Monday, September 29, 2008

juggling act

so there's a lot going on right now. a lot. teaching at penland, trunk show preparations, holiday wholesale orders...when will i sleep exactly? not much, that's for sure! the class is going well. so far we've covered designing basics, surface textures, forging and simple metal forming, and simple findings. today we began soldering and we'll be working on that through wednesday.

my class is great! in addition to a few projects (a pendant, a pair of earrings, and a cuff bracelet), i asked them to spend some time over the weekend drawing in their sketchbooks and also asked them to make a few lists (i do love lists!!) - 3 goals for the class, 3 favorite artists, and 3 things that inspire them. then today i spent time with each student going over the lists and drawings. it was fantastic to get to know them a little bit better this way. i am enjoying working with them so much! they are talented and seem eager and excited.

in an effort to reduce stress, i am postponing item of the week and guest star friday until next week.

back to work!

thanks for reading.

Friday, September 26, 2008

guest star friday #26...liana pattihis

today's guest star is liana pattihis. liana's jewelry consists of simple frameworks that are covered in layers of enamel. the enamel is applied in such a way that certain areas are covered completely, while others remain visible, giving us a glimpse of what's underneath. i like the texture she achieves through her process and her use of layers to create depth and dimension. due to the application process she uses, there is probably little she can control. the results lend a lush, organic quality that can only be achieved by allowing the materials to do what they want.

thanks for reading.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

this just in

yesterday afternoon my studiomate, joanna gollberg, and i were asked to teach beginning jewelry at the penland school of crafts for the next 8 weeks. (the teacher originally hired for the session had to leave.) this was a complete shock! the fall session began just days ago on monday! i will be teaching the first half of the class until i leave for my west coast trunk show tour and joanna will teach the second half. this morning the two of us met with the class for the first time to introduce ourselves and set forth our plan for the concentration. then i spent some time with each student to discuss their individual skill set, to find out what they were working on, and to learn about their expectations. i also demonstrated a few basic techniques. we'll continue with more basics tomorrow and then move on to soldering on monday.

i have to say, i am completely awestruck by this whole thing. i am so honored to be here as a teacher, thrilled, excited...

it's going to be an interesting couple of weeks.

i'll keep you posted.

thanks for reading.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

domino magazine

my very thin gold rings were given a little love in the october issue of domino magazine. one of the magazine's regular features is "make me happy" in which a stylish girl tells domino readers about her favorite stuff. this month's girl is lena corwin, a brooklyn-based textiles designer and illustrator, and she picked my rings.
i am doubly excited about this little bit of press. i've had a love affair with domino since i moved into my current apartment and have admired the work of lena corwin for years. (here's one of her pillows.) it is so nice when these things happen!
thanks for reading.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

item of the week

for the next couple of tuesdays i plan to write about my new fall preview pieces for item of the week and i want to begin with my absolute favorite, the scallop links necklace. when i designed my pieces back in august, this style was not included because i hadn't thought of it yet. the idea didn't exist until i was actually making my preview pieces a few weeks later. i was working with another completely different idea for the steel and gold collection, playing around with various shapes and combinations, but was really struggling. nothing satisfied me. a few days later i remembered my desire for more dimension in my work and considered how i could make this happen in my new pieces. i had also just gotten back from the beach and had shells on my mind, specifically scallops. i started manipulating my long oval shape with a hammer and was very happy with the resulting curve. when i linked a few together i found they created a wonderful scallop edge. i also liked how loose the pattern was, changing as the necklace shifted on the body. the above picture shows this quality nicely.

all my new fall preview pieces are 20% off from now until october 15th.

thanks for reading.

Monday, September 22, 2008

fall preview!

i just added some new pieces to my shop. there are 10 total, a few in each collection. these pieces will give you a little taste of what i am working on for next year. to celebrate, all fall preview pieces are 20% off until october 15.

thanks for reading.

Friday, September 19, 2008

guest star friday #25...sabrina meyns

i discovered new designers online this week, a uk site that features scores of emerging artists. as i explored the long list of jewelers i found the work of sabrina meyns. sabrina is interested in flowers and particularly in what happens to them at the end of their life cycle. she is fascinated by the "ghost-like" quality of petals and leaves and tries to capture their fragility and translucency. i especially like how the combination of off-white paper and silver creates a soft warm glow.

thanks for reading.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

item of the week

this week's item of the week is the stacking rings from my steel and gold collection. i know i have mentioned this before and it may be old news to some, but that class i took with maria phillips a few years ago and the things i learned there play a significant role in my work today. this is vastly evident in my steel and gold collection. i learned how to solder steel with gold in this class. i experimented with some old binding wire that was lying around in the studio and the 18K gold solder i had on hand. i made a bunch of simple rings and forged them into different shapes, hammering each along its surface and sides with more or less force every stroke. i loved the results - simple shapes in near-black metal hints of bright gold. later these little pieces turned into an entire collection. my stacking rings are closest to the originals, except they are always round:

please enjoy 20% off the stacking rings for the week sept 16-22.
originally $70 for a set of 3, on sale for $56.

thanks for reading.

Friday, September 12, 2008

guest star friday #24...eva of tinctory

i just found the work of eva of tinctory while visiting etsy. i was immediately drawn to eva's jewelry because it is smocked. there is something very comforting about smocking, it's so tactile, nostalgic, sentimental, feminine...i have loved smocking since i was a kid. my favorite thing to dress up in was a blue sundress with a smocked top and a full skirt. i like that eva keeps her pieces simple, creating mostly pendants. it really highlights the technique. her subdued color palette is contemporary, yet lends a sense of age.
thanks for reading.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

item of the week

today's item of the week is the bean bracelet from my egg & bean collection. i made the original bean bracelet for myself long before the entire collection came to be. i can never find bracelets to fit my freakishly small wrist and wanted a few hammered bangle style pieces for easy, everyday wear. i first made a small round bangle in sterling wire and then bent it into an ovoid. then i took it a little further by adding the indentation along the side. i tried it on and couldn't believe how well it fit. the ovoid fit naturally over the curve of my hand and the little bend allowed the bracelet to sit just so. it was definitely one of those eureka! moments for me.

please enjoy 20% off the bean bracelet for the week, sept. 9-15.
regularly $60 each, on sale for $48.

thanks for reading.

Monday, September 8, 2008

so pretty

i recently found the website of verre where you will find delicate glass jewelry. i remember seeing their work in brooklyn a few years ago and loved it. they package each piece in a tiny glass bottle. very sweet and scientific.

after visiting the site, i remembered another artist who makes glass jewelry that i really like,
jane d'arensbourg.

finally, check out kait schott's cool earrings:
thanks for reading.

Friday, September 5, 2008

guest star friday #23...fabienne vuilleumier

today's guest star is fabienne vuilleumier. fabienne uses "thermo formable material" to make many of her pieces. this material can be heated in hot water or with a hairdryer and then molded by hand. it hardens as it cools. i love the alien, sci-fi affect it has. many of her pieces remind me of jelly fish and other underwater creatures.
thanks for reading.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

west coast trunk show tour

i will be heading west for a tour-of-sorts with trunk shows lined up in four of my favorite cities and shops.

friday, october 24 at seaplane - portland, or
saturday, october 25 at velouria - seattle, wa
saturday, november 1 at rare device - san francisco, ca
saturday, november 8 at carol young studio|boutique - los angeles, ca

more details to follow...

thanks for reading.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

fall preview

on september 22 i will launch a fall preview of what's next for spring 2009. for a few weeks now i've been thinking a lot about how i can incorporate more sheet metal, add dimension, and all together make my lines more cohesive. last week i made 10 new pieces for the preview. i was excited at the beginning of the week to work on new jewelry, but then struggled each day to make the pieces really work. most of them weren't quite right at first and in many cases i completely scrapped my ideas - they weren't dynamic or "new" enough and still others looked too much like what lots of other jewelers are doing. however, over a few mornings with fresh eyes i was able to make the necessary alterations to complete each new item to my satisfaction. i know from this recent experience that as i continue making new pieces for 2009, i will be faced with more challenges and considerations.

thanks for reading.

my grandmother's locket

here is a picture of my grandmother's locket which i mentioned in my september jewelry of the month post. i'm not sure what it's made of, although i'm guessing it's gold plated. i do know the front is enameled and it had tiny faux pearls framing it... only a few of those remain. inside is a picture of my grandfather.

thanks for reading.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

item of the week

this week's item of the week is not one but two earring styles - small and large aligned post earrings. when i was deciding on this week's item i thought, "what shape do i absolutely love?" i had a quick and easy answer - aligned - which i think you can see best in these two pairs of earrings. i create this shape using a "finger shaped mandrel" intended to make ring bands with the comfortable, more natural shape of a rounded square. i bought this mandrel a few years ago as a treat. later, when i was developing my preface collection, i didn't want to limited myself to working with just the preface shape so i turned to that mandrel. i felt its design was complimentary to the unconventional geometry of preface. for my aligned shape, i hammer the outside of the piece and flatten the top and bottom ever so slightly in the rolling mill. the result is a simple, mildly unexpected form.

please enjoy 20% off small and large aligned post earrings for the week, sept 2-8.

small regularly $50, on sale for $37.50
large regularly $58, on sale for $43.50

thanks for reading.

Monday, September 1, 2008

september jewelry of the month

september will always be back-to-school time for me, even if i'm not in school anymore. i associate this month with the fresh start of the school year and all kinds of new things, namely, notebooks. for this month's jewelry of the month, i collaborated with my friend and fellow artist marianne dages. marianne is a book artist, photographer and printmaker. she made tiny books for which i created brooches inspired by a locket of my grandmother’s.

each is approximately 1.5" wide by 3" long. the brooch and handmade twisted wire chain are oxidized sterling silver. the books are handmade flax fiber paper and linen thread.

there are 8 brooches available at $120 each. each comes with a numbered and signed card.

these brooches will remain available until sold or september 30, whichever is first.

jewelry of the month is a way for me to realize designs that don’t fit into my regular collections or studio jewelry. these pieces are an opportunity to take ideas from sketchbook to workbench and share them with you. each edition will be limited to less than 10 and will come with a numbered and signed card. each item will sell for under $120. i plan to use unusual materials like vintage wallpaper, new techniques like sewing, and i will collaborate with friends who work in other media like glass and clay.

find out more about marianne dages and her artwork here.

if you would like advance notice, please send me an email -

thanks for reading.