I have ALWAYS needed a creative outlet, for as long as I can remember. When I was a young girl I was always saving up pocket-money for arts and crafts kits and begged my mom to teach me how to knit. When all the other girls were asking for Cabbage Patch Dolls for Christmas (okay I must admit, I begged for one of those too!) I was pleading to ‘Santa” to bring me my very own Smith-Corona Electric typewriter so I could start planning out my first novel! Um… that typewriter had LOTS of use, but the novel fell by the wayside, although I have never entirely given up on the idea.
When I was pregnant with my son, I began making jewelry. I have ALWAYS had a passion for sparkly things 😉 and I had attempted to make a few baubles here and there, but the bigger I got in my pregnancy the bigger my obsession became. By the time I was 8 months pregnant, I KNEW that I was going to start my own business!
Karisma Original Jewelry Design was started in my living room when my son was about 3 months old. I started out with a few containers of beads, a couple of clasps, and a spool of wire, and it ended up growing into having a FULL room with tools, tumblers, silver and THOUSANDS of beads!
I researched day and night (and sometimes day again… the joys of having insomnia). I made a LOT of mistakes, but I learned from every one of them. I did some bigger shows, and I was JUST starting to really get my name out there when my illness took away everything.
I tried desperately to hold on to my business, but I just couldn’t. It was just too hard. I went through a time that I tried to convince myself that I just didn’t have the passion anymore…. and then I went through a stage that just looking at a set of rosary pliers would set me into a rage. I then tried to tell myself that I HATED JEWELRY and I was ready to move on….. None of that was true…. I felt like a failure.
I closed up shop until the love of my life came walking back into my life. One of the first questions he asked was “Are you still making jewelry?”. I hummed and hawed, and didn’t really know how to answer that question. But his natural way of removing all of my defenses came into play and I told him the absolute truth. I still loved the art of jewelry making, and I hated that I wasn’t doing it anymore. It was a part of me that I lost, and t made me feel like I had failed.
Very quickly after that, my honey was walking me into bead stores, and asking me questions… “What is THIS stone?”, “Where is this from?”, “Is this a good price for a whole strand of THIS?”…… and JUST like that I FELT PASSION AGAIN!!! I tried my hardest to pretend indifference, but from the first time I picked up a strand of beautiful potato pearls, I was HOOKED AGAIN! It’s part of who I am that I thought I had lost, but I picked up right where I left off!
We now have a kitchen nook in our condo that has become my STUDIO! And it isn’t abnormal to have to move my chasing hammer and dremel to get to the microwave (thank God for understanding men!), and I have thought once again on starting a home-based jewelry business… I don’t know if I am in the place that I need to be to be successful yet, but I am trying…. and that speaks volumes to me.
Not only is making jewelry a huge part of me, it is also a creative outlet for my pain this time around.