Margot Potter is the author of several best-selling jewelry titles, including The Impatient Beader series and, most recently, New Dimensions in Bead and Wire Jewelry. Her signature style and design aesthetic features pretty and wearable jewelry that’s also a snap to make. New Dimensions in Bead and Wire Jewelry does something no other jewelry book does by combining hard shaping wire with flexible beading wire to create stunning sculptural designs. Today, Margot joins us for an interview.
Q: When did you start crafting? What craft did you start with?
Margot: I will spare you the diaper story, so instead I will say that I grew up with a fine artist as my mother in a family of creative people. I can’t think of a time I did not create things from mud pies to sand castles. Formally, I entered hand sewn soft sculptures and clay figurines in local art shows as a kid. So those are my first real crafts.
Q: What other crafts do you do besides jewelry design?
M: Painting, drawing, cooking, baking, home decorating, stamping, inking, paper crafting, repurposing, mixed-media art, and I’m currently learning crochet. If you can make it, I will try it! I am not afraid of anything, unless it requires time-consuming, minute detail work, in which case my impatience overrides my curiosity!
Q: What made you decide to write New Dimensions in Bead and Wire Jewelry?
M: I have been working with Beadalon for almost 12 years designing ‘in-use’ projects featuring their hard and soft wire. Much of that work is very architecturally and sculpturally driven, I am constantly trying to make the wire do things it mostly doesn’t want to do. I thought a book about combining both mediums to make dimensional designs might be different enough to stand out on the shelves.
Q: What is the best part about writing a book? What is the most difficult?
M: I love the designing and writing copy; I hate writing the step-by-step instructions. I think most designers would agree that writing the instructions is tedious work. Also letting go of my desire to control every aspect of the book is difficult.
Q: How do you get inspired when you’re feeling a lack of creativity?
M: I think people are surprised to hear that I never feel a lack of creativity or run out of inspiration. Everything inspires me and creativity excites me. I just love making things. My biggest problem is turning that off so I can unwind and unmind.
Q: What is the skill or technique that most intimidates you?
M: Nothing really intimidates me. I’d love to tackle sewing and more fiber arts. I know that I will make a lot of horrid things before I make beautiful things, but even the crappiest creations have something of value. However, I do not find small repetitive kind of creative tasks interesting or fun; I am The Impatient Crafter after all.
Q: What’s the best advice you could give to a new jewelry enthusiast?
M: Have fun. Don’t worry about making perfectly perfect things. The best stuff you will make will probably unfold because you were willing to stretch yourself creatively. No act of creativity lacks merit. Trust your eye. You have it in you to be a designer, you really do.
Q: What’s your favorite jewelry blog, and why?
M: The Writing and Art of Andrew Thornton (http://andrew-thornton.blogspot.com). I love his transparency, his soulfulness and his willingness to share his creative process and journey. He’s also one of my favorite people in real life.
Q: What tool, notion or material can you not live without?
M: I can live without all things, but I can not live without love. Creative people will find a pathway to creativity no matter what tools or materials or notions they have at hand.
Q: How has jewelry-making changed your life?
M: Well, it brought me a husband, a retail business we ran for five years and an unexpected career as an author and designer. Eight years into that career, I’d say I’m deeply blessed. If you’d have told me at 34 I’d be married with a 14 year old daughter and working as a designer in the craft industry, I’d have thought you completely daft. So…I’d say it’s changed my life significantly!
Thanks so much for joining us, Margot!