Teresa ''Teri'' Ford

Teresa ''Teri'' Ford

Fire Mountain Gems and Beads' Jewelry-Making Contest 2010 featuring Crystal

Meet the Designer-Artist

Where do you live?
Kelso, Washington

Describe your artistic style.
I can do any style, Indian, classic, modern, retro and I do more than beading and jewelry-making.

What inspires you as a designer-artist?
Color! Beauty! Shapes! When I see something, anything and I like it, I can immediately see color combo/shapes which create the beauty.

What materials do you most enjoy working with?
Beads, clay, yarn, thread, candlewax, material, paint, felt pen, pencil.

What is the name of the piece you submitted with your success story?
Versatility (Multiuse Necklace or Belt)

What inspired this design?
This particular design was meant for the 1.5mm cube beads and fringe beads, but I knew that this would look more dramatic with crystal and 24Kt beads with the crystal square or round artemis pieces.

How did it come together?
My plan was the crystal and gold to double the wrap on the neck and create into a belt. Yes, the longer it became, the more I knew this could be a very "versatile chain." This is also very dainty. You need to hold it and tie it very slowly and gingerly. Also, because I was so pushed for time to enter this piece, the squares are not what I consider finished. But I didn't want to change anything after submitting.

Share Your Background

When and how did you begin making jewelry/beading?
About seven years ago.

Who introduced you to beading?
Myself, I bought some pretty beads and a book and started to learn by using embroidery floss.

Do you have an artistic background?
My grandmother made hand-stitched quilts, which were on display at every capitol building in the lower 48 states on a five-year tour. My mom also makes handmade quilts and other crafts. I made my first hand-stitched baby doll blanket at age six.

How did you discover Fire Mountain Gems and BeadsĀ®?
Through the man who owned the one and only bead store in my town.

What other hobbies do you have?
Crochet, sewing, coloring, claywork, wirework, writing, pattern making, paper like scrapbook, signs, interior decorating. And all of this from my bed. Bed ridden 20 hours a day, seven days a week and I'm a DBE amputee/paraplegic.

Do you belong to any beading societies or beading groups?
No, just me and a friend. We both entered in 2008. I was a bronze medal winner with you for my seed beaded patchwork purse and she was a finalist with her beaded wire hurricane lamp.

Beading Success

What role does jewelry-making play in your life?
If it wasn't for my beading number one and other crafts, I'd go crazy being bedridden. And this is a full-time career, I really do start working @ 7am and go until midnight-two am. 7 days a week. This is my life.

If you used jewelry-making as a way to bring in income, how are you selling yourself and your jewelry?
Did markets and consignment shops, but now I'm starting a store on the web.

Do you participate in any charity fundraisers?
Breast Cancer.

Any advice for aspiring jewelry-artists?
Start small, one or 2 items at a time. Keep your first one as your prototype.

View all of Teri's designs in the Gallery of Designs.