My ability to design jewelry has grown through the years. I started out learning a stitch and then a pattern (frequently from a beading magazine). I always tried to make it my own. I never want to copy it. The choice of beads, colors and components available make it easy to change the pattern a good deal. In the picture below, I made the brooch in the center similar to the one published in Beadwork Aug/Sept 2006, Crystal Radiance Brooch by Tina Koyama. The ones beside it are my variations.
Now, I try to push myself to find the right technique and materials to express life at the microscopic level. By thinking about the stains we use in the lab to depict various tissue structures and disease processes, I have begun to step outside my box when choosing color combinations and components in my designing and making jewelry. I realized recently, we all get too comfortable in our choices staying with the same colors and styles, in jewelry as with many aspects of our life.
Perphaps, it is time to step outside the box, mix it up a bit and try something different. If you usually wear small and dainty - try something big and bold! If you usually wear studs - try some long dangle earrings. If you have to wear them around the house for several days before you get up the nerve to wear them out, that's okay! Try a different color. You might be surprised at the response you get.
I truly love watching someone try on my jewelry and seeing them fall in love with it.