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Betina creates a wide variety of curious and quirky handmade jewellery, greeting cards and more from her home in Brisbane, Queensland

03 April 2020

Designer Spotlight: betina-RAHH

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Tech marketing specialist, beader, designer, and crafting weirdo, Betina: ‘I get very excited and distracted easily, so my collection of things ranges far and wide’

My name is Betina and I am a 30-ish born and bred Brisbane local. I am bright, bubbly, loud, a little bit weird and not very subtle! I am a one-woman-show and have been selling on Madeit since December 2017.

Some of betina-RAHH’s collection of cult-favourite Bin Chicken ibis jewellery and humorous greeting cards

I get very excited and distracted easily, so my collection of things ranges far and wide – my creations include earrings, bracelets, necklaces, framed prints, greeting cards, lanyards, brooches, magnets and have now even expanded into stubby coolers and tote bags. Who knows what else that list will include in the future!

Betina creates a wide variety of curious and quirky handmade jewellery, greeting cards and more from her home in Brisbane, Queensland

I am a very proud to have just built a brand new house and live there with my boyfriend. We like to go on lots of adventures so no kids or fur-babies for us (which means more creating time for me!). He is a nurse and does a fair bit of shift work, which means I’m able to create while he’s at work and we still get to spend time together when we share days off.

The bubbly Betina photographing some of her jewellery products: ‘I am both very passionate and energetic and love spreading that around!’

When I am not creating, I have a full time job as a Marketing Specialist at a technology company. Having a full time job as well as “betina-RAHH” as a hobby business sometimes makes it tricky to fit in all the bits and pieces that go with managing an online store, multiple social accounts and attending local markets about 10 times a year. As if that wasn’t enough already, I also host Musical Bingo at a local pub once a week which is an absolute blast. What can I say – I am both very passionate and energetic and love spreading that around! I love keeping myself busy and wouldn’t change it for the world.

Betina and some of her handmade collection at a local Brisbane market

When I was considering different options to branch out into an online store, even though I know how to develop and manage websites - I didn’t want to do this for just me as I know how much effort goes into it! I did some research and stumbled upon Madeit and fell in love. Being an Australian run platform, I already felt more connected and I really liked the fact that it was specifically for Aussie makers - it felt like a little community! When I found there was a Facebook group for Madeit makers, I joined straight away and was thrilled at the gorgeous, supportive community that came with it - you just don’t get that with other platforms or your own website!

Betina’s half of the new home office she shares with her boyfriend: ‘As I have recently moved into my new house, I was super excited to have a dedicated space for my crafting’

As I have recently moved into my new house, I was super excited to have a dedicated space for my crafting. Previously, we rented and moved around a bit, so for a while the kitchen table became my making, packing, sending and market prep zone. It was a relief having some order and finally a home to put things!

Gluing backs on ‘bin chicken’ ibis earrings and laser cut succulent studs

My creative environments consist of three main places; my desk, my outdoor table, and at my computer. I use my desk when I am doing more of the structured, streamlined tasks such as gluing my earring backs and packing orders up to post. Or if I do any short bursts of creating before work.

Some of the betina-RAHH range backdropped by the peaceful tree-lined view from Betina’s garden table: ‘My creative environments consist of three main places; my desk, my outdoor table, and at my computer’

I use the outdoor table when I am doing more creative things like making my lava jewellery range or building lanyards. The table looks over lots of green and trees and always has a breeze so it is the perfect atmosphere for creativity.

Some of the betina-RAHH kawai avocado pun range of jewellery and greeting cards

When I am doing my digital designs for my stud earrings, greeting cards and frames, that’s when I use my computer. I actually love all things digital design and technology and feel at home in front of the computer. This is one of the reasons why I have branched out into so many different styles of creative outlets - my enjoyment for both digital and tangible design of pretty things!

A blue glass beaded wrap bracelet by betina-RAHH: ‘I draw my inspiration from anything and everything around me and am more emotive than structured in my design process’

I draw my inspiration from anything and everything around me and am more emotive than structured in my design process. For beading, while I love to browse sites like Pinterest, it is more for overarching inspiration rather than specific ideas.

Betina in a bright pink dress with avocado print, kneeling behind vintage suitcases of her handmade wares at a local Brisbane market

I tend to go with my gut and create things (particularly when I am making earrings or lava jewellery) based on what I have available and how the pieces fit together. My craft room has an endless supply of beads, so I look around and see what colours I have to play with, what shapes I want to work with and go from there. Sometimes I even wake up at an odd hour of the morning with a design stuck in my head that I know I just need to try out.

Three lasercut bamboo succulents in natural, purple, and blue: ‘Sometimes I add colour (but never much!) to enhance the simple designs’

When it comes to my digital designs, I aim for simple, striking, and easy to identify. It also helps for me to think ahead for how I will use each design – for example for laser cutting I know the lines need to be bold so they look great when they are etched. These designs I then modify slightly to create my greeting cards - sometimes I add colour (but never much!) to enhance the simple designs.

Kawai avocado, lime and chili print ‘You guac my world!’ pun greeting card by betina-RAHH

My love of kawaii designs, cartoon food with faces, quirky things, bogan aussie slang, sparkly things, animals, anything cheeky and generally a mix of either super bright contrasting colours or subtle earthy tones are my core go-to’s when designing and making anything.

Some of betina-RAHH’s collection of succulent jewellery and greeting cards: ‘My house is filled with things from local makers, artists and handmaidens’

I have always supported handmade and my house is filled with things from local makers, artists and handmaidens. My favourite part of receiving and buying handmade is the love the maker puts into each and every creation. My soaps have rustic edges and smell way better than anything from the supermarket. My walls are filled with one-of-a-kind crochet hangings and art that you will never see in department stores. My handbag essentials pouch is threaded with love by a Madeit maker. Even my keyring is intricately embroidered with love by a Brissy Bayside grandmother. I absolutely love seeing the time and care taken to create things and supporting a real human who does a happy dance when you buy their item.

Betina’s home production line gluing earring backs on lasercut designs: ‘I never realy grew out of my crafty phase and just advanced into pipe cleaners, pom poms and sequins’

Handmade to me has always been something special. You could go into the ‘psychology’ of it and it would probably tell you that my love for handmade started because my ‘love language’ is giving, and everything I make has a piece of me entwined into it.

A pair of lasercut bamboo combi earrings by betina-RAHH

Ever since I was little I had so much creativity and love to give and I wanted to share things with everyone, so I would do this by giving them a drawing, or making them something out of paper, sticks and anything else around the house I could get my hands on! I never really grew out of my crafty phase and just advanced into pipe cleaners, pom poms and sequins.

A bold paid of one-of-a-kind tassel earrings in fuchsia, red, orange and yellow: ‘When I was about 8, my parents got me some beading supplies to play with and it truly started from there’

When I was about 8, my parents got me some beading supplies to play with and it truly started from there. We went on a family holiday to Stradbroke Island and I had been busy making seed bead rings, bracelets and necklaces - they were actually pretty good! There happened to be a market on at the time of our holiday and my mum asked if they would allow me to set up a stall and they said a very enthusiastic yes and waived the stall fee for me! I ended up selling quite a few things that day!

A natural canvas tote printed in one of Betina’s popular ‘bin chicken’ ibis design with the quote: I must be an ibis because I’ve bin chicken you out’

In 2010 when I was made redundant and I had about 3 months between jobs and made more bracelets, necklaces and other beaded creations than I knew what to do with - so that’s when my first official venture started. Beads By Betina was created and I started up a Facebook page and Instagram account and would sell locally to friends, and friends of friends.

A black stubby cooler printed in one of Betina’s popular ‘bin chicken’ ibis designs: ‘(They) now affectionately call me Bin Chicken Betty’

I had success with selling online and at markets and got too excited so branched out into more ideas - I honestly have too many hobbies!!! I also started doing quote prints and greeting cards to inject even more of cheeky personality into my creations and I started designing original images on the computer and finding how to get them laser cut on acrylic and bamboo. A lovely couple in the Sunshine Coast hinterland embraced my weirdness and helped me achieve this, they have also helped bring my other creative ideas to life (like my tote bags!) and now affectionately call me “Bin Chicken Betty”.

The new bright and cheerful betina-RAHH logo

Because I have branched out into so many different things, the name Beads By Betina didn't truly represent me and what I do. I decided it was time for a rebrand and I commissioned a gorgeously talented Melbourne artist who I have admired for a while to create me a 100% personalised and unique logo just for me. This marks the launch of my new brand, “betina-RAHH”! I am now going through the process of rebranding everything to encompass all the weird and wonderful things I do and take me into the next phase of my creative journey - who knows what I will add to my collection next!



Visit betina-RAHH to find more punny jewellery, cards, and more: betina-RAHH

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