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Saturday, October 29, 2011


Halloween is tomorrow and the ghosts and goblins, scary faces and skeleton bones are just waiting for their chance to come out! Sometimes it's fun to be scared and feel a little fear; to watch a scary movie with your BFF or do something daring for the thrill or shear terror of it! Fear serves a valuable purpose. Without it, we wouldn't know safety. But fear can keep us confined to our safety net and prevent us from branching out and growing. How nice it would be if we could turn it on or off at will like a faucet!
I am a glass artist specializing in jewelry, and just recently started exploring larger pieces and accessories for the home. I named my business "Cocoon" several years ago for a few reasons, but mainly because for me, a cocoon symbolizes a place for rejuvenation -- a haven for nurturing and transformation. It is very protecting. I step into my 'cocoon' when I work with glass to transform it into modern art. Here are a few pics to familiarize you with my art.

Recently I was challenged by a men's shoe designer on why, as an artist, I don't use my name as a brand and drop "Cocoon". I won't go into that here, but suffice it to say, it struck a chord of fear within me. If you care to, you can read my blog post on it here.

Fear also presents itself to me when I think about contacting store owners to show my art. The fear of rejection from them kept me from taking the step to call or walk in to get an appointment. For the longest time I made excuses to avoid possibly hearing the words, "We're not interested," or from reading the thoughts passing over their face that what I was showing them was not of value in their opinion.

I can't tell you how many "discussions" my husband and I have had over it. He is the king of facing any fear or doubt and just running straight into the fire with amazing confidence. He doesn't hesitate; when he sees an opportunity he takes it, where opportunities don't yet exist, he makes them. I am truly awed by him.

I, on the other hand, procrastinate and busy myself with the things that, while still helpful for my business, are comfortable for me. He has been bugging me, and I mean BUGGING me to go talk to Nordstroms or Fred Segal. "After the holidays," I say. I am afraid. I feel fear. Will they even talk to me? And if they do, will they just say, "uhhhh, I don't think so..." Or, what if I do get in to talk to them and they like my art? What if they want to place a big order? F.E.A.R.

We have a choice - let fear limit and prevent our growth, or face it, take control and see how far we can go. I am slowly dissolving the grips that fear holds on me and have taken some baby steps. In fact, I now have my art in some local boutiques and galleries, a couple of locations in the Santa Barbara area, and even one in Connecticut!

And, if you happen to see Cocoon by Suzanne Balestri in Nordstroms or Fred Segal, you'll know I ran straight into the fire and finally pushed my fear aside.
This is a contribution to Not Just Another Jen's Word of the Month Club!


  1. Thanks Suzanne for playing in the Word of the Month club! I love that you wrote about your fear. Just think of all your fans when going to Nordy's cheering you on. Go Suzanne! Go Suzanne! You deserve to be there and I can already see it. :) Cheers!