I love to play with fire, a trait of all metalsmiths… being a pyromanic. I love to mix fire, metal & stone which by accident or design makes me a jeweler. I am mostly self-taught & really enjoy making the entire piece right down to every little component. I am by education & devotion an RN. For 16 years I worked as both a jeweler & an RN. After 20 years in the nursing field I decided to finally give up that vocation. I miss being a nurse but I love being a full time jeweler more. I am married & have 2 children. My family was the start of my jewelry business. My husband & I decided I would stay home & raise our children, but I still worked as an RN on days he was able to stay home. In my spare time I began making jewelry. I had no idea where it would lead or that I had any skill or passion for what I now, love so much. It’s been a wonderful journey of learning & creating. It’s been a pleasure to be home, be a mom, have a trade, & become skilled at a fine craft. Where does my inspiration come from? A question I get all the time, especially with my unique stone pieces. 1. It comes in lost thoughts (really random stuff at really random times *you have this too*, pay attention, & write it down) or times when I am doing something else & the idea just floats into my head… it’s a very organic process. 2. New creative designs are never good if the thoughts are forced. I have always kept a very disorganized journal of these thoughts. I go to it when I need it & when I don’t need it, the daily practice of writing down the thoughts you dismiss. It’s a messy tally of my brain but it works. Somehow that messy record of randomness flows out of my fingertips & into a sheet of silver or gold. (Tip to creativity~ Don’t watch TV. Try it for a month. It works. Your brain will finally settle in to doing its’ own thinking.) Other inspiration comes from surroundings I love: the outdoors, kids, birds, flowers, flowing water, dirt, rocks, trees, religion & religious symbols, everyday nature, history, biology, & science. Design is everywhere. 3. Don’t forget you, my customer…you have given me my best ideas. You have pushed me to do things I would’ve never done. You’ve given me important, special, meaningful projects that I’m honored to do for you. So, thank you for your belief in me. I couldn’t have, nor can I do it without you.
God Bless, ~Joy Kruse
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