We all have career goals, right? When I first started making jewelry, one of mine was to have my work published. I still remember what that first piece was. It was a woven cocktail ring made out of Swarovski crystals and Miyuki seed beads. After that, it was to have a piece published in Beadwork magazine. Another ring design was born. And then another after that.
(From left to right: Crystal Cocktail Rings published in Step by Step Beads magazine, November/December 2007; Flirty Flower Ring published in Beadwork magazine, February/March 2008; and Simple Twist Ring in Beadwork magazine, August/September 2009. All of these will be available in PDF and kit form on my website very soon.)
I took a hiatus for a while. I wasn't very active with the beading world from about 2010 until about 2015. I was still making things, I just wasn't publishing. My job had become geared more toward the purchasing and product management end of things, so I wasn't playing in the beads as much as I was buying them and counting them and selling them for others to enjoy.
In 2015, something lit a fire under my butt and I got really excited about beads again. I think it was all the cool new Czech glass beads - SuperDuos, Crescents, Honeycombs... I could go on and on! I started designing again. And my work was once again being featured on the glossy pages of my favorite beading magazine. I had four pieces published in one year.
(From left to right: Heavy Metal Bracelet published in Beadwork magazine, December/January 2017; Copper Connections Necklace published in Beadwork magazine, June/July 2017; Beads In Bloom Bracelet published in Beadwork magazine, February/March 2017. The In Bloom Bracelet is currently available in kit form.)
And then... MY WORK WAS ON THE COVER FOR THE FIRST TIME EVER!!!!!!! I could not be more proud of this necklace and bracelet set, and I have even designed an entire collection around this color palette.
Even after having the honor of being on the cover, never ever EVER in my wildest dreams did I envision that one day in the lazy days of summer, I would be contacted by the editor of Beadwork magazine to be told I was under consideration for Designer of the Year. Could I submit a few samples of some pieces I might like to highlight? Sure, no pressure. When I found out I had received this honor (I'm not worthy, I'm not worthy), I was over the moon excited. It has been the hardest secret I have ever had to keep. But it's here! It's finally here! And not only is it here, but my work was on the cover AGAIN!
What's next? Well, as a Designer of the Year, I will have a piece featured in each of the magazine's six issues over the course of the year. I already have all of them done and I know what's in store. Number three is my favorite and the last one will be as much of a show-stopper as the Tucson Vista necklace was. That's all I can say about that, but I promise to share them as soon as I can. Suffice it to say, this is an incredible honor, but I feel like it is just the beginning. I am already working on new pieces to feature here as well as in the mags. Stay tuned for more!