I posted this image on Facebook, and a few people wondered if I was making a ring out of cheese....
Uh, no. No cheese rings here, even though I am from Wisconsin.
This is a wax carving for a custom ring for me, that will represent my word of 2014, DARING. With my strong conviction that custom jewelry can be a talisman for what a woman or man wants to become in their life, I need to live by those words and make myself a talisman too.
Why DARING, though? A few people were surprised, because they thought of me as very daring already. Yes, I do train a martial art, and I am willing to go to nearly any country in the world, so from the outside it seems quite daring. However, there is a lot that I have inside that I may be hesitant to share. I have a whole folder of articles and blog posts in my hard drive that I have written and never posted. So, this year, I will wear this ring, and remind myself that the time for holding back is over.
After all, I have some big goals for my business. Creating a community around the idea of jewelry as a tool for empowerment, creating a space where I can welcome my clients and connect one-on-one, and living my mission as a warrior of beauty in the world. The last part, about being a warrior of beauty, is why I choose the ring below as an inspiration for my talisman of daring:
This is a ring from Mughal India, from the 16th century, called an archer's ring. The archer's ring was worn on the thumb to protect it as the string was released. However, this particular ring with elaborate ornamentation was likely never used in that manner. These enameled and bejeweled rings were created to be admired for beauty and craftsmanship. I have been drawn to this ring shape for years and years, and finally decided that there was a purpose to creating a ring with this warrior connotation.
What does being a warrior mean to me? Well, nothing to do with fighting, but everything to do with being completely committed and not willing to give up on something that is held dear. It also requires the willingness to step out in front. Not an easy task at all. Sometimes raising the white flag of surrender seems like the comfortable path.
As I commit to being this warrior of beauty, I wonder, what do you want to commit to? What jewelry would you wear to remind you of this important mission? Hit reply, I would love to hear what comes to mind. Or, if you feel the call to have this jewelry piece made for you, you can head over here and fill out the custom design form.
Speaking of custom design, I made a few pieces in November and December that I would love to share:
A ring for a couple that has been together for a long time, and decided to mark the commitment through a non-traditional ring of silver and blue sapphire. We used the Wrought Curl Ring as an inspiration for this customized design.
This bracelet was a gift from mother to daughter, as the daughter completed her nursing degree. I used diamonds and gold that already belonged to mom and we used the daughter's organic style wedding jewelry as an inspiration.
Even though this couple was already married, an engagement ring was never exchanged. I don't think she was expecting this half-carat diamond ring to be under the tree!
First of all, thanks for stopping by! I know every retailer on earth is currently trying to get in front of you to sell you something for the holidays, so I truly appreciate that you are considering a piece of jewelry from my studio.
Ordering custom jewelry for Christmas.
Time is clicking away if you were dreaming of a custom designed piece of jewelry for Christmas. Whether you want to buy it as a gift, or you want to buy it as a gift for yourself (which I totally support, I am going to make something for myself), it is best if I hear from you soon.
Here is what you need to do:
Head over to my custom design page and fill out the custom design form
What will happen next? I will get in touch and we will talk more about what you are seeking to have made.
Ordering Ready to Wear Jewelry for Christmas
I love to be able to say yes to every order and get it out the door fast. However, I have a limited-production studio. In order to make sure that your wish to have the gift in time matches my ability to get it there quickly, I have created Couture on Demand and Gift Guide sections to my website.
Everything in these sections is in stock for immediate shipment, and as soon as a piece sells out, it will be removed from the section. Easy for both of us. The last to order anything in either of these sections for pre-Christmas delivery is December 21st in the United States and December 15th outside of the US.
Any questions? Feel free to use the Contact Us tab on the right to send a note.
The wind was blowing gently, but this time from the Gobi, not with the winter chill of Siberia. With the horses content and busy with their grass-ripping and chewing, Naratsetseg breathed in relief at the signs of summer warmth. Even being a woman born in and of the steppes, she had found that winter particularly hard to bear, with the constant concern over the animals.
Even in the deepest winter, as the snow piled against the ger and jammed the door shut, she went to her imagination, and created within her a vision of summer. Her ring reminded her, as she saw the clear blue of the turquoise from Isfahan brightly catching her eye. The special gem that came via the Uzbek trader with the penetrating stare, appearing one day seemingly out of nowhere. His odd presence signaled to her that what he carried was of significance, and without words, she selected the turquoise from his satchel.
The Turquoise Dot Ring
A while back I had the chance to meet the beautiful Neha Uberoi, former professional tennis player, and role model for Indian youth in sports and achieving excellence.
We had a great time talking when she came to interview me at my studio, and she wore some of my jewelry to the America India Foundation event. She shared these beautiful pictures on her blog along with the interview. Click over to read the story. The black and gold sari is a perfect match for my jewelry.
On Monday night, I had one of the most exciting and memorable nights
since I began my business in 2001. I was part of a very special program, 10,000
Small Businesses, sponsored by Goldman Sachs and the Tory Burch Foundation. We
were the first all-female, startup class to go through the 10K Small Business
Among the people there to honor us was senior adviser to the president ,Valerie Jarrett, and hearing her describe me as a entrepreneurial leader and world-changer was truly remarkable. At that moment, I wished that I had worn waterproof mascara!
There were classes on everything from leadership, financial statements and operations. We also had business advisers who helped us through the process of creating a plan for growth. Over the four months of the program, I filled in so many gaps in my business knowledge. Coming from an art background, most of my business education has been self-education, and of course I skipped over the parts that were not fun or exciting to me.
Now that I have graduated, I can say that 2013 is going to be a big year. I can't wait to share the journey with you!
Pictured from left to right are: Kristin Leu, of Leu Design, me, Tory Burch, Sylvia Fredericks of Bazillion Bags, Bren Bauer of Fortunata Living, Sandra Nieto of Sandra Baquero, Nneka Moseley of Nneka Saran Handbags, and Terri McCullough of the Tory Burch Foundation.
Above is a screen shot from the Morning Joe segment about the program that aired the next day. This is a still photo of me onstage receiving my diploma from Mika Brzezinski, Tory Burch, Valerie Jarrett, Arianna Huffington and Gray Cohn of Goldman Sachs. You can see the whole segment here.
There is also a blog post by Tory Burch in the Huffington Post, which can be found here. Can you spot me in the group picture?