Carla Brauer

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Carla Brauer is an American entrepreneur. Carla started Dermestidarium in 2014 and is based in Dallas, Oregon.[1]

Carla Brauer, founder of DermestidariumCarla Brauer, founder of Dermestidarium




@Dermestidarium (2.25K followers)


Early Career

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Carla started Dermestidarium in 2014. They detail the beginnings of their company in their Starter Story interview: [1]

Q: How did you get started on Dermestidarium?

The first time it occurred to me to clean a skull was over 10 years ago, when I was interning at a goat meat ranch to learn about sustainable farming.

We were harvesting some of the older bucks for meat, and they had long, beautiful horns. It seemed like such a waste to discard what I knew could be a beautiful and fascinating skull, so I tried to clean it. I had NO idea what I was doing, and it turned out to be a mess. But the idea stuck with me, and as I continued working with livestock I ended up with the occasional skull to attempt to clean.

> Give yourself the opportunity to try and the room to fail. Take calculated risks, have backup plans, avoid debt wherever possible, and measure success by the value your business is bringing to your life, not by your perception of how well other people are doing.

I finally got serious enough to bring in some assistants. Several thousand, actually. I mail-ordered a box of Dermestid beetles, the type of flesh-eating beetle that forensic scientists use to clean bones when investigating crime scenes. With the help of my new creepy crawly friends, I honed my craft to produce the best possible results. There's a lot more to the process than just the beetles' work, and because every specimen is unique, I'm always finding new challenges and ways to improve my process.

how-i-started-a-successful-side-business-cleaning-animal-skulls Dermestid Beetles

When people meet me now, they usually assume I've spent my whole life living in the country, working with farm animals and hunting, as I do today.

But the truth is that my background couldn't be more different - I grew up in a big city, and spent many of my younger years as a vegan animal rights activist. While animals and the ethics of what we eat have always been important to me, my relationship to those things has changed as I've learned and grown over my lifetime. My transition from being vegan to becoming the farming, hunting, bone cleaning person I am today was the subject of my TEDx talk, which you can find here.

Source [1]