I have always loved jewelry. I have always loved glass. I guess falling in love with beads was inevitable.
I started with seed beads, making those (tacky!) long fringed earrings that everybody else was making. I took classes at the LBS. Most of all I just kept at it, and before long I was coming up with my own designs and teaching them at that very same LBS. In 1995, Embellishment – the precursor of the current Bead and Button Show – came to Austin. To say that it was a life-changing experience is not an overstatement. I saw lampwork for the first time (Loren Stump and Al Janelle – how’s that for an introduction?!), and one of my seed bead pieces, Sweet Dreams, Bobby Jean, was a juried finalist in the show.
It would be another eight years before I took my first lampworking class from Molly at Heritage Glass. Since then I’ve been lucky enough to learn with some amazing lampworkers, including Loren and Al. Blue Moon Glassworks and Heritage Glass have fed my inner artist while starving my bank account ;-).
In my day job I supervise the Appointment Tutoring Program for the Sanger Center at The University of Texas. More than 180 undergraduate and graduate students provide tutoring to their peers in a variety of courses (about 4,000 hours a year!). The irony that 70% of the tutoring we do is in math, physics, and chemistry is not lost to me: although I have a PhD in Educational Psychology, I completed my undergraduate career with no physics, no chemistry, and only one calculus course.
I also love dogs. “Yellow Dog” was a nickname for our much-loved first Golden Retriever, and when it came time to choose a business name, well, what else was there? And, the aforementioned Bobby Jean was our first Border Collie, who lived past 17. I hate to cook. I hate to do laundry. I clean only when I have to or when the amount of dog hair floating around makes me think that maybe the husband-unit has brought home another dog without my knowledge. I like to garden when it’s not too hot and not too cool – in Austin, about 10 days a year. In addition to bead talk, I’ll update about the girls, gardening, and occasionally even cooking on the main blog page.