Why would anyone want to do that?

Bumped to business class on a flight to Phoenix last week, I found myself with an extra-large lap tray and, for the first time in weeks, four leisurely hours to work on a project. (There’s something awry if you have to ascend 30,000 feet to find time for creative pursuits!) As the plane landed, I was tucking five of these finished components into my bag, when a woman passenger rushed over to me, said she had been watching me stitch away diligently for hours and just had to know how these little rectangles were going to be used. After running every possibility she could imagine through her head, she thought they might be buttons. A good guess, actually! As she turned one over in her hands, fascinated, I explained that they were components for a necklace. Walking toward baggage claim, I heard her husband ask, “Why would anyone want to do that?”

Good question. Ask 50 beaders, and you’d probably get as many answers.

My newfound beading hobby was just becoming serious, threatening to overflow my jewelry box, when the devastating earthquake struck Haiti in the first days of 2010. Like so many others, I couldn’t get the photos of the destruction and the desperate need in the faces of the children out of my mind. That’s when it hit me. Maybe I could sell some of my pieces and donate the profits to the recovery. I began contacting lots of great people, fully appreciating the interconnectedness that beading and blogging afford. Every e-mail I sent to a designer asking permission to make and sell a special design, was met with resounding approval. (One decided to donate a portion of the proceeds from her next show. Another sent one of her own creations to be included with mine.)
Egyptian Collar, a Shelley Nybakke design, in red and blue

My sister, who is by far the more crafty sibling and chock full of creative inspiration, joined me, and this year we are venturing beyond our annual trunk show (her profits go to her local children’s hospital and mine to Doctors Without Borders) and are signing up for our first craft fair.

I still make the occasional piece to add to my own cache, and love making gifts for family and friends, but the real joy comes from the domino effect of the talented women I’ve met, all helping to make a positive difference in people’s futures. And who wouldn’t want to do that?

1 comment:

  1. Those components are awesome looking! Kudos to you for your charitable work!