Q. ~Hi Kim, Thank you so much for taking time out to chat with me.
Can you tell us a little bit about yourself, your designs and services offered?
A. ~Hi Tonya, first, I want to thank you for the honor of being chosen as your first Featured Artist. This is such a great thing you are doing, a fun way to get know the folks behind the scenes! My name is Kimberly Booth and I live near Huntington, West Virginia with my fiance and our 2 beloved furbabies, China and Sophie. I am a huge bead lover and magpie, I love just about anything that sparkles LOL. I am a beaded jewelry designer. I used to dabble in all sorts of crafts from painting and flower arrangement to sewing. Since I found beads though, all of my creative time has been dedicated to that pursuit and I have loved every minute of it!
Q. ~How/when did you first become interested in jewelry design?
A. ~I actually started out with beads doing seed bead embroidered 'paintings'. I'd take a design and create it on fabric with the teeny tiny seed beads. When I started searching eBay for new colors of seed beads I kept running across auctions for beautiful beaded jewelry by the talented members of the beading group The Bead Hive. I finally asked to join and have been a member and moderator for the group ever since. I have been creating wearable art for 4 years now and I can honestly say that without the enthusiasm and encouragement of the members of the Bead Hive, I wouldn't be where I am today.
Q. ~Where do you find inspiration for your designs?
A. ~Mainly from the beads themselves. I'll see a gemstone or lampwork focal bead and if it's the right one for me, I'll see the finished design in my head just by looking at the bead. Sometimes I'll get an idea for a themed charm bracelet and then search out what I need to make it but normally it works the other way around. I seem to choose either very organic focal beads or very feminine ones. I love the look of beautifully created lampwork, both borosilicate glass and the 'soft' glasses. I also love using semi-precious gemstone beads, I love the earthiness of them. As long as bead makers are making beautiful beads, I'd like to think that I'll be beading!
Q. ~Several of your jewelry designs were recently featured in a new book written by Kim Gover titled Beading Design with Semi-Precious Stones, Glass, Pearls and More.
Congratulations! Being the proud owner of quite a few of your designs myself, I can honestly say that the recognition is well deserved.
In what ways do you feel this type of artistic recognition is beneficial to your creativity?
A. ~Being recognized by your peers as a designer worthy of publication is a huge honor. The selection process and the subsequent submitting of your work is a bit nerve wracking though LOL. The biggest benefit is the confidence I've gained and the willingness to try new techniques and grow as an artist because of it.
Q. ~Is there any one marketing tool that you have found to be the most beneficial in growing your business?
A. ~I am still trying new things and haven't really struck on the right techniques for marketing my work. I've been selling on eBay for 3 1/2 years and on Etsy for a few years now. I have recently opened stores on both Artfire and 1000Markets. I have a blog that I am terrible at tending so that hasn't worked out very well for me LOL. I guess I am still learning what/where is the best fit for my targeted buyers.
Q. ~In these tough economic times, when even large corporations are closing their doors, what motivates you to "keep at it"?
A. ~Obsession, Obsession, Obsession! If I didn't bead I'd go stir crazy LOL. Getting even a small sale really boosts the drive to continue, it's a form of verification that other's appreciate your work. It's a huge ego boost to have other's spend their hard earned cash on something you've made with your own hands.
Q. ~Thank you again Kim.. It has been a pleasure getting to know more about the woman behind The Pink Martini Boutique.
Before we go… What advice would you give to someone interested in jewelry design?
A. ~Create what you LOVE! Don't create to 'sell' or for a 'market', I've tried that and it doesn't work! If you put your heart and soul into what you are making, what you are making will reflect that passion. Also, buy the best materials you can afford because quality ALWAYS shines through! Art Jewelry is a lasting investment that you want your customers to be able to hand down for generations and quality components will see that your work lasts a lifetime!
You can visit Kimberly
and her blog