Fire Mountain Gems and Beads' Jewelry-Making Contest 2010 featuring Swarovski crystal
||Meet the Designer-Artist
Where do you live?
Describe your artistic style.
My husband calls it "funky", but I just like making things that are different. My creations might be graceful or sporty, steampunk or comprised of vintage findings but, as yet, I haven't made the same thing twice.
What inspires you as a designer-artist?
I generally choose beads or findings whose color or shape attracts me and take it from there. I've also begun a list of designs I'd like to do based upon things I see around me.
What materials do you most enjoy working with?
Honestly, beads that I don't have to struggle to see. I also want to experiment more with decorative wire-wrapping.
What is the name of the piece you submitted with your success story?
Sparkle Around Earrings
What inspired this design?
It was a combination of the contest theme and the weather turning colder here. I love the spring and summer, so I focused on those seasons when I made the earrings. It kept my mind off the cold outside.
How did it come together?
I chose the materials I hoped to use but, as often is the case, the beads and findings seem to "tell you" what they want to do despite your initial plans.
Share Your Background
When and how did you begin making jewelry/beading?
A young acquaintance of mine told me that her favorite saying was "Love Never Ends." I thought it was sweet and wanted to gift her something with the phrase. I chose to buy letter beads and made her a simple necklace and bracelet of beads strung on suede cord. Of course, I was left with almost a whole box full of letter beads. Being thrifty, I didn't want to let them go to waste. Following my little friend's positive theme, I created my "Upbeat" bracelet--using the letter beads to form dozens of positive words on a long memory wire spiral of a bracelet. I had fun with both projects, had seen all the other beads in the craft store and decided to try making other jewelry items. I then took some lessons at a local bead store, subscribed to a beading magazine and read a lot of "how to" docs online.
Do you have an artistic background?
Nothing formal, although I've always loved doing arts and crafts.
How did you discover Fire Mountain Gems and Beads®?
Recommendation of a friend.
What other hobbies do you have?
My husband and I run a small antiques business, and I enjoy doing the research for that. I also enjoy sewing, photography and cooking.
What role does jewelry-making play in your life?
Beading is a relaxing outlet for my creativity. My desire is to turn it into a feasible part-time career.
If you used jewelry-making as a way to bring in income, how are you selling yourself and your jewelry?
I have a website at www.jewelitts.com and participate in crafts shows.
Do you participate in any charity fundraisers?
I participate in the annual Bead-It-Forward bead-quilt project to benefit breast cancer research.
Any advice for aspiring jewelry-artists?
Fashion is faddish and changes with the wind. If it's not an endeavor necessary to putting food on the table, make what you enjoy creating so that the activity stays fresh and fun.
View all of Elyce's designs in the Gallery of Designs.