So what I thought I was going to write about is not at all what wants to come out. I wanted to give you a happy pattern for making a beaded LOVE pen and call it a day, but its time to dig into something deeper (LOVE pen instructions still included). I would like to share with you about how I nearly annihilated my creativity with judgment, and what Bead Love means to me now. It's a long story, so I hope you're ok with the shorter version.
I was so excited the first time I got accepted to teach at the Bead & Button Show. I felt like I had finally made it. I was proud of my my website and podcast, I had a business coach to help me, and I was ready to make my dream of entrepreneurship a reality. I quit my part time job to get everything ready and to design new things to teach at future workshops. Only the money didn’t come, no new teaching opportunities, and I watched my friend, another new teacher sell out of her kits.
In that moment, I let judgment demons take over. I made what happened mean all these terrible things about me that weren’t true: my work sucks, I don’t design stuff people like, it’s too easy, I’m a bad teacher, nobody likes me, what’s wrong with me, why can’t I make this business work…despite all the evidence to the contrary including the evaluations from the wonderful ladies in my classes.
I returned home, got a new part time job, and carried on. I was really excited about super duos and their potential, and ended up with my Ratan bangle, a class which sold out twice at the next Bead & Button show. It was fun, but the judgment demons were still there, and in full force. Despite the outward success, I was in debt, I hated my job, and I was unable to make a living from my passion. That last part hurt so bad I started resenting my gift.
I quit beading and decided to explore some other things and business ideas. I didn’t touch beads for about a year, and when I redid my office, I considered giving away or selling them all.
I was working with my mentor on a couple things, and after one particular session, I felt the urge to get my hands on some beads. I finished Sherry Serafini’s Monster necklace in one night, and it was so joyful to play with beads again I wondered why I ever stopped!! THAT. That joyful feeling of creating something with your hands, having no judgments or expectations about it being a class or to sell, THAT is what Bead Love is to me. Not that it can’t be a class or something later, it’s that creation for creation’s sake is the joy and the number one priority without any expectations or judgments on it.
A year later I have a full time job and I’m discovering how I’d like to weave beads into my life along with other adventures. I have a couple designs scheduled for future publications, and I started selling finished pieces again. One form of beading that I have always loved that is kind of a black sheep is freeform peyote. I love having no rules, and here’s my work in progress piece. The working title is “the key to creativity is no judgment."
It is my hope that this story contributes to you in some way. If you’d like to make your own beaded LOVE pen, instructions, blank graphs, and the entire alphabet can be downloaded here: Beaded Pens Ebook.