When did you first start making jewelry and how did you learn?
I've been crafting as long as I can remember. There were a few beaded projects at girl scout camp and the staple friendship bracelets in middle school. However, I got serious about it around 2000 when a friend showed me a necklace she had made. From there, I took off learning from books and magazine. While I'm mostly self-taught, I have taken a few classes at local bead stores to learn specific techniques. I'm always eager to learn more.
Can you remember the first piece you made?
No, nothing specifically. Most of the early stuff was just beads strung on beading wire or memory wire.
Where do you look for inspiration?
Everywhere! I find inspiration in other artists' work and in nature. I see designs in my dreams and color palettes. Most of the time, it's the materials themselves that speak to me and let me know what they want to become.
What's your craft space like and how do you organize your supplies?
As for my craft space, I'm lucky enough to have a whole room in our house dedicated to my art. It's packed to the brim with all my craft supplies and found objects.
For now, my beads and findings are mostly stored in a large metal cabinet with loads of drawers. It was a sweet find at an antique store. I've also got several bookcases in the room and closet with all kinds of containers to hold all my tools and supplies. There's a window seat with storage under it, and a vintage hutch with more bits and bobs packed into it.
With so much stashed in one room, I have visions of a larger space. One day I hope to have a little building on our property that I'll dub as my craft cottage. A girl can dream!
What music/podcasts/TV shows do you love to craft along to?
Because my husband also works from home, I try to keep the noise and distractions down as much as possible. However, I will turn on YouTube videos from time to time.
Do you do any other crafts and what are your hobbies?
In addition to jewelry-making, I've lately gotten into mixed media art. You can find me playing in my art journal or altering playing cards with paint, paper, pencils, stamps, stickers, and other embellishments. I'm hoping to progress to larger wall-art pieces that include assemblage of found objects. But, I'm taking it little by little. As well, I'm still hoping to learn to sew and knit at some point!
As well as crafting, I love to go thrifting, read, kayak, camp, get in the water as much as possible, and spend time with friends and family.
Is there anything else you'd like to add?
Being an artist is a constant learning process. Not everything will be perfect the first time around (for most of us anyway.) And, you don't have to keep every piece you ever made just because you made it. If you don't like it, take it apart and make something even better. Life is all about getting the chance to start over. Every day is a new opportunity!
I love this quote from Neil Gaiman:
"I hope that in this year to come, you make mistakes.
Because if you are making mistakes, then you are making new things, trying new things, learning, living, pushing yourself, changing yourself, changing your world. You’re doing things you’ve never done before, and more importantly, you’re Doing Something.
So that’s my wish for you, and all of us, and my wish for myself. Make New Mistakes. Make glorious, amazing mistakes. Make mistakes nobody’s ever made before. Don’t freeze, don’t stop, don’t worry that it isn’t good enough, or it isn’t perfect, whatever it is: art, or love, or work or family or life.
Whatever it is you’re scared of doing, Do it.
Make your mistakes, next year and forever."