Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Jesse James Free Beads Part 1

Hello friends , fellow artists, fans, and those who like to take a glimpse inside my mind!! It's been a wee bit since I have blogged. My son Liam who is 7 had the unfortunate event of being home from school for a week battling strep throat and an ear infection,  I too am not feeling so well. However Art never ceases for me. It is a constant companion like no other that offers me a creative outlet for my thoughts and emotions. So I welcome you to yet another glimpse inside my mind.
Very recently it's been a running joke of many of you asking for only a few minutes to see inside my mind. I am not sure however if this is a good thing or not as I have many hidden very dark areas surely not even acceptable for even a rated R movie lol, though I am able to offer you some small semblance of things you may see. Take inspiration from it, may it help you to think outside the box, for being outside the box is truly where you find yourself , it's where all of the creative's play before jumping off into their own realms, faery lands, and world's where our art is formed and stories are written.
This journey in particular is a walk in a forest and metaphorically speaks of our journey in life.

Let me start by saying that I don't typically use these types of beads that are in this design. However I fell in love with them after using a set to create a mother's day gift for my mother. It was then I saw that Jesse James Beads has a Free Bead program open to jewelry artists, you apply by giving your basic information and letting them know all the social media outlets you use. You tell them a bit about yourself and your art. I waited a few days very anxiously I may say for the email stating I had been accepted into the program. I was then asked to tell them which colors I would like, to which I responded (as many of you know me knew I would) that I didn't have a preference for colors, I love to be challenged, so they should have fun surprising me. To which they did. Ahh, however they sent me a combination of my favorite colors.. gorgeous browns, creams, and golds....
I received two gorgeous strands that coordinated with one another, they were Brown Sugar #1 A and Brown Sugar #2
 You can see for yourself how gorgeous they are!!

Now bare with me while I tell you a story, an incredible story about life & all its beauty, sadness, trials and tribulations.
This one of a kind design I named " Sacred Garden"
We all have a sacred garden where we store memories of our past, our deep dark ugly secrets, our happiest most uplifting moments, moments of love, loss, accomplishment, failures, where we keep our one true self, the one we rarely allow the world to have a glimpse of, where our vulnerabilities reside, where the things that haunt us,  the things that broke us, the things that have made us grow, live. They play with one another among the lavender fields, and at times break away to remind us of who we are, where we have been, and where we can go.
 We alone are the only ones who can unlock that garden. The garden is more of a Forest area, where we begin our walk among the path of the unknown, this is where we learn early on who we are, who our loved one are, we learn how to speak, to dress, to become a part of our society as a whole, but also learn who we are as a person in life, this path turns and twists, it has hills, and mountains so high it almost seems impossible to climb it. Oh but we do... We do this in the face of adversity, we do this when we are knocked down, when life throws us every dam thing at one time so much so that we feel as though that mountain is indeed sitting on our shoulders, and yet we persevere, we climb that dam mountain thru treacherous terrain and we indeed become the victor, knowing that it's but one mountain to overcome but also finding comfort in the fact that we did it once, we gained knowledge and strength, should we need to face these mountains a thousand times over we will know that we can and will indeed do it!! Coming off that mountain we find ourselves in a meadow, that meadow is filled with the most beautiful flowers one could ever imagine, so beautiful we find an overwhelming sense of peace, gratitude, lust, and love. We begin to feel so comfortable that nothing could ever hurt us again, until we stumble upon the most beautiful of all the flowers and we watch it wilt and wither away, and in shock we cry, we feel broken, we cry so hard that our souls lift from us for a glimpse in time and we feel totally and completely shattered, so much so that we don't for a time realize that the winds of time have held us in it's grasp, that they  pulled the sun from the sky to warm us , and slowly put us back together again... we sleep then as only we can after being broken and torn and our world crashing down around us... we sleep...
Upon the next morning we awake ready for the new day, but we have grown , we have learned that even broken, we can be put back together ,we are just different now and view our world in a new way,  this feeling gives us hope!!
We awake on that plateau, we are given hope,  courage,  opportunity to move forward or remain where we are, which would be rather boring as life is the most precious gift of all, regardless of what paths we chose, Life in itself is meant to be lived, your given the chance to fail in order to truly live, to see beyond the twists and turns, to walk into the unknown with your head held high, to know who you are, to always be proud of yourself, to pick yourself up and dust yourself off. To plant seeds of wisdom, knowledge, love, happiness, sadness, successes, failures, kindness, compassion, flaws, in your sacred garden, as a reminder of your life!! Hold this sacred Key to your Sacred Garden and unlock who you are, do not hide among the thorns, but blossom and grow among the stars, it's okay to fall, remember that mountain we defeated earlier? Well he will always be there waiting for you to defeat him again and again.

And this my friends is but a small glimpse into my mind based on recent events in my life that had me contemplating how many times I have defeated that mountain alone and how many more times I will do it again, and how each time I grow stronger and wiser.

Thank you for staying here and reading the story that inspired this design, a huge thank you to Jesse James Free Bead Program for allowing artists to create and tell stories.


-The Beadwench!!!!!

(p.s. As a side note this one of a kind design will be available for sale during my upcoming trunk show held on facebook at LBA Artists Limelight here https://www.facebook.com/groups/1531422820515551/?ref=br_tf  June 29th & 30th with my wonderful friend and fellow artist Kim Sloan)

www.jessejamesbeads.com  #JesseJamesFreeBeads

Wednesday, May 18, 2016


First I wanted to apologize for the lateness of this blog post. It's been a whirlwind of happenings here at home. I have a daughter who is a competitive Irish Dancer who was out for 2 weeks due to a pulled groin muscle, my oldest daughter getting ready to graduate 8th grade, a wedding to dress a family of 5 for, I also had to finish three design challenge pieces, a secret project, three Irish dance events and well you get the point I've been crazy busy, also its been dreary , rainy weather here and I've been unable to take photos.
 I was also waiting on a package to arrive. And this fifth segment wasn't easy as I wanted to challenge you all by giving you some different things to chose from that are sort of off the normal path which as many if you know is where my best thinking comes from... I'm always outside the box in thought and wanted to give you things to really consider....

So without further adoo... your winning vote for Texture was.....

Wahooo... congrats... what an amazing texture for sure....

Now we move onto choosing components to add into the final design. 
I've given you many choices here.. My friend and fellow artist Eleanor (Nellie) Thomas creator & owner of Wooly Wire.... has graciously donated some of her amazing Chiffon Ribbon and some freaking out of this world Wooly Wire in blue, pink, and purple which are the colors you voted for to be used in the final design. for more information on Wooly Wire or to visit her Etsy Shop please go LIKE her facebook page and let her know The BeachWench sent ya!!!

So here are your choices::

As always please leave your vote here in the comments section. If your unable to comment on my blog post please feel free to send me an email at maidendesignsstudio@yahoo.com Subject: YTD5 

Monday, May 16, 2016

This Magical Journey as a Jewelry Artist!!!

Just some food for thought!!!

I always dabbled in jewelry making. As a teenager I'd sit and play with wire and create these off the wall pendants to wear. I didn't have fancy tools, I didn't know any particular technique and how too's, I just made what I saw in my head. I had always loved wire then and still do now. It also scared me lol yes can you believe it?? I was scared!!! Of wire!! Whodathunkit!!!! It's true though, I didn't know there were different gauges, I didn't know there were tools and techniques to use, I just knew I HAD to use it. Oh yeah I'd add little seed beads for some color. One piece in particular always stood out it was a peace sign with bright green and blue beads lol . I have no idea what ever happened to it however. Years went by and life happened... I went to school to become a medical assistant while also battling what is now called fibromyalgia. Then I was called an enigma and was basically a guinea pig for all sorts of not so fun tests and medications. I was used in medical studies as I was 16 at the time and woke up one morning and couldn't walk, my legs were useless, my pain unbearable. It wasn't pretty, but it wasn't going to stop me from living life either.. After I graduated High school, went to medical assistant school, graduated and went on to begin my career as an Ophthalmic Technician. Oh what an incredible many years of my life did I spent as an Ophthalmic Tech. I worked with the most amazing people, doctors, hospitals, etc. Then I got pregnant, got married, then had another baby and that's when things went into a downward spiral, you see the Fibro never left but it did cause more issues, my health started to deteriorate , my body was in constant pain to the point where I now only feel the pain when it is too late to do anything, when its in its peak of pain and all i can do is ride it out. My second c-section was scheduled my daughter will be 12 tomorrow!! She was worth any and all of the pain i had to endure. After that c-section I had bad spasms, they thought I had an early onset of Parkinsons Disease... I was 24 at the time.. So imagine my horror that here I was a new wife , a young mother, and I would have this life changing disease. Scary right!!! I was not able to work because no one would hire me for all the restrictions I had. The first year of my second daughter's life I was barely able to hold her because I would shake really bad at any given time, no medications helped, and the one that did sort of help made me feel like I was in a coma and who could take care of a baby feeling like that? So after many more attempts to see what could be done, what type of help there was, I was put on a regimen of different medications, BTW none of them helped, and I didn't want to become addicted to medications. So I refused to take anymore. I deal with it now by forging thru the pain, with Tylenol and Motrin if needed.  The biggest issue is I'm soon to be 38 .. as in like 3 weeks :)  I don't pay attention to the triggers that begin a Fibro flare up. I can only say it feels like your body is on fire from the inside out and that the pain travels and can be a dull pain or an extremely painful type of pain... you just really never know.

I had my son in 2009!! I was at that point a stay at home mom, which I'm extremely grateful for and saddened by at the same time, does that make sense? My kids are my life, they are only children for so long before they too become adults and so I cherished the time I was given with them, and yet I felt a sense of loss that I was not able to work and help support my family. I felt lost in many ways, as if a part of me was missing. I became depressed though you'd never know it, depression can hit you in many ways, I was always good at making others see that I was happy and go lucky because I truly was, It's hard to even explain how you can be very happy and content and also lost and missing at the same time, but I'm living proof that it does indeed happen!!

My husband was , still is, and always will be a hard worker. However I still wanted to be able to help financially in some way.  One day Liam (my son) took a walk to the local second hand store, on a gorgeous sunny spring day, I'll never forget that day and his laughter, the birds whistling, the warmth of the sun on our faces, the pink leaves on the ground from the Cherry Blossom trees, the noise of the city traffic, the joy my son had just from exploring the outdoors. I felt energized, I felt happier that day than I had in so long, It was because I felt a change coming, oh yea I felt it bone deep, I felt inspired, I felt that my life would change and yet I had no idea why... I just soaked in the feeling I had. I figured whatever was to come would be a great thing!!!

Let's fast forward a wee bit here.......
A few days later my Husband took me to A.C. Moore where I picked up some beading string, some acrylic beads, some clasps, jump rings, and crimp beads.... I think I may have even grabbed a kit thing that had a little of each in it. I went home and looked on Youtube for how to use this stuff. Figured I would make myself a necklace or a few earrings and bracelets. I learned how to string beads, and use crimp beads and clasps etc.... I remember that feeling of being totally happy like that was the moment that started my journey. After a few weeks, yes a few weeks I decided to see if anyone would want to buy some of these amazing creations .... my family did for sure, they were very supportive, a few friends did to and I thought that was amazing too. I then got a call for a custom order, three strands, all Swarovski crystals , it was to be a mothers birthstone bracelet.... It was gorgeous, blingy, and had shiny sterling silver!!! I was so proud of myself!!

That my friends was the beginning of this wonderful, magical, amazing journey. I myself have grown as an artist and a person so so so much. I have met and continue to meet the most amazing people, I have become a part of the most amazing community of artists. I am thankful to so many for pushing me to do better, for challenging me, for lifting me up, for holding me together, for inspiring me, for teaching me, for showing me, for helping me grow not only as an artist but as a person in life, for opening my eyes to a much bigger more colorful world, for believing in me, for standing by my side even when I though my world had crumbled, for giving me the most amazing opportunities, for not shunning my weirdness, for being exactly who you are and accepting me as I am. THANK YOU!!! Each and every one of you have touched my life in some way whether big or small.

I did take a break a few months back, I wasn't sure Id ever come back, and I knew it would hurt like hell to leave but It was a personal decision and the best decision I ever made . I had much time to reflect on myself, my abilities, this gift I was given. That's exactly what I have is a gift. A unique gift. I could never put it behind me, I knew in my heart I belonged here, I knew I could never not create jewelry. I knew another change was coming however i felt it deep in my bones, and I am but a vessel being guided to where I am supposed to be for reasons I have yet to learn, I can most definitely say I am in a very very good place right now, there are many amazingly awesome great things happening to me at this moment that my soul is totally and completely joyous.

People ask me all the time... why do you make jewelry? There are many ways I could answer that, but I'll stick to the one I say and feel the absolute most and that is because I love to tell a story with jewelry, I love to see the emotions on a customers face when they make a connection to a design that I poured my heart and soul into, that my friends is what its all about. Ahh I have chill bumps as I wrote that... It's absolutely true however, I'm able to creatively tell a story using my gift, and in turn I get to see the emotional impact is has on the person meant to have it, that in itself is the most rewarding part of what I do. Its the biggest reason I continue to create, and the one thing that will always feed my soul.

I am but one of so very many artists , so the next time your at a fair, or a craft fair, or want a great piece of jewelry please consider handmade because a machine cant make you feel that way!!!

Thanks for reading this long blog, I'm not sure why I was compelled to write this today but it hit me out of no where that it needed to be said, and so I hope whomever it was meant for sees it and for whatever reasons the universe thinks you needed to know my heart and my story I truly hope it impacts you the way it is meant to.

" Life is but a journey my friends, live it up, laugh lots, love unconditionally, and dance often" -The Beadwench


Saturday, May 7, 2016


Wow... this has been so much fun since  the start of this idea in my head. I thank all of you who are joining in and voting. It truly is fun to see you all really looking over the choices and asking questions when needed. I loved all of the color palette choices.

And your winner is.........

Pinks, blues, and purples...... !!!!! well done everyone... this color palette will indeed be a challenge for me, while i love all color and have used these colors I never put these colors together... so this should be quite interesting......


Okay so now that we have :

1. Chosen the direction of the blanks
2. Chosen where the holes will be
3. Chosen an amazing color pallette

We now move into....


There are so many things that can be used for texture... for example..
a Ball Pien Hammer, nail heads, metal stamps, scribes, and so many more... so here are your next round of choices to vote for :)

#1  No Texture

#2 Dimpling ( a process of hammering using the ball side of a ball Pien hammer that is textured) (photo was found on a google search and is not my work and I'm unable to credit the artist)

#3 Using a Nail head ( this process would use a contractor nail and the nail head would be hit on its side to create texture)

#4 Using a Scribe tool (this tool has a pointed end and create deep small hole impressions or a scratch texture

#5 Metal Stamping (either with a word or saying)

Voting will now be open from Saturdays until Friday at midnight EDT !!!

Happy voting!!!!!!