Hi, this is me: beetle breeder and jewelry and decoration maker!
My name is Livia and I breed and keep beetles as pets. After they pass away, I immortalize them in either a piece of wearable jewelry or home decoration.
Why and How did I become a beetle breeder?
It all started in summer 2014: when visiting a herpetology shop in Germany, I discovered beetles could be kept as pets at home in a terrarium. These beautiful creatures that I played with in the garden as a kid could be kept as pets to admire – exotic ones no less – whoa! I started reading up on the matter via websites, fora and some books. By the end of 2014 I knew what I was talking about, had my setup ready and was ready to purchase some beetles. I chose a nice beginners’ species called Chlorocala africana to get started with – and the rest is history! Many years later, still at it and with much expertise.
However, I realized something quite rapidly: Adult beetles usually only have a lifespan of a few months, so what do I do next? What to do with their bodies after they pass away? Being quite the fan of taxidermy myself, I had to learn how to preserve them. With much love for symmetry I embarked on my insect preservation journey and became really good at it.
The main goal was creating jewelry – for myself at first -, because it would be unique and weird and handmade. After a lot of trial and error with resin, I had found out what works best for the preserved beetles and how to go about it. I started wearing my own jewelry in 2015 and it sparked an interest and admiration in friends and strangers alike. I kept pushing myself and started breeding larger beetles, so after a while I was making decoration with the bigger specimens as well.
In 2016 I decided to turn my hobby into a small business. Basically I wanted my beetles to pay for themselves. By selling excess larvae and jewelry, my beetles would fund the purchase of their food, rearing tubs, substrate,as well as jewelry making supplies. I just needed a name…
The name consists of two components. Coleoptera as it denotes the order of the beetles, and crypt because it signifies a burial chamber – either in an underground catacomb or in a mausoleum. The name summarized the post mortem processing and honoring of beetles quite well. Et voila, January 2017 I had my official side hustle.