Guys! I’m so excited to share with you that I’ve created a new jewelry line! I’ve created a jewelry collection called Empress Mala Designs. I have my own online store at empressmaladesigns.com, and I have my Mala Bead Bracelets on etsy at Empress Malas.
Why Did I Create A Jewelry Line?
Back when I was in my very early twenties I really wanted to take a jewelry making course. It wasn’t in the cards for me at the time and was heavily discouraged by my parents. Probably wise, since it was really expensive and not practical to their minds.
I had gone to fine arts school and once I was finished I was floundering a bit on how to take a creative outlet, and turn it into a career. When I got my Fine Arts Certificate I just wasn’t sure about going further and getting my Bachelor Of Fine Arts. Creating things all day long was easy but I just couldn’t imagine how a career in fine art would look for me. I had won lots of awards in my teens and got to go to Emily Carr on a teen scholarship (most amazing experince of my teens). That intense self expression I felt as a teen kind of dwindled in my late twenties.
The idea of relying on my creativitiy was too scary, especially being amongst so many much more talented and creative artists at school. I admire so much the careers that my art school friends have built for themselves and they are all so successful.
By the time I had finished part of my post secondary Art education, I had plenty of skill and knowledge but no focus and no voice. Because I couldn’t really see a path forward, I chose to not pursue my bachelors in fine arts. Instead I followed a different more practical employment which always just felt like a job. I did really love parts of it but it was never my career.
This constant urge to create is part of the reason I created this blog and take such pleasure in maintaining it. This space means so much to me and I really love this community. It satisfies that creative part of my brain, and allows me to explore things I love. Fashion has been a big inspiration for me over the years. Fashion is art and commerce but it is also craft and function. Somenow, in my mind the catalyst for this blog being Lululemon makes perfect sense.
Recently I’ve been feeling such desire to create something physical and I’ve been reminiscing a lot about my fine art days. I had not made any art or craft since my kids where born, I just admire other peoples art. This confuses so many people in my life that knew me as someone who loved making art. I think I’ve just been incubating my artist.
My Mala Bead Bracelet Inspiration
The creative itch came back in full force back in May and hasn’t left me since. When we went to New York last month we visited this strange little gallery on the Upper East Side. It’s called the Astro Fine Minerals Gallery. Inside is the most splendid display of museum quality Minerals. When I say museum quality, think $10,000 and above and displayed on plinths with glass casings and special lighting. The gallery manager was so lovely and allowed me to take photos and ask questions about all of the pieces I was gravitating to even though she knew I was not a buyer. She was excited to see which minerals where grabbing my attention.
That gallery visit inspired me to learn more about semi-precious stones and minerals. I was so inspired by these amazing displays of art in nature. Crystals are the most orderly structure in nature. They are so strange, magestic and alluring. At this same time my best friend was really excited about Mala Bracelets. She gifted me two really beautiful malas of Apatite and Rose Quartz. They are so special to me because she picked them out for me based on the gemstones. My creative itch, the inspiration of the gallery visit and my friend gifting me with mala bracelets created a catalyst in me and I just started searching out gemstones.
I started visiting a little jewelry making studio nearby. I’ve learned a lot about techniques, product quality and sourcing and I’ve been creating mala bead bracelets ever since. I’m so excited about this new creative journey and can’t wait to see how it develops as I keep learning and exploring in this medium.
Empress Mala Designs
If you love mala bracelets, semi-precious gemstones and jewelry I’d love it if you’d visit my store! I hope you enjoy browising my store the way I truely enjoyed browsing the Astro Fine Minerals Gallery.
See My Mala Bead Bracelet Collection
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Cristina founded The Sweat Edit in 2010. She lives with her husband, two daughters and two boston terrier fur daughters in Vancouver, BC. Cristina dabbles in many creative hobbies such as drawing, painting, and jewelry design which sometimes makes it's way here on the blog. Cristina enjoys various sweaty pursuits such as Peloton spin, olympic weightlifting and running.