This interview, with Kimberly Newman, is from October, 2015
1. Tell us a little about yourself
Hello fellow beaders! My name is Kimberly Newman AKA “The Bead Lady” in my small town ( at least when I go to Wal-Mart) hehehe. I have been married for 32 years to the love of my life. I have two wonderful boys 25 & 21 that have never given their father and I the least bit of trouble. I am the proud owner of Kim’s Creative Designs Bead Shop in Urbana Ohio and have been so for 8 1/2 years now. I have always been a crafty person even with my employment history. I worked as a helmet painter for horse racers (I know weird right?) but loved it! Then the same company started doing glass etching with a sand blaster and it took off. I did this for ten years until my childhood disability of Scoliosis became an issue and surgery stopped me in my tracks.
2. What is your “inspiration story” — where did your interest in jewelry all begin?
My interest in jewelry came from needing extra funds since I could no longer do the physical demands of the job I loved. I began making and selling to friends and doing craft shows and flea markets with the help of my husband Ken my poor human pack mule. During one of the shows while packing up I fell and my husband and I decided enough was enough. With the money I had saved I started buying beads in bulk knowing that I wanted to have a business where people would come to me and I could stay in one location. With a lot of sacrifices made, I finally had enough beads stacked to the ceiling in my dining room to look for a building to rent. Everything started falling into place. Found a great store front less than a mile from my house with landlords I adore! I work six days a week and occasional evenings but I LOVE my customers/friends with all my heart and have finally found my place in life.
3. What is your dream project?
My dream project would be to have some of my collections reproduced for everyone to enjoy! I would be honored to see someone walking down the street wearing one of my pieces. Or maybe make something special for lets say……… “OPRAH” Lol!!! Dream big is my motto!
4. What has been your greatest challenge so far and how did you overcome it?
My greatest challenge is finding time to sit and play, make new designs of my own. I have never been one to copy other peoples designs. I don’t look through magazines for ideas but have no problem helping others figure out patterns they bring in. I’m a puzzle girl and love to find solutions to make things work just right. How do you overcome needing more time to play? You get less sleep! Lol!!!!
5. What is the greatest gift that jewelry-making has given you?
The greatest gift jewelry making has given to me would have to be the wonderful friendships that I have developed through the years. Getting to know other jewelry makers who always impress me with their own styles and imaginations. It has given me the freedom to open my heart to new people coming in and out of my life. I have lost a few of “my peeps” as my husband lovingly calls them to illness or tragedy but still consider them a gift just for knowing them.
6. What words of wisdom do you have for someone beginning to make jewelry?
My words of wisdom to new jewelry makers, “TRY IT ALL!” Try stringing, seed bead work, metal work, weaving, lampworking, you name it! You will find your niche in the jewelry world, that one thing that you excel in and love to do but try it all first. Oh, and ask lots of questions even if you think they sound silly. Trust me, I have heard them all! There are such things as thing-a-ma-jig and watcha-ma-call it right? Just have fun no matter what you do in beading and life. Thank you Jewelers Community and Debbie for asking me to do this interview. I hope I have shared some of the joys that jewelry making can bring to those who dare to explore it.