Blue Roses Design

smaller pic of me 2Hi, I’m Vincenza, 53 years old, mom to three really cool people, and grandma to two awesome little people. I’ve been married to the love of my life for almost 30 years, and our life has been one big adventure. My husband, a disabled combat vet, served in the 82ndAirborne for 11 years and we spent most of that time on Fort Bragg in North Carolina, with two years in Berlin, West Germany. We got to see the wall come down and Germany unified, so I’d say we’ve had some really cool experiences. Our oldest son is also a disabled vet, having served one year in Afghanistan with the North Carolina National Guard.

front1_a423824082014083120I’ve been a stay at home mom for most of our marriage, raising our kids, and going back to school on and off to finish my degree in history; I finally finished that degree three years ago, earning my BA in History at the age of 51!!!! Wearing that cap and gown was awesome.

I wouldn’t call making jewelry my hobby – that’s more of an addiction. I always say I sell jewelry because I couldn’t possibly wear all the stuff I make. My other hobbies are history, reading, knitting and crocheting and making my husband’s life ‘interesting’. My areas of history are Renaissance/Medieval Britain and the Lakota. Lately I’ve gotten hooked on Norse History thanks to my husband and the History Channel. I’m not ashamed to admit, though, that if I’m not making jewelry my face is found in a book. My mom said I learned to read at 3 because I got tired of being read to and she’s never known me without a book in front of my face since that time. While my new dream is to have a work room filled with all the jewelry supplies I can get my hands on, my first and still most fervent dream, is to have one of those libraries that you see in movies – bookshelves floor to ceiling, covering every wall. I’ve got a good start actually, my workroom shares space with my five book cases full of books.

I’ve always been what my family calls “craftsy”. For years, if I didn’t have my face in a book I had a hook or knitting needles in my hands. I started crocheting and knitting at 7 years old and at 30 found the joys of working with thin cotton threads. I will still pick up the hooks or needles when we need hats, scarves or dishcloths, but jewelry is my main creative focus right now. I do have to pick up the yarn at least once a year actually because my daughter has to have a new scarf every winter, regardless of whatever else I have going on. It once took me 5 months to knit her a Harry Potter Gryffindor scarf!

front1_0dcc514082014124325I’ve been creating for as long as I can remember. I played with old jewelry when I was little, taking it apart and putting it back together in different styles. I was fixing broken jewelry by time I was 11 years old. Knitting and crocheting I already mentioned, and then there is writing. I still have notebooks filled with the poems and stories I wrote as a child and teen. I was once told by someone that I have a NEED to create, and that when that need is stifled, that is when my depression takes over. I don’t know how true that is, but I do suffer from Depression and it seems like once I start crafting something, it lifts.

As for my jewelry designs, I tell people I’m like a magpie- if it shines it’s mine. I love to work with glass crystals of every size, but most especially 8mm roundels. I started out with regular glass beads and some Milaflori and Lampwork, but they don’t inspire me the way crystal The first time I made a bracelet with 8mm crystal roundels and held it up to the light, I was hooked. It just has to be shiny.

My second favorite medium, because of my spiritual interests, is semi-precious crystals and stones. I used to scoff at family members who were into crystals back in the ‘80’s, but now I’m not so sure it’s all bogus. Whether the energy is real or not, there is something about handling natural crystals and stones that soothes and relaxes me.

On my list of things to learn in the future is wire work, including soldering, bead weaving and chain maille.  I’ve already done a bit in each area, but none is good enough for the general public yet; oh well, more for my jewelry box.

I started my business about 18 months ago. I would go into WalMart, Michaels and the other craft stores and look at the beads and jewelry components and want so much to buy everything I saw, but I couldn’t think what I would do with it. Then I found Etsy and realized I could do a lot of what I was seeing on the site. I opened my Etsy site in October of 2012, selling jewelry made from the jewelry components I already had in the house. The first sales enabled me to buy more components and I was off and running. In addition to my Etsy shop I sell at my town’s monthly first Sunday art faire and at various holiday fairs in the area. I’m hoping to broaden my scope to the surrounding towns that have craft fairs.

Selling a piece is a great pleasure to me that goes far beyond the monetary part. Sure, the sale means I can buy more stuff, but, even more important, it means that someone liked my piece, liked what I did with the beads and the wires and all the other components. The money fuels my addiction to jewelry, but the sale validates me as an artist. Even a three dollar sale can brighten my day because it means the piece was liked by someone other than me.

front1_238a027072014093236I’d be lying though if I said it didn’t get hard sometimes. I might spend an hour or two creating a piece, but it takes an average of three to four hours for me to get it listed and then shared on all the social media sites that I list my jewelry on. After a day like today, for instance, after two hours of Tumblr, Facebook, Pinterest, and later, Instagram, I wonder if it’s all worth it. To check the stats after a day like that and see very few views, and even less ‘likes’, can take the wind out of my sales. I have my own version of almost every piece that I list for sale. I might think it’s gorgeous, so when it gets no response at all can bring me down.  Then there is the problem of keeping up with what is “trending” in the fashion world. A person can go crazy trying to figure out which jewelry is actually the trend for a season, especially among the young. A lot of the pieces I make transcend trends; I like to make things that will look good regardless of the fashion designers say, but, the fact is that trending jewelry makes for better sales.

I can be found all over the web! I have my Etsy shop: www.etsy.com/shop/Bluerosedreamer. Then there is the new Handmade Artists shop I just started listing in, https://handmadeartists.com/shop/Bluerosedreamer. I can be found on Tumblr -http://www.tumblr.com/blog/bluerosedreamer, Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/bluerosesdesignjewelry,  Pinterest -http://pinterest.com/bluerosedreamer/ and Twitter: https://twitter.com/Bluerosedreamer. You can also find me on Instagram, just do a search for Bluerosedreamer or Bluerosesdesign.

I’m just about everywhere on the web that I can think of being, which is why it takes me so many hours in the morning to get my stuff listed.

I think the only thing left to explain is the name – why Blue Roses. When I was a kid I saw a movie about a hero who had to go out and find the mystical blue rose in order to save the life of the princess he loved. From that time on I became fascinated with blue roses. They are everywhere in my home, fabric, plastic, silk. My husband knows not to buy me roses because until they find a way to create a living blue rose, I’m not interested in any other color.

The name Blue Roses Design started about 10 years ago when I was crocheting costumes for Barbie Dolls and thought I might want to sell them. When I started the jewelry business it was the natural name to take, but, when I tried to use it on Etsy it was already taken. So, to get around it, I am Blue Roses Design dba Blue Rose Dreamer.

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