Peggy Bechtell

   Peggy was born in Los Angeles on August 31, 1943. She was graduated from high school in 1960. She spent two years at the University of California at Santa Barbara then three years at U.C. Medical Center in San Francisco. She received her B.S. in Nursing and worked for two years as a nurse. After receiving her Masters Degree from U.C.S.F. Med. Center for Psychiatric Nursing, she worked at Community Mental Health as a Marriage, Family and Child Counselor in the San Francisco Outpatient Clinic for 25 years.

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   Peggy got married in 1966 to Bob Fleming and divorced in 1978. She married William Bechtell, a civil engineer in 1980. She then went into private practice in 1985. Peggy and William ran a Bed & Breakfast Inn for ten years, from 1985-'95. In 1992, she was on a faculty, teaching interactive guided imagery to Health Professionals all over the country. She spent five years learning that skill and was on the road ten days a month teaching. She was also on call in the E.R. She retired in 1997.

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   Peggy started lapidary, with the San Francisco Gem & Mineral Society, in 1971. She made her first commesso, "Raccoons" in 1971. She then began making smaller, jewelry size commessi (inlays), although she still made several more larger, pictorial pieces.

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   Peggy, one of our most prolific artists, began selling her work in 1982. For one year, some were sold in Nordstrom's Fine Jewelry. Then, for three years, she sent pieces to Scottsdale, Arizona. She loves to travel with their Labrador and is also a photographer, designs clothing, and creates stained glass.
In 1993 she had surgery for carpal tunnel syndrome, which came as a result of this kind of work. She is no longer able to mass-produce her unique and distinctive style of fine art.

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