Linda Valentino

Many Lives, Many Futures

Meet the Designer-Artist

Where do you live?
Seminole, Florida

What inspires you as a designer-artist?
My mom and dad were my inspirations, they taught me that if you put your mind towards anything you can accomplish it, my mom taught me that food comes first, to look into how the food looks that is how you create your work of art, since my mom was Italian born, she said the creation of the land is from the vegetables when I create my works of art I look at how they are in circle or oval form.

What medium do you work with mostly?
Mostly crystals

Why did you become enchanted with this style of jewelry-making?
I am retired now, and longed to help others with their cause. My friend Alisa Savoretti was fighting cancer and lost a breast, so now it’s time to help her with her cause.

Where and How do you sell your jewelry?
I help with charities, I sell at boutiques and art shows.

What is the name of the piece you submitted with your success story?
My inspiration for the octopus bracelet was the tentacles are for all the lost lives in cancer. I lost many friends and family due to this tragedy. Name of the bracelets are "Many Lives, Many Futures".

What inspired this design?
My inspiration was because of my two cousins, Marie, who was diagnosed and passed of breast cancer, she loved life and her family. Her sister Stella, also diagnosed and also had her right breast removed, is still alive and fighting this.

My cousin Stella loved my bracelet. She said it made her happy to know that they swayed when wearing it, she was not the only one with this and that all the lives that represent others who are going to be survivors in this fight, to feel that we are all going through this together.

How did it come together?
The coming together of the bracelets was when I learned how to do peyote stitch, and I had trouble learning this... and for some reason my cousin Marie came to me in a dream to start selling this design to others so they can wear proudly this product of "Many Lives, Many Futures" to be aware that they have many more lives to live.

The product is using number 6mm glass beads with a peyote stitch, using FireLine® thread, number 8, and clasps made of sterling sliders and I have used not only glass beads and crystal bicones but many other styles as well.

I make them to have at least no less than 100 strands. I have made them to have 1,000 strands for those who have lost many members and friends due to cancer.

Each strand represents a life for 5 years represent the colors it is, for example, the colors red, pink, blue and so on has started with one year for that person lived. If they lived for 40 years, I make them to last 40 years which equals to 5 years per color. So the strand and each color represents that person’s age. Top blue is age 1, color purple is 5, orange 10, green 15, yellow age 20 and so on every five years.