This holiday season my shopping list writes itself straight from the heart. I’m giving love. I’m giving beautiful. I’m giving art. I’m giving bellaballs to the people I care about. Because giving is a bella thing.
In the past year, I have had the wonderful opportunity to meet renowned local glass artist, Diane Hansen, and illustrious interior designer, Lesli Jacobs-McHugh. These two Northwest women recently launched bellaballs, a distinctive collection of affordable, hand-blown glass art based in Tacoma. Diane and Lesli combined their passion for life, beauty, and art to create a new business where their mission truly is all about giving ‘beautiful.’
As they opened their personal stories to me, I discovered both women met during adverse times in their lives. Each of them had survived the loss of a loved one to cancer and had befriended one another while trying to rebuild their worlds and move forward with a newly defined sense of purpose focused on giving. It was through that connection and sharing of those difficult experiences that a strong friendship blossomed between them.
For Diane and Lesli, a positive, life-changing moment occurred when they realized each shared a mutual love of Japanese fishing floats. That the glass float humbly begins by holding up fishing nets, breaks free when storms hit, gets tossed about in rough seas, then washes ashore on beaches across the world to be discovered as a treasure was a powerful symbol of courage and transformation. That symbol was so profound, it inspired Diane and Lesli to start their company, bellaballs.
“We decided to take the simple object with its powerful history and elevate it to a level of great importance. We created art that is not only beautiful in its own right, but bellas serve to remind both the giver and the receiver that living beautifully is a choice. Through weathering the storms of life, we each become more beautiful,” said Hansen.
Hand-blown bellaballs are available in 77 different colors. From lovely pastel color palettes to rich, tapestry-toned selections, each unique bella is embossed with a signature sterling silver bella adornment and is accompanied by an individually numbered authenticity card to ensure your original, one-of-a-kind bella.
In their efforts to be all inclusive when ‘giving beautiful,’ both women feel everybody should have the chance to own art. So, they offer their hand-crafted floats at an encouraging price point—no more than $40. “Glass floats come from an ancient tradition,” said Hansen. “They’re exotic. They look fragile, but they’re stronger than they look. We’re excited to offer something this special for such a reasonable price.”
Since the dream of bellaballs was born from a spirit of giving, giving back to the community is also a central part of who Lesli and Diane are. Each year, they choose one of their signature designs as an annual Charity Ball. The torn and tattered Cause Ribbon emblem designed for this year’s Charity Ball is in honor of cancer survivors.
For more information or to shop and order bellaballs, please visit: www.bellaballs.com or call 253.627.0183.