Saturday, October 11, 2014

Maple Seed Rings - For a Fresh Start.

It is the morning of a new day,
even if it is midnight and you are dog tired.
Even if everything failed
there is room for a sunrise,
room for a miracle.

A fresh start isn't just for January 1st
or rock bottom:
you can afford the grace anytime you wish for it to come.
You are deserving.
You deserve to begin.
You were loved into being.
With a love that big do you really want to stay so small?

You wore some path in the grass, didn't you?
You've traveled over it so many times that the green gave way to dirt
and there seems to be no other option when you find yourself 

but all it takes is a visual shift a few degrees one way or another
a minutely different choice,
a tiny spark of betterment

a decision to seek

the world blooms fresh and unfamiliar
scary and sharp
senses fluttering
heart quick

Here in the evening light
a new sun rises
a few thousand miles from where the old one sets…
a fresh start
a new page
a blossoming moment:

Maple Seed Rings:
Turquoise size 6
Chalcedony size 8
Turquoise size 9

in the 



Friday, October 10, 2014

Protector Bag #1: Circe and her Hawk

I have been (for as long as I can remember) a very fearful person.
I have flinched and suffered under the myriad things that fear whispered would happen
if I dared to live.
To live well.
To speak my art
and my mind
and be seen

When I was a singer-songwriter I fought that well-meaning beast so hard.
I played out all the time and never once did I become comfortable with the process,
always the gurgling stomach before a show.
Always the Munson in the back of the venue.

During my twenties I would have dreams where I was living or a visitor in a house surrounded by big cats. None of the doorways or windows were secure
and for some reason there would always be a reason to cross a courtyard
where lions and tigers languished,
watching me, winding around my legs as I walked.
I would wake up in a cold sweat.

Into my thirties the dreams became more benevolent,
with more freedom in my dream-heart to move amongst the beasts
and less fear while I walked.

Just last year I dared to touch them.

Eventually after more than a decade of this kind of progression
it became clear to my waking mind:
these magnificent dangerous cats were protecting me.
They were my guardians.

It would not be shocking then to learn that in my daily life
fear became a more passive participant:
I still feel the cold fingers ever single day
but I am less inclined to confuse them with instinct.
Chalk it up to the magic of getting older and more clear about my purpose.
Clarity of purpose makes for a less timid soul, I think.

This Big Cat journey was so profound that I am now inked with a tiger. 
My protector.

While I was dreaming of my appointment with Camille
I was also dreaming of a bag. Deerskin.
Goddess profile portrait.
Protector on the flip side.

When I was in Minneapolis it was all I could think about.
I sketched and schemed and pre-built all the bits.
All excitement, no fear.


Circe's face is that of my dear friend Michelle, a beauty in both body and soul.
I was so honored to tool that magnificent profile

and make her into the Sorceress. 

Goddess of Magic.

There is something in the colors, the stone deerskin, the ruby suede…
something that mirrors the human body, skin and blood.

On the back is Circe's Hawk - Circe actually means 'hawk', the feminine version.
In essence, Circe's Hawk is simply Circe, wild and all-sensing.
The strongest parts.

In the same vein my dream tigers are simply the part of me that is fierce and vital and
so not to be fucked with.

Though we may find our saving graces in the totems and talismans and symbols,
really isn't it all just the strength of spirit we're holding out for and on to?

I believe the animal soul we are most drawn to -
its energy and strength -
has a twin in our own physiognomy somewhere,

that we truly embody the hero we seek
if we commit to living our best and most honest life

Circe and her Hawk will be in

later today

May your own symbolic protector be with you when you need it most,
in whatever form it takes.


Saturday, October 4, 2014


It's hot in here.
Nothing is beginning, technically
and very little is finished.

These times are my very most unmotivated times
and just like the gym, the most important times to step into the studio.

I wanted to make sure that this part gets its own song, too: this unsexy time in the studio
where it's sweats and bad/good country music
bare feet and the stunningly strong desire to flee.

At the end of days like today 
if I knuckle down and do what my task list said to do (because days like today totally require a task list - the muse is off banging someone else)
the satisfaction is incredible.
The reward is the work itself,
that those middle parts were done
and done well.

Because what happens after the grumbling stops is wonderful:
it's dedication.
Totally not motivation,
it's discipline.

Sometimes I give myself a carrot to get started,
maybe a piece of chocolate if I saw out 'x' or 'y'
or just the pleasure of singing along to the radio
keeping me present and accounted for

and then

I fall in love with the unsexy
and we slow dance
and we laugh at our old jokes
because we've known each other for a really long time
and because the company is really fine

The night after I overcome
my love of shiny and finished things
and get to work
I always sleep really well.

I kept my head in my work,
in the most sacred and mundane parts of it.
I didn't look to be dazzled or inspired.

I hammered.
I sawed.
I smiled.
I put in work.

Good solid life-affirming work.


Wednesday, October 1, 2014


This weekend I traveled.
I drove up to Petaluma with one of my most treasured sister-friends
to meet up with another beloved
and navigate a delicious mixture of business and pleasure.

Every conversation provided this gorgeous clarity
 a ton of belly laughs
a few swiftly falling tears
and a sense of destiny.

That sounds lofty, destiny.
It was.

I fell back into my life here yesterday afternoon
after a Pacific Ocean sunrise
and breakfast at Della Fattoria,
after getting stuck in frightful traffic over the Bay Bridge
and procuring belt blanks at Tandy Leather

I landed back into the arms of Schmilly.
I took in the warm-hued hardwood floors and the hot dry of the South Bay.
Orion was pleased to see me, but he was impatient to know what had become of 
Auntie Kelly, with whom he is enamored.

I wandered the clean studio
humming and buzzing with the thousand new ideas in my head and heart
knowing so well this pathway they travel
to my hands and then out into the world

Anthony had kept track of our beloved orb weaver while we were gone
and he pointed her out to me, tucked under a dried tomato leaf, waiting for the night.

There is something about my life these last few years that makes me feel very much kin
to the weavers: the intense creativity, the waiting (oh my god the waiting), the instinct
and randomness and hunger.

It's travels like this that nourish me 
and refill something so deeply depleted.
The timing is always just so,
just wondrous in its perfection.

My friends are magicians.

Now if you'll excuse me:
my belly is full.
There is a large web to weave
and new pathways
to pave in silk


Friday, September 26, 2014


More Knock On the Door Earrings

Moving Parts, Dragonfly Wing Edition. Made to Order.

Turquoise Maple Seed Magic Spells.

In the 



Monday, September 22, 2014

Pretty Babies

Mini Fern Posts with Amber Droplets

Moving Pieces Fern Posts with 2.25 inch Brass Hoops. Cicada Wing. Maidenhair Fern.

A Knock on the Door Brass and Sterling Ring Posts

Citrine Lilypad Posts

Herkimer Diamond Magic Spells

Lunaria and Fern Magic Spell Necklace. Carnelian Accent. 

In the 



Sunday, September 14, 2014

Scarab Chrysoprase Saddle Ring

Something sacred

Refreshing luminous green chrysoprase for your heart

Ancient Legend has it that the scarab beetle rolled the sun across the sky.
I made this hammer-engraved insect
to roll the heavy rock from in front of your heart

So you can open your chest bright and wide
and shine your prodigious light

Because the world needs it
(that lovely light)
(your powerful heart)
so badly
and always

Fits a size 8.75 finger

In the Metal Shop later today


Thursday, September 11, 2014

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Be That Which You Are

I've been thinking a lot about this post that I want to write, that I've wanted to write for some time to myself when I am lost, to newer artists starting out, to those in comparison-ruts.
Jesus is it SO easy to do, dig yourself that comparison rut and walk the miserable path every day, a sad haggard dog-artist hell-bent on being as ________ as ________ is
as we know
is never going to happen.

It's been a while since I've forgotten my own artistic beauty
because I've got this kid, see and they take so much time and energy that when I get into the studio
I don't give one single fuck about what anyone else has made or sold or blogged about
I just put my sweet little head down and get to work like it's….
well, like it's my job.
Which it actually has been for nearly eight years now.
My beloved job.

That is the first comparison death-knell you hear ringing in a minor key somewhere out there.
The job. 
If you have one working for someone else you've either got so much confidence in the balance of it all that you don't give a rip about what anyone else thinks
or you're feeling like the solution is to someday get out of that 'dead end' and be an Artist.
Capital A. 

Let me just take a second to reminisce about the glory of personal interaction
that being a receptionist gave me.
The warm, soft-lit places I further brightened up with my welcoming smile -
if you know me you KNOW I meant it,
the smile and the greeting.

No matter how much work I did I went home on time
and I was given a pay check no matter how that work was perceived,
no matter how I showed up for it.
Someone else paid me to support other people's dreams.

But before I accepted it I ached about it.
I would actually threaten all kinds of things to my boyfriend at the time
if I couldn't be an Artist.
If I had to stay in this job I'd _______ myself.
Poor guy.
I was really young and really frustrated
and really selfish.
And I thought myself much less than my friends whose music careers were on fire.
I was Less Than.

I think that's where the pain comes from, from the perception of superior and inferior and
our collective inability as constantly evolving creative people to just simply and regularly take a minute to breathe in the beauty of what we just made, regardless of how anyone else received it.
Or didn't.

You can have a day job your entire life and still create a body of work any master would be proud of. You never need to worry about how the bills get paid, so your freedom is vast though your hours logged might be a bit less.

You can be a full-time artist and do the same, or you can squander your hours away not feeling worthy of your situation, self-sabatoge at its finest.

It can feel difficult to create consistently and well and make a living as an artist
but once you've begun doing that (which is a small miracle!!) there are still comparisons to be drawn
if you're into that sort of thing.
There are a million more hoops to demand that you jump through.

Are you human?
Then you've maaaaaaybe compared yourself at one time.
You've looked over at other work and sighed.
Then you've likely sniffed around someone else's Etsy shop 
and wondered how they've managed to craft their work and promote so beautifully that 
they sell out in seconds.

The rough truth is that if you do these things and think you'll use a pre-owned dream
to further your own, the world is cheated of the greatness you've got, the greatness
completely unique to your hand and heart.

Don't waste your time being lazy. Time is the most precious commodity.

What if you smashed all the business models someone else laid out?
What if you took the time to set a new standard?
What if your path was so fresh and bright that you felt like a continent was discovered?

What if you embodied your own brand so fully that they could not be separated, the maker and the made?

What if you meditated on your future art?
What if you took those two hours tonight to sit quietly at your bench/stool/lathe/whatever
until something sang "Make me"
like Patti Labelle?

What if the world were richer with possibility than your tiny mind could conceive?
What if you ended up opening to that which made the universe
and it guided your hands through the process of the most ultra-cosmic brooch/table/belt/song/shoe/mailbox/yoga pose

And what if it all started
because you decided right now to celebrate the current situation,
no matter how awesome or shitty it is?
To say "I am here" with total acceptance and the spirit of an adventurer.
To maybe believe that failure is just a door way
or that mistakes are ways that Mystery softens our hard
in order to help us heal and create?

What if you were enough, you with your meh-ass day job
or your shop where nothing sold at all
or your failing brick and mortar?

What if you decided to own it all and move from this single moment,
listening closely and gently and passionately for the next instruction
from some celestial book?

And what if you took delicious and powerful action
over and over again
until there was momentum
and change?

I ask you these things in the spirit of artistic comraderie
I believe that there is enough ______ for everyone
and I so badly want for you to live out your finest creation
as fearlessly as possible
and with as much wonder as my child talks about the moon
and sun.

I want to make art along-side other thunder-and-wonder-struck souls.

Be that which you are
and make it as magnificent as it could be
day by day,
building a life 
anyone would relish living.