Friday’s Feature Author, is not an author, but an artist.
A haute couture designer named J-na…
My first contact with J-na was via a tweet that she post where she simply said, “Dreams heal!”
I’d read this shortly after a bad dizzy spell from the benign tumor residing in my ear. I had been writing and was having trouble focusing afterward. Frustrated, I instead picked up my phone to play a game and get my mind off of the episode, when I received a tweet from a friend. While there I happened upon J-na’s words. I was intrigued to say the least. The words hit home at that moment, and I had to find out more about the person behind this simple, yet complex thought.
When I ventured to her website, and read about the artist herself, I was struck with a lightning bolt that is her strength and passion for life:
“As a haute couture designer, I travel the world and meet dozens of women, many who have shared very intimate pieces of their lives with me, I am struck at how connected many of us are in overcoming major obstacles and trauma in our quest for our dreams.
These trials, if we do not let them crush us, can sharpen our intense appreciation for life and freedom, and give us such passion and drive, that life takes on a completely different hue, a strong, new intoxicating fragrance, and even a deeper spiritual meaning!”
I read on and learned that as a small child, in the process of taking care of her younger sisters, she climbed up on the gas stove to get cereal out of an upper cupboard. The pilot light caught her nightgown on fire, and she went up in flames.She was disfigured and horribly scarred. But her story doesn’t end there…in fact, this was only the beginning.
Her tale of love and life renewed with her family, and later with her husband and their children was more than an inspiration. It was a reminder of what I’d been telling myself every day for the last three years. Rise above. Fuel the fire inside. Fight the consuming flame of despair and shame.
When you look at her designs, her energy is her signature of each piece. Her “handmade Haute Couture Gowns, Dresses,Wraps, Sweaters, Vests, and Accessories with an emphasis on hand-knit natural compassionate furs with gemstone embellishments” are personal statements as much as they are fashion. Her color choices alone are lush and vibrant, and her designs are fun, dramatic, sexy…yet surprisingly comfortable…much like the designer herself I’m guessing.
When I contacted her to let her know I wanted to feature her on my site, she was in the process of “schmoozing” a potential employee:
“…this journey out of confusion and fear, the shame of disfigurement and the pull of my burning desire, has been so weird! For me, conquering one hurdle leads to a new awareness, a clarification of unknown and unspoken dreams that wait...patiently waiting for conscious awakening! Each new step upwards reveals new and exciting truths which are buried within, like hidden treasures, just waiting to be discovered!
I always thought that my original goal/dream was the end point to drive towards...never, ever imagining that it is the JOURNEY itself that is the real reward! One can never imagine the creative talents and secret hopes residing within, until each progressive step and struggle illuminates them! This is the reward: dynamic growth of the heart, mind and soul...forgetting the trauma of the past, redefining it to be the furnace that refines your gold, and loving yourself and others so much more!”
I encourage you to visit her website and read her story for yourself (http://www.j-nacustomgsb.com/index.html), like her on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/haute.couture.jna) and follow her on Twitter (JnaHauteCouture) and please, share the story of life renewed with others.
She is a Phoenix that defied the flames and rose from the ashes.
A Kindred through and through!