Tag Archives: beading

Promoting Etsy Artists-Part 4

Gorgeous beaded earrings

It’s almost spring and I am back again with a new blog! I have not blogged in a while due to health issues, (will detail in a separate blog) but I am back with the story of another wonderful Etsy artist!

I would like to introduce, Cindi from Lakota Charm! She is another disabled artist of Etsy with mad skills and a touching story. Her art is absolutely stunning and I am so happy to have found her! We have developed a great rapport and a budding friendship….you know what they say….birds of a feather DO flock together! I asked her a series of questions about herself, her artwork and her plans for the future. Without further ado…here is Cindi’s story in her own words.

I was in a very bad motorcycle accident in 2008. I have screws holding my shoulder together and I had to have a foot reattached that was ripped off in my accident. Since my accident, I have had numerous problems with my bones and joints. I now suffer from a degenerative bone and disc disease which is extremely painful. I have days where I am unable to walk or get out of bed on my own. Because of this, I am unable to work a regular job as I can not be on my feet for long periods of time and cannot be seated for long periods of time. It is because of this that I decided to start making jewelry as a way to have an income. It is something I enjoy very much.

I enjoy beading and seeing a design come to life. Someone who does Native beading knows the time you put into each piece. You have to love beading to do it because the money you may get from a pair of earrings is very little when you consider the time you put into each one. It truly is a labor of love.

Making and selling my jewelry has changed my life in many ways. It gives you such a sense of pride when someone buys a piece you made because they really love it. It gives someone like me who is fighting a debilitating disease, a sense of worth. When you cannot work and can no longer do some of the things you once did, you can easily fall into depression and you no longer feel like you have any self-worth. Being able to start my own business truly has saved me.

At this point in my work, I am selling my jewelry on Etsy. I have a Facebook page where I introduce many items, and I am in the process of setting up my website. I have also started doing art and craft sales. I hope within the next year to be able to expand and have my pieces for sale in different shops. I would love to be able to someday have my own shop to sell my pieces and to also sell other Native Artists items.

I am inspired by numerous Native artists. There are so many talented Native designers. It seems as though I find someone new all the time. Today I discovered Joy Lynn Parton from Pine Ridge Reservation. She has a store on Etsy called Rez Hoofz & Native Stylez. She has the most amazing painted boots and handbags. They are just beautiful. I encourage everyone to go take a peek.

When I started with Etsy I thought I was never going to sell anything. It took a couple of months to make a sale. But I kept adding items and one day I opened my mail to discover I had made a sale. Since then I have noticed an increase in traffic. More people add my store and my items to their favorites and I make a few sales. I think Etsy is a wonderful place to find beautiful handmade items and to connect with other people who also love making handmade items. I used to put items on Ebay but it has just gotten too pricey. I love Etsy and even with the start of my website and everything else I am planning, I do plan on staying with Etsy and adding more items all the time. I truly love it there.

I am getting married in 2012 and Lakota Charm would never be if it was not for the support of Joe…thank you!
I would also like to thank you, Deborah. I am very honored that you are writing about me. I truly thank you for supporting myself and other Native artists and other disabled individuals who have found a home on Etsy.

Well, there you have it, folks…another sweet, talented individual whom I am so happy to have found on Etsy! Thank you, Cindi for sharing your story with us. I know how hard it can be to talk about our disabilities. But I want others who suffer through disabilities to know that it is NOT the end of being a useful and relevant part of society. Etsy has given so many of us a place to do the things we love to do and help make ends meet as well.

Please visit Cindi’s Etsy shop at http://www.lakotacharm.etsy.com

Beautiful beaded necklace
Beautiful necklace and earring set
More gorgeous beaded earrings!

Promoting Etsy Artists- Part 2

Since I joined Etsy back in February. I have had the great honor of meeting some wonderful artists.   This group of people gathered on one website, is probably the most eclectic and talented bunch of folks I have ever had the pleasure to be a part of.   I feel honored to be a part of Etsy and these wonderful people.  I have joined three Etsy groups and have made some lovely friends.

The purpose of this blog is to give credit where credit is due.  I want to promote some of these awesome artists!  So, I will be doing a multi- part blog on some of these very talented people.  This will be an ongoing project of mine.

This blog is dedicated to an Etsy artist that is partially disabled.  Like me, she has found a place….a home on Etsy.  It has given us a creative outlet as well as a sense of self.

So, without further ado…meet Debra Mills…owner of Healer’s Moon and Sacred Dreams Beadwork.

I asked Debra some questions about herself and her Etsy shop.  Here is what she told me.

When and why did you first become interested in making jewelry?
“I first started beading in 1995 after moving to Oregon. After crafting, knitting and crocheting, sewing, etc. all my life, I was primarily drawn to the Native American style of beadwork for the vivid colors and the texture of the beads. Something about it really filled my soul and sparked my creative muse. I started making earrings with bugle and seed beads and as I learned, my thirst to try new beading techniques grew. As my talent grew, I was able to try beading on leather, making dream catchers and fur purses, and learned the peyote stitch. A few years later I began making barrettes and discovered a passion for it. And I have been learning, growing, and trying new techniques ever since.
I started Sacred Dreams Beadwork in 1999 with my late god-daughter, Katie Marie, after I was laid up with a bad car accident and surgery. We started it as a custom beadwork business where we made jewelry and other items according to the customer’s request. After she passed in 2006 from a tragic car accident, I began just beading what I felt in my heart and offering up items in my store for sale. I still do custom work and of course, I am always happy to get requests.”

What types of things do you like to make the most and why?
“I love creating beaded barrettes the most as it feels the most ‘comfortable’ to me. There is such a variety of styles – materials, types, colors. It is really rewarding when a piece speaks to me of its creation, and then speaks to its owner to add to their treasures.
I also love to make earrings. The colors are so pretty and there are so many materials. Each one feels differently in my hands. I have more ideas in my head than I could possibly make!”

Has your interest in jewelry making changed your life at all and why?
“I have always been a ‘crafty’ person and have been creating since I was a teenager. I’ve always felt like I’ve ‘come home’ when working with beads. It has profoundly changed my life and the way I see the outside world – opened my eyes to the color and beauty in all things around me and allow that to spark the creativity and vision inside, then translate that into beading. Beadwork is a challenge, a blessing, and my passion. Being disabled has tempered my ability to be physically active – but making beautiful jewelry and treasures gives me that outlet to connect with others, with the world around me, and with myself.”










Visit Debra’s shops at