Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Just look at what she did with my beads!!!

Lariat necklace by Jennifer Justman, Field of Tulips lampwork focal by Christine Hansen

Jennifer Justman is one of my favorite online jewelry friends. She has a sweet personality and creates thoughtfully original jewelry designs. Too, having written tales and poetry since she was a child, Jenn’s delightful writing style is a joy to read. (You can check out Jenn’s blog here: Soul’s Fire Designs.)
Jenn’s been making jewelry since 2004, when she first paired sterling silver pendants with seed beads in her wedding colors of royal blue and deep green as gifts for her bridesmaids.

She’s been busy since then – not only does Jennifer have three kids under six, but she makes fantastic jewelry (for humans *and* dolls!) which she sells primarily through her shop on Etsy, Soul’s Fire Designs. Her favorite materials include dark brass, sari silk, gemstones and glass. She’s also very fond of artisan focals including wooden tiles from JLynn Jewels and Skye Jewels, ceramic focals and elements, and of course, lampwork beads.

Jenn is talented with metal; her favorite techniques include wire-wrapping and hand stamping. “There is something about the perfection of its imperfection that just gets me,” says Jenn. “Swinging a hammer is also great stress relief.” Jenn says she’s fascinated with new techniques, and hopes to add basic soldering to her repertoire soon. “I’m also interested in the various types of clay, but for right now, I think I will leave them to the experts.”

Mixed media necklace by Jennifer Justman, Calla Lily lampwork focal by Christine Hansen
“My inspiration comes from everywhere,” says Jenn, who listens to music almost constantly, so it’s no surprise that music is a huge inspiration for her. “A lyric, a mood, an entire song can get my creative spark going.”

Keeping that spark going with three little ones can be a challenge though, and one Jenn copes with by sleeping less. “I used to be a total morning person, but now I’m a bit of a night owl. The calmness of nighttime is very soothing and provides room for my creativity to finally get a chance to flow.”

“I love what I do,” says Jenn, “not just for the chance to create beautiful things, but for the friends it has brought me. Being a SAHM can be very lonely, but I have made the most wonderful friends through this bead-y/creative community.”

I thought it would be great fun to see what Jenn might do with a couple of my lampwork focals, so I sent her one of my Field of Tulips beads and one of my Calla Lily beads, along with one of my lampwork heart pendants. I’m thrilled with how Jenn worked with the tulip and calla lily beads, and I can’t wait to see what she does with the heart. You can see additional pictures of Jenn’s work with my beads at her blog post, here. (all photos in this post are by Jennifer Justman)