MeLinda Hughes of Merlin’s Hope Ragdoll Rescue introduced me to Danielle Murphy who runs Don’t Eat Beads. She makes cat and dog jewelry and if the purchaser tells her that Merlin’s Hope Ragdoll Rescue referred her, Danielle will donate a portion of the proceeds to Merlin’s Hope. She also has some Ragdoll charms coming.
Thank you to Danielle for the interview!
What is Don’t Eat Beads?
Don’t eat beads is my own little passion for being creative. It started when I was a little kid, I ws always running around trying to make and sell something, but i wasnt the kid that saved up the money to buy myself something. I was the kid that would be buying gifts, and my moms most favorite … I would rescue pregnant hamsters at the pet stores when they were getting beat up. at one point in time we had over 50 hamsters needing homes. As I started working full time, I started to be creative at work and lost the crafting side and found myself not at home as much and without a fur best friend. Thanks to a wonderful husband and some amazing fur kids I was able to find that child that was hidden inside. We started fostering, rescuing, and crafting like a crazy lady.
How did Don’t Eat Beads get its name?
We can both blame and thank sangria for the name. I struggled find a name for my creativity and it was thanks to my sweet english angora bunny sangria that I discovered the most perfect name. You see she had this “thing” about eating beads, and not just any beads, swarovski crystals. I would constantly tell her don’t eat beads. Now, 7 years later, i am saying that to our own dogs and foster pups as well as the most wonderful foster failures.
How does your jewelry help kitties out?
It isn’t just kitties, it is more animals in need. Currently I have two rescues that I donate a % of my sales to, I donate jewelry to many rescues to help with fundraisers.
Please describe your creative process. How do you find inspiration for your jewelry?
Honestly it just comes to me, sometimes it is from the people i meet, things i see online.
Do you sell your products in a local store in your area? Or only on Artfire?
Currently I sell on artfire and at local craft fairs here and in dallas fortworth area. I did change jobs and am working as a receptionist at an amazing Vet’s office and that allows me a more predictable schedule and to have most weekeds off so that I am able to be at more fairs. I hope that 2013 allows me to continue to grow my business. I also adore petfest in spring Tx, Funky Finds in Fortworth Tx
Do your customers ever give you new ideas for products?
Oh my, yes all of the time .. It is people, places, and the furkids around me that inspire me most. Some of my best inspirations have come from the oddest of things.
I have a beautiful black and silver bracelet that has an angel in the design. I created that one in memory of a wonderful patient at work.
Have you thought of featuring a Ragdoll cat is some way? (Had to ask.)
I would love to .. I think they would be amazing to be in the pics with jewelry .. I have ordered several cat themed charms that should be in just after the holidays to help create my cat line.
Are you a one wo/man show?
It is just me, although i have a sweet riley that sits on the top of my chair (she thinks she has some kitty in her) and not a shih tzu .. My husband helps on somethings but he really leaves it up to me.
Do you have a blog?
I do not, I have wanted one for sometime but I am still trying to figure out the whole time thing. That and i cant seem to find the time with rescue / foster/ creat and work .
Do you do custom ordering? Can someone return it if they don’t care for it?
I do custom orders and I will take returns on most items. My prices are very low and dont have a mark up so the refund is minus the cost of shipping. I do not return custom sizes. I do work with my customers as best I can to get things correct.