Dot was born with a thread and needle in her right hand. From a very early age, she was always mending doll clothes, making felt dolls, and coloring everything within sight. She toyed with all forms of fiber crafts, and spent over 20 years working with aspects of cross-stitch and embroidery. Slowly more and more cross-stitch pieces required the addition of beads. She liked the texture they added to the tapestry. Then her best friend from Seattle enticed her to enter a local bead store in Columbus Ohio. That was the beginning of the beading obsession. The colors and sparkles of the beads enflamed her imagination, and she began to make simple jewelry pieces practicing each weave and pattern.
She joined a beading group on Delphi Forums (Bead Art), where she found other like mind women working with beads and challenging each other to explore and experiment. Cindy McCormack had just self published a book on beaded dolls, and between the tutelage of Cindy and her friend, Cynthia Bicker-Cook, she tried her hand at making simple beaded art dolls. Everyone was encouraging, but both Cindy and Cynthia reinforced the need to practice the skills and techniques of beading. Dot worked on honing her skills by taking bead classes at the local bead store, subscribing to bead related books and magazines, and using sources on the internet.
In 2003, in the back of Art Doll Quarterly, she saw an advertisement for a doll making convention called Artistic Figures in Cloth. With her a bead embellished Bendi doll named Jonathan, she decided to go to the conference and see if she could learn anything to expand her doll skills. Instantly, she came across friendly, talented women who embraced her and her wee beads into their nest.
Within hours, the members of the local doll making club, Guilded Lilies, invited her to join their group and learn. Spending the weekend looking at the lovely dolls that were three-dimensional figures, she began to imagine how using soft sculpture techniques could be incorporated into beaded art dolls. That one weekend changed her world, and sent her on another path. The combined comradely of both her old friends in the beading world, and the new ones in the doll making world, have challenged her again and again to explore new avenues and oh yes, she even learned to use a sewing machine thanks to her Lily sisters.
After AFIC, Dot decided to enter one of her beaded art doll pieces into the Dairy Barn's Bead International 06. The day she received the envelope telling her that Fantasy Swim was accepted, she danced around the house with wee Jonathan. Then spent the next few hours letting her friends from around the globe know that her artist goal had been met. Since then Dot has been making more beaded art dolls, and jewelry. She has started to incorporate fiber art and mixed media techniques, and is always looking for new paths to take.
Her pieces can be seen at the Dairy Barn at Bead International in Athens Ohio. Fantasy Swim will be in a traveling show for 18 months throughout the US. Her jewelry and beaded art dolls are residing at The Blue Door gallery in Clintonville, Ohio. Her jewelry can be seen at the Mac Worthington Gallery in the Short North area in Columbus Ohio. Her dolls have been shown in the High Road Gallery, Worthington Ohio. Her beaded penguin book, Little Wings was shown at Beads and Beyond in Bellevue Washington during a "Call of the Penguins" challenge. She won first place in the ugly wand contest during Whim beads Las Vegas Retreat 06. Several of her dolls have placed in challenges during the past several years on varies Internet contest. She also has shown several jewelry pieces at ArtFiberFest in Issaquah Washington. She is now working on taking her beading skills with newly learned fiber including felting, quilting, and painting.
Dot lives in the Worthington area of Columbus Ohio with her husband of 30 years and her three Scottish Terriers.