(EDITOR'S NOTE: The following is the next installment in a series of articles highlighting local artists who create wearable art. These Fashion Friday features will be published each month on First Friday.)
Beth Moser, 41, is a celebrated beadwork artist and instructor from Williamsport.
Her designs have been featured in Step-By-Step Magazine in 2010, Beadwork Magazine and Beadwork EMagazine in 2011. She was named one of the top 40 designers of the year in 2010 by Step-By-Step Magazine.
Beaded work by Beth Moser, above and below, will be on display tonight at the Pajama Factory for First Friday. Moser makes earrings, rings, necklaces and bracelets. Prices range from $20 to $475 with the average piece priced at $65.
Moser's innovative designs also will be featured in the Beadwork Magazine 2012 Annual Favorite Bead Stitches issue and Bead and Button Magazine, which will be published in February and August 2013.
She will be a sought-after beadwork instructor at Beadfest, in Philadelphia in April and August. Moser was chosen to show her work in July at the People's Choice Festival of Pennsylvania Arts and Crafts Show in Boalsburg.
Her work will be on display tonight at the Pajama Factory for First Friday.
Tara D. McKinney: Wow, Beth, that's quite a list of accomplishments. How did you get into beadwork?
Beth Moser: I was in college and saw a girl wearing a necklace made with beads.
I wanted to make one so I strung one and I loved it! I sold necklaces to girls in our sorority colors. Then I sold some to guys in fraternity colors.
I started making necklaces with beaded flowers. I charged $2 to $3 per necklace. I am self-taught. I have never taken a beading class.
TDM: So I guess you are a natural. What kinds of pieces do you make?
BM: My favorite thing to do is bead embroidery. I like to make big couture pieces that are real works of art.
TDM: Can you describe a typical piece?
BM: I actually just finished a piece for a Raje Shwari music video shot in New York.
Shwari has worked with Timbaland and 50 Cent and just struck out on her own.
I like to use cabochons, crystals, glass, stones and pearls as the focal points and surround them with beadwork.
TDM: It sounds like you are on your way to designing for some famous faces. What is your favorite part of creating designs for your buyers?
BM: I like to sit with them and get ideas about what colors they like or what stones fit their personalities - are they more conservative or are they not afraid to think outside the box?
I consider them, but put my own flavor on it. It's art, not just jewelry. It's an expression. I don't look at it as creating jewelry.
I want my jewelry to answer the question before it has even been asked.
TDM: What is a typical price range for your pieces?
BM: I make earrings, rings, necklaces and bracelets.
Their prices range from $20 to $475 with the average piece priced at $65.
TDM: What are your goals as an artist?
BM: My dream is to break into the fashion industry and design pieces for the runway for major designers like Rachel Zoe, Michael Kors and Diane Von Furstenberg.
TDM: What inspires you to create your designs?
BM: I draw a lot of my coloring from nature.
I'm inspired by colors, shapes - everything around me. Sometimes a design will come to me in the middle of the night.
TDM: What are you currently working on?
BM: Right now I'm making a Rasta bracelet with colored glass by local glassmaker Trish Strausbaugh.
She has a kiosk in the mall. I'm bead embroidering around her pieces of glass and making a big, beautiful bracelet.
TDM: Can you describe a favorite piece?
BM: I can't pick just one.
I would definitely say that my favorite pieces are created when I'm not thinking about the outcome.
Those are my most artistic pieces. I don't consider what anyone else thinks about it. Those pieces tend to get the most recognition.
TDM: You sound really inspired. Do you have any advice for budding artists?
BM: Nothing is impossible. There is nothing to stop anyone from doing what they want to do if they have passion.
I wake up in the morning and go straight to work at my desk.
I never thought I'd be where I am today. I know I can accomplish whatever I want to do.
That's something I tell my three boys everyday.
McKinney may be reached at life@sun gazette.com.
To submit an artist for consideration, email dborick@ sungazette.com or call 326-1551, ext. 3108.