my rust studio ROCKS

the view from my new studioredding, connecticut has to be one of the most beautiful places in all of america. I am absolutely in love with my new home here with the wild turkeys, the deer, and the really large sounding bullfrog in the boggy pond (are there big bullfrogs here)?.

moving in the midst of a hurricane is always an adventure, but we have settled in so very beautifully and my studio absolutely, positively ROCKS… check it out, even my furniture and artfully neglected rusty anvil match the cool rusty toned (ahem) linoleum. I can’t help but make beautiful things with this vista.

the jewelry studio in Redding

I finished this sweet little sapphire and gold ring, right before I sent the studio off in the moving truck, all hand made 18k yellow discs soldered together with a lovely deep blue sapphire bezel set in rich warm gold. I’ll have to find the picture, as its a great example of what you can do when you melt down gold and start anew. sweet, little and rather unique, my friend beth’s design for her sister in law who just gave birth to a boy, a sister’s “push present” if you will :)

~ looking forward to receiving sue’s “disco” gold earrings to melt down and create anew. dig out that old gold. gold is good right now, brings some of this sun with you as the days get cooler ~

and I do so love melting it down into molten…

be so warm and dry


The LifeChain, part 7

John is finally back to editing the rest of this series about my LifeChain custom jewelry project from this past summer in San Diego, just in time to help me illustrate that round of new inspiration from one of my fabulous clients I mentioned yesterday– check it out, and check in again this weekend to read about my first custom LifeChain commission!

jewelry studio inspiration found!

a few weeks ago, after getting the studio set up, the house in order and the kids down for a nap, i sat down to work and…. wasn’t sure where to start.

i ended up posting to Twitter that i was looking for a sign, for inspiration, and calling it a night.

last week, looking over all of my work online with John, i found the inspiration I was looking for right where i always find it, where i should have been in the first place: with all of you, my clients, fans and followers. it was sort of an The Alchemist moment, where after some anguish, and sort of useless expenditure of energies, I found what I needed most right here at home.

on my orginal jewelry blog on Blogger we found this incredible testimonial posted last month from a long time repeat client back in San Diego posted as a comment that neither of us had seen– John quoted it right away on one of my main jewlery gallery pages and I’m quoting here so you can read it.

Heather made our wedding ring, then my wife’s 30th birthday ring and she adores each of them.

Our 5 year anniversary was no different, and I was so excited for my wife but didn’t want to ruin our dinner and spoil the anticipation. We were early enough to the restaurant with few patrons around, but it starting filling up quick. Not wanting the extra attention of a full restaurant, I couldn’t help myself.

BIG MISTAKE!!!! She was so enchanted with her new ring I didn’t even recognize my wife…. she was a little girl dreaming of beautiful rings someday and here it was! Sounds cheezy but it was true… we are not ostentatious in any sense of the word but she couldn’t stop herself all through the night from checking out her new ring in more poses than I could imagine a hand capable of!

And yes, it was embarrassing for us second hand / retro fiends, but if you’re gonna go big, go heather.

Thanks Heather for the tripleLindy on my wife’s hands! I will send some photos soon and I hope your move went smoothly.

Love Jason and Kimball and now Wilson!

i always turn to my custom clients for inspiration when i’m working directly with them on their jewelry, and here was wonderful Jason telling me what i need to hear all the way across the country right when i needed to hear it- thank, Jason and all my wonderful clients.

it seems now the beginning of a trend, with another inspiring set of ideas tumbling out of discussions with a different client over the few days after that– these next up here this week.

we have to go looking for the pictures of this ring Jason commissioned for his beautiful wife Kimball– little Wilson, I can’t wait to meet you!

silver & gold bangles

I hadn’t made any bangles for a relatively long time, until the old hand forged sterling silver bangle on the

hand forged sterling silver bangle with diamonds
hand forged sterling silver bangle with diamonds

fortunately for my readers, the bangle (even at the really good price through the end of August!) hasn’t sold yet, and you could still get the deal of the year if you like this piece.

fortunately for me, posting this piece up for sale inspired a custom order for a little bit different bangle, which I just finished yesterday in this last round of bench work before packing up the studio for Pittsburgh.

John took a bunch of pictures of all the pieces getting their final polish yesterday, including the platinum ring I posted this morning; here’s the new bangle: solid gold but hammered very thin,with a couple of little 8 point diamonds flush set in the rim near the top:

new custom 14k yellow gold handforged bangle
new custom 14k yellow gold handforged bangle

Moving the jewelry studio- and the family- to Pittsburgh!

Yesterday we were working on the “moving specials on jewelry” page when we realized I’d made no “official” announcement about our move here on the blog or to my subscribers’ list of friends and fans.

So, we’re moving to Pittsburgh at the end of the month of August!

John will continue a couple of his San Diego projects both online and in person– he’s got an office space he’ll be keeping, and a few other things going on- follow him on Twitter to keep up with all that.

We’re moving on to a big simple mid-century home in the Pt. Breeze neighborhood of Pittsburgh, just a few minutes from where my Mom grew-up and a bunch of my cousins, family friends and their kids, too. (I was actually born in Pittsburgh though I grew up mostly in CT).

There’s a perfect open kitchen and big family room as well as a sweet room for the jewelry studio looking out over the backyard– another great set up for work + kids–> we are very fortunate!

So even though, my jewelry doesn’t take up any space, I started a moving sale online because I have a handful of pieces that have been around for while and I’ve been cleaning up the bench– yesterday I found a ring that reminded me of the engagement ring I just wrote about last week, maybe from the same time period. It has a pretty green beryl set in a yellow gold bezel on a sterling silver flat bar ring, flanked by two little diamonds– check it out!

green beryl ring
green beryl ring

Here’s a partial screenshot of the sale page, click the image to see everything.

screen shot of jewelry studio moving sale page
screen shot of jewelry studio moving sale page

the LifeChain custom jewelry project: video #2

the second video of the LifeChain series in the jewelry studio, where I talk in more detail about the LifeChain concept: the materials, sources, and the particular link of the chain i’m forging that represents my bout with colon cancer three years ago.