As a child, my mother took me to see Tibetan Buddhist monks visiting Los Angeles create a traditional sand mandala, applying sand granules through small straw like tubes. These mandalas take several weeks to complete, and upon completion, the monks perform a ritual where they destroy it.
They ceremonially sweep it up, collecting the sand in a jar which is then wrapped in silk and taken to a river where it is released back into nature. This symbolizes the ephemerality of life and the world. Viewing this ritual had a profound impact on me as a young child.
I had been coloring mandalas as a form of meditation for years, when I saw an ad for a jewelry class called “Beaded Mandala Pendants”. I went, and have been hooked on working with beads ever since.
When I create something with beads, I always feel inspired by the Tibetan Buddhist monks I saw as a child. There are Tibetan Buddhist monks and nuns across Asia that bless and chant over beads strings they make called Malas. I use beading as a form of ritual and meditation and am always praying over and blessing my work with positive thoughts and energy.
I became a professional jewelry designer when I began selling equestrian themed jewelry to the Santa Anita Horse Race Track near Los Angeles, California. I now sell pieces in several stores in Homer, Alaska including Fireweed Gallery, Wild Honey Bistro, and Siren’s Folly.