Monday, March 1, 2010

Monday Member Meet & Greet - HeartFelt Rosaries

I am Jeanine from HeartFelt Rosaries (
I  was born and raised in rural Wisconsin, surrounded by Norwegian farmers and a strong Evangelical Lutheran background. When I was very small, my dad (a lapsed Catholic) taught me the Hail Mary and read to me from the lives of the Saints. I knew even then I would be a Catholic when I got older, and converted in my teens.
Many years later I started making little stitch markers for knitting, little wire worked place keepers, and selling them on Ebay. One day, I was browsing the section on Rosaries when it hit me: I could wire wrap--I had the tools and the will. It felt so natural and 'right' to offer my primitive skills for the greater glory of God, and I figured out how to wire wrap and got to work.  That was four years ago, and since then I've made scores of Rosaries, offering them in Etsy and becoming part of our Guild.
I feel close to Mary when I'm wrapping beads, and she is a major part of my life. I do not let a day go by without saying my Rosary--and one of the perks of making  them is being able to pray them before they sell! I have a 'day job', but one of my favorite times is evenings when I'm surrounded by my cats and Mother Angelica and the Nuns chanting the Rosary on EWTN while I work on a new creation. 
I get great joy from that,and I offer all to Jesus through His Mother. This is my ministry, my way of honoring God. And since it is a calling as much as a task, I try to give back by doing random acts of Kindness to the Jesus I see in my customers. I like to surprise them...I try to work within folks' budget, and have offered my work at cost to Religious and Priests--or donated. My reward is the joyous emails I get from people when they get the Rosary and it pleases them as much as any profit (I just buy more beads, anyway ).
My Rosaries are made to last a lifetime, carefully wrapped in strong wire. One of my favorite 'wow' moments when I'm selling locally is to grab a length of a Rosary in my hands and give it a strong pull to try to snap it in half! I love the gasps when I do that--and the Rosary is no worse the wear afterwards. Lots of fun...  I fashion each one individually, trying this combination and that till I come up with a Rosary.
I would be pleased to own myself. Each one is a limited edition, and many are one of a kind. Wire wrapping is more time consuming to make and takes three times the wire needed  for a conventional chain Rosary, but there is no more durable or beautiful Rosary to be found--and you can be assured that you will not find wire wrapping commercially: after all these years, it is still a method that must be hand fashioned, bead by bead. 

May the Glory be to God for any pleasure these Rosaries offer you.


Sarah Harkins said...

Wow, Jeanine, that was so beautiful! You have a beautiful soul, and it shined through this post. Anyone would be priviledged to own such a piece of artwork coming from devoted hands such as yours.

Laude Arts and Gifts said...

Double Wow, Jeanine,

Thank you so much for sharing your story with us. I have always loved your rosaries and have been secretly envious of your skill and talent. Thank you for the inspiration you have given to me with your story and to others with your rosaries.