Where do you live?
Describe your artistic style.
I like to describe my style as somewhere between funky and whimsical. I was once described as a rare mix of the wry and the absurd!
What inspires you as a designer-artist?
I draw inspiration from everything around me--nature, movies, my eyes are glued to the ears and necks of every star to stroll down a red carpet. Mostly, I just enjoy having a big pile of different beads and allowing them to speak to me.
What materials do you most enjoy working with?
I have a magpie-like tendency toward glittery objects, so Swarovski crystal is a long-time favorite of mine. I also am drawn to the unearthly glitter of dichroic glass. I love the possibilities inherent in sterling silver wire. You can accomplish almost anything with a few feet of it!!! I also really like chainmaille ... you can make such beautiful, structured pieces with it, although it's an art that takes a lot of patience.
What is the name of the piece you submitted with your success story?
What inspired this design?
This design happened while I was experimenting with chainmaille, but I wanted more than just a plain chain necklace. I live to sparkle, after all.
How did it come together?
I started fiddling with some Swarovski open squares, and trying to get them to intersect the chainmaille in a way that looked flawless and natural. The weave was triangular, so I found that bracing the squares between a sandwich of jumprings stabilized the squares in the right direction. Once that was done, I made a simple hook clasp that didn't interfere with the rest of the design.
When and how did you begin making jewelry/beading?
I was introduced to jewelry-making by my sister, while she was making jewelry for her wedding party. After that, I started reconstructing every piece of jewelry I ran into with my eyes, and saying "I could make that!!"
Do you have an artistic background?
My early background in the arts centered on the performing arts ... I was into singing and acting as a child. Jewelry-making was the first craft kind of art that I really felt I was any good at.
How did you discover Fire Mountain Gems and Beads®?
FMG was perhaps the first online store I ordered from ... I was blown away by the sheer number of different things available ... tools and components and beads I'd never even heard of.
Do you belong to any beading societies or beading groups?
I belong to several online beading groups, most notably Beading Daily, which has a wonderful forum full of experienced beaders.
What other hobbies do you have?
I love to sing, although lately it's mostly in the shower, or dancing around the house when I'm alone. I'm dying to learn how to sew so that I can make a quilt. Beading (and trying to sell my work) has required that I learn something about photography, and my skills there are sharpening, but I mostly photograph my beads!
What role does jewelry-making play in your life?
I find jewelry making very soothing and relaxing. There's something very satisfying about starting with a pile of pieces and making something beautiful out of it. I find that if I'm very upset about something, I can put myself into a better mood by making something. I also really like to design pieces specifically for the people around me ... I love being able to "match" a friend's personality!
If you use jewelry-making as a way to bring in income, how are your selling yourself and your jewelry?
I do have a small online store (www.mysticpesto.artfire.com) and I absolutely love entering contests. I also like to design pieces specifically for charity auctions ... my first big sale was at a charity auction.
Do you participate in any charity fundraisers?
I've supported several charities with my bead work, including The World Smile Foundation, Family Health and Social Services, and a few of my contest winners have gone to the American Heart Association.
Any advice for aspiring jewelry-artists?
Base all of your design decisions on what YOU love. Any art is an expression of yourself, and the fact that you're proud of a creation when you're done is the single most important factor in it.
View all of Moira's designs in the Gallery of Designs.