Sunday, December 27, 2009

No Cookie Cutter Look Here

I love layering my jewelry. I know, "big surprise." Today I was photographing some new pieces to post to my site and I took a few shots with the bracelets layered with some of the things from my personal collection. While a cookie cutter is good for, well...cookies; it's not such a great thing in fashion and that includes jewelry.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

The Magic That is the Chrysler Building

Given my penchant for tiny things (hey, that could explain some of the men I've dated!), it probably comes as no surprise that I have collections of small things throughout the house and studio. Most are mementos or representations of places and people I love. This wire miniature of the Chrysler Building is part of my collection.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Ribbons and Bows

It's the season for ribbons and bows -- so why not tie up a few bracelets. I had fun mixing grosgrain, organza and a satin pin dot ribbon on these two bracelets. I love each of these bracelets alone -- one in labradorite and the other in pyrite crystal. Freshwater pearls of varying sizes dance along with the gemstones. Love the combo of the two - it all kind of blends and works for me. And, while the bows and the ribbons are a trend -- the good news is, when the trend is long gone, the bracelets will remain, forever timeless and classic. I like that.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Snow, snow, snow.

All the talk of snow in NYC is really making me homesick. I know, I know, after all these years I shouldn't feel "homesick" about the City; but I can't help myself. I am thinking it is because my life there was so different and so steeped in the wonder of it all that over the years it just became a part of my spirit; and not being there, I feel as if something is missing in me. After all, ten years is a long time to live somewhere -- in the same home.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Mystery and Glitter -- What?

So, you're asking "what do mystery and glitter have in common?" I know, the two words seem like a contradiction in terms (unless, of course, you are a stage magician); but believe me, in this necklace, the opposing qualities come together beautifully.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

I'm In Heaven!

Is there anyone else out there who looks at a rock and swoons? I know, I know...I'm a bit on the geeky nut side. But, what can I say...I truly love gemstones; always have...always will. I have a lot of favs and pietersite is pretty close to the top of my list. Over the years this magnificent stone became harder and harder to come by so I haven't done anything with it in years. That being said, you can only imagine the joy I felt when I saw a few mighty specimens in Tucson last February.

Friday, December 11, 2009

The Robins are Back! The Robins are Back!

My favorite part of having a hawthorn tree in my backyard is the fact that it feeds a ton of robins during the bleak months of winter. This week, with the temperatures hovering in the teens, the robins came back in droves to munch on the berries. Having so many of these beautiful birds in my yard almost makes me forget about how many times during the warmer months that damned tree caught me with one of its lethal thorns.

Monday, December 07, 2009

Love That Max Blog

This whole "virtual universe" has me intrigued, to say the least. Every day it seems I learn something new about it all. Post this, comment, poke someone, tweet -- it's strange in that it has connected us all but in a very disconnected way. Ah, my inner philosopher stands tall at times.

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Coffee -- the Beautiful Bean

Jay Bush step aside. In my mind, there is no bean lovelier than a freshly roasted coffee bean from Peet's Coffee. Let's give a moment of silence for the beautiful bean. I was out of coffee for four long days -- no wonder my life was caddy-wampus. (I have no idea how to spell that correctly, so please put down your red pen. Thank you.)

Monday, November 23, 2009


"Don't happy!" Okay, so those were the first words that came to mind when I was thinking about how stressful the holiday season can be for some people. Corny? Yes, so I apologize. If you are stressing, help is on the way in the form of beautiful amethyst. Yes, I said amethyst -- as in the gemstone.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Inspiration from the 50s

Luckily for me, I caught Rear Window on TMC the other night. Great flick and even better clothes and jewelry! Shallow perhaps, but honestly, Edith Head was pure genius and her gowns would probably look fabulous on anyone lucky enough to wear them. But on Grace Kelly -- pure perfection. The frosting on the cake?

Sunday, November 15, 2009

A Litte Reminder

Nothing like a romp through the leaves on a crisp fall day! What could be better than that? Beatrix with her sissy, Missy. Having fun, full of spirit and just being in the moment. It's a good reminder for us human types not to get too caught up in the zaniness of the holiday season -- we should really enjoy the moments and just have fun. Sounds like a great plan...don't you think?

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Get the Look -- Mix It Up!

So many of you have asked, via my web site, if I would do a look book type thing that gives you ideas of how you can layer your TRL jewelry pieces. So, I thought I would do it here and eventually add a special section to the site. As you know, I am a nut for layering -- my thinking is that in most cases, if one is good, several are better. I keep that thinking in mind when I design and make each piece in my collection. My mind is always questioning..."how will I wear this?" I know, the mere mention of how my mind works scares me, but it's an interesting contraption. Most days you will see me around the studio or out wear-testing new designs and not just one at a time. My philosophy is just mix it up -- I am not one for a matchy-matchy look or even for the "wearing two of the same design" idea. I like it best when my jewelry "goes together" but does not "match." That being said, here are a few ideas to get you started.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Looking Back

It's pouring rain here in the PNW. While riding in the car, Bea has decided that at times it is best to look at where we have been not necessarily where we are going. Some days it's easy to get locked in the past with lots of "what ifs" and "maybe I should haves." When I see Bea looking out the back window as we roll along, it's a happy reminder that "we can look back, but we just shouldn't stare." Why do I want to say, "Ah, Grasshopper?"

Friday, November 06, 2009

Halloween Humiliation

While I know that Beatrix absolutely hates wearing any kind of garb; how could we resist when her Auntie Carol gifted Bea and her sissy, Missy, with matching witch hats?

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Copper -- The Vibrance of the Season

Here we are, coming on November. Lots of ghosts and goblins will be out and about this evening; full of the joy of it all. What fun. Looking out at the hawthorn tree with its vibrant hues of golds, oranges, reds, ambers and copper reminds me that the season is in full-swing. (No hint of the current baseball frenzy intended.) I have always loved the look of copper in jewelry -- especially when it has been softened with a nice patina. Yes, I do play chemist occasionally and patina the metal I use in my jewelry.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

"When Cars Were Boats" -- The Sequel

While I was out running errands yesterday, I happened upon another reminder of my youth. I mean when I was really, really, really young. It's true, and I'm not afraid to admit it, I was a teen in the late 60s and cars from the 50s were the set of wheels to own. Seems that all the "cool" boys owned something from that era.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Mother Nature Inspired

The hawthorn tree in my back yard is loaded with berries this year. They start out green, over the last few weeks they have changed to the most glorious color of red. While the tree has the worst spikes on the branches, somehow, during the icy winter, birds by the hundreds eat the berries all season long. I don't know how they do it without impaling themselves -- but they have the knack. The colors of the berries and the leaves on the tree right now are so pretty. I just had to share.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Loving the Necks!

I finally got around to watching the new episode of Ugly Betty. For some reason, I love watching the show -- for one, having lived in NYC, it's fun to see the location shoots. Along with that, the fact that I have a few friends in fashion and publishing, make it fun to see a show that is so over the top about both of these industries. What I like most about the show, however, guessed it...seeing the jewelry.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

If It's Good Enough for Mother Nature

People are always asking me where I get the inspiration for my jewelry designs. I know it sounds vague but I am inspired by all things around me. I feel like a giant sponge (no cruel jokes please) in that I seem to absorb the energy of what's going on in my world. Much of that energy is passed on to my jewelry.

Monday, October 05, 2009

Harvest Moon Festival

There is so much "magic" about the moon. I especially love the romantic part of the lore that tells us that if we look at the harvest moon and ask for the love of our life, we'll get what we ask for.

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Timeless Style -- The Proof

Another little trip down memory lane -- this time, my Grandpa and Grandma Lochridge. I swear, I could walk into Prada today and find similarly cut styles. More proof that classic styles are indeed timeless and thus endure the test of time. This pix, must be c.1950 or maybe earlier.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Crash Corrigan Ranch c. 1950

What fun is this? I was going through some yet unpacked boxes that I haven't gotten to since moving from NYC (yes, I know it was a long time ago but these things take time, you know) and it was so much fun to uncover some pix that I haven't seen in years. This is one.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Vamp Gothic Meets LA Ink Meets TRL Jewelry

Not sure when it happened; but I am mesmerized by the look of red and black. I have to laugh at myself -- I have not read or seen the vampire books/films that are currently making the rounds; and I really hadn't given tattoos much thought until I lived in NYC.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Mixing it Up with Joan Rivers

Today, I was listening to Joan Rivers on QVC and it hit me -- I have been collecting her jewelry for 19 years. Yes, 19 years and I am not afraid to admit it. I started with "just the enamel bangles" and that lasted about one visit.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Vineyard Inspired

I have been really lucky in life in that I seem to live in locales that are surrounded by vineyards. The Pacific Northwest is one of those places. There is something about a vineyard -- a bit of mystery and a lot of romance.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Back When Cars Were...Boats

Talk about your inspiration. This Hudson, I think from the 50s, is really something. Can't you just see some guy in Levi's and a white t-shirt with white socks and loafers and his girl in a full skirt with lots of petticoats, a little sweater, anklets, bobby socks and white bucks? Okay, so I just age-outed myself.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Willamette Woman -- Peek in a Purse

Well, yes it's true, looking inside a woman's bag can be a scary thing. And, so it goes with mine. When I was asked to do the "Peek in a Purse" feature for the September-October issue of Willamette Woman (part of the Statesman Journal in Salem) I thought it would be fun. Well, it certainly was -- but, now the world knows I am somewhat of a kook!

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Just a Hint of Fall

Oh boy -- there is definitely a hint of fall in the air today. For me, that's a good thing, as the long hot days of summer are not my fav. Fall makes me think of new beginnings and new things -- new clothes, a new "do" and new activities. I think it is a throwback to the old back-to-school days.

Saturday, September 05, 2009

There's a Moon Out Tonight

Almost full, just a little sliver missing -- but clouds and rain are on the way, so I knew I would not be able to catch the full moon. I love the moon in September and October -- it seems that it is always a big harvest moon. And, since I love the fall -- for me the moon is a sign of cooler days and breathtaking colors. The sky in this pix makes me think of labradorite.

Thursday, September 03, 2009


Yes, I said watermelon. I bought this little watermelon earlier in the week at Bauman's Farm here in town. While I knew it was going to be yellow on the inside, I was still surprised that it was really YELLOW. Not hints of yellow, or yellow to pink -- just yellow, through and through -- wonderful contrast to the big black seeds.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Bea's Mini-Me

Over the weekend, another Carin rescue came to stay at the Beck's while she waits for a new family to love her. She is the cutest, sweetest little two-year-old girl -- a Bea look-a-like. I call her "Bea's Mini-Me" -- but her real name is Katie.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Botswana Agate

I have been working on some new designs for a darling bride-to-be. She is so excited about the fact that I am able to make a special bracelet for her in orange to wear on the big occasion. Yes, orange. Since orange is not that common of a color in gemstones -- she was thrilled when she saw the Botswana agate design I had on my site.

Friday, August 28, 2009

A Rose by Any Other Name

When my creative energy is blocked, it doesn't take much to get it flowing again. No matter where I am, all I have to do is just stop and look around -- it seems there is always something to really "see" that gives me inspiration.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Meet Obi-Wan

Big day at the Becks -- Obi-Wan, a new rescue came to stay while he waits for a new family. Cute, 5-year old Cairn -- really social, loves chasing the ball and is having a blast chasing around with Beatrix and Missy on the farm. He has a big ol' crush on Bea -- thinks she is really cute and Bea...just wants to be friends. Isn't that always the way?

Monday, August 24, 2009

Hops and Elephant Eyes

"The hops are as high as an elephant's eye..." -- oh, where are Rodgers and Hammerstein when you need them? I guess if the musical "Oklahoma" had been set in Oregon, then the lyrics would reflect the hops crops, instead of corn. Well, thinking about it, I guess the musical would not be titled "Oklahoma" it would be title "Oregon" and I am sure would be a wee bit shorter since it doesn't take as long to spell O-R-E-G-O-N. My head is spinning.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Gemstone Rope Style Hits the Site

All of those unfinished goodies I showed a few days ago are ready for posting to the site. I promise they will be on the site later tonight and all of the rope-style bracelets -- small, smaller and smallest will be ready to make the trip to your home. Here are two finished pieces just to whet your appetite!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Things I Miss About NYC

Well, not really things, but this thing in particular. This image was borrowed from a photo taken by friends in NYC -- they were celebrating their son's birthday at one of the most spectacular places on earth -- The Natural History Museum. Talk about your inspiration!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Choose Me! Choose Me! Choose Me!

I had a bunch o'bracelets all lined up on a work tray and they looked like so much fun, I had to snap a pix and post it here. I love making this particular style. Something about the repetitive nature of creating the "rope" is very Zen for me. That is the reason I so enjoy knitting -- it's not so much the finished product, in that case, it is the very nature of the knitting technique. However, it is both the technique and the finished product when it comes to these bracelets. Picking just the right gemstones or glass beads for the "charms" makes me happy. Interesting, I am so easily entertained.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

What Sounds Like "Bag Lady?"

Yesterday, my neighbor came over to give me instructions for dog and cat sitting while they (the people) run off to the beach for three days (gee, what's wrong with this picture?). This was the first time she has actually been in my house since we always chat over the back fence. Yes, it seems that is a reality in small towns. "So, you're a bag lady," was the first thing she said as she sat down.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Hip Chick Meets Glizy Glam

I've had so much fun designing this special necklace for a friend's niece who is soon departing for London. She wanted something similar to the Hip Chick-Surfer Dudette design that has been so popular on my site. But, I thought the overall feel of the necklace should be a little more sophisticated, without being stuffy. When I think of London, I always think edgy (funny but the straight-laced somber Queen thing never comes to mind).

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Just Plain Silly

As I was driving out of my little community this is what I saw. So, of course, I had to share it here. It's good to know, that if I am out walking today there will be a place to sit, should I have the need!! I wish I could find the pix I took of a friend of mine, sitting on an old toidy along the curb on 70th and First in NYC.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

Dolling up the Shorts and Polo

So, I am walking around the studio and house wear-testing a new bigger than life multi-layer gemstone necklace based on the one shown here. It is stunning and really dolls up my shorts and polo! Luckily the neighbors have adjusted to my strangeness -- but when I first moved in they were a little shocked when they would see all the glam with a t-shirt and shorts or sweats!

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

A Trip Into Wonderland

I took a break from work today and Beatrix and I drove over to Bauman Farms just outside of town to pick up some fresh fruit and veggies and visit with the animals. While I could pass on the animal visiting, it is the best part of the trip for the Beaster; although the last time we were there she got her nosed pecked by a turkey. A humiliating experience at best.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

Mocha Latte or Western Saddle?

When I was making this bracelet my thinking was all about mocha latte -- maybe I was just longing for a hit to spark my day. Weird though, when the image popped up on my screen I immediately thought of Montana or Wyoming and all things cowgirl. Perhaps the unusual copper reminds me of the beautiful tooled leather used in saddles. That, or maybe I am just nuts. What do you think?

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Black and White, Cha-Cha-Cha

Wow -- I was looking for something totally unrelated and in my hunt discovered this cha-cha beauty! Funny, when I made this bracelet a thousand years ago, it seemed really BIG, even for me; and today, it looks just perfect. Guess it is all relative and perhaps I was a bit before the trend on the really big jewelry.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Mermaid Dreams

This hotter than hot weather, yes, it is 104 in this part of the country, is making me long for my long-ago-life at the beach. I'm telling you, if I was anywhere near the ocean, a river, or a pool of water of any type, I would jump in, clothes and all. Of course, this longing for cool shores was boosted when my brother-in-law sent me a video of a surfer in Huntington Beach catching the perfect ride at the U.S. Open (surfing not tennis) a few days ago.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

A Rare Moment in Time

Since I had just finished nine new necklaces, I figured it was a good time to step away from the studio for a break. When I came back to it -- I took one look and tried to remember when the tornado had run through the place. As I work, the area gets loaded down with "stuff." While I like a clean work area -- I have never been one of those designers who spends more time cleaning than creating.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Tiny Treasures and Eclectic Mixes

A while back I took a pix of the flowers on the table in front of the sofa from above looking down. Today I was going through some old files and when the image popped up on the screen I saw much more than the flowers. You see, that table houses a collection of small treasures that take me to different places and times in my life. Let's see -- rocks (yes, rocks) from Central Park in NYC; a strange flip-out kind of extension ruler that was my dad's way back when -- I remember playing with it "carefully" as a kid; my dad's wallet which still holds his stuff (wow, I wasn't prepared for the tears); an amazing purple blown glass ornament/ball -- a gift from Bubbles, a dear friend in NYC; a beautiful tooled leather wallet that belonged to a friend's mom, sand dollars from the different beaches I called home, a very small photo of the windows of a cottage on Nantucket Island; a photo of a bundled up me (it was December) and Agatha in Central Park in front of the scary London Plane tree (these trees always remind me of those in the animated film Fantasia) with the rooftops of Fifth Avenue in the background (that was the day I met Mike Nichols and Diane Sawyer on Madison Avenue and yes, we actually had a conversation in that "only in New York" kind of way); a Baccarat crystal heart from an old beau, a small photo of an "always" love hugging my little Norwich, Agatha, in NYC; vintage spools from woolen mills in New England that now serve as candleholders; and, a photo of a dear sister-friend and her big ol' love of a dog. I think that about does it. I look at each tiny treasure and I am immediately taken to that moment in time. While it might look like a hodge-podge of stuff to others -- to me it reflects much of what has crossed my path, helping to create the person I am today. Hm-m-m, a little philosophical today.

I realized that I do like little snippets of life and tiny things. I have always believed that life happens in moments and that's where I like to put my attention. I think that is why I love designing and making jewelry -- I get to use lots of pretty little things, stringing them together to make pretty bigger things! Kind of like life -- little moments that mix with other little moments, adding up to make a totally great experience.