Earrings, Year of Jewelry 2014, Human Design, Uncategorized

A FREE Tutorial!

I am releasing this tutorial for FREE to anyone that is interested in learning how to make these cold connected hoops.

I made this tutorial a few years ago and decided to add it to my "For You" section for those that are exploring how to use metalworking tools in their own studios...

You can also just click on the photo above and it will take you to the page with the .pdf on it. 

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This weekend Shayne and I are traveling up to Roanoke to start looking at properties with our real estate agent. 

I wanted to share a story about how we found her, and how this relates to the Human Design work I have been absorbed in lately. 

In Human Design terms, I am what is known as a Generator. In Human Design, you have a Type (Generator, Manifestor, Projector or Reflector) and a specific strategy for making decisions that are right for you. 

As a Generator, it is correct for me to wait to respond to someone or something in my environment using my emotional, or Solar Plexus, center as my authority when it comes to making a decision. 

That's right. I am not an idea person. I never have been...or if I had an idea about something, it has historically been very difficult for me to actualize it. 

I have been unknowingly working with this principle of response in my jewelry practice for years. I don't think up jewelry ideas. I don't design on paper...or have 'ideas' about designs. I go to my bench, and I respond to my tools and supplies that are in front of me. I usually call this 'playing'; but now, after immersing myself into this particular modality of being, I have more clarity on why my 'playing' works so well for me. 

Back to the real estate story...

Both Shayne and I are Generators. We are designed to respond. And if we wait to respond, our body's innate intelligence will put our consciousness where it needs to be physically in order to draw, or attract, what we need next in our lives according to our desires. 

Two weeks ago on Saturday, we were in Roanoke looking at neighborhoods and making our final determination if Roanoke was the right place for us to purchase a home. While we were driving around, we talked about how great it would be to find someone to ask about some very specific questions regarding the city's forward-looking plans as it relates to livability, as well as getting a nice recommendation for a real estate agent since we know absolutely nobody there. 

A few hours later, I was thirsty, and Shayne wanted a coffee. We were driving past a coffee shop in the neighborhood we are seriously looking at, and we both responded to it by stopping and ordering our drinks. We were sitting on a couch, and in front of us was a large coffee table and 5 chairs. 

A woman approached us and asked if the area we were siting in was hot, since it was right near the window. We responded, "No, it is actually very pleasant here.." and she sat down, along with her party of four others. 

Shayne got up to use the bathroom and I became engaged in a conversation with her and two of her friends. When Shayne came back, we all started talking about Roanoke, and they shared with us their moving story, and we were off to the races so to speak discussing Roanoke. 

These people were very, very open and wonderful about sharing with us their impressions since their move, and answered all of our questions with a degree of specificity that was a delightful surprise. One women had just moved here and she enthusiastically gave us a strong recommendation to call her real estate agent, and she fished out her phone number as we were all leaving. 

The husband of the woman that asked if it was hot there happened to be, as we later found out, the City Manager of Roanoke! Our intention to find someone that really knew the city and the direction they want to go in as it pertains to livability was granted to us within hours of us stating our desire to find out. 

We were in response to our environment. And the Law of Attraction worked beautifully as a result.

I have many, many more stories about  how living in response, for me, has ALWAYS worked much better then trying to go out there and 'Make it Happen' in a forceful way. Some people are designed to Make it Happen. They are Manifestors. Others, like me and Shayne, are not. We encounter a lot of frustration if we try to manifest things in a forceful manner. But as we are experiencing, there is a beautiful flow and ease that happens if we just wait and respond. 

This is just a small example of what I am talking about when I mention Human Design. I will be writing more about my own experiences with it, as I experiment with it and see how living in response on purpose and consciously pans out.  

I have bought three books that have been exceptional as far as explaining Human Design and how to understand your own type and decision making authority. 

The Definitive Book of Human Design: The Science of Differentiation by Lynda Bunnell and Ra Uru Hu

The Gene Keys by Richard Rudd

Understanding Human Design by Karen Curry

 I have been working with this material for a couple of months and it has been LIFE altering for me.  I have been working with Differentiation for years through my exploration of jewelry, and this modality or understanding has catapulted me into new understandings about who I am, why I am and what I am here to ultimately do with my life. 

As I continue on my own journey into differentiation, I will share what I find here. If you have any questions, feel free to email me. 

I have been sharing this information with my friends and family, and I am convinced that this information works. It provides a framework that immediately allows your shoulders to drop in instant awareness that how you navigate the world is most likely different from your peers and family and that it is OK. We are all different. We are not alike...and that is the way, I believe, that God intended it. We are not supposed to be alike. We must be different so that humanity as a whole can continue to evolve, change, mutate and experience life from every angle of consciousness. 

Have a great weekend...I will be updating my Instagram stream over the weekend with anything that captures my attention..hopefully our future home will be one of the pics! 

XO!

 

 

 

 

My Summer

School started for many this week, but for me, it feels like I am just beginning to come up for air as it relates to the intense learning curve I've experienced in the last two months. 

Where to start?

In the beginning....

A couple of months ago, I attended an Alliance of Divine Love Conference in Jonesborough, TN where I attended the presentations by ordained ministers and sold my jewelry. 

I met some incredible people and one woman in particular, Sandy Freschi, introduced me to my Human Design Profile, and frankly, I've immersed myself into this modality based upon the importance of understanding our personal individuation. 

It has literally been so mind blowing and affirming, that I am seriously considering transitioning myself towards introducing others to their Design Profile and seeing where that goes in a professional way. I've been casually working with my friends and family over the last two months with their own profiles, and day after day, I continue to learn how on-target this information is regarding how to experience a life that feels joyously effortless. 

Which leads me to my next announcement....

Shayne and I are moving to Roanoke, Virginia!

I am going to be leaving the River Arts District, and my beautiful studio. 

Hard. Hard. Hard.

However, I am very excited about this move. Shayne and I had a heart-to-heart talk about six weeks ago about trying to love living here, and for the most part, we have enjoyed it. But after being here for a year, we have discovered that Asheville is a fantastic place to visit and enjoy while on vacation, but living here is a far different story. 

Housing prices are insane. Traffic is terrible. The downtown is so overcrowded and 'busy' that it isn't that enjoyable fighting the traffic and the chaos. I've only been downtown maybe 10 times in the last year. Asheville seems to devote all of her resources to catering to the tourist, but the livability for those that live here permanently seems to get the short shrift. And it is just really expensive. The day to day seems to nickel and dime you to death. 

So Roanoke here we come. It is on the Parkway, which we love; and it has a long pedestrian and bike friendly greenway with walkable neighborhoods and AFFORDABLE housing which has become hugely important to us. We are not going to move there, rent, then find a house. We are going to purchase a home and move directly there (hallelujah!). We've spent two long weekends there already, and have met some wonderful people that have been super helpful and informative. 

We can afford a big enough house in Roanoke that I will have a home studio, which, after being in a very public studio, I am really looking forward to again. I have learned SO MUCH about myself, about my calling and about how to support myself doing what I love to do since I have been here. The experience of living here in Asheville has been so valuable in so many ways, that I know deep down that living here for the year was critical for me getting to where I am now. 

Without the experience of the River Arts District, I don't know that I would have learned in such a direct way the importance of developing a line of jewelry or how to work in a production-oriented way. I have used our retail space as a sort of test kitchen regarding jewelry design and direction. And now, after a year, I am working on developing a particular line of jewelry that I will concentrate on making for next year.  

So that is in the works, and I feel a renewed sense of satisfaction towards the way my creative outlet is evolving. 

My Summer has been so full...I had my nieces and mother for a week and I completely unplugged and immersed myself in time spent with them. It was so fun to experience a mountain summer with them, going to the swimming pool, acting like a tourist here with all the things to do that are so fun, and making lifetime memories together. 

I've also worked on some small new-to-me projects as well...I made some Southwestern buttons for a lovely lady that wanted some of my metalwork in her quilt, as well as some metal pieces that were embedded in another artist's lamps back in my home state of Arkansas. Those were fun little side projects that helped stretch me as a metalworker, and it was so satisfying to help other creatives complete their own visions of beauty. What a humbling and wonderful thing to have someone appreciate and resonate with your work that they want to add it to their own. So grateful for that!

I have quit drinking coffee and have taken up tea...

I successfully let go of Facebook and the minutes that I am saving there are being redirected here and elsewhere. Here is an excellent post about this decision from one of my favorite writers, Alexandra Franzen.

It basically came down to an essential question for me, and that is, "Do I derive more joy and enrichment from this activity or does it leave me with the opposite feeling?" For me, FB, more often than not, left me with a sour taste in my mouth. On my drive into work, what I read there made me feel less than rather than more than. 

I love Instagram, primarily because it is so visual and clean. I derive much joy in shooting my little memory shots during the course of the day, and I love the way Instagram allows me to connect to others that share the same sort of gratitude for the good in our lives. These small moments flavor our days like a particular spice, or favorite cup of tea...that is what I want more of.

This summer has been about realigning myself...to myself. Taking note of what my feelings have been relating back to me about my environment and instead of rationalizing or ignoring them, I am choosing to change the way I interact with my environment to tweak it for more joy. 

Our moment point in the NOW is the culmination of a lifetime of decisions. The small ones are just as important as the large ones. They all work to fabricate the life that we find ourselves traveling through.

Here's to Fall!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Goodbye, Facebook!

I just wrote my announcement to ditch Facebook on my Facebook page...and I will be pulling the plug by the weekend. 

Hello...wow, six weeks since my last post! That may be the longest I've ever gone!

The last month and a half have been so intense, so life changing/affirming that I quite frankly didn't know how to even write about it.

Until I do, though, some of these changes are showing up in how I choose to spend time here online. And after a lot of thought, I have decided to focus my attention right here on my own website, with Instagram/Twitter and Pinterest as my social networking platforms when I decide to update while mobile. 

This post isn't going to be a diatribe about Facebook, but just an announcement about my decision and where you can find me if you are interested in keeping up with my work and some new things that have captured my attention!

Moving forward, I plan on being much more active here, in my own space, and will be doing some rearranging and adding more jewelry designs, too.

If you don't want to miss a post or update, feel free to add my Blog feed RSS to your reader or sign up for email notifications of new posts.  When you click on my RSS Feed button at the top of my sidebar, you have the option of adding your email address and having my posts come right to your email box. Easy!

 I have to run now...but will be updating this site and my shop this week. 

Thank you...thank you...thank you...

XO!

 

 

 

Reciprocity

I sold a small collection to a local resale shop here in Asheville called Reciprocity. One of the designs I came up with to fit their clientele are these 18-gauge Ear Slides.

I gave Jessica a pair and she has been wearing them...the gauge of the wire is a little larger than the usual 20-gauge I use for ear wires, so if the wearer's piercings are very small, these might not work for them. 

They look so cute on...but also a little edgy, too. I like the combination!

My piercings are pretty roomy from years of wearing heavy earrings...so they fit very comfortably, but these are not really made for 2nd or 3rd piercings going up the ear. 

In the last few weeks, I have been busy, busy, busy getting inventory made and selling what I have. Feeling so blessed to be able to say that I have been able to meet all my financial obligations from running a new business from the sales of my work. 

I am learning so much about personal value, too. How I value my time, my work output and where I want to focus my attention regarding my business' next steps. It's been emotional and scary at times...I had a mini-breakdown a couple of weeks ago regarding my own expectations, and I let some fear creep into my mind about what I am capable of. 

As this happened at work, I was gently given the space to emote my frustrations by some very loving friends...that's the wonderful thing about being part of a creative community. 

They understand and completely relate.

Growth requires a gathering in, a swelling...and then elongation into our something more. I believe my tears that day allowed for the elongation to occur, once I released what I was holding onto within. 

I have so much to do yet...

My immediate concern is getting enough inventory ready for a conference I will be vending at on June 19th. It is the national Alliance for Divine Love (ADL) conference, and I am really looking forward to it. 

And then I will be working on this website to have my new jewelry available for purchase. I have decided to let Etsy go, and I will be transitioning to a Square website for my jewelry which will be linked up to my retail gallery in the River Arts District. It will make my bookkeeping much easier!

I have been plagued with lower back issues which has been making my output at times agonizing.  As you know, I am working on discovering what this means on a subtle body level for me. 

My lower back, from my research, has to do with value of my own power and authority. It comes from thinking that people other than myself are taking control of my life. I have been contemplating this...how does that actually show up in my life? What are my thoughts about this? 

I am finishing up some prior commitments I made when I was not handling the responsibility of running a brick and mortar retail space, or dealing with new accounts. I believe that is part of it.  The thing is, I said yes to them. Other's didn't force me. But I think I have been framing it like that, instead of owning that it was ultimately my decision.

The lower back has to do with action. Forward motion...and that, coincidentally, is exactly what I have been struggling with over the last few weeks. 

Our bodies are such amazing feedback machines letting us know where we need to adjust or change our thoughts and beliefs. Once we do that, the body can then realign and get back into balance. 

Every sickness, every body condition that is uncomfortable and/or painful, is your higher self trying to get your personality's attention for change to occur so that your soul can move on to greater and higher learnings using the body as the physical vehicle for these experiences to actualize.

It is so much more empowering to understand this connection between our body, our personality and soul. The power to heal is ours. It always has been...and the older I get, the more I see how this innate conversation between all of our ways of expressing physicality has been under constant assault by those that want to monetize our pain for their own gain.

But old habits of thinking die a hard death. My ego personality is still holding on to the prior programming and it has been such a struggle for me to reprogram and test this out for myself. 

Fear...is my main adversary. Once I whip this...I feel great things are just around the corner. 

I think this new account with Reciprocity couldn't come at a better time...I am reminded that if I treat myself with kindness and love, that my life, and those around me, will respond in kind.

It is a reciprocal relationship that we have with ourselves as it relates to the relationships we have with others. I believe that those that treat themselves with disrespect, with unkindness and unloving thoughts, will see those beliefs reflected back to them by the others in their life.

How you treat yourself directly influences how you are treated by others. So be kind to yourself and watch what happens!

 

 

 

 

Prayer Stick Earrings

Sticks, staffs, and wands have long been used as tools and symbols of higher forms of communication. A stick, staff, or wand is an antennae. They direct, receive, and channel energies. They are used to draw forth and give expression to the feminine life force, for healing, protection and creation.
— Ted Andrews (Animal Speak)
prayersticks.jpg

I don't have any feathers yet, and all great prayer sticks need a feather. I will be working on that aspect of these Prayer Stick Earrings tomorrow.

Yesterday, I took Sadie outside to pee, and as we turned the corner, we ran into a fledgling Robin baby...he was on the ground and Sadie's chase instincts kicked in. She went after the bird, and the baby took flight all the while Mama bird was swooping both me and Sadie in the mayhem that happened in a split second. 

I couldn't find the baby. Gone... I watched Mama bird twitter back and forth on the roof line of our apartment, crying softly for her baby that took off. 

I stayed outside for 30 minutes, trying to find that baby...and while looking, I could hear Mama tweeting softly, wondering where her baby went to. I felt terrible about the whole episode, and when I feel terrible about something, I try and find the deeper meaning, the higher perspective. 

One of my favorite books on animal symbology is Ted Andrew's Animal Speak: The Spiritual & Magical Powers of Creatures Great & Small.

I immediately went back inside and looked up the meaning for the Robin. It is a territorial bird, often fighting with song for domination of a certain area. I love that...fighting with song, rarely hurting another kinsman. They have learned to settle their differences gallantly. There is a lot to learn there.

And their red breast is connected to Kundalini energy...another subject that I have been pre-occupied about lately as it relates to women going through menopausal change. 

The heat of the Kundalini, I believe, has something to do in a subtle way with a menopausal woman's hot flashes, indicating that great change and new growth is emerging from her lower chakra centers. All the energy required to make a nest for her young ones, to birth and to feed and to protect them--moves up the spine and into the creative wisdom centers of her being.

Many women fight and suppress this...it is uncomfortable for some. For others that understand the importance of radical self-care, the movement of that energy isn't as uncomfortable. 

You are not sick if you are menopausal. You are transitioning into a way of being in the world where flying at a higher altitude allows for more perspective. 

And the Robin's song...I am identifying with that aspect of this bird's energy in a profound way.  I am also trying to sing my own song as it relates to why I do what I do with metal. 

Making jewelry saved me from going crazy while I was in the middle of my own menopausal storm. At the time, I didn't know what was going on with my mind and my body. If you have gone through this transition, you know what I am writing about. 

So many sleepless nights...coupled with crushing fatigue and anxiety; it was a trying time for me and Shayne. I was young when I transitioned, only 42. And we were moving about so much that I didn't have a doctor that knew me or my body. All they wanted to do was prescribe me Xanax. 

I had to get quiet and fully occupy my hands and heart as I journeyed inward, trying to figure out what was happening to me.  

Making jewelry, for me, was all about healing, protection and honoring my intense need to be creative.

I didn't create any little people during this lifetime, but I had that creative impulse, and I yearned to channel the primal urge to create from a deep, inner place into something tangible and hopefully, meaningful, to someone besides myself. 

So back to my Prayer Sticks.

The idea for the Prayer Stick earrings I started making last week just came to me while I was preparing a large order for a new account. I spent a few hours making variations of them, all the while calling them Prayer Sticks in my mind and knowing that it was important to listen to what my hands were trying to communicate to me.

I have enough experience in my creative process to understand that meanings don't come in a linear way. Sometimes the answer comes before the question.

When I came inside yesterday and randomly opened up Animal Speak, my eyes fell onto the definition of a Prayer Stick that I opened up this post with. 

Huh.

Now I know why this tangible idea of the Prayer Stick in metal adornment is important for me to explore. I love that they can be little antennae for the wearer, attracting the feminine life force that is so wise, so receptive. 

It's time to sing my song, establish my territory and prepare for the new growth that is trying to push up through the Spring/Summer soil of now. 

And tomorrow, I am going to fabricate my version of the Robin's feather so that I can add one to these new Prayer Stick earrings. 

I'm making these Prayer Sticks for those that are transitioning in their own way into their wise-woman self. 

Hope you are having a great week...and that you can find the deeper meanings of your everyday experiences for a greater understanding of you.

It's so important...you are what the world needs right now, and my hope is that you can continue to find the courage to sing your song. 

XO!

ART MoB and River Arts District Studio Stroll and Art Sale

This post is going to be a hodge-podge of information and current happenings...I have so much stuff to share that is fairly random, that I think I will just spill it all in one big post!

Last weekend, I traveled up over to Hendersonville, NC and dropped off 32 pairs of earrings to ART MoB, an eclectic art gallery filled with local art. 

I went super simple with my display, and was excited to put my work on my new earring cards. I haven't really blogged about this new addition to my work...my earring cards have some words on the back...

I decided to take the opportunity to spread some of my philosophy to anyone that is interested enough in my work to check out the price. I figure if they don't want to take my earrings home with them, at least they can take a moment in their day to know that they are amazing.

This is my 5-second elevator speech...this is what I want my nieces to take to heart as they continue to individuate into the young women they are turning into.  If I could go back in time and talk to myself at certain stages of my past, these are the words I would use based on who I am right now. 

Price tags are usually about what something is worth...I am hoping to remind others about their own worth when they spend time with me or my work.

This weekend is something called the Spring Studio Stroll and Art Sale in the River Arts District. 

Our studio will be open from 10am - 6pm on May 9 and 10th...and we will be there working on some demonstrations or actually just making jewelry...so feel free to drop by if you are in the area!

I will have about 6o pieces of jewelry available and Jessica has about twice that amount too...

 

As for another announcement...here is the photo of the newest Step by Step Jewelry Magazine tutorial that is now available. This design is one of my older ones, but I always get so many nice remarks about it whenever I have one or two earrings available. 

Again, this design came about because of two things that I didn't intend to do. A long time ago, I bought some small donut beads but was perplexed about what to do with them. I started to wrap them and ran out of wire, so I just shortened it about 3/4 the way through, and ended up liking the way it turned out. 

I have done lots of variations of this wire wrap over the years, and I love how easy it is to vary by using different stones, different gauges of wire, colors of wire...the variety of ways to personalize it are endless. It should be on newsstands now...in the next week or so I will be submitting my final tutorial for the year. It will involve crystals...something I have never used in my work (you know, the faceted kind!). I can't wait to see what I end up doing...as of right now, I haven't got the foggiest clue!

But I trust I will.  

So now that the business stuff is out of the way, I want to share with you something that I just purchased that I love...

They are called SleepPhones...they are for listening to music or guided meditation tapes while you are in bed. They wrap around your head like a headband, and the are so comfortable that you can lay on your side while listening to whatever it is you want to listen to. 

I received mine this week and love them!

I am still reeling from the conference that I went to a couple of weekends ago. I am wading through many of the books and cd's that I bought while I was there, and making some new inner connections that I know are going to improve the quality of my life.

Actually, they have already made a big difference. 

Have a great Mother's Day Weekend...XO!