Sunday, January 15, 2012

guest post - kathy van kleeck

passionate exchange

shard trio

This is my first opportunity to post as a guest on a blog and I’ve been wondering what I wanted to write or share … what am I thinking about right now, what’s inspiring me, what’s piqued my curiosity? I was stalled for a fresh idea and then a new and now good friend stopped by this morning. Our conversations usually revolve around creativity and collaboration and always leave me energized and inspired. Throughout our conversation I was scribbling notes and as we were winding down our visit, I had my theme.

goddess bracelet

Accepting, embracing and fully engaging with our genius.

My new friend (a knitware designer/maker) and I share a virtually identical aesthetic – pretty extraordinary when I think about it. The foundation of that aesthetic is best described as “wabi-sabi”, the Japanese philosophy of imperfect beauty. My love of all things wabi-sabi dates back to my days as a potter in the 80’s. It merged into a new medium when I started making and selling jewelry in ‘94.

In the last few months I’ve become aware that for pretty much my whole career as a designer/maker I’ve held a bit back, not shown my real self, always kept something in reserve. Meeting my aesthetic twin is helping me to change that, giving me the courage to finally release the brakes, feet downstream, leap and build my wings on the way down, take off the filters and fully engage in a passionate pursuit of my long buried genius.

vertebrae cairn

What that means for my business - rather than expanding my market and focus, I’m narrowing it. My existing body of work, with an urban organic vibe, thrives in something of a niche market. The new Urban Primitive collection looks to be an even smaller niche … kind of a scary direction. But once I got started, I couldn’t stop. And I gotta say, I am thrilled with my new jewelry … steel and bronze metal clay combined with fossilized shells and bones, accented with rough gemstone nuggets and artisan lampwork beads on hand-cut leather, hand-plied silk or linen cord.

steel and bronze cubes

My worst fear was that no one would get what I’m doing and I’d be stuck with a bunch of work no one wanted. But joy of joys, the work is being well received, opportunities are showing up, I’m making connections with like-minded makers – in person, on Etsy and my blog, the work is getting into Treasuries and I’ve been asked to guest post here … all delightful and all unexpected. I am finding my tribe.

What is finally starting to sink in are these words from Marianne Williamson’s, A Return to Love

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. 
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. 
We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? 
Actually, who are you not to be? … 
Your playing small does not serve the world. 
There is nothing enlightened about shrinking 
so that other people won’t feel insecure around you.”

It is ever so clear … showing my authentic self, shoulders back and chin up, putting forth work that is a clear expression of my soul’s passion, being direct and true and accessible … can only be a good thing.

My new path is all about passionate exchange … be it what I make or what I say or how I interact with the world at large … staying present and authentic about what I do and say and share.

cuneiform shards

I’ll leave you with a recent quote, and my new mantra, from my favorite business goddess, Danielle LaPorte.

“Show up. Shine. Let it go.”

Thanks for reading and sharing my journey.

l I g a – kvk

love, infinite grace, abundance

you can learn more about kathy here:




mairedodd said...

thank you so much kathy for sharing your work and your thoughts here... being truly authentic makes one vulnerable for certain, but the pay offs are undeniable... you are a wonderful example of that... your work resonates - and one wishes to hold it just to see how it 'feels'...

Artisan Beads Plus said...

I am in love with your work :o) I am quite sure you made the right choice to release what you have been holding back. Although, it may be true that you are narrowing who will appreciate your art jewelry, it will balance out with the great admiration of those who understand the unique talent behind each piece. So beautiful.......

Kelli said...

Absolutely beautiful work. Love the raw, earthy feel of it!!! Thanks for sharing wiht us

Izzy said...

What an inspiration post and powerful quote (both of them). I feel head over heels the first time I saw your work months ago. The Urban Primitive collection is absolutely amazing. Thanks so much for being our guest today!

Kathy Van Kleeck said...

Thanks all!
What I'm seeing clearly right now, the more I follow my heart's lead, the more the opportunities fall into my path.
Lovely and synchronistic and awe inspiring.
Thanks again - Kathy

Cindy Pack said...

Wonderful post! Thanks so much for sharing.

Peace & blessings~

nina said...


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...