Circles and Pearls Necklace
Meet the Designer-Artist
Where do you live?
Describe your artistic style.
I'd call my style ''check out what I found at the Bazaar.'' I love the look and feel of ancient jewelry, so I'm very inspired by Egyptian, Greco-Roman, Celtic, pre-Columbian, anything utterly handmade.
What inspires you as a designer-artist?
Inspiration for me comes from process. Once I have a flash of an idea, or have tried a new technique I can't help but spawn numerous ideas from it. Physically working, whether drawing, or just diving into my materials seems to make me thirsty for more work.
What materials do you most enjoy working with?
Well, I LOVE 18Kt gold, but I haven't got the budget. Since I'm very into wire right now sterling is wonderful, but right now I'm having a brass moment (partially because of cost, but it also suits my ''bazaar'' style) I also love colorful glass and gemstone beads.
What is the name of the piece you submitted with your success story?
Circles and Pearls Necklace
What inspired this design?
This piece was inspired by pectoral designs. Loosely.
How did it come together?
It was fairly planned, but the end result also pleasantly surprised me.
Share Your Background
When and how did you begin making jewelry/beading?
I think I was about 10 years old when I began beading. I explored wire, beads, macramé, and even had the chance to do some real metalwork in high school.
Who introduced you to beading?
I'd say I introduced myself. I think I was trying to do '20s beaded dresses for my Barbie Dolls.
Do you have an artistic background?
Yes, it's a pretty terminal condition. It's pretty much how I have defined myself. I have 2 degrees, an AAS from Fashion Institute of Technology in fashion design, and a BFA in Jewelry and metals from Rhode Island School of Design. Since then I have worked as a professional jeweler, a kitchen designer, and in sales. Now I'm rediscovering my roots in beading and wire.
How did you discover Fire Mountain Gems and Beads®?
Through a friend who needed help meeting the assortable amounts! We would pool orders to get the 15+ discount in college.
What other hobbies do you have?
Knitting, sewing, and cake decorating.
Do you belong to any beading societies or beading groups?
Not right now.
What role does jewelry-making play in your life?
I've found that I am a miserable person without jewelry-making! Seriously, miserable myself, and a pain to be around. So I soldier on with my toddlers grabbing my supplies, and husband tasking over the mess, and having to pack it all into a tiny apartment. The alternative was not pretty. In 18 months or so I hope to return to actually earning money.
Any advice for aspiring jewelry-artists?
Don't give up! Get some kind of connection with other artistic people, and just do it for the joy. Focusing on money or salability has always been deadly for my creativity. Also, for those of you suffering from Art-school trauma - there is a place for everyone and every style. Even if you have a dry spell for YEARS, you can get back your voice, or maybe really find it.
View all of Laura's designs in the Gallery of Designs.