Boomerang Beader

That's me: Diane Jolie.
Greetings from Bead&Button magazine at Kalmbach Publishing. I’m Diane Jolie and I’m happy to rejoin the editorial team.  
That’s right. I’m rejoining, hence the boomerang. Sorry to anyone who might have thought I was a new beader from Australia. I’m neither new nor an Aussie.

I started my beading obsession in 2003. At the time I was working at Kalmbach for Birders’ World magazine, which was a birdwatching magazine. It was my second bird-related magazine, having worked for Ducks Unlimited in Memphis, TN, prior to that. After ten years of bird-related editing, I was ready for a change.
Festive wire Christmas trees
Paulette created these tiny Festive Wire Christmas Trees for BeadStyle back in 2003. Her creations were so popular, they were often duplicated.

When my friend and fellow Birders' World staffer Paulette Biedenbender transferred to BeadStyle magazine, I got the idea that this might be a fun and interesting direction for me as well. Having a fine arts major, I was eager to get my hand on some beads and I moved over to Bead&Button shortly thereafter.

Alice used art beads by Carol Fonda and Monty Clark for these pearl and crystal necklaces.
Mindy made this multistrand necklace in 2005, but I think of her and bead crochet more prominently.
I honed the craft under the guidance of Alice Korach, co-founder of Bead&Button, and Mindy Brooks, founder of BeadStyle. Oddly, Alice and I had a strangely similar start to beading both around age nine. Each of us started beading using a child’s American Indian Bead Loom. I made a key chain with the loom, but Alice picked up those beads and went on to inspire a generation. Personally, she motivated me to be the fearless beader I am today.
While Cheryl was best known for her wirework, she created wonders with seeds and accent beads.
Alice and Mindy, of course, were not my only guides on my beading journey. Cheryl Phelan patiently answered all my questions and was an incredible inspiration, especially her wirework. Debbie Nishihara kept my spirits up with her upbeat personality and tremendous gemstone creations. Terri Torbeck helped me with the basics, and I think of her always when I thread a needle – or needle a thread as she instructed. And Anna Nehs (aka Anna Elizabeth Draeger) … the most humble of beaders. What she did with crystals was unbelievable!
Debbie Nishihara graduated with a BFA degree in sculpture with a focus on bronze casting. Lucky for us, she became a bead addict, too.
AnnaNehs eggs cropped
Anna Nehs and her crystals. There's no limits for her.
Connie pendent cropped
Connie whipped up this pendant for last December's Design Challenge.
This is my second week back at Bead&Button so I am just getting to know Connie Whittaker, but I already appreciate her beading style, her color choices, and her attention to detail. (Don’t even think of having a thread showing with Connie around.) She has a corner work station with the best bird watching opportunities. Our neighborhood red-tailed hawks perch on tree limbs outside of her window and a northern cardinal hops past her on the window sill. (The cardinal is not there at the same time as the hawk. That would be bad, for the cardinal at least.)
Julia bracelet
Julia's bracelet features the new Arocs and Minos beads.
Julia Gerlach was in the books department when I was first at Bead&Button. While we didn’t have a chance to interact too much back then, I am delighted to work with her now. She has an easy-going personality and a fire that drives her to bead anything and everything. No technique or difficulty level holds her back. I know I will be learning quite a bit from my new editorial partners, Julia and Connie. 

Now, I can’t forget to mention my old friend Lora Groszkiewicz. Lora has been at Bead&Button consistently for 16 years. For those of you who have contributed to the magazine, contacted us for information, or stopped by the Bead&Button Show asking for help, you probably had the pleasure to encounter Lora. She has the passion and drive that keeps everything running and the patience to go with the flow with the ever-changing industry.
As you might be able to tell, I am delighted to be back at Bead&Button. I hope you and I will have a chance to learn, inspire, and encourage each other to go in new directions with our beading.

If you are lucky enough to make it to the Bead&Button Show in Milwaukee, please stop by and say hello. I’ll be the one smiling.

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