Thursday, February 3, 2011

Designer Interview- Elizabeth Del Monte

Pink Quartz Fairy Necklace, art bead from Green Girl Studio
Let me introduce you to Elizabeth Del Monte. She is an amazing jewelry designer with the most cheerful personality. Her excitement about beads is contagious. Read on to find out more about Elizabeth...

JH: What is your personal name, business name, website and location?
ED: Hi, I’m Elizabeth Del Monte. That is my name and my business name. I have a store at Etsy which is very conveniently named the same, I also have a blog,

JH: What kind of jewelry do you make? What types of materials do you prefer? what kinds of art beads do you use?
ED: My jewelry can be described as contemporary. I work mainly with silver and gemstones although I love the look of oxidized copper. I try to use it as much as I can. My favorite art beads are metal (silver/copper/pewter/bronze) pendants. I build a story around them and lampwork beads.

JH: How did you get into jewelry design? What are some of the important things you do for your business?
ED: I started making jewelry in 2007 with the objective of preserving my mother’s pieces. A friend showed me how to do my first bracelet and from then on I couldn’t stop. I am a believer in education and I take every class I can get my hands too. I try to improve myself as a jewelry artist every day.
For my business I use Etsy, I host several open houses a year, and I carry a photo album of my work with me (scrapbooking style). That way I carry my inventory with me all the time and show people what I’m working on. So far networking and relationships have been my most successful venues for selling my jewelry.
I think it is also very important to give back. I do a fundraising design every year for Relay for Life (Cancer Research Fundraising Event). This year my design is a Swing Gemstone pendant necklace and earring set. All profits will go to my team. You can find more details at my website and blog.

Copper Fun Ceramic Necklace, art bead from Jangles

JH: What is your workspace like and how do you work in your studio? What is a typical day like?
ED: My studio is a work in progress. I have half of my office, a portion of the family room and a portion of the garage…not very practical, but a start. I hope to have a real studio some day.
I work in finance for a telecommunication company, so I design jewelry at night and during weekends. Sometimes my family is jealous of the bench…I don’t blame them.

JH: How do you stay inspired and motivated?
ED: My inspiration comes from different sources, magazines, books, the internet, nature, and most important the beads themselves. Motivation is not difficult for me because this is what I do for fun.

JH: What kinds of art beads do you look for? Is there a bead you wish an artist would make for you?
ED: Normally I look for anything that I can make a pendant. I always gravitate to the “V” shape of a beautiful necklace with a focal art bead. Any bead with a heart shape is my favorite.

JH: What beady plans do you have for the future? Do you have new designs or ideas you will be exploring soon?
ED: This year I will be certified in Metal Clay. My vision right now is to design my own pendants and build around them with semi precious stones. The stones have such an amazing energy that I can’t see myself working without them.

Dominican Dream Necklace. This necklace was a finalist in the 2010 Bead Star completion under the gemstones category. I built the art bead with a Larimar stone and a fancy bead cap. I designed the silver charms and included words that remind me of my country, the Dominican Republic. The other gemstone is Amber. Both stones are typical from my country and specifically the Larimar, can only be found there.

Flower Center Jasper Necklace. The art bead for this necklace was constructed from a metal flower from Gail Grossman Moore and a lampwork disk from Kimberly Branch.

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