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Nicole DeBaere's Profile

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I was born with beadwork in my blood! I first started making jewelry when I was a little girl. For holidays and birthdays, my favorite gifts were the kids craft kits. My first kit was for friendship bracelets. The most meaningful kit was a seed bead loom. My favorites were any beading kit! I loved them! I "played" with them until all the beads were used up. I would keep some finished pieces for myself and give the rest to my best friends and favorite family members.
My family continued to give me these types of gifts because I loved them so much, and they did too! The adults who would see me "work" always told me that I was talented and that I should sell my jewelry. But I didn't. I worked so hard on those little bracelets. They meant so much to me! Looking at them on my wrists gave me a sense of accomplishment. Seeing my friends proudly wear them made me feel loved! I had fun developing my style and playing with color…

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  • Female
  • Born on January 29
  • Joined October 21, 2010

Favorite materials

delica beads, semiprecious gemstones, nymo thread, crystals, seed beads, swarovski crystal

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  • Beaderfly
    Handcrafted Artisan Jewelry and Wearable Art

About

I was born with beadwork in my blood! I first started making jewelry when I was a little girl. For holidays and birthdays, my favorite gifts were the kids craft kits. My first kit was for friendship bracelets. The most meaningful kit was a seed bead loom. My favorites were any beading kit! I loved them! I "played" with them until all the beads were used up. I would keep some finished pieces for myself and give the rest to my best friends and favorite family members.
My family continued to give me these types of gifts because I loved them so much, and they did too! The adults who would see me "work" always told me that I was talented and that I should sell my jewelry. But I didn't. I worked so hard on those little bracelets. They meant so much to me! Looking at them on my wrists gave me a sense of accomplishment. Seeing my friends proudly wear them made me feel loved! I had fun developing my style and playing with color combos. I loved my purple and lime green friendship bracelets!
As I got older, I started using a loom to weave seed beads together. This work stirred something deep inside me. My native culture that I had been disconnected from was awakening! I remember working at the Oneida Gift Shop in the Casino, doing my beadwork when it was slow. The customers who would see me work always told me that I was talented and that I should sell my jewelry. But I didn't.
At that time, I was still learning. As a self-taught beadwork artist, most of my pieces were experimental. Hours went into each piece. I felt that I wouldn't get paid accordingly and gifted them to friends and family instead. Those gifts were far from perfect and when they would break, my friends and family would tell me. Fixing their broken jewelry helped me avoid making the same mistakes. Their criticism helped me become a better beadwork artist. I don't believe that I would have gotten this feedback from strangers, and I wouldn't be where I am today without their encouragement.
My best friend told me once that a necklace I had made for her broke, but instead of having me fix it, she steered me in a different direction. She suggested that I try wrapping my beadwork around crystals and stones, which was something new in the beadwork world that I was familiar with. This required much more skill than I had at the time, which prompted me to continue my self-taught beadwork lessons. I started reading BEADWORK magazine when I was a young adult and furthered my techniques through the internet.
Because I am self-taught, by beadwork is different from traditional beadwork. The Oneida people are known for raised beadwork and bead embroidery. My new-traditional style gives me an edge, but I hope to learn from my Native Elders in the future. Still, my beadwork style (off-loom bead weaving) has been welcomed in my community. What a blessing!
I wear my beadwork creations proudly and continue to gift jewelry to friends and family. People always compliment me on my jewelry and ask me to make pieces for them. And I do! I welcome custom projects from my customers and love the opportunity to expand my skills. But I still have a hard time selling my jewelry for what it's worth. So much time and technique goes into each piece. In today's economy, it's hard to convert wealth into profit.
I recently took a budgeting class and was encouraged to sell my jewelry to supplement my household income. So here I am!
For a LIMITED TIME ONLY, my handwoven beadwork jewelry will be ON SALE at a LOW INTRODUCTORY PRICE! My customers will still get high quality jewelry full of spiritual wealth, but at a fraction of the true cost. So until the economy improves, I'm offering my beadwork at prices that are still affordable for my customers.
When you wear a piece of jewelry that I've made, I'm confident that you'll feel it's worth every penny! I use only a needle and thread to weave beads together, usually one at a time! Each stitch brings me closer to inner peace and connects me to my roots. And these spiritual vibrations are imbued into the beadwork. You'll feel its strength and power. You'll feel more connected and grounded. You'll feel (and look!) like a Goddess!

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