Wednesday, December 29, 2010

snowy days

Here's a photo I took of the snow storm in PA the day after Christmas. Although it prevented our plans that day, it sure was beautiful. Now, even days later, all I want to do is stay at home with a good book and snuggle up in this...(throw by BiscuitScout on etsy.) I have been dying for a chunky knit throw but sadly I know my cats would destroy it in about 3.5 seconds. Hope you all had a wonderful and happy holiday!

Monday, December 20, 2010

out of print

I was introduced to this website, Out of Print clothing, and I am not kidding you, I literally want EVERYTHING on their website. They take out of print cover art from classic books and print them on t-shirts and sweatshirts. They have such an amazing selection and the great thing is, for every item you buy on their site, one book is donated to Books for Africa. I see a mass amount of awesome t-shirts as gifts in my friends' and family's future! Above are my top three choices for myself (Brave New World, Pride and Prejudice, Catcher in the Rye... all tees are $28).

I'll be celebrating the holiday with my family for the next week and intentionally plan to stay away from computers and the internet. I hope all of you have a wonderful holiday!

*NOTE: Out of Print T-shirt sizes run a little small so I would recommend going up one size.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

when i can't stop thinking about them, i know it's love...

A group of us went to NYC yesterday and I was so inspired by all the jewelry I saw, that I couldn't wait to get into my studio and start making stuff. This little number was inspired by some great pieces I saw at ABC Carpet & Home. I am officially obsessed with mixing gold and oxidized sterling silver!

I couldn't stop drooling over these earrings by Melissa Joy Manning, that I knew I had to make something for myself. (Mine are made out of sterling silver and clear topaz crystals.) I guess when I can't stop thinking about a piece of jewelry, I have no choice but to make it or buy it... it's my one true weakness.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

etsy gift guide

Here's some of my favorite gifts to give (and receive!). And if you don't have time to make anything yourself, etsy is the best place to find a gift made with love (even if it's not by you!):
top row, left to right
1.) I love love love cozy, oversized loop scarves and the rosette on this one is so cute. (avivaschwarz- $68)
2.) I am a girl who loves jewelry! I love the old-timey wax seal and the monogram makes this necklace feel so special. (stclairboutique- $78)
3.) Giving notebooks as gifts is a tradition in my office. Taking notes feels so much less boring when it's done in a cute notebook. I love the whimsical print on this one. (shoofly- $16)
bottom row, left to right
4.) Monogrammed notecards... so classy! (theoriginalpear- $20 for 18)
5.) My mother gave me a patchwork quilt one year and I cherish it. I love the colors on this one and how the patches are all organically sewn. (cedarpointdesigns- $210)
6.) I absolutely adore mittens. I love the cute strap and button detail on these. (homelab- $35)

Friday, December 10, 2010

chinese staircase

Like the friendship bracelets you made when you were a kid, but so much better... and way more glamorous! (Diamond bar necklace by Brooke Gregson)

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

twigs and diamonds

I am in love with this twig ring by Bittersweets New York. Wouldn't it make the prettiest engagement ring?

Friday, December 3, 2010

it doesn't matter

I love jewelry that is part feminine and part quirky, like this pendant by all those threes. I pulled this image awhile ago for inspiration for my locket but I feel a surge of motivation to search for more jewelry with cute and cheeky sayings.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

lucifer is just alright with me

I love these rings from Lucifer Vir Honestus. The gunmetal paired with sparkly diamonds is just about perfect and I love how these rings look stacked. The negative space is almost as interesting as the rings themselves.

Monday, November 29, 2010

wonderfully simple

I love this wonderfully simple ring from Elephantine. I usually wear a lot of jewelry on a daily basis but lately I have been desiring a much more minimalistic style with my accessories. The simplicity of this ring feels so refreshing and exactly what I need.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

nature imitating itself

I can't get over how beautiful these two stones are! (Landscape Jasper on the left and Dendritic Agate on the right.) They look like they were hand painted with the greatest intent and skill. Nature can create some pretty amazing things.

Monday, November 15, 2010

rough amethyst

New addition to my ever-expanding jewelry box! I got this glamorous piece this weekend from JKarma (thanks for the present, Sara!). I love the rough amethyst crystal paired with the gold... and oddly enough, this piece kind of has a similar effect to what I was loving about the Watermelon Tourmaline necklace.

I am off to Chevy Chase again for the week to help out Anthropologie's newly opened accessories store. So excited to see the space again and see what has sold and what new product they have gotten in!

Friday, November 12, 2010

dash dash

I saw this on one of my regular reads, A Cup of Jo, and fell in love. At first I was drawn to the dainty simplicity of this necklace but once I read that the beads spell out words in morse code, my heart simply melted!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

watermelon in winter

I would love to wear this watermelon tourmaline necklace with a chunky knit sweater to give a little pop of spring color during the cold winter months.

Monday, November 8, 2010

another one to the arsenal

I am a ring stacker, through and through. (I mean... why wear one ring when you can wear three?!) I am contemplating getting a sapphire band to occasionally add to my wedding ring set (comprised of my wedding band, engagement ring, and the ring I purchased from the sale of my wedding gown) for an additional pop of color now and then. Some may call it overkill, but I like the option to mix and match with the set of rings I plan to wear every day for the rest of my life. And this sapphire band is so reasonably priced, it only seems like a minor splurge.

Friday, November 5, 2010

north star

Just finished this ring last night... my first ring, actually, produced out of my own studio. Inspired by the dewdrops ring from Sundance, I took a more industrial twist to the setting design. A 3mm cubic zirconia is bezel set on a hammered and oxidized sterling silver band. And the thing I love most about oxidized silver is that the dark patina will only get better with time as it fades with wear, bringing out the hammered texture even more.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

pretty tough

Equal parts tough and pretty, this crystal-trimmed gunmetal cuff from Made Her Think is a showstopper! This cuff would take any outfit, even jeans and a t-shirt, to a whole other level of cool.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

any new york

I am loving the sculptural designs of Any New York. (My 3 favorite designs, featured in Lucky magazine, are directly above.) I am completely entranced by these exquisite pieces of wearable art. I think I can confidently say that these designs would never bore me!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

oh, melissa

You have done it again, Melissa Joy Manning, you have stolen my heart once more. I am simply dying over these stud earrings, so simple yet so unique. These are definitely a pair of earrings I could see myself wearing time and time again.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Anthropologie shoes & accessories

I'm back from opening Anthropologie's first accessories store in Chevy Chase, MD and it was unbelievable! We transformed the space into a wonderland of detailed display and the product is simply amazing. Here are a few sneak peeks...A candy store of delicious accessories!

Estate rings from Doyle & Doyle, a new product addition for Anthropologie... and such an exciting addition!

Wall decor and bags by Leslie Oschmann.

Monday, October 25, 2010

accessories store

For the next week, I will be helping out at the opening of Anthropologie's very first accessories store in Chevy Chase, MD. Of course I am excited beyond belief! If you are in the area and can stop by, the store will be officially open this Friday the 29th! Necklaces, boots, scarves... oh my! (photo above: vintage tea cup bracelets from Anthropologie)

Thursday, October 21, 2010

tangled chains

I discovered last night that artfully tangling chain seems to be just as hard as untangling chain! I tried to make a pair of earrings like these last night but struggled with getting the chain just right. Haven't given up quite yet but it just goes to show that things that look unintentional usually require very intentional actions.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010


Oh, lordy! Aren't these london blue topaz earrings beautiful?! Nothing beats the color of this magnificent stone and the gold makes them look so dainty.

Thursday, October 14, 2010


It seems that I am on the search for a special yet can-wear-it-everyday kind of band. A ring that may be an investment but worth every penny based on cost per wear. Although I have been drooling over Todd Reed's bands lately, this one from Sundance, just jumped to the #1 slot.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

hello dreamboat!

I need this ring by Todd Reed or I might just cry.

I may possibly need this one as well... bestill my heart!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

antique capital

A coworker and I headed to Adamstown, PA on Friday to pick up a few antiques for some of our Anthropologie stores. Right off of the PA Turnpike on Rt. 272, about an hour from Philadelphia, there is a row of antique malls filled with multiple sellers offering an array of goods. Although I was a little disappointed with the jewelry options available, I know Adamstown will be my first destination when I am in the market for beautiful antique wooden furniture. The German Trading Post, above, was our favorite retailer of the day.
And besides a French 19th century sterling silver picture frame, which was sadly way out of my price range, the winning find of the day was this Victorian photo album still outfitted with all the original photos of the owner's friends! Loved it!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

cut coins

My dad made me this horse pendant forever ago but I had to share. My dad has a hobby of cutting out images in coins he has collected and this is the first one he made for me when I was younger (worn with a gold locket from my grandmother). Lately, I have started to see similar items for sale here and there (like from petsalad on etsy)... who knew my dad was a visionary ahead of his time?! But I know I will cherish my custom made one much more.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

teeny little guys

I went to a bead show at Beadworks last night and I was in heaven. So many beautiful strands... I had a hard time editing down my selections! But I couldn't resist these little guys, 1.5x3mm tourmaline drops. I envision spacing them out organically on a very thin sterling silver chain.

Thursday, September 30, 2010


I have bought a few butterfly and moth pendants over the years but they have not lost their charm. The beautiful designs and colors of these wings make the most vibrant pieces of jewelry (not to mention the fact that most designers are helping support butterfly conservations). But I was shocked when I discovered that this pendant, by CarrieBilbo, is a cicada wing. So beautiful! Be sure to check out Carrie's other designs on etsy... I pretty much want to buy out her entire etsy store!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010


I love hoop earrings! They look great on and are simple enough to work with any necklace. I am in the market for some elongated hoop earrings and I stumbled across these beauties on Joy O Designs. Love them!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

happy fall!

Happy Fall! By far my favorite season, I look forward to fall longingly when the summer days just seem too hot for way too long. The list of things I love about fall is endless... dropping temperatures and a cool fall breeze, scarves, riding boots with dresses and heavy knit stockings, changing leaves, pumpkin flavored treats, fall light weight coats, Halloween, Halloween candy, anticipation of approaching winter holidays, sweaters and sweatshirts, snuggling under a comforter with the windows open, apple cider and baked apples, hay rides, my wedding anniversary! What are you looking forward to this fall?

Friday, September 17, 2010

two of my favorites

Since I am wearing two of my favorite pieces of jewelry today, I thought I would share some pictures. Above is a necklace I got while I was in Miami years and years ago. I really wish I could remember the designer! I love the melted, gnarled metal at the top and how wispy and delicate the chains look dangling from the bottom. The length is just perfect.
Probably one of my favorite stacked ring combinations. The bottom ring is a cheap CZ sterling silver ring I found in a bin of rings at a vintage store which I bought for the purpose of stacking. The middle ring was a loose 2 carat emerald cut aquamarine I had set high in a sterling silver mount. I wanted it to look like a large cocktail ring but found it looks even better stacked with other rings. The top ring is just a plain cheap sterling silver band to balance it all out. I like mixing and matching my rings but for some reason, when I reach for this aquamarine ring, this is how I end up wearing it every time!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

sweet macabre

I have been gravitating towards the idea of using gothic details in sweet, feminine designs... something small and unexpected only noticeable upon closer inspection, to supply a tiny bit of surprise at the discovery of something a little dark amongst an overtly feminine piece of jewelry. I would love to add this small hummingbird skull charm (by billyblue22) to a festoon style necklace with swags of shimmering chain and the sparkle of an array of semi-precious stones.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

today's the day!

I can't wait any longer! I need a torch so badly to get a lot of projects done that have been building up so this little guy is coming home with me today (available at Home Depot). This tool is great for smaller pieces and is generally used for small home maintenance projects. Although the flame is small, it reaches pretty high temperatures so I have high hopes that this may do the trick for small rings or, at the least, small silver findings. I'm going to test it out this weekend and see the range of what this tool can do. I'm still saving for a big torch but this will help me get a lot more accomplished in the meantime. I am so excited!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

a lazy labor day weekend

To pass some time during my very lazy labor day weekend, I went to Barnes and Noble to peruse their craft section. I snapped a photo of these beautiful earrings in one of the books I looked through (I am awful... I didn't write down the name of the book so I can't give it proper credit!). I was excited about manipulating wire for the frame of these earrings and decided to swap out the sapphires for iolite.

Friday, September 3, 2010

the next frontier

I am very interested in learning how to work with PMC (precious metal clay). I have a few books on the subject and am excited about the prospect of learning a new technique. PMC consists of tiny particles of pure silver and gold in organic clay that can be worked and molded similar to modeling clay. When it is heated to the right temperature, the clay burns away leaving pure silver or gold constructions which can be soldered, filed, and polished similar to pieces made by more traditional metalsmithing means. There seems to be a lot of pros and cons to this method versus the traditional methods of manipulating sheet and wire metals but I am excited about the control this form of jewely making can lend to certain designs.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Villette Jewelry at Zuzu

I took a walk around my new neighborhood, Collingswood, NJ, this weekend and came across this amazing gallery, Zuzu. I had a wonderful chat with the owner, Allison, who is a fabulous metalsmith herself, and Villette Jewelry will be sold there later this month! Zuzu is a cute little shop where jewelry is hung like art on the walls. AND there is a full metalsmith studio in the back where Allison holds classes. This may just be a match made in heaven!

Friday, August 27, 2010


I am in desperate need for some new watches.... both of mine recently died their final death. I wear a watch every day, in fact, my wrist feels naked without one, and I generally buy the same watch over and over again from the Fossil outlet (a chunky leather cuff watch in either brown or black). Although I will probably end up getting the same style again, I am starting to consider getting a wrap style watch too, just to shake things up. Here are 2 of my favorites.I love the color options for the face and the leather is worn in just perfectly. (from Sundance.)
I love how old world this looks and I love that you can personalize the name plate. (Revolt70 on etsy.)

Thursday, August 26, 2010

silhouette dream

How amazing is this silhouette book art?! This piece by Mia Cabana is so heartbreakingly beautiful I literally gasped when I saw it on my regular read, design sponge. Wouldn't this make an outrageous background for a jewelry photo shoot?! I'm in love...

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

the start of something beautiful

I was in desperate need of an oxidized bracelet to go with all of my oxidized necklaces and earrings. This was inspired by numerous images I have collected including the bracelet I recently saw in New Orleans. By default, I am not a big bracelet maker. I wear the same silver bangles just about every day, but I love this piece so much I have convinced myself to focus a little more on making bracelets. I have been having a blast lately looking high and low for bracelet inspiration. If you have any suggestions of inspiring bracelets, pass them along!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

salon style wall decor

I am having family stay with me this weekend for a family wedding and I am scrambling to get my new house ready. I still have a long way to go but, oddly enough, the biggest task I have yet to tackle is hanging all of my wall decor. For years now, I have been hanging my wall decor in a salon style. The picture above is similar to how my wall decor looked in my last apartment (all black and white photos, all black frames, clustered together in rectangular form, a lot of frames in mass) but I have been thinking of changing things up. Here are a few other salon examples I am loving...
I love the cluster of alternating colored frames. They all coordinate but there is still variance. (And I love that wall color!)

I love the mixture of shapes here, especially with the bust.

I love the variation in frame shapes but also the consistency of colors and the art within the frames. This would have to be well thought out but so impactful.

I love the minimal amount of frames and I LOVE the addition of the oval mirror. (I guess it also helps that I love the striped wallpaper as the background for these frames as well... and while we are at it, I also love that old trunk being used as a table!)

I have also been thinking of buying old frames to display some of my jewelry in my workspace. Guess I really need to make a trip out to scour some of my favorite antique stores for all the old frames I will need.