Debra Gibbs

Debra Gibbs

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


Meet the Designer-Artist

Where do you live?
Summerville, South Carolina.... which is a small historical town, just outside of Charleston, South Carolina.

Describe your artistic style.
Elegant, colorful, peaceful, sparkly.

What inspires you as a designer-artist?
Colors and shapes that are pleasing to the eye. And usefulness of the item.

What materials do you most enjoy working with?
Swarovski crystals, pearls and flat back rhinestones.

What is the name of the piece you submitted with your success story?
Lavender Pearl Bracelet

What inspired this design?
I was thinking about what would be lovely and perfect to create for a bride or flower girl... that would be soft, a little sparkly, blend in with a pastel color theme, and beautiful.

How did it come together?
I was working on a creation for a bridal client of mine in white pearl with a small dangle charm, and then I found the Swarovski crystal pearls in all of these beautiful colors (from Fire Mountain Gems) and I began creating different colored bracelets with matching ankle bracelets.

Share Your Background

When and how did you begin making jewelry/beading?
I began working with crystals back in 1999. I think the craze on the cell phone charms is what got me started, and then my work evolved from there.

Who introduced you to beading?
I found it on my own.

Do you have an artistic background?
Yes, I majored in art when I was younger. I am sure that is what helps me now.

How did you discover Fire Mountain Gems and Beads®?
A bead magazine.

What other hobbies do you have?
Boating, traveling, and simply being near or on the ocean.

Beading Success

What role does jewelry-making play in your life?
Working with crystals is my full-time job. This is my new career. I retired from 2 other careers that I had. (Nail technician 18 years, and bartender 17 years.)

If you used jewelry-making as a way to bring in income, how are you selling yourself and your jewelry?
I promote and sell my creations on Etsy and Artfire. I used to do the craft festivals, but found it to be too much manual labor and not enough profit. So I no longer put my energy into that. This is the first contest that I have entered. I post permanent laminated brochures in various locations with my business cards attached. I wear my creations everyday to promote myself on a daily basis, and constantly hand out my business cards that I keep in my wallet with me.

Do you participate in any charity fundraisers?
I always donate my creations to local charity fundraisers.

Any advice for aspiring jewelry-artists?
Hang in there. Have faith in your craft, and create from your heart.