Saturday, 12 December 2009

Meet the Lonely Jewelers on Etsy 2: Kristy Jewelry

Take a look at these lovely items of jewelry. They are from this week’s featured seller, Kristy Jewelry.

What about this bracelet! Such a delicate rose and baby pink it’s a real classic piece. Perhaps a gift for a bride or bridesmaid? Or just for a special night out. At 15mm and 8mm, these pearls are big enough to make a real statement!

I love the colours on these peacock earrings, beautifully accented with the tiny faceted crystals. At 4.5 inches long, they are really dramatic. You probably wouldn’t need any other jewelry – although, if you’re a real jewelry fan, you probably never leave the house without a full set of bling on, right?

Kristy, from Springfield, Illinois, has been making beautiful pieces like these since her stepmom introduced her to crafting with some tiny beads and fishing string. Now she’s started selling online, after being asked "where did you get that" or "can you make me this" and is eagerly awaiting her first Etsy sale.

Browsing the shop, you can see how Kristy is inspired by changing fashions and seasons. No surprise then that one of her favourite pieces is one she made to wear with a Halloween costume. She says “I actually bought some cheap beads thinking I probably wouldn’t wear it again, but I love it.”

My favourite item is this button and bead bid necklace:

It’s got a real retro feel, and orange is such a key colour this season.
So visit the shop and have a browse around. Kristy says that she wants other to know that she “loves what I make and I never intended to ever sell it - it just started happening and I just want people to love my stuff as much as I do.” When you’ve had a look around, I think you’ll love it too.

Don’t forget to visit Kristy on Facebook and MySpace too:

Friday, 20 November 2009

A quick turnaround

Last weekend I went to a great bead fair and picked up some lovely things: semi precious beads, some fantastic Sicilian clay beads, which I'm still thinking about what to make with, and some acrylics.

Within the day, I made up the pillar-box red acrylics into a necklace and I listed them a day later on Etsy.

Within 5 minutes I had a message to say they were sold! What a great surprise!

That turnround really took my breath away. Less than 48 hours after buying the beads, the necklace was on its way to California.

I didn't even have time to start thinking about what I would wear it with.

By the way, if anyone knows whether the patterns on these beads mean something, please let me know.

Saturday, 7 November 2009

Meet the Lonely Jewelers on Etsy 1: Eluna Jewelry

April Williams from Raleigh, North Carolina is the inspiration behind Eluna Jewelry (, a shop full of beautiful shapes and forms made from silver, stones and reclaimed stained glass. Despite being a busy working mum to a toddler, April finds great passion and energy in creating her pieces, and says she doesn’t know how things will turn out, she just starts out and it all happens. I think you’ll agree from looking at the shop that they turn out pretty fine!

April has been creating jewelry for the past four years, and describes how she came to start out:

“I have actually been a rock and gem hound since I was little. I started creating jewelry for my wedding and with the encouragement of my friends and husband, I continued. Four years ago, I taught myself how to wire wrap. Three years ago, I took a class in cabochon cutting. I have been hooked ever since.”

April was looking for a unique name that no-one would mistake, so she chose the same name for her shop as her virtual cat in World of Warcraft! Everytime I look up the shop, the name conjures up images of the full moon, which I think is very apt given the lovely cabochon gems there.

There’s a lot of sterling silver in the shop, but April’s first love is working with rough stone to create cabs. Her favourite piece of jewellery, and the one she’s not intending to sell, is a Labradorite cabochon wrapped in sterling silver. Here’s a picture of her current favourite item from the shop:

a pendant which combines beautiful silver-sheen obsidian and moonstone wrapped in luscious sterling silver wire.

A unique creation is the reversi hoops, a really different, designer-looking alternative to standard hoops. They thread through the piercing so that the tiny loop sits at the back of your lobe as an alternative to a butterfly fastening. April says she has even gone to bed in them, they are so comfortable and easy to wear, and they are a real hit with her customers.

What is April’s top tip for online selling?

“Word of mouth is the best advertising you can get. And one of the best ways to get great word of mouth advertising is to offer good customer service. A good product and a great attitude will bring in more customers than a good product and a bad attitude. I think many people get so caught up in the money, they sometimes forget that the customer service is important too.”

With so much positive feedback, and so many fans of the reversi hoops, I think we can safely say that April practices what she preaches!

You can also follow Eluna Jewelry at:
and on Twitter: Elunajewelry

Sunday, 1 November 2009


Now that Halloween is over, it's a good time to start thinking about supporting the poppy appeal. It's a cause I feel strongly about, as it not only encourages people to remember history and hopefully learn from the mistakes of the past, but also remember those risking their lives for others in danger zones across the world.

The poppy is such a beautiful flower, I wanted to celebrate it. Here's a link to the treasury while it lasts

The creativity of folks on Etsy never ceases to wow me. The fine art pieces here are especially beautiful, I think.

By the way, if you buy oen of the poppy pins from Wychbury, a donation to the Royal British Legion is included.

Saturday, 24 October 2009

Treasury mad!

Making treasuries must be addictive, because myself and my Etsy pals from The Lonely Jewelers team have been burning the midnight oil selecting beautiful items and then waiting for that tiny window of opportunity to open up.

Here are some examples. I hope you like them!

"The days fly by, but these creatures live for ever"

"Autumn Gold"

"Azure if you are missing the sea"

"Dreams really can come true ... over the rainbow"

A shame that treasuries don't live for ever!

Sunday, 18 October 2009

The Legendary Gypsy Queens and Kings

Just recovering from going to see the Queens and Kings last night. What a fantastic, energy-filled evening! This music has such life, such a fascinating heritage and really makes you want to dance...

In our household, there is virtually every type of music you can think of. My other half is a full-time musician, playing modern jazz trumpet, and he's responsible for introducing me to a whole range of the best music from around the world.

Over the last few years, we've been following Balkan and Gypsy music from around Eastern Europe and the Ukraine. It's probably an acquired taste, but if you've never heard it before, it's really worth having the experience. Turn the volume down on your PC first, though, as the brass is quite strident!

You can hear and see the performers here:

They deserve a bigger following, I think.

Sunday, 11 October 2009

Autumn colours

If you like jewellery that reflects the colours and shades of Autumn, check out this treasury from TheEarringBoutique:

I love this necklace. What do you like best from this selection?

Saturday, 10 October 2009

Places to return to...

Travelling has been curtailed a bit this year by the arrival of Lucca, so I've been reflecting on a few of my favourite destinations. One of the most interesting, and seemingly least well known, is Kihi Island in Karelia, Northern Russia.

We were on a boat between Moscow and St Petersburg in 2003 when we pulled up at the island. In late September, the northern light was beautiful and it gave the small island a really magical appearance. It's what the tour guides describe as a 'green stop' - apart from these fabulous buildings. Apparently, the air is so pure around there that rare mosses and lichens grow on the trees. There was certainly ever shade of green you could imagine on view.

Basically, it's an open air museum of wooden architecture. The church is the most spectacular with its majestic wooden onion domes dancing against the white northern sky. There is also the farmhouse where inside you can view what life was like for those living there - anything but romantic given the harsh winters and stark conditions.

You can read more at if you're interested.

It felt like a privilege to go somewhere so off the beaten track but so stunning and different.

Where have you been that you would like to return to?

Saturday, 26 September 2009

Introducing the dog

A year ago yesterday we brought this small brown puppy aged 12 weeks into our lives. We’d just got back from holiday and had been madly preparing the house and garden – imagining we had everything puppy-proofed. Of course, we were totally wrong!!

Lucca is named after the beautiful Italian town in Tuscany we were visiting when we decided it was time to get a dog. It’s the birthplace of the composer Puccini whose music we both love.

Both me and my other half were brought up in houses with dogs, but we’ve never had one ourselves. With work, we’d restricted ourselves to cats, but now my other half works from home, so having a dog became practical.

A year later we both agree that we’ve never been more tired, or more fit! Lucca has a main big walk each day, usually with a swim. He also has about three other little outings to the small lake, stream and woods we live near. As a Labrador from working stock, he’s extremely active and has the energy to run all day, but he also loves his deep and dream-filled sleeps. Our rule about not going on the sofa lasted about two hours. He was born in a stable on a working farm, but he seems to have a real instinct for creature comforts!

Of course, we are biased, but we think the world of him. He’s taught me so much about the simple pleasures of life and about living in the moment. We’re both devoted to keeping him happy and healthy.

The pictures show him doing some of his favourite things – swimming, football, digging and yawning!

I hope you’ve enjoyed meeting Lucca. He’ll be featuring back here, I’m sure!

Saturday, 19 September 2009

Today's creations

Two major projects on the go for today: Amazonite and baroque pearls strung and knotted on white silk, and a new departure for me, acrylic beads.

I bought into the acrylic craze last weekend at a Bead Fair. They are large and bright white, with pink, green, blue and yellow flowers artfully painted on them - what girly girl could resist those?

Anyway, turns out I have similar sized acrylic faceted smokey brown stones and just as I strung them, they really started to pop!

So I’m off to finish off, and hopefully post photos later.

See y’all!

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