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Jill Waterbury

HANDCRAFTED JEWELRY

My entire life I’ve been happiest when I’m creating. You know the feeling you have when you love something so much that hours of the day fly by in the blink of an eye? I get that feeling when I’m knitting, crafting, taking photos, painting, drawing, cooking or something along those lines. I’ve tried so many things just for the sheer joy of it. 

A few years ago I was told about silver clay jewelry. The concept of making something with clay, firing it and then getting silver jewelry BLEW MY MIND. Of course I had to learn this too! This was different though. It was LOVE the first time I tried it. After that it was a slippery slope. I had to keep getting my fix. I made the leap from silver clay to actual silver smithing. Learning any new skills related to making jewelry was addicting. I found a little studio that I could learn in a small group setting with all the tools and took as many classes as I could. I was a kid in a candy store! 

But the process has been a slow one all-in-all. There’s this whole issue of “paying the bills” and having a “day job”. My obsession knows no bounds though. I spend what free time I can working on inspiration, creating my own designs and construction. If I’m going to be honest, part of why it took so long was that I wasn’t willing to put myself out there to sell yet. My insecurities run deep. Heck I’ve never really given myself credit for being good at any of what I do. Partly I think that’s due to my upbringing (be modest!) and I think it’s inherently part of being a woman. We are SO hard on ourselves! I also believe deeply that if I can do it, nearly anyone can. So then why would anyone buy something from me they could do themselves! I digress…..

Creation is rejuvenating to me. (That and spending time out in nature, camping, hiking or just generally enjoying being away from humans.) I can spend hours in my studio and I feel so good when I’m done. But I’m still learning. I keep seeing pieces that I love and deciding to make one for myself. So I put my spin on what I love and then move on to the next obstacle. And that shows in what I have to offer at this point. But I have to sell to make more! “Earn while you learn!” someone told me once. I have to say, I think that’s pretty good advice.