Song Sense Jewelry is donating 10% of all sales to PHAMALY,
Denver’s award-winning theatre company which produces professional plays and musicals that exclusively feature actors with all nature of disabilities
Welcome to my Song Sense Jewelry’s – “Seven Fingers Zero Toes” Blog, where my job is to help guide you to the many wonderful choices for jewelry you’ll find here, and how each one might speak to you. And I’ll introduce you to me, the designer. When I make a piece I leave an essence of my spirit within it. All of my jewelry is made with your comfort in mind. No wires hanging out of your necklace to scratch your neck. I run my fingers along the beads to make sure they are not sharp. In most of my necklaces, I even place small, smooth beads in the back so there’s no irritation behind there. All bracelets and necklaces securely connect. Most with magnetic clasps, so nothing is likely to fall off. The materials I use are high-quality.
gold filled or gold plated clasps and findings
The sense of awe I find in new lampwork beads or the struggle of putting on a clasp all has me totally engaged and pain-free. When I’m finished creating a piece, I can sense myself within it. In writing the description I contemplate how I’ve created its uniqueness just for you. You are reflected in my jewelry, the perfect match for your lifestyle. Whether it’s the colors, the texture, the shape, or just the mood I was in, that handcrafted piece of jewelry is an expression of my creative spirit coupled with how I see it, in turn, expressing you.
My new work includes mosaic tile wall hangings made from polymer clay. These can include a saying you write arranged with molded letters or stamped sayings I have in stock. Each tile is unique with items such as molded faces, goddesses, flowers, and stamped music notes, geometric shapes, and dragonflies. I then decorate each with mixed media such as mica, gems, jewels, charms, and chain. Each wall art piece is created with a meditative Spirit and is especially for you.
Let me introduce you to me, since so much of me is in my artwork: If you ask me what my crowning achievements in life have been, I’d include the birth of my son, of course, working a full-time job for 27 years, snow skiing, roller skating, mountain repelling, designing and creating jewelry, even co-founding a theater group and portraying some covetous roles on stages of the prestigious Denver Center for the Performing Arts. Nothing too amazing in those acts. Except I grew up in a time when I was told I couldn’t do them.
I always wanted to be an actress. Even as a small child I would choreograph my own pieces, wearing long nightgowns trailing behind me to disguise the leg I was missing. My favorite song to dance to was “Cathy’s Clown” by The Everly Brothers. I’d start in my little green rocking chair and rock to the beat. Then glide to the floor with a couple of spins for a splendid finish!
My first leg was amputated when I was 9 months old as a result of a condition called Amniotic Band Syndrome. I would have my remaining leg amputated at 16 years old when numerous surgeries could not make it viable. Hence, the “zero toes.” I also create all of my jewelry with only two fingers on my left hand. The “Seven Fingers.” The condition also affected my spine, hips and pelvis, heart and other internal organs. By the time I was 17, I’d had 26 surgeries.
But I still wanted to do those dances! So in 1989, four friends and I would go on to form a theatre group for performers with disabilities called PHAMALY.
I soared on that stage, discovering things about myself I never knew! I played everything from a Jewish mother to a conjoined twin. And I was nominated for “Best Actress in a Musical” twice by the Critics’ Circle!
Because of chronic pain, I’m unable to continue my work on the stage. I really thought my world had ended. I was in horrible pain and didn’t want to get out of bed. I was quickly becoming dependent on pain medication.
Then my Mother-in-Law, Fran visited me and brought her jewelry-making materials. I watched as she made marvelous works of art out of beads. And I asked her to teach me. We worked together long distance for about six months. She showed me new beading techniques and bead colors, etc. But I couldn’t keep it up. I was in so much pain, I’d have to quit 10 minutes into the project and forget where I was when I returned to it. Soon I gave up on it and crawled into my bed determined to stay there.
Then Fran passed away and left me all of her beading materials. I had to try again in her memory. At this point, I was also experimenting with meditation. Why not combine the two?! Meditative jewelry-making!
I picked some beads, laid them out on the beadboard and sat back and meditated. When I finished my meditation, I had a gorgeous new necklace! My friend calls it “Trance Jewelry”! Later I also picked up polymer clay art and included that in my meditative process. Usually, I am able to finish a piece in one sitting. Things that take longer have a definite stopping place for me to rest. Now, instead of going to my pain medication bottle, I go to the art table! I was so afraid of becoming dependent on medication, but it’s beads and clay that I’m addicted to now!
Visit my Shop and see my “Trance Jewelry,” Vintage Jewelry, and Wall Art