Mark Todd, Staff Writer 20.JUL.10
Aubrey and Shasta Deaver of the Little River community are blessed with creative gifts and have been putting them to good use.
Aubrey, 26, is a wastewater technician by day and an artist who works with metal by night and on weekends.
Welding, metal art and more are his specialties.
His wife, Shasta, 27, is a teller supervisor with the State Employees Credit Union. Her background in business and design is now put to use as a website manager, photographer and office manager in her time away from the credit union.
In early 2007 the couple started their family business, Iron Expressions, at their home off Crab Creek Road near the Little River Baptist Church.
The green stucco house they live in is also a product of their hard work and creativity.
It has been transformed by the couple from a bland, rundown building that used to house an antique store, gas station and beauty parlor into a completely different place.
Again, their determination and attention to detail got the work done complete with new interior walls finished with heavy wood panels.
They have a garden, a separate workshop, five dogs and a cat and keep going from morning to night.
There have been a few near disasters along the way. Welding can be dangerous, and Shasta said of her husband, “he’s been on fire a couple of times.”
At the age of 14, he spent three months at a Shiner’s Hospital in Ohio recovering from an accident that involved lacquer thinner.
Despite that, his enthusiasm has not lessened.
Ideas come from all sorts of objects that he sees, including flowers, while animals such as wolves and bears inspire other work.
“I try to stay away from stuff that people have already done,” he said.
The business has grown via word of mouth, through the Web site, and appearances at a variety of arts and crafts shows.
Their first invitation to a show was the Cashiers Valley Spring Fling last year. Things went well and they have become regulars on the crafts show circuit since then.
While they sell a number of items from their existing inventory, they do much of their work to order.
Have an old shovel or piece of iron that you’d like to turn into collectible art? They can help.
Aubrey graduated from Brevard High School in 2002 and enjoyed welding, shop and maintenance work while there.
Shasta is a graduate of the class of 2000 and enjoyed business and art at Brevard High.
The welding experience Aubrey received in high school built the foundation on which they were able to create their own business.
He was initially in a masonry class located not far from the welding class. The sparks caught his eye and masonry was soon in his rearview mirror.
He began early on using scrap metal to make tables and plant stands and helped raise money for the school by selling his creations.
He finds it hard to relax, he admitted.
“I’ve got to be doing something,” he said.
Leroy Richter, his welding instructor, immediately noticed something special in Aubrey and began encouraging and fostering his growth.
Richter continued to teach Aubrey even after high school, as they became partners in a welding business of their own.
As Aubrey’s skills grew, so did his creativity.
Soon after they founded their own business, the couple expanded beyond just welding and handrails to include metal art and custom ironwork.
Copper pictures with metal frames, fire screens, yard art and much more are among the creations.
As Shasta said, yard art “adds color all year and you can’t kill it.”
He bases his designs on the personality and home decor that customers have and goes from there. The result, he said, is “anything anybody can imagine.”
This approach allowed Aubrey to explore his passion for making unique products and nurtured his creativity.
Shasta contributes her own artistic abilities to the work helping with design, coming up with new ideas, painting, and using her love of photography to capture and display their work. They have an online photo gallery where anyone interested can browse through photos of their work. The website also has a blog and a show schedule so customers can stay up to date on their upcoming shows.
The web address is www.ironexpressions.com
The couple may also be reached by phone at 877-3655.
Special Thanks to Mark Todd & John Lanier of the Transylvania Times. We really appreciate you guys!