Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Suddenly Earrings...Part II

I am still in the mood for adorning the ears in beauty. I hope you enjoy viewing the rest of the collection.

Friday, October 10, 2008


It has been awhile since I have posted and for this I apologize. I have purchased a slew of creative books, all of which are crammed with creative ideas that I can’t wait to try out (I will tell you all about that in a future post). I did manage to sit down for a few hours last weekend to design the earrings that you see here. They are available in my Etsy shop for anyone who may be interested.

The days are becoming cooler, a welcome relief from the scorching Georgia heat that knocks me out every summer season. Autumn comes late to this southern region and the leaves still haven’t decided to change colors. I simply can’t wait because fall is my absolute favorite time of the year and I feel compelled to cozy up my surroundings. It’s time spread candle vignettes all over the house, cook home made squash soup and apple pie and burn spicy smelling incense.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

She's Leaving Home

I will soon be facing an empty nest. It seems quite unbelievable to me. My only child, a daughter, just graduated from high school and is going off to college in the fall. I know when it is time to pack her up and take her things to the campus apartment, I won't be much good. Yes, the nerve wracking sound of music will no longer stream from the third floor, the cat may have some peace, and there will be no need to always have to cook dinner...but still. I sure will miss her.

I love the robin egg blue of these turquise beads, they look like they could fit into the empty nest in the mixed media piece above. My mom loved the twists and turns of this necklace and claimed it for herself. I will make some earrings to go with it.

Another view of the Empty Nest necklace.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Day trips are nice...

It was great getting away from Atlanta for a minute and taking a day trip to Athens, GA, home of the University of Georgia. It is a cute little college town with lots of quaint shops and restaurants. Nourish is a new boutique located in Athens and several of my jewelry pieces are there. I loved the shop!

One of my pieces in the shop was selected to be in a huge one page spread in Southern Distinction magazine. I am thrilled. You can see both my original piece and the magazine spread below.

Of course I had to find a bead store and was very lucky to find some wonderful amazonite bead drops. Here is a pic of downtown Athens.

It was really nice getting away, with gas prices so high, day trips are a nice alternative. Still, I feel the beach calling my name...

Sunday, June 15, 2008

What to do...what to do...

Playing with texture using various types of gesso (i.e. crackle, garnet) on Kozo Rice paper with materials such as cheese clothe and crumpled tissue paper. The text (an original poem) has been printed out on a transparency sheet and slipped under the textured tissue papers.

Selecting stamps and molds...just purchased these goodies the other day...can't wait to see what happens. Picture shot with one of my favorite prints entitled: Kettle and Poppy Seed Heads by Arthur Easten.

Glorious contrast! The small pillow was quilted by my sister, Kathy, who has a wonderful blog called Knitting Sutra, for all of you out there who are passionate about knitting and working with fibers.

White texture...

Placed in the lower right hand corner, is an ink jet transparency made from one of my original mixed media pages. I scanned the mixed media page into the computer, put transparency paper in my printer, and proceeded to print out the image. This is a really fun way to reuse your original art work in new and exciting ways!

Monday, May 19, 2008

A Very Busy Time

Well, it has been quite awhile since I have posted on my blog and I do apologize. It has been an extremely busy time with my daughter getting ready to graduate from high school! I am also very excited and happy to announce that the book 1,000 Jewelry Inspirations has been released! I am very fortunate that many of my pieces are featured in the book and I have one two page spread! I will be talking more about that feature in an upcoming post. Finally, I am in the process of completing a book proposal (another reason I am so busy). I have to steal time to get away to my tiny studio. I just completed these two special pieces.

String of Prayers Necklace

A very soulful piece of jewelry accented with layers of vibrant color and intricate twists and turns. A grouping of selected beads hang from a knotted turquoise leather lace and forms the centerpiece of this necklace. A long curved inlaid bone bead makes a great statement and the intricately designed Bali bead caps cup vintage glass and beautifully polished turquoise beads. The strand is finished off with coral rondelle beads.

Ancient Voices Necklace

This wonderful mix of jasper, African trade, bone, silver, glass, leather, and wood beads come together to form a sassy adornment. I forgot to mention that it also includes a generous piece of crystal that came from an old chandelier! The style of this necklace is asymmetrical, with one side connected by interlocking seed bead lariats and the other side accented by a select grouping of beads that hang perfectly from knotted leather lace.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Art Party

Here is another angle of my journal page called "Fusion Heads". I painted it one summer when I was visiting my mother, who at the time, lived in PA. I loved (and miss) those long quiet summer days when you had nothing special planned at all. Sometimes my sister would visit at the same time and we would have one of our famous, "Art Parties". It was like being kids again! We would get out our toys (paints, beads, yarn... whatever) and begin to use our hands to create. We haven't had an Art Party in a long time.

I painted this journal page many years ago. As you can surmise, I was dealing with my ongoing frustration with procrastination. I still struggle, although I feel I am getting a little bit better. I have a great deal of things on my plate (all the time it seems) so it is important that I don’t get too overwhelmed. I just recently submitted several pieces to a new boutique that had its Grand Opening today! I hope all went well. If you are ever in the town of Athens, GA, stop by and check out Nourish. The shop has loads of handcrafted goods by some very talented artists.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Along the Creative Path

Spring has its benefits and one of them is lifting the gloom that was lurking too near the perimeter of my personal space. I think the temp reached 72 today, the sky is clear and I love the way the sun beams are streaming into the house. I have not been in my studio for a very long time. A few weeks ago (March 2nd) I posted the entry “Beads of Inspiration”. Well, today I started fiddling with the beads and leather and a host of other ingredients. I am going to call this one “Hidden” because you really have to examine it up close to see all that is going on in this necklace, quite a few surprises and hidden elements.

Here is something else I am working on, the texture and the movement of the coral shells as it snakes around your neck makes such a gorgeous statement.

This cache of beads, shells, glass, silver, bone, and gem stones on dyed turquoise leather is another assemblage I started today. I want to call it “Prayer”. There is something about the combination of these elements that make me think about prayers. I do not know how it will end up, this is just the beginning. I will sleep on it. Sometimes I have to let partial design grouping brew a little while (sometimes a long while) before I know exactly what to do with it. An excellent book to read about the universal practice of prayer is by Thich Nhat Hanh, entitled “The Energy of Prayer”. Thich lives in a retreat in France called Plum Village. Plum Village is Buddhist monastery for monks and nuns and a mindfulness practice center for lay people.

What a relief to be back in a creative and inspirational groove. It’s like a form of prayer when you really think about it. How else does a formless thought become something genuinely beautiful?

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Along the Spiritual Path- Trapped in the Web of Thought

There is a constant chatter that goes on in our heads, so much so that it is often quite difficult to have a peaceful moment, a moment with no thought, just a stillness. That is why it is hard to meditate. We must constantly remind ourselves to shut up! Concentrate on the breath…just breathe.

I know that when I finally do quiet my mind, I get a glimpse of something ethereal, an “awareness” beyond my thoughts. Just recently I came across a poem by Rumi. He was a Sufi mystic who wrote poetry about his relationship with God, whom he called the “Beloved”. Part of the following poem, which is untitled, talks about being trapped in the web of thought:

…I’m only with you in this transient shadow that is my body;

My joy is beyond the cusp of your frantic imagination;

Now I have broken free of the dull gravity of knowledge

I take it and use it and do not let it oppress and abuse me.

Like insects we are trapped in the web of thought,

We are entwined in cords of anguish from moment to moment.

I can visit thought with diplomatic lightness ready and able

To spring away with the flick of a finger from its net when I will

Thought is my prey waiting for my will, I'm a hunter with a heart

Mathnavi 11, 3547

Words of Paradise
Selected Poems of RUMI

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Thank You

I thank You God for most this amazing
day: for the leaping greenly spirits of trees
and a blue true dream of sky; and for everything
which is natural which is infinite which is yes
e.e. cummings

Monday, March 10, 2008

I Remember Sky

The deepest azure sky I have ever seen was in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Puffs of the whitest fluffiest clouds hung in suspension overhead. Just as delightful and awe inspiring was the black velvet night sky, pierced randomly by twinkling star light. These visuals are forever branded on my brain. I want to go back just to see the sky if nothing else. There is just something about that place that I love and it keeps calling…keeps calling me back. There are certain places that speak to each one of us and there must be a reason why it tugs at our hearts and spirit.

Eckhart Tolle, the author of The Power of Now and his latest book, A New Earth - Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose, expounded on his podcast with Oprah, that one day he woke up with a strong “knowing” that he had to move to California. He didn’t know why, but he had to go. At the time of this realization he was living in England. He packed his bags and ended up in California by way of Vancouver. While there he began writing his new book. He returned to England, but soon realized while he was there, that he could not come up with new material for book. He could only make editorial revisions. When he returned to California his flow of ideas reignited and he was once again able to write new material. It was at that point that he surmised this was the reason he had to come to California. The “vibration” level was different on the west coast and because of that he was able to complete his book! I find that story quite fascinating!

I think New Mexico has the same kind of power over me. Each time I go there I get fired up with ideas for my art…the entire landscape is so inspiring. The fresh air, dry climate, scrumptious dishes smothered in southwest flavors and magnificent sunsets are enough to make any soul happy. This little place, in the middle of the desert keeps calling me…keeps calling me back and one day I will answer.

Photographs Courtesy of Philip Greenspan

Saturday, March 08, 2008

I'll tell you one thing, this is my baby

This is my puddy cat and his name is Rickie Boy. Anywhere I happen to flop down in my house, a few moments later my baby shows up and stations himself somewhere in the nearby vicinity. He's like that...he doesn't like to be alone. At night he sleeps under my bed and sometimes he even snores! In the morning when the alarm rings, he jumps on the bed and lays his body across my chest. I feel his little heart beat and that is so precious. Sometimes he sits behind my head and chews my hair. Rickie Boy is a faithful companion. I'll tell you one thing for sure, he's my baby.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008


I can never seem to have enough of them. There are piles of books all over my house, on the night table, next to the bed, on chairs, in baskets, on steps and yes, some are even on shelves! The books pictured are just some of the many books I am currently reading. These volumes ignite ideas and provide great inspiration. As soon as I purchase one another one comes out that I must get my hands on! Contrasting colors also spark ideas for design concepts including these wonderful deep blue lapis rondelles that a sweet friend purchased for me at the latest Bead Fair in Tucson, Arizona. Placing them next to a strand of African trade beads and a huge blue and white porcelain bead ( purchased at least 25 years ago in the East village, New York), say something really sublime! Don't you think?

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Beads of Inspiration

I just got these wonderful handcrafted beads from Blue Heeler Glass, a shop on The row of glass discs in the chalky muted leaf hues are the ones I am specifically talking about... I absolutely love them. Today I was playing around with some of the many beads in my stash and came up with this combination in hopes it will inspire me to return to my studio. I have been in a bit of a funk... may the clouds pass over, allowing me a moment of peace. My mind has been much too over active with work, finances, the upcoming high school graduation of my daughter, fear of empty nest, loneliness, sadness...things I must work through. I have many design sketches on pieces of paper, in notebooks, on napkins, just about everywhere! Tonight I will watch Oprah's Big Give with my mom and eat chocolate cookies with milk, and then to bed!

Friday, January 11, 2008

Creative Everyday

It is a new year, therefore it is time to do something different. I decided to join the online group of participants that congregate on the blog "Creative Everyday". All of the members vow to do something, anything, that is creative...everyday! To learn more about how it works go to: Creative Everyday 2008. I think this is going to be great fun and I look forward to checking out everybody's blog and gleaning support for my creative efforts along the way.
So far 2008 looks like a very promising year. I have also started a form of yoga called Svaroopa . I tell you it is changing my life. I have attended 10 classes so far and I plan on doing it for the rest of my life. This form of yoga is extremely gentle (especially good for people who have pysical ailments and limitations, of which I have both) anyone, and I am anyone can do it. All of the poses are supported (if needed) with blankets/blocks /head supports etc. Svaroopa is a Therapeutic style of Hatha yoga that uses familiar yoga poses to create a deep opening in the muscles around the spine. You feel absolutley wonderful during and after class. I will talk more about my experiences with this in later posts.
I am excited to show off some of the new pieces I have been working on in my studio. Take a look see.

Monday, January 07, 2008

Something new from Mandala Jewels

This is what I have been up to lately. I just love everything about this new piece, from the variation in color of the jasper beads and the way they play against the "spotted" African trade beads, to the knotted suede lace which is threaded with hill tribe beads. I also added an old Asian coin into the mix. On each side of the southwest inspired focal point sits a cluster of semi precious stone charms consisting of primavera (my personal favorite), turquoise, bone and silver. This bracelet is truly an original...and very "rich" looking to boot!

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Blue and White

It's no mystery, blue and white are my favorite colors. I use this color combination in my decorating, jewelry design, and clothing. The deep blue of the New Mexico sky dotted with white cotton candy clouds can stop me dead in my tracks. I drool over blue and white porcelain in antique shops all the time, and I love french country blue and white toile fabrics. The fascination never seems to end. There is just something very fresh about these colors and throw in green or red as a contrast and I am in heaven.