Hi everyone…thought maybe you would want to know a little bit about me. I have been in the glass and jewelry industry since 1993 and lampworking since 1996. I was a jewelry designer, selling at art and craft fairs in the beginning.
It all started when I was young. My grandmother had a huge collection of antique gemstone and commercial brooches, rings, clip on earrings and necklaces, as well as beads galore. I fell in love with the sparkles and jangles and would go through her endless boxes of pretties, trying them on, asking to keep everyone of them. She was so gracious. She allowed me to take some apart and redesign them into my own creations. It was a time with her that I will always cherish and never forget. She encouraged me to pursue my dreams and that dreams do come true when you apply yourself and follow your heart. Here I am now following my heart., many years into my adulthood with my own grandchildren. I enjoy every day.
My passion took me beyond making glass. It brought me to invent The Leonardo Petal Puller/Presser tools back in the mid 2000’s - filling in the gap when there were not bead presses. Everything was shaped with simple marvers, pokers and the flame. I needed a tool to make flower petals and created the Leonardo LampworkPetal Puller which I started marketing in the early 2000’s. I have sold thousands of the tool and changed it to help other lampworkers with the way they worked the glass. I We have come a long way since then. I also invented and developed the Leonardo Featherbone and Fishbone tools. I was the first to develop the smaller brass stamps where I coined the term “imprinter”. We now have a large line of Leonardo Lampwork Imprint tools which you see on the site here. I was the first original person to develop the logo/sig tools for beadmakers. The rest have taken my business model to grow a business themselves. I am always working to make creating beads more precise and faster for production flame workers. I hope you check out my You tube channel on how to use the Leonardo Lampwork Tools.
I spend much of my time on my Facebook Sales Groups. Currently, I am dealing in gemstones, pearls and special buys found on my FB group. I still make glass too, lampwork and fused glass. But my love of stones has overcome me. I have taken some courses on stones and pearls and earned certificates in the field. Please go and join if you want components. Please Invite your friends. Designers need something to string, bead, wire wrap and set their glass and components. I only carry quality stones, pearls and cabs I also have special buys I find interesting that I will offer and sell.
I am also a rep for an Australian Opal artist who has been a friend of mine for years. Here is the link if you love opals. Janice cuts the stones herself. I have beads, cabs, strands, and jewelry always available 24/7.
I have a tool group I am trying to grow so I can have special sales and giveaways, drawing people to my website. Please go join and invite your friends.
I am an author, and you can find my books on Amazon. Creating Lampwork Beads for Jewelry (2007) and Art Bead Jewelry “Seasons in Glass” (2009).
I also write for Soda Lime Times magazine and was co-founder for the magazine Artisan Jewelry Times. Sadly, we closed the magazine due to the death of our partner and web designer. Here was the press release which also gives a bit more about my career since 1993:
Name: Karen Leonardo - Artisan Jewelry Times co-founder and Editor
Author of numerous books, articles and courses on bead and jewelry making, entrepreneur, founder and owner of Leonardo Lampwork Tools and Beads, and co-founder and Editor of Artisan Jewelry Times, Karen Leonardo has over 25 years of experience in Art Jewelry design, business management, Internet marketing, Lampwork bead making, and publishing in multiple media.
She received her Bachelor of Science from Indiana University of Pennsylvania in 1988, where she was named to the Outstanding College Students of America for that year. She also has been recognized by the International Who’s Who™ of Entrepreneurs, nominated for Artist of the Year in Pennsylvania, and served as a Regional Director for the International Society of Glass Beadmakers.
Diane Woodall, Artisan Jewelry Times’s Publisher, said, “Karen Leonardo is the perfect person to be Editor of the magazine. She not only has decades of experience as a world class artisan jewelry maker, she also literally wrote the book on how to make handmade jewelry. She has been a contributor to our Lampwork magazine for several years and has a large following among jewelry designers and artisan jewelry makers (many of whom she met at art jewelry shows and fairs over the years), and she has a broad range of contacts in the jewelry making world. Finally, as a detail-oriented businesswoman who successfully built multiple business concepts from scratch. We are happy to partner with her in the new magazine endeavor as she leads as the magazine editor with her intuitive sense of style, innate ability for identifying trends and keeping the magazine interesting, fresh and relevant for customers and subscribers worldwide.
So, after reading some of my major accomplishments in my career, I hope you put your trust in me to join my sites and groups and allow me to help you with your glass, tool and gemstone needs.
Thank you for your support and be blessed!