Things are made beautiful when they’re put through fire: Tara's story is proof of that. 

Tara certainly didn’t set out to be a jewelry designer: she grew up in Anchorage Alaska playing Army with her older brother. As it turned out, this prepared her for the real thing: tara's ten-year service as a Military Police Officer in the Army.

a photo taken of tara in 2004 while in school at ft. leonard wood, mo

a photo taken of tara in 2004 while in school at ft. leonard wood, mo

tara and two other squad leaders at a live fire range in kuwait, prior to iraq

tara and two other squad leaders at a live fire range in kuwait, prior to iraq

tara's truck right after the blast. the grapefruit sized hole in the door is what severed her leg

 

On Valentine's Day 2006, while on deployment to Baghdad, Iraq, Tara's truck was hit by an Improvised Explosive Device, causing the traumatic amputation of her right leg above the knee.

The incredible blood loss caused Tara's heart to stop for almost 20 minutes, resulting in a brain injury that manifested as a movement disorder. In the beginning, Tara's motor skills were so compromised that she couldn't hold a fork to feed herself. The loss of her independence was more traumatic than the physical injuries she suffered, inevitably causing severe depression to set in. During this time, Tara contemplated suicide more than once.

tara and her grandma in the hospital soon after her injury

tara and her grandma in the hospital soon after her injury

a photo taken of tara in 2013 while at work

a photo taken of tara in 2013 while at work

 
 

In the thick of it, a therapist suggested that Tara find a hobby that used her fine motor skills. She chose to try jewelry. Throughout the multi-year process of recovery, her grit and tenacity kept her moving, and she learned everything possible about the craft while practicing everyday. Creating jewelry became Tara's glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel, and it gave her purpose, and hope; principles she missed dearly.

Tara is so grateful for any opportunity to tell her story.

She has been featured on the CNN Morning Show, the Dr. Oz Show, Cosmopolitan, and Women's World Magazine, among others. 

An article about tara's story, published in the July 2016 edition of an industry magazine, Lapidary journal jewelry artist.

An article about tara's story, published in the July 2016 edition of an industry magazine, Lapidary journal jewelry artist.

an article about the near death experience Tara had.

an article about the near death experience Tara had.

an article about tara published in the industry magazine the retail jeweler.

an article about tara published in the industry magazine the retail jeweler.

Tara Surfing on Long Island in 2010

Tara Surfing on Long Island in 2010

”My hope is if you decide to purchase a piece of jewelry, when you look at it you remember the sacrifices my warrior brothers and sisters are making for you every day, so that you may live in peace.”

-Tara Hutchinson