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Seed bead artist: Dyane Bradley

Artist: Dyane Bradley
Nandi Designs Jewelry

One Sunday afternoon while walking off a very hearty lunch in a local shopping area, I wondered into a bead store for the first time. As my friend John and I wondered through the store, intrigued by not only the beads but what someone had created with them he turned to me and said “You could do this”. My response was “why would I want to?"  I couldn’t imagine why he would suggest I consider making jewelry. I just laughed. He said because I was creative, detail oriented and paid special attention to the way I coordinated my outfits, I could do the same thing with the beads. I stopped laughing!

Like the rest of you, I became addicted to the creative process as a child. I never stopped allowing that creative child to pursue a variety of outlets. I mentioned his suggestion to my friend Karin, I was intrigued by the suggestion and so was she. She’d never been in a bead store and suggested that we visit another local bead store that was even larger than the first one.

So, we stopped in at the bead store. “The rest”, as they say, “is history”. As I walked through the store a flood of ideas began to flow. I bought some beads and supplies. It was one of the longest rides home, ever!
I made 3 necklaces and couldn’t wait to share them with someone. They went with me to a doctor’s appointment and stayed there. When I told the receptionist that I had made the necklace I was wearing and produced the others, she asked if they could look at them while I was in seeing the doctor. She asked how much they were and I was taken aback, I had never considered selling them. So, like any other beginner I gave a price that was too low ($10) and went in to see the doctor. When I came out she presented me with $30.00. “What’s this?"  I asked, and was stunned when she said it was payment for the necklaces. After I got my mouth off the floor, I said thank you and left. I had never made anything and had anyone purchase it before, WOW.

I still get that feeling when I sell a piece. That was 10 years ago.

I’ve taught myself and continue teaching myself what I want to learn. Each project is another opportunity for me to dig a little deeper into my creative well, to challenge myself and see what I come up with. I love things that remind me of the Victorian Era, especially the gardens. I try to re-create them or bits of them in my pieces. I grew up and live In Long Beach, CA and my love of the Sea is obvious too. Sometimes, I use those colors in my pieces. The colors change dramatically depending on which coast I’m inspired by at the time. Nature is a never-ending source of inspiration. I may just use the colors I see out of my window. So many people ask me how I started making jewelry, and they laugh when I tell them. It’s a good story that includes one happy ending after another. For me, each new piece is the beginning of a new story.

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Thank you very much Cyndi for featuring me and my Art Jewelry on your BLOG. It is truly an HONOR! Dyane
Cyndi L said…
Thank *you* for sharing with us, Dyane! I really love your story about how you got started...hopefully others will find it inspiring too :-)