Thursday, March 31, 2011

"All Sorts of Oohs"

Whenever I donate to an auction, I choose to do it because of the cause it supports.  I will always support the boys' school, my alma mater, and various foundations around the area that are close to my heart.

But it's not often that I get any feedback from the person who won it. I knew that a friend had been outbid.  I just didn't know who walked away with it in the end.  So, after having donated my Bacchus Lariat to the York School auction, I was very excited to get this email from the winner:

"Guess what: I’m the one who bought it. It’s terrific. I wore it today and got all sorts of oohs. Thanks from York, thanks from me. Love seeing those boys and being in touch from afar; they are growing up so fast!"


Cin Cin for a Good Cause

Hefty sterling silver grapes and luscious cabernet-colored recycled glass inspired this choker and earring set that's going to my dad's Monterey Peninsula Sunrise Rotary Club's International Night 2011 auction in May. 

Click here for more information about the event.

Cin Cin Choker and Earring Set: a hefty sterling grape cluster hangs at the center of the choker. Recycled cabernet-colored glass, sterling silver, and garnets are all handwired to complete this one-of-a-kind choker.  Recycled cabernet colored glass and garnets are handwired with sterling silver and hang from sterling French wires to match the choker.

Pretty Peacock Bracelet

Like a peacock, this one-of-a-kind bracelet sports various shades of blues and green.  Matte recycled glass, rough fluorite nuggets, amazonite, Russian amazonite, labradorite, and green jasper are handwired to form this chunky one-of-a-kind bracelet and closes with a matte abstract sterling silver toggle clasp.
Click here to purchase this piece from my etsy site.

Joyful Chrysanthemums

Chrysanthemums symbolize optimism and joy. The Japanese consider the orderly unfolding of the chrysanthemum’s petals to represent perfection, and Confucius once suggested they be used as an object of meditation. It’s said that a single petal of this celebrated flower placed at the bottom of a wine glass will encourage a long and healthy life.

An artisan sterling silver chrysanthemum button is the focal point for this one-of-a-kind choker. The button is handwired with recycled purple glass, rough rainbow fluorite nuggets, smooth fluorite rounds, hematite, two-tone Czech glass, and sterling silver cones, closing in the back with a sterling silver lobster clasp.
Click here to purchase this on my etsy site.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Spring Bunny Choker

I love these sterling silver bunny buttons!  This choker is softer-hued - Spring green, earthy grey, and muted purple - than the first piece I did.  It's perfect for Spring, for Easter, or anytime!

The sterling silver button is handwired with smooth prehnite nuggets that have lots of earthy grey inclusions, a deep purple agate druzy, and sterling silver to form this assymetrical choker.  Another prehnite nugget dangles as a focal point below the rabbit. The necklace closes in the rear with a sterling silver lobster clasp.

Click here to purchase this necklace from my etsy site.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

I [heart] Rabbit Food

After listening to Chef Adrienne speak at the ISM fundraising dinner on Saturday night, akin to when I first read Michael Pollan's The Omnivore's Dilemma, I was (re)inspired to embrace a healthier table.  It's not that we eat bad foods; on the contrary, my kids have already adopted some of my culinary neuroses - no food coloring, no high fructose corn syrup, as local and as organic as possible, etc.  So, when I came across these cute sterling silver bunny buttons, I decided to make them into necklaces that annouce: "I love rabbit food."

The sterling silver button is handwired with orange jade nuggets, an orange agate druzy, and sterling silver to form this assymetrical choker.  An orange-cream lampwork bead dangles as a focal point below the rabbit.

This particular piece is not for sale.  However, if you are interested in a similar necklace, let me know.  Just comment on this post with a way to contact you.  Thank you!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Washing Away the Dust

Picasso once said: Art washes from the soul the dust of everyday life.

I could not agree more.  Sitting down with my beads, at the end of the day, is a welcome respite from the daily grind; even if it's almost midnight when I finish a piece, I feel invigorated by the sentence, "I made that!"  I know that Jake feels the same way about his canvases.  I feel very lucky to be surrounded by creative, giving individuals who also wash away dust from their days by creating - on canvas, in metal, with gems. 

I made some rounds and picked up pieces from different artists who have donated to the International School of Monterey's International Extravaganza Gala and Auction this weekend.  I just wanted to give a shout out to some of these fabulous, passionate artists.  With much appreciation...

First, to my husband who is never happy with his paintings.  His "La Dolce Vita" will be the last on the auction block tomorrow.  I am so very proud of my Love and his matter that he says they are never good enough.

Click here to see more of his work at his etsy shop.

Iris Brewster donated a dynamic multimedia collage entitled "Dance a New Beginning." Love it! 

Her blog, Through the Eyes of Iris, includes photos of some other pieces.

Jessica Calzada is an uber-talented gal, based in New Mexico, who takes some rockin' black and white photographs, knits luscious scarves, and makes sensational jewelry.  She donated a necklace and earring set to the auction that is made with real acorns.  Gorgeous! 

Click to visit her etsy store: Gypsywick by GypsyJessica.

And last, but not least, Paxton Mobley donated a white bronze sand dollar belt buckle and a sterling silver seahorse pendant.  If I hadn't already commissioned a parrot tulip piece, I would definitely be bidding on his stuff.  Check out his website: Paxton Fine Buckles and Jewelry Design

Here's a photo of him, hard at work, on one of his sculpted buckles.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Wild Grape Earrings

"Beneath the crawling shadow
Of a crumbling temple to gods long-forgotten,
The wild grape twines amid the fragments
Of shattered pillars prone upon the ground,
And its dark leaves hide from sight the broken sculptures
Of faun and youth and maiden,
That once stood in the temple pediment,
Young, naked, beautiful.
In wild freedom it climbs over the carved acanthus
leaves of the crumbling columns,
And weaves a funeral wreath over their dead beauty.
The wild bees hum and buzz
Among the grape-flowers, heavy with honeyed perfume,
Under the drowsy noonday sun,
That spills its amber wine from a full goblet over the thirsting hillside.
Wanton and wild,
Like an unhappy lover
Clinging to the breast of his dead mistress,
The vine clings in voluptuous embrace
About the naked, pallid forms,
And mingles there with the eternal beauty
Of youth and age
And life and death."
~Wild Grape by Frank Oliver Call

Deep grape-colored recycled glass are handwired with pale purple fluorite rounds to create these dramatic earrings. The earrings hang from sterling silver French wires.  Click here to purchase them through my etsy shop.

Springtime Blossoms

"Flower god, god of the spring, beautiful, bountiful,
Cold-dyed shield in the sky, lover of versicles,
Here I wander in April
Cold, grey-headed; and still to my
Heart, Spring comes with a bound, Spring the deliverer,
Spring, song-leader in woods, chorally resonant;
Spring, flower-planter in meadows,
Child-conductor in willowy
Fields deep dotted with bloom, daisies and crocuses:
Here that child from his heart drinks of eternity:
O child, happy are children!
She still smiles on their innocence,
She, dear mother in God, fostering violets,
Fills earth full of her scents, voices and violins:
Thus one cunning in music
Wakes old chords in the memory:
Thus fair earth in the Spring leads her performances.
One more touch of the bow, smell of the virginal
Green - one more, and my bosom
Feels new life with an ecstasy."
~Robert Louis Stevenson

Inspired by the soft blossoms springing up, I created a few simple earrings that reminded me of those soft, fragrant flowers.  Here are in the pale purple and pinkish shades of wispy wisteria...

[click here to purchase through my etsy store.]

...and one in the pale yellow of a heady narcissus...
[click here to purchase through my etsy store.]

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Java Queen Earrings

Wearing these earrings makes you feel like a queen...and, the different colors of smoky quartz remind me of all the different shades of coffee - from the strongest black to the palest latte.

Faceted and smooth smoky quartz are handwired with hematite and brushed sterling silver dics to form these one-of-a-kind earrings. The earrings hang from sterling silver French wires.
Click here to purchase these from my etsy site.

March 8, 2011 Update: These have been purchased.  Thanks, Paula.  Enjoy! ~CMM

"Break a Paw!"

I made some pieces for our friends who are currently in a production of "101 Dalmatians" at the Golden Bough Theatre in Carmel.  If you have a chance to go see it, you should.  It's a howling good time!  Click here for more information or to purchase tickets; the show runs till March 20th.

Each piece is a little different, featuring dalmatian jasper, recycled red glass, garnets, and lava rocks.

I made necklaces for the budding actresses and earrings for the theatre mammas who deserve just as much recognition for their taxi service, costume making, and general mom-awesomeness. 

Hats off to all those gals - both on stage and off!

Shamrock Earrings

"May your blessings outnumber
The Shamrocks that grow
And may trouble avoid you
Wherever you go."

March madness means I have green on the brain.  I made series of green earrings that I'm listing for sale this evening.

Shamrock I Earrings.  Green aventurine rounds are handwired with recycled green glass and sterling silver beads. They hang from sterling silver French wires.  Click here to purchase them.

Shamrock II Earrings. Faceted green chalcedony are handwired with recycyled green glass and sterling silver beads.  They hang from sterling silver French wires.  Click here to purchase them.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

A Howling Good Time. Woof.

As we get ready to see our little friends in PacRep's "101 Dalmatians" this weekend, I hunted high and low for some beads to create some pieces for the actresses. 

I found it: dalmatian jasper! 

Dalmatian jasper is an opaque ivory colored jasper with black spots...just like the canines.  

I made five different pieces, each slightly different than the other.  But most of the components are the same: dalmatian jasper, recycled red glass, red jade, and garnets.  Photos to come - after the show.

Let Your Creative Spirit Take Flight

I wanted to make a necklace for a friend of a thank you for just being her.

Her blog - that she calls her nest - is a constant inspiration for treats to make and sweets to eat. So, naturally, I picked a sterling silver bird charm as the focal point. I handwired the charm with a mixture of shiny and oxidized sterling silver, using rough aquamarine nuggets, iolite rondelles, amazonite rounds, and rough-finished recycled glass beads in a deep teal shade to create this one-of-a-kind necklace.

I hope she likes it!