Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Squirrel Love and Completion

Pieces for the squirrel bag are coming together: on the backside of the piece, in lieu of the words I often tool, I am giving this particular bag an extra pocket, inspired by the very animal she features - where else will you stash your acorns?
Or your cell phone and keys: anything you may need to reach for quickly...

Any way you fill it, it's a dandy little pocket, and it'll be closed with a swing clasp, just like the front of the purse for ease of entry.

By the way, the vibrant blue in the background? That's the rich, sumptuous suede that will line the whole bag, back pouch included!!! It's like a Caribbean vacation every time you reach for the lip gloss!!

Mark and Markette :)

I also wanted to show you the poppy corsage cuff, which has been gobbled up already by a fearless reader who knew it was hers when she saw it!

It is very fancy and quite frankly, a stunner.

I am off to lapidary workshop this evening with Stacey - I may even have a new stone to set tomorrow - Oooooooh!


Tuesday, June 29, 2010


When I lived in Los Angeles, I worked at an exclusive country club.
For the most part, it was utter hell and I was in a bad way every time the alarm clock rang and I knew my fate for the next eight hours.
Oh, yeesh!!

There were, however, a few pluses to my job.
The waitstaff and other workers were for the most part terrific and wonderfully kind people, which made taking abuse at the clawed hands of Botox addicts somehow bearable.

Another gem?
I named him that for no particular reason: all I can say is that it fit him well;
'he' being a squirrel whose sex I couldn't be bothered to investigate!

Two fifteen minute breaks per day, I went down to the tennis courts and got a cup of peanuts from the snack shop and for the duration of my break, Mark would dance in and out of my hands, sometimes sticking around even after the food was gone

sitting quietly with me
under the breezy palm trees
amid the ladies and lords of leisure...

it is with him in mind that I make this purse
and let me tell you:
it's a pleasure to remember his lovely little self.


Monday, June 28, 2010

Coming to a Leather and Metal Shop Near You...

Ok. I was a little nervous to post the line drawing of the Squirrels in Love purse, because at this phase of the design game, they look like two diabolical rats plotting world domination: not unlike Pinky and the Brain (except for the whole appearance thing!).... I promise that after tooling and color these two will be the pinnacle of anime-eyed sweetness.

I hope to have this purse in the Leather Shop in a few weeks, before I leave on my 10 day Los Angeles excursion.

The 2nd in the corsage series: poppy flowers!!! Should be finished in a few short, happy days!

I wanted to put a few affordable options in the Metal Shop today: the above is a delicate chrysoprase ring in size 6 - the price will be reduced a bit because the stone is rustic - there are a few pits and dendrites. These do not detract from the appearance at all: in my opinion, they make it all the lovelier.

Lastly, I have made a swinging little pierced sprout necklace: oh, it is so lovely.
So delicate and strong, all at once.

Both sterling gems will be in the Metal Shop in a few shakes of a squirrel tail :)


Sunday, June 27, 2010

Nothing Like the First Time....

... you complete a ring that was made completely by you, with tools and materials supplied by mother nature and innovation.

This cabochon is the first I felt comfortable setting in sterling and placing in the shop to sell. When I placed it in the ring face it popped into place with such grace, such ease: I've been taught well!

The material is Crazy Lace with an internal drusy pocket: those of you who know me well know that I kinda sometimes cannot bear crazy lace, because it can be super-extra-loco-cokooo-for-cocopuffs crazy in the pattern department, and I like order in banding.

This was the first rough rock I picked up, nearly two years ago, long before I ever knew I'd begin cabbing my own.

I am a lucky girl to have learned this work from an expert in the field and of late I have been receiving kind, encouraging words from some of my lapidary heroes. Thanks :)

It also helps that a dear new friend is learning with me, traveling down these addictive unfamiliar lapidary waters together; a great way to go.

This is a Fire Seedling ring.
It is a size 7
and will be in the Metal Shop a little bit later!

Saturday, June 26, 2010


Start with some Bovine Bakery love early in the morning...

Add friends you adore...

Funny pups you meet by chance...

Fields of tall, waving grass and classic California green and gold...

Food so good it makes a grown man shed a tear...

Blankets of fog....

Vanilla skies...

Petaluma Pete and his tiny dancer...

Jewelry that reminds you of good dogs and dearest friends...

Add some precious sips of Lavender lemonade for good measure...

(now get out your calculators and compute)

You'll find the sum is a day off that both refilled the heart of a parched woman and broke it all over again.

My heart is intertwined with the tremendously soulful earth of the North Bay...
no matter that the timing was wrong for us to stay
or that it was bone-achingly lonely...

the place is one of the great loves of my life
and I will treasure it dearly for as long as I breathe.

I hope you do something this weekend that allows you to live with renewed vigor and a big heaping helping of love and joy.

Adoring you a whole heckuva lot,
Sunny One

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Everything is coming up Flowers!

dang he's on to something... new and old all at once.

I am also dancing because a series I began last week has come to fruition and beautifully to boot:
the theme was earrings- asymmetrical pieces of the same stone - not butterfly-ed, just nearly similar pieces of some of my favorite rocks:

Pyrite in Quartz (droooool)
precious Arizona turquoise, nearly the last of my stash
Wild Horse Magnesite, like snow and earth...

I love the fact that you need to look twice before you can see the difference, but they're there, just like your fingerprints.
The carved blossoms are something I fear I may not find again:
perfect pink carved stone, petal soft and cool to the touch.

These three pairs of earrings will be in the Metal Shop in a little while,
full of love and beauty.

In the Leather Shop, flowers are the theme as well:

Tooled Classic Blossom pattern....
Rich colors, resist-peach, tawny caramel and chocolate edging.

Off to the sweets drawer for some dark chocolate while I list:
who knew leather could make me hungry?


Tuesday, June 22, 2010

The Triumphant Return of the Eclipse Stone

Big Bang Necklace, in the Metal Shop shortly.


Collaboration Love

Upon a nest of kelp, tooled with a firm yet delicate hand, lies a lovely round of recycled sterling art made by the one and only Kerin Rose.

Kerin's work, in person, exudes soul and carries an energy of love, compassion and rarity that is palpable.
It feels like a prayer in your hand.

Here are Kerin's own words about turtle lore and her process:

"Through thousands of years and in many cultures, turtles have captured out imaginations. Ancient North American peoples believed that the world rested on the turtle's back. In some Far Eastern cultures, it was believed that the turtle's represented Heaven and its underbelly represented Earth.
The turtle symbolized the possibility of uniting Heaven and Earth within one's own life. Sea turtles were here with the dinosaurs, surviving the Ice Age and they remain in our seas today and speak to us with their beautiful energy...
Turtles naturally withdraw and go inot their shells when danger is present... they know how to take care of themselves; their instincts tell them when it is time to turn away from the outside world and be self-protective. Turtle carries her home on her back and is at home within herself and her own heart. Turtle energy is innocent, as they have few predators, and is associated with the ideals of longevity, wisdom, strength, perseverance and truth. Symbolizing the element of water, wear turtle to remind yourself that whatever path you are choosing, slow steady patience and going with the flow will bring great satisfaction and accomplishment over fast but flighty results.

Hand carved in beeswax and cast in recycled sterling silver, I carved this turtle medallion to represent the element of water in my 4 elements bracelet... go with the flow, and remember: the good things in life are worth waiting for."

Our collaboration has been too long in coming: several months ago after the big move she sent me four gorgeous medallions, while I waited for the right time and the right imagery to encircle them in leather.

The color was created using a resist and a tremendously rich and caramel-y saddletan, my very favorite antique for hide.

Hand stitched with braided waxed thread, this particular bracelet will fit from a 6 to 6.25 inch wrist. It is at once elegant, rustic and evokes the best of the ocean.

Prayers for the Gulf are all over this piece: for the birds, fish, plant life and the men and women who make their livelihood in those waters.

I will be donating 15% of its asking price to

Please consider making a donation on your own time as well. This is a tragedy of such epic proportions.

I will be putting this special piece in the Leather Shop tomorrow morning.

As Kerin would write,



Monday, June 21, 2010

One For Me....One For You!

I spent some of my precious beach glass on a pair of earrings to remind me of spring and Bodega Bay and all good things: if you are a craftsperson, you need to make yourself things every once in a while: your techniques and creativity should be your spoils.

I spent a lot of hours and a lovely duo of stunning rhodonite in a sparkly black material (tenorite? Quartz?)
and a small round of rhodochrosite.

The theme of the piece is rebirth (all birth in general) and movement. Negative spaces in the design give it depth and a curlique strand lends a sense of play and lightness to the design.

It has a really wide band and fits a size 8 finger.
It will find its way into the Metal Shop this afternoon!


P.S. San Francisco was magic - White truffle oil drizzled fries were consumed. Salted caramel ice cream was devoured. Walks on the beach and extremely good friends did abound!!

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Fin!!! :)

A custom order for an extremely lovely, extreeeeemely patient girl.

Tomorrow, Sideburns McGraw (seen below giving me some lip) and I are going into San Francisco to have fun adventures with Natty and dinner with the wives.

Viva la weekend!

Here's a big kiss planted on all of your cheeks, too -



Friday, June 18, 2010

Something to Burn off the Hurt

I went into the studio today with my soul on fire...
so many women in my life right now are aching and I wanted to make something that would ease the discomfort, but I was overwhelmed with a love so fierce for all of them that everything seemed hot to the touch.

The world is in turmoil.... my girls are in pain.

So I gathered all that heat and heart and poured it into a simple pair of blood-red carnelian earrings.

On the back are three flame seedlings, tiny fires to burn off the hurt so fresh growth can burst forth and repopulate the world with new ideas
new joys
a tiny jingling tag creating music when you walk, laugh and chop cilantro.

Light and inspiration for this worldly path.

To say that these were prayed over would be an understatement: they were infused with healing energy, love and extreme care.

These will be in the Metal Shop very shortly.

Tomorrow I am going to dedicate my yoga practice to my women, my tribe.

May we all find the pearl that waits in that murky darkness.

Love and Might,

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Thank Goodness.

Soul Sister in my Easy Chair

Fresh baked bread on the Viking cooling off...

Collaboration with the fantabulous Kerin Rose brewing...

My lapidary efforts looking a bit more.... lapidary..(!)

Custom order in its final riveting stages...

Today was an answered prayer: this last week has caught me lagging and existentially sad
and fearful in a way I cannot find words for;

just 'being human' stuff.

Terra being here unexpectedly (she found out she's playing a full set at SF Lilith Fair this morning, which means I see her again in a few weeks!!! Squeee!!) and staying for another night
means I get to be with a girlfriend who feeds my heart and soul.

I needed this.
It has stoked my creative fire
and given me a day of hugs and heart-to-hearts my weary spirit so needed.

Sending you all love and a slice of homemade bread with salted butter.
My mouth watered just typing that :)