Get to Know Jewelry Artist Candie Cooper: Kitchen Counter Metalworking Instructor!

Have you registered yet for Kitchen Counter Metalworking for Beaders with Candie Cooper? It's our next live webinar, happening on Tuesday, March 17, 2015 at 1 p.m. EDT. I've always said that learning basic metalworking was one of the best things I could have ever done as a beader, and now if you've ever wanted to learn more about easy ways to get started metalworking, jewelry artist Candie Cooper will walk you through everything you need to know! We asked Candie to share a little more information about herself with us so that you could get to know her before her webinar. Read on to learn more about how she got started making jewelry, what her ideal jewelry studio would look like, and more!

Where are you from originally, and where do you currently live? I'm from Indiana and after living abroad, moved home 5 years ago.

What do you do besides jewelry making and beading? (What's your day job) This is my day job, haha!  I'm very lucky to work in the creative industry doing consulting and designing.

How and when did you start making jewelry? I started making jewelry when I was in 6th grade (just a few years ago-wink.)

Do you prefer to work from patterns, or design your own? I prefer to design my own jewelry, and keeping up with fashion trends while designing is important to me. 

How would you describe your personal style? Cowgirl meets edgy eclectic.  My jewelry has often been described as "out there."  It used to hurt my feelings, but now I take it as a compliment.  "Out there" means it's different-not everyone has it, which is a good thing.

What other creative pursuits do you enjoy? I spent last summer making quilts.  This year my New Year's resolution is to declutter and beautify my home so I've been cleaning and making spaces pretty (a little at a time. I hate cleaning, LOL.).

Tell us about your studio… what kind of space inspires you? My studio is really cozy.  It's on the second floor of our home and it has a little back porch connected to it.  I fantasize about a chase lounge out there and a stack of books, but then I'd probably not get any jewelry made.

What's your secret weapon? Sand paper.  I distress everything.  Metal, leather, wood…  DIG IT!  Alcohol inks are a close second though.

How do you stay motivated on long or complex projects? I'm a visualizer.  That means I picture myself at the finish line and things look and feel amazing.  And when I'm burned out on it (this is inevitable on really long projects), I break for soft serve ice cream or a cookie.  A quick clean up of my space also re-energizes me (but this is a desperate measure because I hate cleaning).

What has been your favorite project recently? I recently helped design some components with Jesse James Beads that are coming to JoAnn Fabrics as we speak.  I also just had a baby and she's been the most amazing project of course.

What's your favorite thing you've made for a client? I make elaborate charm bracelets for a hospital auction each year.  These three lovely women hire me to make it and I love piling all the parts and beads together to make something truly unique.

What would your dream studio look like? It would be filled with mannequins.  I design on mannequins so this is key.  It would also have tons of boxes against the wall with each thing neatly organized and labeled.  It needs lots of windows too. The break room would have my personal barista and chocolate fondue fountain with tons of fruit.  I like to aim high and dream big, can you tell?

How has blogging and owning a business influenced your process? Mmmm, it's a lot sometimes.  Owning a business is a 24/7 gig.  It suits me though because working in the same place, day after day, would be like caging a bird (or a chipmunk is probably more like it).  As for blogging, I used to blog to let my family know I was alive when I lived in China.  Now I use it as a tool to talk about what I'm up to.  It's great!  I just need to flex that muscle a little more often 😉

What's your current beading soundtrack? Haha, do you really want to know?  I have a huge range on my phone from Pitbull to the Pistol Annies.  Sometimes my friends look at me and shake their heads.  Wild!

Anything else you'd like us to know? I'm a big fan of doing the happy dance. I love my husband, my kid, and Jesus. And I feel really lucky to have the opportunity to share what I know is my purpose.  Thanks tons!

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