Maker and DIY culture. The ingenuity, curiosity and collaboration taking place today is redefining how we, as a culture, innovate.
FF: Any advice for makers and biz entrepreneurs new to our creative community?
A+Co: Get out and meet people, share ideas, ask for feedback and open yourself up to different ways of doing things. If someone is teetering on the edge of starting a creative business, or simply wanting to pursue an interest, start walking in that direction. Take a class. Join a club. Give it a try. Have patience and don’t be discouraged by mistakes. Mistakes are an important part of the creative process.
FF: If you have a strong partnership with a non-profit org, what is it and what inspired you to do this?
A+Co: This Spring, I volunteered to teach leather working to a 7th and 8th grade art class at Mackintosh Academy. We met twice a week for two months and I may have enjoyed the experience more than they did (though I’ve heard they loved it). I hope to continue the same next year.
Additionally, it is a goal of Arielle + Co. to support a cause.
(Don’t print this, but my first priority is to stop being a “non-profit” myself :-) Sorry Rick - had to include this. Many makers will relate!! )
Shop and share some good stories with Arielle + Co. at Firefly Handmade Summer Market, July 23-24, 10am-4pm, Twenty Ninth Street shopping district , 1710 29th St. (between Canyon & Walnut), Boulder, CO.