For Queen Victoria
Tell us about your business.When I was a kid, my parents had a weekly ritual of visiting the local flea market on Sunday mornings. One summer day, they came home with a mason jar full of vintage beads - Czech and Japanese glass, African trade beads, old buttons, and other fascinating bits and pieces. I was hooked! I spent weeks sorting through that jar and making jewelry. Once school began, I sold what I'd made for extra snack money. I started making jewelry once again in 2007 after graduating from the Maryland Institute College of Art with a Master's Degree in Community Art. As a recent grad, I was poor and needed some extra income. Around the same time, I created a blog called 'Baltimore by Hand' to promote and celebrate makers in Baltimore. While making jewelry and writing about other crafters is not my current day job, I would like for it to be one day. In the meantime, I am simply enjoying any and every opportunity I get to use my hands and make lovely things.
What makes your business stand out?I have a background in photography and so I draw inspiration for what I make from what I see, which is why I take my camera with me everywhere. Over the years, I've also become a bit of a bead expert and as such am very meticulous about selecting my materials. My goal is always to make something special that honors the charm and distinctiveness of my findings. That's why most finished pieces are one of a kind or limited edition.
What's the best business advice you've received?Always keep making. It's a little similar to Ernest Hemingway's advice to try and write everyday at the same time because having a routine allows for more creative freedom. So, I try to make something everyday - even if it isn't jewelry.
Mark Your Calendar
NOMINATIONS ENDAug. 31, 2015
Final day for entering the Audience Choice Award competition.
VOTING ENDSOct. 19, 2015
Final day to cast your vote for your favorite makers.
WINNERS ANNOUNCEDOct. 23, 2015
2015 Editors' Award Winners and Audience Choice Winner announced.See past Award Winners
AMERICAN MADE SUMMITNov. 7, 2015
Don’t miss our networking event and maker lecture series in New York City. Tickets are available now.Discover the American Made Summit