ETSY TREASURY: Tour de {NewNew}

The Tour de France (aka "Le Tour") is coming up at the end of this week, so I figured I'd see what a few of my bike-loving friends over at The {NewNew} were up to. I have to say, this was a fun treasury to put together.

Running from Saturday July 4th to Sunday July 26th 2009, the 96th Tour de France will be made up of 21 stages and will cover a total distance of 3,500 kilometres.

I did a bike tour once. Of the Bronx. I missed the start line and got lost in Van Cortlandt Park. To make ourselves feel better, me and my equally directionally-challenged friends started calling it The DeTour de Bronx. And then we actually called it. Around the old Yankee Stadium we decided to take the subway home. With our bikes.

Oh yeah, I'm a New Yorker thru and thru.

Speaking of New York, a few people have asked me, "What's this NewNew you keep referencing?"

Ask and ye shall receive:
The {NewNew} is an eclectic group of independent artists in the Metro New York area devoted to fostering a creative and supportive environment among its members. The group encourages a spirit of camaraderie through craftsmanship and strives to help its members achieve success on both a personal and professional level. Members come from many different backgrounds and produce fine, handcrafted goods including clothing, home décor, jewelry, accessories, paper goods, bath and body products, toys, and baked goods. Everything is designed and produced locally by the talented artists of The {NewNew}

I am a proudly eclectic member of The {NewNew}.


On The Table

Sometime I like to display personal totems on my market table as a way of bringing customers, or good luck, or to keep away rain.

This little guy is for security.


Summer on the Shore

Once again I'm in the mix, this time in an Etsy treasury devoted to {NewNew} artisans inspired by the beach. I can almost smell the ocean....

Thanks to the marvelous muppetloon for mention. Go Gorgeous.


Where to Find Persuede This Weekend

This Saturday Persuede is easin' on down the road to The Fort Greene Artisan Market (not to be confused with the ubiquitous Brooklyn Flea), located in front of historic Fort Greene Park, at the corner of Dekalb Avenue & Cumberland Street.

Aside from all the leafy goodness of the park, the best thing about this location is that it's adjacent to the Greenmarket, so you can shop healthy and go gorgeous, all at the same time.

From there, I'll be putting on my silver slippers and gettin' my soulful scarecrow on at the fabulous all night movie and dance party marathon that is the centerpiece of BAMcinemaFEST in Brooklyn. I imagine, given the recent sad news, it will turn into a tribute to the King of Pop. I know I'm going to cry my eyes out (waterproof mascara y'all) at The Wiz/Mahogany double-feature. And then I'll dance the night away at the BAM Cafe.




I customized this Tree of Life charm with two tiny Sapphires and a Freshwater Pearl for a recent client. It was a gift for her mother, who loves pearls. The Sapphires represent the daughter (who was buying the necklace) and granddaughter, who is 6 months old.

The combination is so boss, I decided to make it a regular in my etsy shop. Mostly, I like the metaphorical trinity of air, land and water. The sapphires and pearl represent the sky and the sea respectively, while the earth-bound tree made from silver mined from the soil completes the thought.

Go Gorgeous.



Optimizing My Online Shop

What it looks like when I'm working at my jeweler's bench late at night.

For me, the fun part of jewelry is the actual design and craft. I love sitting at my work table when it's covered in different stones, feeling their energy in my hands as I make decisions about what metal to use, how to best present them, whether the colors work together....and so on and so on. I can easily lose a day "playing" with my raw materials. And even though my wrists are achy and my back is tired, it doesn't feel like work at all.

A somewhat artful jumble of Freshwater Pearls, silver chain, Obsidian and other cool stuff.

A not-so-artful jumble. Believe it or not, I know where and what everything is.

Another late night "moody jeweler's bench" shot. I love these pillow-cut Citrines.

The not-so-fun part is the more "tasky" stuff like updating my Etsy shop, making sure it's optimized for search engines (aka managing my "SEO" -- Search Engine Optimization thank you very much -- I just learned that term yesterday), and taking good pictures of my completed pieces.

You wouldn't think taking a decent picture of pretty stuff would be so difficult (or maybe you would, given my less than perfect pictures above)...but it is! Sometimes it takes 20 shots before I get one that works. I tried switching things up from my usual white background when I was at the Artisan Market on Saturday, but I'm not convinced the pictures work. There's too much going on in the background, they're overexposed and, worst of all, the earrings are not hanging evenly:

What do you think? Time for a reshoot?



Twitter Made Me Do It

I have been off and on with Twitter, though lately mostly on. Recently I discovered Twitter Tees, and now I'm really on. I keep thinking I'm going to come up with something truly clever, but thus far, this is the best I can do:

So take pity on an almost clever twitter and vote for my twitter tee (you have to login with your Twitter account). Then we can all wear the same shirt!

(Thanks to the little misses for the nostalgia shot! Ahh, those were the days.)


Nice Things That Happened This Weekend

1. A lovely lady whom I met in December at a holiday craft fair called me up and said she had been thinking about a necklace I made and wondered if it was still available. It was, and she found me this weekend and it still delighted her, so she bought it. Can I tell you how good that made me feel?

2. The best conversation with Melanie, an acupuncturist, about the healing energy of the color purple. She ended up purchasing this beautiful earring/necklace set made of Rutilated Amethyst and Sterling Silver. I got so caught up in the conversation, I forgot to take a picture! Best of all, she's opening a women-only spa and when she does, I'm in there like swimwear.

3. My friends Chi & Liam stopped by my table in Ft. Greene and kept me company when the foot traffic ran slow.

4. So many people took my business cards, I ran out!

5. Met some new {newnew} crafters.... greetings fellow Etsians!

6. Some friends brought their kids out to visit while I was at the Bleecker Street market. They were really cute, but the little seven-year-old dude won my heart as he struggled and worked really hard to make a pair of earrings for his mom. I bet she will wear them all the time cause Moms are great like that.

Thanks to all my Persuede customers for your ongoing support, friendly conversation and good energy.


Where to Find Persuede Jewelry This Weekend

This weekend coming up is jam-packed with all things jewelry-related. I might need to clone myself...

Saturday, it's Persuede's Artisan Market debut! The Fort Greene Artisan Market (not to be confused with the ubiquitous Brooklyn Flea) is located in front of historic Fort Greene Park, at the corner of Dekalb Avenue & Cumberland Street.

Aside from all the leafy goodness of the park, the best thing about this location is that it's adjacent to the Greenmarket, so you can shop healthy and go gorgeous, all at the same time.

Sunday I'll be at the prestigious Fine Arts and Designer Crafts on Bleecker. Five blocks of Bleecker Street between Christopher and Bank are closed to traffic creating a plein-air gallery of 150 professional artists and designers selling only their own unique creations. It's a breath of fresh air in our urban landscape, where you'll find a wide range of moderately-priced functional and collectible art plus have the opportunity to discuss the creation process with the artists.

In addition to my usual selection of handmade jewelry, I'll also be featuring some of my more unique, one-of-a-kind pieces that I usually wear myself. This one is currently featured in an Etsy Treasury:

I was inspired by the unusual cuts of Kyanite -- the silvery-blue stone. They reminded me of lightening somehow, which caused me to think of Mt. Olympia, Greek mythology and the role of the goddess.

I admit, there's a lot going on in my head at any given moment.

But I digress. So I was thinking about totems and how powerful they can be as personal markers of one's own strength of purpose. Then I find out that Kyanite serves as a bridge between mind and matter. It's a powerful stone of manifestation toward reaching your hopes, dreams and desires.

One week and one aching wrist later I arrived at this necklace, which I designed on the fly. Everything, including the chain, is handmade. I feel like a goddess when I wear it, so I call it Totem. Perhaps someone else will connect with it too.

Go Gorgeous.


Pick Up Sticks

I reposted these last night on Etsy during an extended and ultimately unsuccessful battle with insomnia. Carnelian is an energy stone. Associated with the sacral chakra, it amplifies your connection to other people, creativity and energy storage.

In other words, it provides a nice pick-me-up. And who doesn't want that when looking in the mirror?

I was inspired by the cut of the stone, which reminded me of the cattails in my mom's front hall, and the echoes of classic architecture in the rich columns of Carnelian gracefully suspended on 14k Gold filled wires. The idea was to create a personal, jeweled architecture for the ear, and by extension, a frame for the face.


The Many Tentacles of Yum

And since food is on my mind...

One of my fellow {NewNew}ers, Meekiyua, posted this review of a classic NYC snack-attack hole-in-the-wall place great for lovers of octopus. It's this really tiny Japanese place that specializes in something called Takoyaki which is basically a grilled octopus nestled within a round dumpling of luscious fried dough. Mmmmm....

Read the full review >>


Philly Was A Blast

But alas, no incredible stashes of vintage finds to talk about. I think next time I'll have to really explore a bit beyond the city limits. Wonderful music though and a great time. How does anyone leave the Reading Terminal Market?

My new favorite cookie is any cookie made by these folks:

Serious, the fudge dipped chocolate chip alone is worth the trip.


Philly On My Mind

This weekend I'm going to be in the City of Brotherly Love with my love for some live music, a little museum-going and some serious vintage rummaging. Some parts of Philly remind me of Brooklyn, if not in look then definitely in feel.

You can follow my adventures, such as they are, on Twitter. I look forward to sharing my finds when I return. You never know from whence inspiration will rise....

Image of Philly mural courtesy of Brooklyn Bridge Baby


The {NewNew} POPs up at 93 Nevins

My fantastic Etsy team, The {NewNew}, will participate in this year's Atlantic Art Walk by highlighting artists that use environmentally-friendly materials in their creations at 93 Nevins Street - reclaimed from a building derelict for 20 years, this new townhouse was created with the idea to be as green as possible.

Art Walk is a free, self-guided tour of open artist studios and area exhibitions, a range of public art projects, special events, with local merchants hosting a range of artwork and events. The pop-up shop will be open on both days of the Art Walk where participants in the self-guided, curated tour will get a taste of the variety of handmade items that are created in the local community.

Find green gifts made from sustainable materials such as silkscreened apparel, fine art drawings and prints, handmade ceramics, paper goods, plush toys, jewelry and housewares from shops like Cakehouse, Wabisabi Brooklyn, and KnitKnit.

As always, we try to help you shop local within the top tier of craft

Thanks to KimmChi.etsy.com for the post and links!


A Secret Love of Musicals

Yes, I am one of those people who loves musicals, sings along with the movie, and even, dare I admit it, acts out the scenes in the privacy of my own home. Forgive me if you've already seen this. It's got nothing to do with jewelry...but it makes me happy. So perhaps it will make you happy too.


My Clients Look Good

I'm just sayin'...

Apologies to all the lovely ladies whose pictures I didn't get. If you have a picture of yourself rockin' the Persuede that you'd like me to add to the mix, email it to dream@persuede.com.

And as always, go gorgeous.