Hermon nurse finds creative outlet in clay earring business

Published: May. 12, 2022 at 5:21 PM EDT
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HERMON, Maine (WABI) - It’s National Nurses Week.

For the past two plus years, the pandemic has made the challenging profession even tougher. TV5 caught up with one nurse from Hermon who discovered a way to escape from the everyday by channeling her energy into creating something beautiful.

“Working full-time as a nurse, I was looking for a hobby, something to get my mind off the pandemic and something I could kind of escape to,” Kelsey Gaghan said. “I saw clay earrings online and thought, ‘I can do this!’”

NICU nurse Kelsey Gaghan says she’s always been crafty, but it wasn’t until 2020 that she was able to cash in on her creativity.

“I bought some clay and started making earrings for my family and friends, and then it kind of blew up on my social media,” Gaghan said.

Paying homage to both her great-grandmother and the State of Maine, Gaghan named her business Olive & Pine Company.

In addition to an online shop, she’s also selling in a number of local brick-and-mortars as her popularity catches on.

“Probably two months ago I was out to dinner with my family and I saw a girl wearing a pair of earrings that I made, so I had to go up to her. That was a very cool moment for me. You always wonder, ‘Where are people wearing my earrings? What outfits are they wearing?’” Gaghan explained. “It was so cool to see her wearing them out to dinner with her family. I said ‘Hi’ and ‘I made your earrings!’”

Gaghan estimates she’s made a couple thousand earrings in all. Other than her husband, who lends a hand by making boxes, she’s a one-woman band.

The NICU nurse -- finding a labor of love in creating her own works of art by hand.

“I usually get inspiration by mixing different colors of clay, so all of the colors that I make are all hand mixed. You know, I’ll take different colors and mix them together and think of, ‘Oh, this would be a nice shape or size or style.’” Gaghan said. “But, I don’t make anything that I wouldn’t wear myself, so I try my best!”

As a way to show appreciation for her colleagues, Kelsey is offering a Nurses’ Week discount.

You can enter “NursesWeek22″ at checkout for 22% off her online store, oliveandpinecompany.com. The promotion runs until Friday night.

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