SHELBY, N.C. (AP) — When a friend gave Beth Coiner two delicate fishbones she had found on the beach one day, Coiner knew she wanted to create a pair of earrings out of the slender filaments with tiny razor tooth edges, but she never anticipated they would end up in a comedy horror film.
The Menu, which is available on Netflix, has several scenes where actress Hong Chau is wearing the Shelby woman’s creations.
Coiner said filming was taking place in Savannah, and the costumer designer saw the earrings in a Charleston shop, called Worthwhile, where Coiner was selling some of her work. They ended up buying them to be worn in the movie and then requested six more pairs, which were sent back to Coiner after filming was done.
Coiner said when she got a call letting her know they not only wanted a main character in a feature film to wear her jewelry, but that it would be clearly visible on camera, she was excited.
“I was like, is this real?” she said. “I was glad it was in a great movie.”
She described The Menu as a “foodie kind of movie.”
“It’s a good movie. I’m pleased to be associated with it,” she said.
Coiner said she did a jewelry show in Greenville before Christmas and had three fishbone earrings in the show and they all sold, in part thanks to their claim to fame.
She has one pair left but can make more.
Coiner, who has a studio in her Shelby home, uses molds to create the earrings.
She still has the original fishbones used to make the mold as well.
Coiner, who is a dancer turned jeweler, spent an idyllic childhood in Washington, North Carolina, on the banks of the Pamlico River, before moving with her family to Shelby when she was a senior in high school.
Following her graduation, she went to Columbia College, a women’s liberal arts college in South Carolina, for dance and ended up in New York City where she was a modern dancer. While in New York, she also began looking for other creative outlets and started taking a jewelry class.
In 2001 she was ready for a change and moved to Charleston, South Carolina, where her parents had a condo and she began attending Penland School of Craft and learned the basics of metal working and eventually moved into a studio space for artists and started selling some of her work in local stores.
“My work was influenced by the surroundings of the beach and the low country,” she said.
She would make molds of shells and sharks teeth and create bracelets, necklaces, earrings and more.
Coiner eventually moved back to Shelby to help take care of her mother who was facing some health problems and has remained here.
She currently makes a lot of “bespoke” jewelry, which is custom pieces made from old jewelry.
She said she can take a ring that belonged to someone’s grandmother, remove the stones, come up with a whole new design, and create a whole new piece.
“I really like the custom work, it’s such an intimate process,” Coiner said. “It’s sentimental, everyone has a story.”
She described it as being an intimate exchange, similar to choreographing a dance.