I’ve been on the road since early May. It will take me awhile to process all that I’ve seen and all that I’ve done–the people, the places, the art, nature, jewelry…

I learned so much from Nina Bagely’s workshop at Valley Ridge Art Studio. Of course I’ve taken apart much of what I made there, ordered a bunch of new supplies, ordered more, bought a load of beads at Beadology in Iowa City. In very short order spent a whole lotta money.

Then I knotted, wrapped, patinaed and then cut up again, redesigned, and now have to buy some more stuff. Hmm.

I think I have two finished pieces I feel good about.

Here they are. Working on two more.

On the road

I really did think I could upload new jewelry to my Etsy shop by May 5. Wrong. Lots of work travel in the next month, so I don’t anticipate additions to the shop until end of June. Mid-June I’m taking a workshop with Nina Bagely–looking forward to that! If you don’t know Nina’s work check out her blog Ornamental.

FUEl in Mt. Vernon is still the go-to retail gallery (and awesome coffee and home-baked goods spot) for my jewelry.


What a strange few weeks it’s been. Some of you knew that was invited to Elizabeth Catlett’s 97th birthday party in Cuernavaca Mexico. I was all set to leave yesterday for a week (several days in Mexico City, too). But Elizabeth died on Monday April 2. I visited Elizabeth Catlett and her home and studio in August 2006. I selected and purchased 27 prints for the UIMA collection. It was such an honor. One of the greatest experienes of my life. In some fantastical alignment of the planets, Mauricio Lasansky died the same day at age 97. Lasansky establish the printmaking department at the UI in 1945 and significantly changed the course of American printmaking. We lost two major figure in the art world, both of whom have (and will have), a major impact on my work as a curator.

The day before Mike asked me to look at a protrubrance near a private body part. It was a pregnant tick! Whoa. I quickly grabbed tweezers and yanked that mother (or soon to be mother) out. I was able to do this because when I was a kid our dog Susie would get loose in the woods surrounding our Cape Cod house and return with ticks galore. We’d have to de-tick her. Lit them on fire, too. My mom relished that.

Luckily Mike’s tick was a wood tick and not a deer tick. He’s taking an antibiotic just in case.

Back to the subject of jewelry. I’ll be participating in the Riverbank Art Fair at the University of Iowa Student Union in the Main Ballroom April 28 and 29.  I only do two fairs each year, and this is my first 2-day fair. I will have a lot of material.

Most of what I’ll have will be familiar, although still one-of-a-kind.

There will be a few new small lines such as this style of knotted bracelet below. Thanks for reading my blog. I see I’ve been blogging for one year.



Use coupon code ILOVESPRING when checking out.

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I do love spring. I love the colors and delicacy of early tree buds, the greening of the grass, and the juxtaposition of greens and blacks. Look closely and you will see black. One of my wonderful painting teachers at UArts (Morris Berd) told me that and it’s true.

Color just blows me away. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Usually I go for neutrals with either subtle differences or in combination with pops of color. But when all things spring are blooming I love the bolder brighter colors.


Got back from NOLA (New Orleans Louisiana) late yesterday. The conference I was attending, SGC International, annually brings together professors and students of printmaking from all over the world. I heard that 1500 people were present. It’s been about 15 years since I attended the conference, and my has it grown. I attended panels, went to openings, and made major contacts for the UIMA. The most amazing aspect was that I saw several people from Philadelphia–people I had lost contact with. And it was so wonderful to see them.

I did have a chance to wear my jewelry designer hat when I visited The Bead Shop on Magazine Street. Really great store–lots of unusual beads.


I made a bracelet in honor of my trip. I love these opaque vintage style Czech beads. You can find it in my Etsy shop.


It was St. Patty’s day weekend and apparently NOLA is one of the best places to celebrate. NOLA


Women and jewelry.

Yesterday we attended the 3rd birthday party of our grand (?) niece (our nephew’s daughter).  Her grandmother Karen is an amazing cook.  She made the most incredible chicken vegetable soup.  She also made chili, which I heard was excellent.  And there was cake too.  The presents ranged from the cutest clothes I’ve ever seen, to Disney Princesses paraphernalia (even sheets for her bed), and Play-Doh (never did lke the stuff), Candyland (loved) and Cooties.  We baby boomers like to give the kids presents we played with as kids–even though the kids think they’re lame.

For the first time I brought my jewelry to a family gathering.  This is my husband’s side of the family.  Mine are all on the East Coast.  Karen saw a bracelet in my Etsy shop that she liked and so after checking it out with her daughter, I decided to show them my wares.   After the festivities, when the kids were busy with bubbles (it was a gorgeous warm day), games, etc., I got my stuff and spread it out on a card table.  The ladies could not have been more supportive!  It made me feel good.  Just chatting with them about jewelry, I realized that favorite jewelry carries with it stories about who, what, when, where, (and sometimes why).  These stories are important aspects of the context that gets shared from generation to generation.

We give our nieces charm bracelets and a charm for it every year.  I hope that one day they think of these bracelets as talismans of their childhood lives.

One related note:  Last week I received the best comment from an Etsy customer. She wrote:  “I purchased this item from you and received it a couple of days ago . . . just wanted to tell you that it is exquisite . . . absolutely gorgeous and  totally exceeded expectations. Thank you!”

Have a great week.  I am off to New Orleans!

Tax day.

Tax day. We are meeting with our accountant Monday. At least I got in a nice weekend in Chicago and will be in New Orleans in a few weeks for a conference. Please comment with any “must sees” or “must eat there” recommendations!

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