Saturday, February 28, 2009

Black, Grey and White -- A Stylish Combo

These black, grey and white striped sardonyx beads grabbed me when I was least expecting it. I was looking for something else totally not related in any way, shape or form to sardonyx and POW! -- there they were. Just two lonely strands of beads -- medium and large sized -- just tempting me to pick them up and see what I could create. Always one to accept a challenge (why do I think of Peter Sellers when I say that word? And, not the cheesy Steve Martin version of PS -- only the original PS.) I bought these beauties and brought them home. I must admit that they sat mocking me for a bit from their perch on my studio work bench -- then one day the inspiration hit. Here is what those beads morphed in. This bracelet now on my site and a necklace (and oh my what a necklace) still in the works. The bracelet just looks so sharp and classy to me -- it gives a twist of the "basic black" theory. I load one with some of my silver bangles and it makes quite a look. Now that the season is changing (well, hopefully some day it will change) you will wear this bracelet to punch up neutrals and pastels. Black is a nice change from the ordinary when it comes to pairing it with the lighter colors of spring and summer. So, for all you black fans -- this one's for you!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Unakite -- Captures the Colors of Venice

I love unakite -- unfortunately the colors of the stone don't come to life in photog for some reason. Well, perhaps they do for someone who really knows how to do the perfect lighting and settings on their camera -- but as we know, that's not me! Anyhow, I was going through some old pix and found one from Venice that actually looks like the colors you find in unakite. So, I thought I should post it here and then, perhaps, you will understand why I am ga-ga over this gemstone. Oh and it goes without saying that I am over-the-moon when it comes to Venice, as well.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Little Red Hen

Some days I feel like the Little Red Hen or the Dunkin' Donuts guy ("gotta make the donuts"). I'm not complaining because I absolutely love every part of it; but sometimes I just have to laugh at myself. I design the jewelry, make the jewelry, photograph the jewelry, promote the jewelry, process orders, pack up and mail the jewelry and then start all over again. But, I love it and I have all of you to thank for giving me the opportunity to do what I absolutely love and to share it with all of you. Today the challenge became on of capturing the beautiful color of the sodalite beads that make up this bracelet. I'm a bit closer, but still not there yet. This is definitely one of those pieces that you need to see to really get the color -- or that is my excuse for being a not-so-great photographer. Mixed with the Montana blue Swarovski crystals the sodalite is really nice. If you click on the image you'll see an bigger image -- I think the blue comes across better on the larger pix. For all of you who love the calmness of the color of blue, this is the bracelet for you.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

First One From the Studio

I found these large fire agate stones in Tucson -- don't ask which vendor or venue -- it's all a foggy state in my head. However, I do believe they are found in Mexico. I had such a hard time trying to decide which stone to work with first -- I finally put them all in a heap, closed my eyes and picked up one. This is the winner -- the warm, caramel colored large agate stones look lovely with the bronze-brown and clear Czech glass beads. The brushed finished goldplate oval link chain brings it all together. Hey, I just discovered something -- if you click on the pix it pops up bigger than life -- didn't know that was part of this program -- but what a nice surprise. See more at

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Waiting, waiting, waiting.

Sitting here in limbo -- waiting for boxes of "jewels" to arrive -- seems the postperson (got to be politically correct) is always late when I am waiting for something special. Meanwhile I am playing with some leopardskin jasper beads that have been in the inventory for a while now -- the bracelet here is one of the designs that is available at I just love these beads -- their natural pattern does resemble leopard skin and the colors are really beautiful. Browns, tans and hints of black -- basic, but not boring. Mixed with the antiqued bronze-like chain and metal beads and popped with the fire-polished Czech glass beads makes it all come to life. The pix is a bit dark but in true light, the colors are lovely. I'll get lost in making a few more pieces with these beauties and before I know it -- the postperson will be ringing the bell delivering those new treasures. Oh boy!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

The Party's Over -- in Tucson That Is

Packing up and getting ready to head out of Dodge. While it's a bit sad to say good-bye to my niece who did the show with me, I am so looking forward to getting all my new treasures home. And, of course, to see Beatrix, my little Cairn. I have a stinkin' suspicion that once my rear hits the chair in my studio, it may stay there for quite some time. While it was a bit tiring and dirty at times, my time here was really fun. Not only did I get to spend two weeks with my niece, I was fortunate enough to meet with Jay King and his oh-so-friendly crew and Shivan Sarna who is quite the little spitfire. That woman has incredible energy. For those of you who don't know, Jay sells his gemstone designs on HSN in the shows titled "Jay King Mine Finds." If you haven't had the good fortune to ever see what he brings, he is scheduled for Sunday, 2-15th throughout the day. Shivan is studying for her GIA and is a jewelry host extraordinaire on HSN. How lucky were we to be surrounded by experts who have a great time while they work? In my world, that's a good thing. I so thank all of them for making the effort to actually meet with me and share their ideas and laughter. it made the hunting that much more fun. See you back in Oregon.

Monday, February 09, 2009

Hints of Things to Come

I couldn't help myself on my last day of shopping here in Tucson -- stunning African rose quartz, labradorite, garnet, hessonite (orange garnet) and citrine all called to me like sirens from the sea. So I caved and forked over the last of my gemstone budget and became the excited owner of these intriguing fancy-cut gemstones. Believe it or not, I couldn't sleep last night -- I had visions of new designs dancing through my head. So I finally gave up, flipped on the light, sketched and made furious notes in my always handy notepad. As I see things, there is always time to sleep but when the creative juices get flowing -- then it's time for work (or play in some cases). These tiny treasures are beauties -- the shape is unique on some and the faceting really catches the light and gives back brilliant flashes. Oh man -- can't wait to be back in the studio at home and see what comes from all of this. Exciting times ahead.

You might want to be sure that your name is included on my mailing list so you'll be among the first to see the new pieces. You can do that by visiting -- on the home page there is a Stay in the Know box that lets you add your e-mail addy to the list.

Pearls That Fell From the Sea and Landed in Tucson

I'm asking myself just how many pearls I can look at before my head explodes. This just gives you an idea of the number of pearls I got to look through to find some interesting shapes, sizes and colors for new designs. And, this is just one pearl supplier! While I whine a bit about it, it's really fun since I don't look for the perfectly round pearl . I was lucky enough to find some grey, ivory, black and the prettiest silver-white keishi type. Oh-la-la! I can't wait to be back in the studio so I can start working on all kinds of new designs using all of the new stuff. Watch for tomorrow's post -- earlier today I bought beautiful smaller faceted beads and will see if I can get a pix to post tomorrow. Lots of new design ideas coming to me with those. Something a bit different from my usual big and bold designs -- I got a bug to do some smaller charm style necklaces and earrings. So stay tuned.