Maker: Marina of Pliers & String

I absolutely LOVE how Marina of Pliers & String decided upon her business name. Something in her decision making criteria really resonates with me.  Meet Marina and go online to check out her crafts!


Please introduce yourself. 

Hello! My name is Marina Ivanova and I’m originally from Bulgaria. I currently live in Los Angeles, CA with the love of my life and our two dogs.

What do you make or do?

I make jewelry. My pieces combine different methods; I cold-forge, create intricate assemblies, and work a lot with fiber. I’m currently working on lost wax carvings to cast in silver and bronze, and I’m very excited about that!

Pliers & String

Where can we find your creations?

You can find my things on my website or etsy, and you can follow me on Instagram.

Pliers & String

Is there an interesting story behind the name of your business?

It took me a while to come up with Pliers & String. I wanted to convey a broader concept so as to leave lots of room for exploration. I’ve been all sorts of crafty in my life—I sew, draw, make pretty much anything I can figure out how to make—the name Pliers & String, to me, is symbolic of the infinite possibilities a few simple tools and the imagination can bring forth.

Pliers & String

How long have you been creating and is it your full-time job?

My ultimate goal is to make this my full-time job! I’ve been in the fashion industry for 15 years, ten of which I spent designing apparel for two GUESS? Inc. brands. I left corporate fashion a couple years ago and took a good chunk of time to recharge and complete various creative projects that I never had time to tackle, and that’s when Pliers & String was born.

Where do you find inspiration?

I am largely inspired by materials, shapes, textures. I get into lots of trouble in bead and fabric stores. I’m also a bit of a hoarder, so…let’s just say our closet space is dwindling.

Pliers & String

What’s on the horizon for you and what you do?

My next priority is growing the wholesale portion of my business. I love interacting with customers face-to-face—curated markets and event trunk shows are a great way to do that. Landing some recurring wholesale accounts and building relationships with store buyers is my next goal.

What inspiring advice would you give to other creatives be they established or just starting out?

It’s so easy to fall into a negative thought pattern and doubt yourself and what you are doing, to stop before you even try. I think creatives especially identify with that because what we do is so personal, our work is part of us, and putting it out in the world can make you feel very vulnerable. Nobody likes failure, or rejection. So my advice (to myself, too) is to accept that there will be rejection, and failure, but—I came across this quote recently—failure is not the opposite of success, it’s part of success. Keep going and doing what you love.

Pliers & String

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