You owned a bead shop?
Why, yes. Let me explain. I first made a beaded bracelet when I was 10 years old and attached it to my hand-made "Cabbage Patch" doll in 1986 (The bracelet is still on the doll). Mom and dad were always fixing things and taught me how to use hand tools at a young age. Dad taught the family how to put together circuit boards and solder in the components. (He owns an electronic store in NJ) After a family dinner, we would assemble circuit boards. (I thought every family did this.)
I continued to repair and make beaded jewelry through high school, selling some items at the Jersey Shore and repairing antique jewelry for a local antique store. I went to college thinking I would major in advertising or graphic design, (pleasing all of the "You are going to college to make jewelry?" skeptics) but I kept taking jewelry electives. I changed my major to silversmithing and graduated from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia in 1998 with a BFA in Crafts and minor in Art Education.
I never saw my life any other way and love making jewelry. I also love to repair customers jewelry because their jewelry is always so rich in history, memory, and emotion.
I opened Silver Wings Studio in 2002 and closed it in 2011. It was a great time!