I began making jewelry probably around my freshman year of high school, maybe even in the 8th grade. Nothing fancy, just beaded rings. After college, chandelier earrings started to become really popular, and I started making a lot of those to wear. Again, nothing too fancy. About a year and a half after my husband and I got married, I gave birth to our daughter, Isabelle Virginia, on August 1st, 2007. My then nearly 3-year-old niece Jane came to visit me with my father in law that morning, and because she was almost 3 (she would be 3 the following day) she couldn’t say, Isabelle. It came out as Shes-A-Belle. To this day, that is still my father in law’s nickname for Izzie.
Shortly after Izzie’s birth, my father started to become really ill. He suffered from a lot of different heart issues, including cardiomyopathy, which my sister also has. He was always in and out of the hospital, and because he was so sick, he started to go back to a local Catholic Church. He knew I liked dabbling with beading, and he asked if I could start making rosaries for the people who couldn’t afford to get one. I made him up some, we had them blessed by the Father and that sort of started my journey. A week after Izzie’s 1st birthday my father passed away from a major heart attack. Since then, jewelry making has become my way to grieve and heal, and deal still with that loss.
I have taught myself how to hand dye, how to wire wrap (that is an ongoing process though), how to colorize components, how to solder, how to stamp, and how to make more of my essential findings. A lot of the lucite flower earrings and necklaces, are hand-dyed by myself, and I am happy that I have come up with a few signature colors so far. I also like to colorize some of my findings, in unique patinas, or antiquing. I want to provide jewelry that is unique in every way, and I will always try to make my pieces more and more elaborate as time goes on.
I also enjoy creating handmade greeting cards. I also use a lot of unique coloring and ink blending processes in a lot of my cards. I really enjoy playing with my stamps and learning new techniques as far as cardmaking goes. I’m constantly learning new techniques for both of my passions. I have a dream for myself, and if I can make it happen, I will.