Fire Mountain Gems and Beads' Jewelry-Making Contest 2010 featuring SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS
Meet the Designer-Artist
Where do you live?
Describe your artistic style.
The Egyptian link has drawn me from the moment I started learning how to wire bend. Maybe as a metaphor of the cycles of life, I feel each piece is a celebration of life and the earth metals and gems to help me remember to enjoy and live each day.
What inspires you as a designer-artist?
Colors are my inspirations in themselves. Add to beautiful colors the simplicity and sheen of silver, copper or gold then a smile of appreciation from someone and my heart melts and new ideas form. Of course my husband reads books to me as I bend my wire and I interrupt him for his opinion.
What materials do you most enjoy working with?
Pretty shiny crystals or brilliant colors from nature added to metals using the complicated and time consuming Egyptian link.
What is the name of the piece you submitted with your success story?
Lady Kiya (Mother of Tutankhamun) Bracelet
What inspired this design?
The goldsmith of a pharaoh 3500 years ago made a complicated interlocking link. Starting with this famous Egyptian link, I added colorful Swarovski beads making it my personal statement and worthy of the mother of the famous King Tut.
How did it come together?
I will always love any color close to turquoise, then I wanted royal purple...somehow I added the grey which set off the other colors and sterling silver with a Swarovski sparkly subtle beauty. I think the original plan was about 50% of the final piece.
Share Your Background
When and how did you begin making jewelry/beading?
My first copper wire bending attempt was to make a beautiful necklace to help with my arthritis. I used the Egyptian link for the first time and fell in love with it.
Who introduced you to beading?
As a child, I knew a local artist who made her own ceramic beads and her own glazes. I was the only kid in school with a kiln in my kitchen and my mother and I would create beautiful things together.
Do you have an artistic background?
I have a lifetime of loving art. I studied art in Italy for a semester in college. From age 8 through college, I was in theatre as a dancer, choreographer and helped design costumes for our local productions. Now years later I thought I was creative until my jewelry was accepted at our Art Museum gift shop in Reno and now I feel the artist inside me wants to do more and more and more.
How did you discover Fire Mountain Gems and Beads®?
Great place to purchase abundance and beautiful inspiration for jewelry.
What other hobbies do you have?
I have a thing for Jane Austen and Charles Dickens, so yes I like to read. Nature hikes are important to me. I am trying to learn French!!!
Do you belong to any beading societies or beading groups?
Sometimes I get together with local groups for fundraising sales.
What role does jewelry-making play in your life?
My work is great, but it is difficult to see the progress of severely mentally ill people. I have always needed to do something with my hands to make something...quilts, clothing, and candles. Nothing has fulfilled my evenings like making this jewelry and listening to my husband read a thriller or biography while I spin 20 feet of wire and some gorgeous gems or beads into a beautiful piece of jewelry.
If you used jewelry-making as a way to bring in income, how are you selling yourself and your jewelry?
My successes are related to the Nevada Art Museum Gift Shop and fundraisers. I sell in two shops, one in Carson City, Nevada and the other in Berkeley, California. My web store on etsy.com is called earthblessing and although I don't sell much on the web, people ask to see my jewelry and touch it and buy it.
Do you participate in any charity fundraisers?
I am often asked to give and I do so...I am happy to be able to help raise money. The last cause I donated jewelry to was for the fishermen affected by the oil spill.
Any advice for aspiring jewelry-artists?
Do what you love and the money will follow!!!