An Interview with Crystal

During the early days of this blog, I was asked to do a “Getting to Know You” interview.

Most of you have probably never seen it, so I thought I’d post it here, today.

An Interview with Crystal

1. Please tell us more about yourself.

I’m a woman who loves all forms of art. Ever since I was a child I’ve had the desire to learn to create something beautiful. Of course at first it was with paper and a little box of crayons! 🙂 Over the years I’ve learned many different types of crafts including needlework, decorative painting, sewing, knitting, floral arranging, doll making, and beading. My work has been sold in gift shops and at artisan shows and craft fairs. I’ve been making jewelry for about 5 or 6 years, and I enjoy it tremendously. On a more personal note, I’m married to my best friend and we have two wonderful daughters, who are all grown up now.

2. How was your shop started?
After making jewelry for friends and family for a few years, I began to receive many kind compliments on my designs and also encouragement to begin selling my creations. I discovered etsy around the same time, and it seemed to be the perfect place to display my work. I’m so impressed with etsy – it’s a wonderful community of people who appreciate the beauty of items made by hand. I think it’s so important to support the arts and the spirit of creating. Everyone benefits from art – those who create it, those who buy it, and those who simply look at it! It’s inspiring and soothing all at the same time. Bravo to etsy for recognizing that the Internet needed a place dedicated to showcasing handmade treasures.

3. What inspires you?
Art in general inspires me, but I am particularly inspired by vintage jewelry. It is definitely an art form. Although the materials used were often inexpensive (rhinestones, Lucite beads, glass beads, and plated metals), many vintage designs truly rival the finest pieces of precious jewelry. One reason for this is that many of the designers were originally trained to make fine jewelry. That’s another whole topic, however! LOL

4. What handmade possession do you most cherish?
Ah, that is a tough question! I absolutely cherish anything that someone has taken the time to make for me. It would be impossible to choose a favorite but . . . I treasure doll clothes that my grandmother and my mother made for me many, many years ago, and an afghan that my husband’s mother made, and a set of prayer beads that my sister-in-law made for me, and the handcrafted gifts and cards that my daughters have made over the years, and finally, although my husband has not made gifts for me – he chooses very thoughtful gifts with cards and wrappings that have a coordinating theme and this I cherish as well.

5. Which items in your shop receive most compliments from customers?
I suppose it would be my earrings simply because I sell them most often. Earrings are a more affordable purchase – something that we can buy to treat ourselves now and then. Women love a new lipstick, or a pretty new scarf, and earrings also fall into that “something small to jazz up my wardrobe” category. I receive compliments on my necklace and earrings sets, as well, along with the beads that I select for my designs. Beads are one of my passions so I love working with them, especially vintage beads – which truly are treasures from the past, and an art form in themselves.

6. What is your favorite bead/gemstone?
That is easy! Amethyst! I love purple! 🙂

7. How do you promote your work?
Well, I actually have two shops – one is my website and the other is my etsy shop. After I started to make jewelry, I became so interested in beads that I studied everything available to learn more about them. I began to use more and more vintage beads in my designs and eventually decided to offer them for sale. My customers are very helpful in recommending my shops, and I also have a blog, which has brought me new customers and also many new friends!


Hang on, Kids! The weekend is almost here. 😀



Interview with the Artist: Elsie

This installment of Interview with the Artist features a very special lady, whose beautiful paper snowflakes have brought joy to countless people . . . and I am one of them!

I “met” Elsie a couple of months ago when she began to comment on the blog. She won the weekly giveaway and afterwards sent me an envelope that contained the most gorgeous paper snowflakes I’d ever seen!


I was simply fascinated by their intricacy, and also very touched that she would surprise me with such a delightful gift! After learning a little more about Elsie, I discovered that she does this all the time.

She very graciously granted me this interview. I know you’ll enjoy it . . . and as Elsie says: “Let it Snow!” 🙂


Were you interested in art as a child?

I loved art and my kind parents always encouraged me. I would cut big square snowflakes and spent lots of time practicing. I also enjoyed drawing, paper arts, painting, and clay/pottery. I became an elementary art teacher and worked until my son was born. He’s 21 now.

Does it take a long time to develop a talent for making them so beautifully?

I learned to cut a wide variety of paper snowflakes as I was teaching my students to cut the 6-sided, more realistic-looking, type of snowflake. We decorated the whole school with them!

Do you need special scissors to create the snowflakes?

I use regular scissors, five inches long, sharp and pointed.

Who are the lucky recipients (besides me!) of these exquisite little pieces of art?

I have given away hundreds of my paper snowflakes to friends (mailed in Christmas cards), neighbors, nursing home residents, hospital patients, hospice staff, also to shelters, schools, and offices.

Can you estimate how many snowflakes you have made over the years?

One year I cut over 2000 of them. Lately I lose count.


Of course white paper is probably best because it makes the most life-like snowflakes, but have you ever experimented with different colors or types of paper?

I still experiment and use pastel colors of blue and pink for hospital maternity floors, or I try to include shapes of angels, trees, or even names in the snowflake designs as a treat for children to find – it’s so fun and I am constantly inspired!

Do you also make paper dolls or other paper art?

My other art interests include origami paper folding, woven paper hearts, personalized paper pumpkins, and window valentines. Paper crafts are inexpensive and portable to work on, and fun to share!


Do you keep any examples of your best work – just for yourself? 🙂

I haven’t saved any snowflakes for myself . . .

I make the snowflakes to be small gifts of appreciation from me, or to send my good wishes during the Holiday Season. The kind notes and letters of thanks I’ve gotten are delightful and bring me joy, and I’ve saved them all. I once received a personal Christmas card, in return, from U.S. President Ronald Reagan, and some of my little snowflakes were on display at the Cleveland Museum of Art, on the office windows of the Education Department! This blog interview invitation from Crystal is thrilling for a Mom from Ohio! Thanks Crystal!

Wishing all a Happy New Year and Let it snow!


If you’d like to contact Elsie about her snowflakes, please leave a comment on this post with your request, and I’ll be glad to forward her email address!