Friday, November 30, 2012

Protector Series #3: Mama Polar Bear

Mama Polar Bear does not fuck around.

If any threat in proximity or aggression is perceived by this powerful animal
she will end her foe
with great speed and efficiency,
leaving the remains to steam blood red in the arctic cold.

Before Orion I thought of animals protecting their young with a distant coolness:
now I feel a strong sense of kindred maternal respect.

I would protect my son until the last breath left my body
and then I would haunt this earth until
he was safe.

When I was dreaming up a design for a female protector
the polar bear came to mind effortlessly
as supremely badass and hugely powerful.

After the enamel was fired a perfect pure white
I kept my brush strokes tiny, diluting the watercolors to show her plush and deep pelt
in its fullness and warmth.
I wanted her well-fed, prepared to protect your heart.

The large and small faceted amazonite chunks are ice floes hand strung on sterling silver wire with meditative care.

With climate change afoot, the polar bear is losing its natural habitat.
A percentage of the sale of this necklace will go to Polar Bears International,
an organization that addresses and takes action to effect positive change for the magnificent beasts.

She will keep watch over your heart
like the mother she is.


Thursday, November 29, 2012

Late November

And the enameled cones burst forth
like the colors from the apple tree!

Overcast and chilly here
with the promise of rain
and snow in the high hills....

come, winter:
I have a tiny star to keep me warm.


Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Two Beautiful Bags

At long last, a few tooled leather delicacies
a long time coming!

The first is a sumptuous soft leather clutch with a centerpiece of three magnificent tooled poppies
which acts as a closure.

The bag looks almost more magenta here than anything, but it person it is brick-colored, a rich and wintry red.

inquiries are welcome


Secondly I just had to share the completed custom bag order from early October:
just as with the clutch I worked steadily and slowly,
not allowing any kind of rushing and the result
is an exciting custom piece

with a personal message and an heirloom future.

Lots of joy in the making these days
from start to finish.


Sunday, November 25, 2012

Treasure Hunt

Magic is just around the corner
in our neighborhood...

Sunny, Schmilly & O


A few beautiful enameled copper pieces are on sale


today -

perfect for holiday gifts!


Saturday, November 24, 2012

Finding the Rhythm

We are home
and though I cannot speak for Orion or Schmilly I report a heavy heart
for myself.

It's never easy to leave family and it gets more and more poignant as the years go by.
When it was just the two of us it felt like a vacation and now with the three of us it's like a gift that unwraps over and over again with each moment, squabbles and all.

It's silly, but I always come home with something from I've 'borrowed':
a pair of sweatpants from my sister
a vintage enameled colander from my mom
a pair of old ratty cutoff jean shorts from my Poppy
and when I see them in passing
or wear them for any length of time
they feel like a hug
and that means I've stolen a few more moments with my people.

The air is golden and warm here
full of California's finest paradoxes:
too much traffic
breathtaking hills
quaking earth
sweet cottage living

Days like today are few and far between, when exhaustion from traveling literally puts a kabosh to your best intentions and the most you can squeeze from the hours are a few loaves of bread and a baby who laughs and cries within minutes of the other,
surely teething, certainly set into a new orbit of the old normal.

Orion's learned how to clap now and loves to show off this trick. 'Yay!!', we all explode when he does it and this gives him so much pleasure.
'High-five' is next.

Babe traverses his environment with a series of rolls and spins, not interested in crawling with his legs: he prefers to stand on them, relaxing down from his tippy-toes and dedicating whole minutes to sussing out every detail of a toy with an eerie adult-ness that makes me think he must have been an engineer
in a past life, some tenacious part of his brain refusing to let go of its knowledge.

You can practically hear his thoughts as he sticks out his upper lip in concentration, "Contemptible chubby fingers!! Oafish grip!!"

There's this whole new level of melancholy to leaving now... the next time we're together he'll be talking, maybe walking and I want everyone to see the in-between.

While Orion naps
and Anthony catches up on his interests
I am going to read just for pleasure.
And rest.

It's okay to take time and rest in it.
It's okay.


Saturday, November 17, 2012

To be Continued...

Have a bountiful and beautiful
Thanksgiving, my dear reader:

Oh the harvest from the kiln will be bright and 
nourishing this December!


Thursday, November 15, 2012

So Fierce...

...You can feel her from a distance.
Mama Polar Bear
is not to be crossed


Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Color, Phase II

Sometimes I think the babe is working in tandem with my design and building day-by-day:
his naps always allow me to finish just the thing I needed
and no more.

To share with you the glorious color using just one antique alone
and a resist,
carefully working a damp sponge across the leather as if it were a brush.

Antiques create a look that is burnished and vintage if you will it so
or solid color with a definite warmth.
My favorite is saddletan

Sometimes when I am 'painting' like this I forget to breathe.
Because every hide accepts color differently I have to constantly redirect the ship
and work with the unique palette that piece of leather has dictated.

This particular piece of leather had a golden and marvelous tone
and the work was so rewarding and unfolded with such grace that I had to stop myself from singing so as not to wake my son.

There - he calls now - just as I finish writing this...
of course.


Volcanic Trinity

Two rings and a necklace
all filled with the intention of opening and abundance

necklace a sweet deep mint green with a perfect pale yellow Mexican Jelly Opal center
that catches the light and makes it into a visible symphony

Super-high-dome sunny-colored volcano ring with a light-blue Arizona turquoise center
in size 7
and a cosmic volcano in a light teal with a perfect pink rhodochrosite center in size 9.

These are the last of the offerings in the Metal Shop
before Thanksgiving vacation
the duration of which the stores will be shuttered, opening again on 
Friday the 25th of November.

I continue to be amazed by the gifts of firing enamels...with each color layer I apply
the smile broadens, the heart softens and a clarity of vision comes

Thank you for being a part of what I'm creating, 
I feel so blessed to be a part of your days.


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Monday, November 12, 2012

Pelican with Labradorite and Citrine, # 2 in the Protector Series


With the bull elephant safely in the hands of his intended, it was time to work on the second of the protector series.
When I asked my Facebook readers for beasties 
a dear friend asked for a Pelican.

They'd already been on the brain when my dear Laurie Brown came to visit:
she said they were dying by the hundreds from lack of food.
My heart ached.

With this series I donate a percentage of the necklace sale to a charity that cares for the animal, bird or insect honored on the enamel.

For the Bull I 'adopted' a pygmy elephant in Africa through

I am still shopping for a Pelican-centric charity: suggestions welcome!

It's easy to forget how meditative it can be to string small beads on sterling wire.
There was a lot of breathing deep, a lot of prayers and intentions set for this special necklace

and a very luxe teardrop of microfaceted citrine to hang over the heart chakra.

This particular portrait was fired many times to get the depth of color not just from paint, but from the marriage of translucent and opaque enamels.
The watercolors were dancing on the brush with this one...pure magic.

It is open for reserve

at your leisure.