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Leather Girl

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FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WPTA21) - It's an art form as old as the hills on a medium even older. Leather has been mankind's companion for millennia, for clothing, shelter and thousands of other uses and over the centuries leather working has evolved into something magnificent.

“I love being able to take a blank canvas, draw out a design and then use different tools to create textures” says leather artist Katarina Floyd.

The millennia-old tradition of leather working is being practiced today at Katarena Floyd's Fort Wayne home where this young woman carries on her own tradition of creating art that began at an early age.

“I used to type up books on my grandma's computer,” she says, “and then I would draw pictures for the stories.” 'Which was more fun?' we ask. “Illustrating”.

Katarena Floyd's relationship with leather goes back years, to her days of breaking wild horses...training them for riding and pulling carts. Over time she developed a deep appreciation for the leather tack and saddles that made her life with horses possible. At 29 years old she now uses her favorite medium to create one-of-a-kind wallets, purses, belts...jewelry..pendants, brooches..lovely earrings she decorates and paints, often using Native American symbols and motifs that honor her own Native American blood. This is no home hobby to pass the time, Katrena has worked in sales, built horse drawn carriages and furniture and her plan is to grow her leather working into a full time business.

“It would be nice to open a store eventually and be able to meet customers,” she says, “go through different colors in person and help them create the functional leather products they want to use in their everyday life.”

Katarena already has a business partner, about to launch the Bliss Brand Company, manufacturer of leather, silver and gemstone jewelry and accessories. She'll market her work on a website and Facebook page to start but that store she dreams of is no doubt on the horizon. A livelihood and life in art born years ago when she discovered art and horses and the joy of creating. A Path Katarena Floyd seems destined to follow as she hammers out her own life in art.

Eric Olson

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