Thursday, August 19, 2010

News and Some Major Decisions

Warning - this post is long, but important for anyone interested in my beadmaking career. 

As many of you know by now, I have been going through some major life crises over the last year or so.  I won't go into the details of those - you can read through older posts if you haven't already, and are interested. 

I've been doing some heavy thinking for months now and have finally come to some decisions about my life and about the future of my career in beadmaking. 

At the end of this month I will begin applying for some jobs outside the home.  I've got a couple in mind at Costco main office, where my husband works.  Both jobs sound challenging but will offer a couple of really needed changes in my life. 

Working outside the house will reacquaint me into being with people on a daily basis again, something I badly need.  Being self-employed, I have been relatively reclusive for the last 8 years. Making and selling beads is a one-person thing for me, so I've spent most days alone either in my studio or in my home office.

For the most part I have enjoyed this alone-time.  I am an introvert at heart.  But after so many years, one longs for daily human contact.  My husband, of course, is always there for me.  And I have always had great friends that I keep in contact with and see occasionally, but there is nothing like daily contact with peers - even for just a little while. 

I of course can't be absolutely sure I will qualify for any job, but I will be applying and interviewing until I find one, and it may happen quickly or might take awhile.

Here's what will happen with my current situation:

Air & Earth Designs, my main website which features my handmade beads, will stay online until I find a job.  I will be removing the custom order element soon, because honestly there hasn't been any demand for at least a month, and I find myself dreading the idea of doing any more custom work.  The Beads For Sale page will feature any beads I make between now and when I get another job.  Once I have another source of income, the bead selling part of Air & Earth Designs will go on hiatus indefinitely. Air & Earth Designs will remain only as a gallery and portfolio of my work, as well as a place to announce classes and shows.

That doesn't mean I won't be making beads anymore - I don't think I will ever quit making beads.  I want to somehow recapture the joy and bliss I once felt when creating.  I think that if I turn it back into a hobby that will happen.  Beads I do make will go into my inventory and will be sold when and if I register for any shows, and gives as gifts to family and friends.

Bead shows I do will likely be only in my local area for awhile, due to financial concerns.  I really want to do the ISGB Gathering in 2012 when it comes to Seattle.  Before that, I am sure I will do some smaller local shows and maybe even the Puget Sound Bead Festival or some other show in Washington, California or Oregon. I will have to wait and see as to whether I will end up participating in any larger, national shows, as travel is really too expensive for me right now.

As for Coloraddiction, the tutorial website I share with Kimberly, that will stay up, probably for a long time.  I will likely continue to do the occasional tutorial, and I know Kim has some in mind as well.  I know I want to continue teaching skills to other beadmakers and I am sure Kim does as well. 

As for teaching in person, some things are already in the works for me.  I will try and teach as a side job, taking trips to teaching locations on occasion when the opportunity presents itself.  I will announce those locations on Coloraddiction and on Air & Earth Designs.

I have loved creating for myself and for my customers - I really have.  The floundering economy and the depression and anxiety have just made that almost impossible this last year, so I need a change.  Will this change be permanent?  I honestly don't know.  It may be that I might not be able to reintegrate into the work force - I might just not be personable enough.  I may not be able to handle working outside the home. Who knows.  But I want to try, in the hopes that it changes my financial situation and my emotional well-being for the better.

As for those who might wonder whether this is in part because of the lawsuit against me (and a group of other artists) that I have previously mentioned.  The answer to that is yes, but only in part.  The stress of being continuously defamed and erroneously reported for fraud is incredibly debilitating.  The lawsuits and what has come with them has taken a serious toll on me creatively, emotionally and financially.  However, something tells me I might have come to these decisions eventually anyway - this just speeds things along somewhat. 

I know, however, that I have done nothing wrong, and I have proof of that.  But the lawsuit remains and I have to continue to be involved until it's settled, and that takes away from what I really love to do - which is create gorgeous things. 

Creating in general, for me, replaces my ability to have children.  It's something I need to have in my life - like water or air.  Hopefully these life changes will enable me to get back to the joy of creating soon.

If you've read this far - thank you.  I really appreciate your time and concern. 

All my love,


  1. Dear Kandice, I really hope things will work out and you will get a nice job soon!
    Wishing you the best, hugs, Carolien

  2. You've given so much of yourself to this community and I personally can't thank you enough for that.

    I wish you all the best in this next part of your journey and hope you'll keep posting updates so we can all tag along.

    Good luck on the job hunt! We'll be here rooting for you!

  3. Hugs**** I always love your work and my friends too. Thanks for creating such beauties, we really enjoy your pieces.

    Best wishes to you on your job search.

  4. Good luck in your job search,
    Lise F.

  5. Kandice,
    I am saddened to hear of your decision to halt Air & Earth Designs as you have such beautiful work, you were a great inspiration to me when I was learning how to make beads and I am sure your work will be missed.... until such time as you come back to us.
    All the best for the next leg of your life journey!

  6. I hope everything works out for you. I am about to take a beginner's glass beadmaking class because I am so in awe of your work. Are you still going to keep up your tutorials on etsy?

  7. I too love your beads. Some of my favorite jewelry is made with work I've purchased from you. Good luck with this next phase of your life - it will unfold as it should. Also good luck with getting your muse back.

  8. Sweet Kandice,
    As your days grow into weeks and weeks into years you grow older and wiser! As you make these difficult choices they may seem to you so utterly icky! It's a new journey think about how much fun you will have; seriously turn this into a positive <3! You will never be gone from the glass community.. It's in your blood..
    Many Many Blessings of good wishes and good vibes as you travel this new road!
    Much Love, Vonna
    PS: OH, I hope you understand this...

  9. Susan Burwash8/19/2010 6:53 AM

    Dear Kandice,
    Thanks for all you've done for the beadmaking community. Even if, goddess forbid, you never made another bead, your legacy as a beadmaker is already secured. Good luck with the job search and with getting past depression. Both WILL happen.

  10. Hi Kandice,

    Good luck with the job search. I am disappointed that you may not be making beads for a while but I completely understand. Thank you for all that you have done for the lampworking community. You are one of the reasons that I fell in love with this art form and want to learn all that I can so that I am able to create beautiful beads. I have learned so much for you and for that I am grateful. I hope that everything works out for you and that your life takes you on an amazingly fun filled happy journey. Cheryl W.

  11. I hope you that you find what you are searching for Kandace....good luck to you!

    Evie :D

  12. I am sad that the events that have spurred your decision making still hover, may they be resolved soon. Good luck with your new route, and take heart that your effort are so appreciated by such a lot of us.

  13. I wish you all the best in your transition, Kandice, and hope that you will soon find an ideal balance in your life. While it will be a loss to the beadmaking community to have one of their pillars go from a full-time to a part-time presence, it is most important to listen to what your heart needs. You had my admiration already, but you have it even more for having the courage to make a big change!

  14. I'm never sure what to say when so many people respond to me in such a kind way. I am really, really grateful - thank you.

  15. Kandice, I hope you can find a job that will fulfill your financial and social needs, and give you the freedom to go back to creating your lovely beads for pleasure. Best wishes and prayers to you.

  16. Hey there. You don't know me, but I wish you all the best. I've loved reading your blog, seeing your beads and your wonderful colour sense. I hope it all goes well!

  17. I hope your change in journey will make you happy and give you some peace. I believe your bead making and creative spirit will be more enjoyable to you as a hobby. I have noticed a change in your beads recently, and I think it reflects your feelings - they don't seem to shine like they used too. Good luck with your venture into the outside world and I wish you all the best.

  18. Big hug from me, may all your dreams get true.

    All my best for you dear Kandice,

    ♥♥♥ Manuela

  19. (cries)

    I'm so sorry for all that you've gone through. I've followed your work silently for years and have admired you and your willingness to share. I just started making beads and your color theory has been a huge help.

    I understand the internal agony that can go on when making a decision like this and my heart goes out to you. I know you don't know me from Adam, but know that you're in my thoughts.

  20. Sheila Seeber8/20/2010 9:32 AM

    Hi Kandice,we love you and know that you will do well in all that you do. I'm glad you are keeping the beadmaking as a hobby and so sorry to hear about the lawsuit. You sure don't deserve that (definitely an understatement). Your comment about maybe not being personable enough for the job market makes me realize how unaware of your sweet personality you are. You would be an asset to any work force. I understand your need to be with people while also feeling like a recluse, because that is how I felt when I went back into teaching. I love to be home and alone, but I love to be with people too. Hopefully you will find the perfect balance for yourself. I'll keep you in my prayers. (And, I'm also praying that so much will change by next summer that you will want to go to Detroit Lake with us for a day or so!) We would give you all the comforts of home!) We will still try to find some time that we can come up and visit you, if that works into your schedule. Let's wait and see the directions our lives unfold and hope for the best!

  21. I'm sorry to hear that you have had such a poopy year. You are very brave though for making such a big decision. I hope that this change for you does make the changes in your life that you need at the moment.
    As for that other person, really don't people have better things to do with their time!?!

    Anyway hugs from me, I hope you get a job with loads of fun people