Heather Rivera, M.Ed.

Artist, Designer and Owner at GutsyGirl Designs

As a Jersey girl who transplanted to Dallas, Texas, then Cleveland, Ohio, and now Cape Coral, Florida, I’ve taken my quirky creativity everywhere I’ve been. From obsessively making macramé string bracelets at nine to crocheting massive afghans at twenty to madly chainmailling every jump ring I see in my late 30s to joyfully wire-wrapping shells and gemstones at (ahem) forty-something…I’ve been creating with my hands for as long as I can remember.

To me, there is something so meditative and therapeutic about taking what seems like a million disjointed pieces and unifying them into a single cohesive piece. I can (and do) sit in the same spot for hours, utterly and blissfully focused on whatever my hands are working on.

I currently have two jewelry brands - Captibel Designs, which features starfish and shell jewelry from Sanibel and Captiva; as well as the edgier GutsyGirl Jewelry, which offers chainmaille, washermaille and captured crystal. My work has been presented in many juried  group exhibits in multiple US states. I am also part owner and managing member of the wonderful Harbour View Gallery in Cape Coral. I have three bachelor's degrees and a Master's Degree in Instructional Technology.

My purpose in developing and producing these GutsyGuides is to not only show you how to make particular projects, but also (and more importantly) to teach you skills that will enable you to invent your own. I have the monopoly on nothing, but I do have a substantial amount of knowledge to pass on. Since my jewelry design is all self-taught, much of that knowledge has been hard fought and hard won as I (painfully) figured it out through (sometimes very expensive!) trial and error. I'm hoping I can help you avoid some of that pain!

It feels fantastic to create and I believe that everyone is creative. If you have read this far into my bio, you will probably benefit from what I have to offer. It doesn't matter whether you are enjoying jewelry design as a hobby or looking to develop a productive business. My vision is to enrich the creativity that you already possess with new techniques and skills that will catapult your jewelry design to the next level.

See you in class!!

*A portion of the proceeds from every GutsyGuide sale goes directly to nonprofits that elevate women and girls!*

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