Thursday, September 22, 2016

A New Kid in Town?

There are two consistent long-running loves in my life — rocks and paper. (Did you think I was going to name people? Sorry!) Over the years, it’s no surprise, I have parlayed my love of rocks and created my jewelry biz, which I still so enjoy. Recently, while it has been officially in the works for the past eighteen months, I finally shared my latest baby with a few of you; and I'm thinking it's time to bring it out of hiding. So, on that note, I’m blending my two loves, although a little diverse, by introducing my papergoods biz here.

A bit of history — I have made paper dolls, paper doll clothes, calendars, journal pages and cards my entire life — well, at least for as long as I can remember. (Does anyone remember Betsy McCall the paper doll that came monthly in McCall's Magazine back in the 1950s?) Over the years, card making and paper crafting has remained a constant with me…I just love crafting with paper — printing, stamping, cutting — it’s just pure fun. My “official” history with printing goes back to the old days in school where I hand cut stamps from linoleum blocks and film for screen prints. I wear scars on my hands and one on my foot (don’t ask) as badges depicting the labor of my love over the years. Best lesson ever...a good tool is a sharp tool!

Many years back I started designing, printing and cutting stickers for my personal calendars — a few Filofax styles to be exact. I love stickers and I love all things vintage so I created tiny little pieces all vintage-inspired to jazz up my calendars. Along came the planner craze and I jumped in with both feet or maybe I went in head-over-heels! I was so tickled to see that there is a whole world out there that is full of wonderful people who love their planners and decor just as much as I do! If you didn't know, there are entire online communities built around planners created by Erin Condren and The Happy Planner by MAMBI.

I know…it’s a really young crowd and I am sure I am the great granny in the mix. But, hell, if you love something who cares what age you are, right? As a jewelry e-tailer since 2006,  I was intrigued when Etsy made a splash in the world of online retail for what was then handmade goods. While very interested, I have never sold my jewelry there. It just didn’t seem like the right fit for my designs. However, I did start shopping for planner stickers and paper-related pieces on Etsy. There must be hundreds of thousands of shops that sell planner-related goodies on Etsy. Even with those numbers, I really only found I two shops that offered vintage-inspired stickers that matched my design style. Can't lie, I was a little surprised when I had to wait four weeks for my first order to ship (which I now know is the norm for most shops on Etsy) but loved all I had ordered in those early years.  I loved what these two shops created — I found that I was still designing and making stickers to meet my specific planner needs. And, if you follow my jewelry biz at all, you’ll know that I balk at having the same thing everyone else has. And a lot of what was and is on Etsy in the planner world are "me too" type designs and just not right for me.

Lightbulb moment — at least I like to think of it that way! Why not open an Etsy shop and sell planner stickers that I designed? I couldn’t possibly be the only person who likes to decorate their planner with vintage-inspired stickers, could I? So a little more research and I discovered that the shop I had ordered my first vintage type stickers from had 16,000+ orders since they first opened their shop. That’s a lot of stickers! As with many things in life, I decided to give it a go — why not? Etsy makes it pretty easy to open a shop that looks great with very little financial investment — it does take a lot of time and photography skills; but I love every minute of it. 

So, enough about the history…my whole point here is to invite you to join me on this venture of mine. To date, my reviews have been stellar and I am a bit short of three hundred listings in the shop. Unlike most shops, I don’t do quick releases that disappear in a few days. Because of their non-trendy nature, many of my listings have been there since day one. All of my designs are vintage-inspired and a bit of the shabby chic side, including florals, stripes, checks and ditsy patterns. In a way, I think my designs are a bit more mature and there is nothing that is “me too” about them. (Think of me as the Advanced Style guru of the planner sticker world! Where is Ari Seth Cohen when you need him?) Young planner girls will wince when I say I have not designed one ombre box! (I say that with love and I so respect all these young kids out there with successful shops! Kudos to you!) I only list designs that I love and use in both my Erin Condren and Happy Planners. It's much like my jewelry. If I don’t like it you’ll never see it in my Etsy shop or at Tanya Lochridge Jewelry.

Well, with that, I hope you will take a little look-see over there. My shop name is trlplansandprints — if you are in the planner community I think you might find some joy in the goodies you see. I would love to hear your thoughts. If you aren't a lover of all things planner, if you are a mom, grandma or aunt or like me a great granny — the stickers make great gifts for those young planners in your circle. As a little treat for you reading all of this you can use promo code TRLBLOG20 to save 20% on your order.

And, thanks for all your support over the years. Because of you, I get to do what I love and I am very grateful to each and every one of you.

Friday, September 09, 2016

Red Hills Market — What a Treat!

Hooray! finally got to Red Hills Market in Dundee. For those of you not familiar with Oregon, Dundee is situated in the Wine Country of the Willamette Valley, hence the name, Willamette Wine Country. Clever how that works. While I am in Dundee regularly to catch up with my the hair guru, once I am back on the road heading home, it’s hard to get me to stop. Silly I know considering Red Hills Market is less than a mile from my hairdresser! But that’s who I am -- a homing pigeon, of sorts.

Last week, my sister-in-law invited me to have lunch with her, my niece and her daughter, which I think makes the daughter my grand niece. Is there such a thing? Since the girls were already headed to Dundee, I suggested Red Hills Market. Tricia (my niece) had already been there with my hairdresser and really liked it! (They are childhood friends, having met when both were in second grade. So, it’s okay…my hairdresser is not cheating on me)! First I have to say…it was so much to fun to see them and do some major catching up without a hundred people milling about. Wow…time goes by so quickly -- yesterday my niece was two and riding a tricycle in my backyard and today...well, let's just say she is old enough to have a beautiful twenty-one year old daughter (or is she twenty-two).

Red Hills Market is really charming but not in a fussy way. I immediately loved the character of it and the food was excellent in that casual Willamette Wine Country kind of way. Anyone living in Oregon will understand what that means! It’s a casual place — with orders being taken at the counter and then delivered to your table. The food was fresh, in season, rustic and delicious! I hadn’t planned on taking pix for a blog; but, as I always do, I had my camera at the ready. So I snapped a few shots after we visited just to give you a quick peek.

As you might guess, Red Hills Market is stocked with of a wide array of wines from local vineyards, beers from local breweries and cheeses from local farms. (I actually swooned at the display of cheese — luckily I don’t think anyone noticed. If they did they were polite enough not to point and chuckle! I have my eye on a roquefort for when I return.) The buyer/owner of the place has a fine eye for decorative accessories and there were some great pieces scattered around. (Ah, memories of my old, old, old Country Peddler days.). I only took a quick look at all of the goodies just to whet our whistles a bit.

I will definitely go back to checkout the cooking studio and see what that is all about. Oh, and they do have wine-tasting upstairs -- here's a thought...a jewelry trunk show and a wine tasting. So stay tuned…I’ll take you along next time!

You can find Red Hills Market online at 

Monday, May 09, 2016

An Orchard of a Certain Age

It’s been quite a while since I’ve posted here — seems like time is running at a break neck pace these days. And, honestly, I was (am maybe still am) having a bit of blog burnout tossed with a heavy dose of the winter blues. That being said…I think I am back…at least for the day!

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Lingering in the Splendor of Fall

Is it just me or have retailers been pushing christmas and gift-buying a bit earlier than usual this year? Seems that emails about getting a jump on Black Friday and the holidays and “last chance” opps are triple what they have been in the past.  Yes, I’m a retailer…but I’m not ready to push the holidays just yet! I remember, back in the late 70s (yes, I am that old) when I had my Country Peddler brick and mortar stores, my clients would clamor and beg for holiday decorative pieces to be put out in September instead of the first day of November. I made the mistake of sharing with a few of them that all of the holiday items were ordered the prior January, received in July and were sitting in the Country Peddler warehouse, tagged and ready to go when I made the switch from fall to Christmas and Hanukkah! Big mistake! The second year, I did acquiesce and changed the shop over to holiday on October 10th!! Loyal customers were parked out front waiting for me to open the doors at 10:00 just so they could get first dibs on all the delightful goodies.

Wednesday, September 09, 2015

Looking Back: The Fantasy of Joan Rivers Jewelry

Tanya Lochridge Jewelry Agate, jasper, avenutine, quartz and Kazuri Bracelets

Living in New York City all those years ago, yes back in the dark ages when Starbucks was just a dream in the minds of New Yorkers (hard to believe I know), I was so lucky to be exposed, in a good way, to the world of Joan Rivers Jewelry. I eagerly watched as her line of jewelry launched on QVC; exciting times for so many reasons. I started collecting immediately with a heavy emphasis on her enamel pieces. In the early years, many of her pieces were made in Rhode Island. Yes, that Rhode Island. Believe it or not, Providence was a Mecca for jewelry design and talented designers and the quality of the craftsmanship of the pieces flowing out of the workshops was magnificent.

Wednesday, September 02, 2015

Layer or Stack? Stack and Layer? Neither or Both?

Tanya Lochridge Jewelry Smoky and Rutilated Quartz Gemstone Necklace

So much confusion – do you layer or should you stack? The question is are these two very different styling mantras or are they really just different words for the same thing? Personally, I think I use the words interchangeably; but maybe I’ve been wrong all these years? Sure as heck wouldn’t be the first time and I am sure it’s not going to be the last! Do you layer necklaces but stack bracelets? Head spinning? I know mine is…well, it does all the time; but that’s another story best left for another day! Back to the jewelry and I’ll try to stay on track here! Lay down your bets now!

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Not Your Daughter’s Baubles

Tanya Lochridge Jewelry Carnelian Gemstone & Gold Vermeil Necklace

I know, I know, the line usually goes something like “not your grandmother’s pearls” – but in thinking about jewelry, I believe there comes a time in our lives when we move out of the disposable jewelry and clothing category and step up to the investment clothing and real jewelry category. I’m not saying that we limit ourselves to just wearing precious stones and own just one or two pieces that we wear every single day; but I do think that, as women, we want to not only make a statement with our jewelry – we also want to leave the right lasting impression with it all.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Skin Cancer: Not a Laughing Matter

Four months post MOHS.

My original plan was to share my basal cell carcinoma experience in September when I was six-months post-MOHS, but there have been circumstances in my life that pushed me into writing about it now. Recently a dear friend was diagnosed with, and is treating, a melanoma on her cheek...cause of said melanoma...the sun. Over the past few years, I have lost two friends both the result of sun-related skin cancers. Me? Yes, in the last year I have had three basal cell carcinomas removed — one from my calf, one above an eyebrow and the most recent from my nose. The pix here is me today...healing but still feeling a bit battered, bruised, swollen and scarred but happy to be on this side of the treatment process. All of the pix in the post are documents of my surgery that I had in March and my recovery over the last four months. Warning, the pix that follow in this post are pretty graphic so if you are the least bit squeamish you might want to skip this entry.