I have been collecting beads, designing jewelry, and selling my work for more than 25 years.
I have my parents to thank for my creative pursuits: my mother never hesitated to use her mind and her hands to tackle a project, be it creating knitted masterpieces or handling the ledgers for my father?s business. My father and his two brothers were proud artist/owners of CARVED GLASS BY SHEFTS, creating beautiful sandblasted works of art and installations in such renowned places as the L.A. Convention Center, Tavern on the Green, and the Waldorf Astoria. My brother, my cousins and I have inherited this streak of creativity and talent that has manifested itself in diverse ways.
Back to me! My parents would not let me have my ears pierced until I was 16. So I took my bead collection--I was fascinated by glass and sparkle even back then--and created fabulously long, dangly, clip-on earrings to fulfill my need for glitz and drama.
My work became popular in college (at Tufts University in Boston) and continued to gain attention after I graduated. Upon leaving Tufts, I took my work to the Big Apple, where I had my first successful trunk show at Macy's, and presented my work at art and crafts shows around New York.
Looking back, I realize that no matter what I was doing in my life and career, my passion for creating was ever-present.
Part of the joy I derive from my work comes from a love of treasure-hunting. I was thrilled by the discovery of vintage carousel-type filigree findings from the 1950s. With these, I was able to create a unique interpretation of the chandelier style earring. I can lose myself on the web for hours searching for talented artisans whose beads I incorporate into my own jewelry designs.
I use vintage Swarovski crystal in my pieces. These beads are highly collectable and add an unmatched intrinsic value to the finished piece. Any bead that has a gorgeous sparkle, unusual shape or texture and fabulous color can find its way into my work.
Friends from college tell me they still wear pieces I made back then. I can think of no higher compliment.
I share my life with my wonderful husband and three children. We now live north of Atlanta... but I still get up to New York City as often as I can!