I can remember when I started making jewelry and picked up my first publications. I was in awe that there were people out there whose 'job' it was to create such lovely designs and write articles for the magazines. I knew that this would be a dream job for me. Little did I know that those who were in those pages were just like me, or at least, had started out just like me. I remember when I realized that I could possibly submit something to a magazine and have it printed. That was an aha moment for sure.
I set a goal for myself in 2009 to be published once per month. I did it, but boy was it a struggle! Those deadlines just keep on coming! But it helped me to hone my writing skills and understand not only what the different publications were looking for but also how they wanted to receive it.
I don't have the time these days to submit to so many publications. I pick and choose, or rather, I think about doing it when I have something that I think might be worthy. I don't really sit down and create just for those glossy pages, but only submit something I think might catch their attention.
When I submit things for publication, I never really know what they are looking for, even after all this time. I mean, they might have a call out for something in particular like long earrings or fall themed bracelets, but I really never know if what I am making will make the cut, because I am rarely cutting edge. I just make what I like, and if someone else likes it then that is all the better. And lest you think that every thing I submit gets published, that would be wrong. I have boxes of jewelry that went no where, or went to one publication and then another or to the Gallery Q and then to Etsy only to be rejected more than once because no one wanted it. Destination: reWork.
Early in the year I was tickled to receive the notice about the Creative Jewelry submissions for 2011. This once a year publication is a compendium of some of the best and brightest designs out there. It is not a regurgitation of designs you have seen in other magazines, but more like a book that is a great jumping off point and one that I hang onto every year.
I recall that I submitted about 10 pieces for this issue: earrings, necklaces and bracelets. I was thrilled when they told me to send in 8 of them, and then a little panicked. I busied myself writing up the step-by-steps just so, packaging them all in little boxes and including hand written tags. I was really hoping that a few would be picked up especially after putting in all that work. One was immediately selected to be the Design on a Shoestring project in the Spring Stringing issue. I had no idea as to the fate of the rest.
But one day in the middle of the summer, my friend Kerry Bogert emailed me the image of the cover of Creative Jewelry in the pre-publication advertising call. There was my necklace "Out of This World" on the cover featuring Kerry's unmistakable mod dot bead. I emailed Miss Danielle, editor of Stringing to find out if it was true. She said they were still mocking up the covers and hadn't decided yet, but if it was in the pre-publication marketing that was a good sign. So I sat on that news and tried not to think about it because I didn't want to jinx myself.
So it was with great anticipation that I waited to actually see a copy of Creative Jewelry. I finally found it in a local book store last week Thursday when I left for the Inspired by Nature retreat (more on that at a later date, I promise!). And when I returned home, there were my copies of the issue and all my lovelies back home with me.
I submitted 9 pieces, and had four picked up in the magazine which is way more than I could have hoped. I am beyond proud to be on the cover and to showcase an enameled filigree bead from Barbara Lewis and the lovely glass bead from Kerry Bogert. They each created components that I used to to make jewelry for my Gallery Q exhibit from a year ago that was inspired by the painting by Brenda Wenberg called "Looking Good." This necklace was one of the few that I had left from my Gallery Q exhibit and I thought it would be publication-worthy, but I had made it in the summer of 2010 so I wasn't sure that I should send it in. I am so glad I submitted it!
My two all-time favorite books are Stringing Style and Stringing Style 2. (I seem to have misplaced both of these books, but I can almost remember them page for page.) I liked how simply they were laid out and how inventive the designs were. I feel that way about this issue. It feels like a book and is filled with some top-notch talent. I am very blessed to be sharing space with people I admire like Jen Judd Velasquez, Marcie Abney, Cristi Clothier, Stephanie Dieleman, Kristy Abner, Kelly Morgan, Michelle Mach, Jess Italia Lincoln, Denise Yezbak Moore, Heather Lawrenz, Melanie Brooks, Carter Seibels Singh and Molly Schaller, just to name a few (and if I missed your name, please don't fret! I love this issue to pieces and I am so thrilled to be in it with you!). Plus there are plenty of new (to me) designers in here as well, and that is just so exciting. I think that seeing new perspectives is almost as fun as finding them on my own!
There are more than 130 pieces in this publication and there is something for everyone. Want to know my personal faves?
- "Rose Copper Canyon" focusing on a gorgeous pink geode focal.
- "Lucille" for its stunning simplicity.
- The fresh color palette and masterful asymmetry of "Air and Earth."
- The woodsy balance of "Wise One."
- For an amazing knot technique in "Brazen Knots" that I can't wait to try.
- A great cluster of briolettes in "Autumn Luxe," something I never would have thought of
- Mixed metals are so lovely in "Earth and Sky."
- And the wonderful playfulness in the "Songbird's Garden."
One of the pieces that didn't make it in was "Woodsy." This is one of those cases where I truly thought that he would get picked up. That little owl was the first one that I ever made last winter. I loved that little owl so much that even though it didn't get into the magazine, I made a whole flock more. And you all loved them, too, because they flew my Etsy nest in a big hurry! Today on the Art Bead Scene you can go and read all about "Woodsy" with a tutorial on how to make him. You can use your own woodland creature, and there are tons of art beads out there that have a woodland inspired theme, but I have put up a custom listing for a one-of-a-kind Woodsy wise old owl in case you would like him to come and live with you!
Thank you, Miss Danielle and your lovely staff at Interweave for always treating me with such a kind heart. I am truly honored to be in such esteemed company and thrilled to be the cover girl twice in one month!
So now it is your turn...
Have you ever wanted to submit your jewelry designs to a magazine?
What is stopping you?
They are always on the look out for new talent. Just be sure that you have come up with a design that is interesting, has a great blend of materials and is extremely well made. Read my post here for some Do's and Don't's for submitting to publications.