Los Angeles Artist Alexandra Koiv Creates Lasting Memorials for Beloved Pet Companions

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Now celebrating her fifth year of creating pet urns, Alexandra Koiv's Internet-based business is flourishing. The site, http://www.custompeturns.com, is visited by people throughout the US and internationally as well. Her work has become so successful that she has recently expanded by inviting other known artists to create urn designs. Most current is work by James Hill, Steve Shelby and Stacia Lang.

Some people will send a photo of their pet, and I can use the image to create custom pet urns. I also have a memorial page on the site where I can post the picture of their pet

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Artist Alexandra Koiv had more than fifteen years experience working in metal when a fellow artist asked her to create a pet urn for the ashes of his beloved cat. Initially, she wondered how to create a piece that would be both art and a memorial. Her experience as an artist and her lifetime devotion to animals proved to be a magical combination: when she finished the piece, both she and her friend were delighted.

Pet ownership is more popular than ever. Thanks to modern veterinary medicine, pets now have much longer life expectancies, making the bond between them and their owners even stronger. Today, pets are family members in the truest sense. Yet strangely, when Koiv made her first pet urn, she was surprised to find the urns available to memorialize lost pets were not, in her view, unique or special. More importantly, she wanted to offer artworks which “celebrated the joyous, happy times” people have had with a loved companion. Now in her fifth year of creating pet urns, her internet-based business is flourishing. Her site, http://www.custompeturns.com, is visited by people throughout the US and internationally as well. She offers a variety of urns for cats and dogs, and also will custom design an urn on request.

Working in steel, Koiv hand writes pet names and other messages lovingly on the metal. “Some people will send a photo of their pet, and I can use the image to create custom pet urns. I also have a memorial page on the site where I can post the picture of their pet,” she explains. A devoted pet lover herself, Koiv says she spends a lot of time with her customers on the phone, as they work through the shock and grief of their loss.

One bereaved cat owner wrote: “We received Tycho's urn on Friday, March 28th, in perfect condition…I was truly moved by the depth of care and attention you gave to packing and presenting “Angel Kitty”. I cried as soon as I saw and smelled the beautiful packing materials enclosed. I really felt as though you knew and loved Tycho…I want to give you my heartfelt thanks for making this painful experience a little easier. You are a true artist to the core - very sensitive and respectful, professional and thoughtful.”

Koiv’s work has become so successfully, she has expanded by inviting other known artists to create urn designs. Most current is work by James Hill, Steve Shelby and Stacia Lang. Prices range from around $100 for the urns available on the site to $400-500 and up for custom-designed pieces.

Koiv finds deep satisfaction in helping grieving pet owners transition into a time when they can remember their pet with love for the time they spent together. “Nothing can restore their loved one,” she says, “but in time they are able to look at the memorial urn with fondness and joy. It preserves not only the ashes, but the loving memories.”

For more information about Alex Koiv and her pet urns, please visit http://www.custompeturns.com, call 323-222-9533.

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