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Monday, August 15, 2011

Have Beads, Will Travel.

I don't know about you but I rarely leave the house without a small case of beads. The thought of being stranded or delayed without something to do scares me. My beads are my security blanket and just knowing that they are nearby makes me happy. I don't think I am alone here, am I? Sometimes just having the beads with me opens new doors and introduces me to new people. A story.....

This morning after I left the gym, I realized that my 10:45 appointment was actually a 10:15 appointment. I knew that I would have JUST enough time to shower and dress but would I have enough time to gather up the beads I needed for a new project I wanted to try while waiting for my daughter? The choice was simple. I chose to partially my hair and use those 3 minutes to look at and not just grab at some beads. The "grab" method usually leaves me without something I really need, like thread or an extra needle. There really is a point to all of this. :)

As soon as I sat down in the waiting room I put my beads on my lap, plugged my headphones in and got ready to work. Before I could even thread my needle, the nicest woman started asking me about what I was doing. I told her and shared some pictures. She loved my work and wanted to see more, so I happily scrolled through some pictures on my phone. And then she asked the one question for which I don't seem to have a quick answer, "Do you sell your work?" Lately, this question runs a close second to the question, "Do you sell your children?" I know this is a bit of an extreme comparison, but when you spend hours creating a one-of-a-kind piece of bead woven work, the idea of selling it is not an easy one to think about. My excuse of late has been (truthfully) that I have been writing books and instructions and have been using my work for samples. To sell them would mean to remake them and truth be told, remaking is not something I like to do.

The work I create just happens. I don't plan in advance. I veer off the original path so often that sometimes I am not sure what I was thinking of making because the end result is so different. There are many unfinished pieces of work that probably can't be finished because I don't remember how I did what I did. But I digress.

It's not that I don't want to sell my work but if I do, I won't have it anymore to look at or to photograph of to show to others. So the question of whether or not I sell my work is never easy to answer.

I told this very nice woman that she could come over to see some of the pendants I make that I do sell (not easily, but I do sell them). She was so excited and arranged to come right over. As she was looking at the pendants, I started showing her some other work. She fell in love with one of my necklaces and asked me the price. I won't go into detail but suffice it to say that I will miss this little necklace. Can I make another one? Yes. Am I going to? No. It is now hers. I know she will love it and take care of it and wear it well. I know it will make her smile the same way it made me smile.

After she left, I looked at all of the pieces of jewelry that make me smile. Then I made a call to inquire about being included in the Holiday Market at the BBAC here in Birmingham. I think it is time. Not all of my work is for sale, but certainly some of it is.

If you are interested in seeing the pieces that are available, please send me an email and I will send you pictures. If you like near me and happen into the Holiday Market you might just see my work there.

It's not easy to part with some of the work I love but maybe this is a good time to start. It may make it easier to send the first of two of my most favorite works of art off to college next year. I will cry, but I know that someone and some place else will be really happy to have her. And she will make them smile.