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5 questions with Design Challenge winner Lumy Omat

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Liberty, by Lumy Omat, is the winner of the Stitching category in Facet's July Design Challenge. 

Lumy Omat has been beading for a little over a decade in various styles, stitches and materials. Originally from Bucharest, Romania, she arrived in Toronto, Canada, in 1996 with her family and a background in engineering. Today, beading is a full-time venture. Since 2005, together with her daughter Andrea (also an artist and beader), she has been running The Beading Heart, a local bead shop that has its own cable TV show! In the shop, they offer co-op placements for high school students looking to earn credits towards college courses in arts or trades.

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HOW DID YOU LEARN JEWELRY MAKING? 

I first started beading when my son asked me to make him “rally pig” keychains, for him and his car club friends, more than 10 years ago. Over time the keychains got more ornate and my daughter suggested perhaps expanding and trying jewelry, and the rest is history.

In the early stages of beading I would rely on magazine instructions to grasp concepts and stitches, and later videos. Over time I developed my own style, and broke free of printed instructions, deviating from the rules, playing with colors and mixing patterns for more complex finishes.

WHAT IS YOUR DESIGN ESTHETIC?

Always work your way up, learn the basics so you can later expand, learn from other’s hard work and respect it. Always look for inspiration in what you know, for it will feed it to fruition.

WHERE DO YOU FIND INSPIRATION FOR YOUR WORK?

I find inspiration in everyday life, news, nature, books I'm reading. I look at beading as an embellishment to life. I use Japanese and Czech glass beads, Swarovski crystal, gemstones, and whatever else I can incorporate in my pieces -- depending on what I’m working on it always changes. 

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WHAT PROJECTS ARE YOU WORKING ON RIGHT NOW?

I’m currently working on finishing off a series of Contemporary Geometric Beadwork bracelets, inspired by the simple things that bring me pleasure, translated into beaded wearable art. Some of those things are flowers, travel, and playing cards. It’s going to be an eclectic collection but very bright, happy and hopefully inspirational to other beaders.

WHERE CAN PEOPLE SEE MORE OF YOUR WORK?

On my personal Facebook page! In 2014, my business partner Andrea and I set up the Durham Region Bead Society, a space for beaders to share their work and ideas with other local artists and artisans. Additionally, my store, The Beading Heart (Whitby, Ontario, Canada), has been offering professional beading classes, courses, beads and findings retail.

FIND MORE: peyote , seed beads , bracelets

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