How did you find beading, and what do you feel was the “hook” that has kept you beading?
See bio: the hook that keeps me beading is the endless creativity it provides. If you change a color or size it can change the entire look of a piece. (check out the attached bio at the bottom of this webpage).
Do you now, or have you in the past, done other forms of creative works, and if so, what mediums?
Prior to beading I did needlepoint. Lots of bargello pillows!
Who are your beading “heros” and why.
I’ve been fortunate to be able to take classes from many talented beaders. I would say Cynthia Rutledge, Sherry Serafini, Diane Fitzgerald and Nancy Cain have had the most impact on my work. Cynthia’s early work focused on creating beaded 3-D shapes – squares, donuts, etc. My Cosmos Tassel Necklace was directly influenced by techniques I learned with Cynthia about how to create shapes. Diane forever changed the way I use thread and choose thread color. Thread is not only functional but an important consideration in design. The color of your thread has a big impact on how your beadwork will look. Nancy taught me about the importance of tension and control when creating beaded shapes. Sherry makes my creativity soar! Her work just opens my creative floodgates. I usually don’t make her projects. Frankly just being in one of her classes gets my mind going thinking about endless possibilities.
What's the best piece of beading advice you've received, and from whom?
In general don’t be afraid to rip it out and start over. It’s important to be able to critique and edit your work.
Your pattern illustration – do you draw your own diagrams? Do you use a particular program? Do you use photos? Do you have a graphic design background?
I use Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop to create my diagrams. I’m self taught. It’s a slow form of torture! I do not have a graphic design background. I do the best I can.
Is there a particular piece of beadwork or series that you are particularly proud of? If so, why? (please include jpg(s) if possible)
There is a piece I did a few years ago when I was working for Crystal Creations. It showcased shaped beadwork. It was very involved. It’s called the Court Jester. The kit and instructions are available from Crystal Creations. I’m also very proud of my Arabesque collection which also includes the Elephant Walk Pendant.
Do you have beading designs that feature unconventional beading materials?
I like to you vintage beads and one-cut seed beads (these add sparkle) and different types of fabric for bead embroidery.
Can you tell us a bit about your creative process, sources of inspiration, work flow, etc?
I pull ideas from lots of different sources – magazines, books – sometimes I will look at a piece of jewelry and think about how that would look in beads. Cosmos Tassel Necklace is based on a necklace I saw on HSN.
Do you have favorite stitches? Least favorite stitches?
Not really – right now I’m doing a lot with CRAW and PRAW.
What are you working on now?
Some new bead embroidery projects and new workshops
Do you have a favorite type of thread, needles, or other supplies?
I choose thread based on the design. I tend to like Pony needles. Love my pointed tweezer for taking out knots. And I love my microcrystalline wax!
Is there something you absolutely must have for beading or designing?
Nope – just inspiration – plenty of that around!
Where can our members view your work and find more of your patterns?