Mob It Up

•October 23, 2012 • Leave a Comment

Hey there, prospective cash mobbers! I look forward to seeing y’all on December 9th at Literacy Midsouth. I’ll be there with all sorts of natural-gemstone goodies, including necklaces, bracelets, and two-for-$20 earrings. I’ll also be happy to take custom orders for the holidays. Some of my favorite work lately has involved making pieces that honor a special date or person, using birthstones and Morse code to signify names, birthdays, anniversaries, etc. If you’d like to make a special request and purchase it during the Cash Mob, just drop me a line.

Small Packages

•June 28, 2012 • Leave a Comment

Things are in a bit of upheaval in the There Was Eden studio these days. After reaching critical mass with my existing organizational system, I had a complete deconstruction of my space and then … well, then nothing. My beads sat in color-sorted piles for a month or two, until a particularly dramatic time-out session caused my son to smoosh everything into one giant pile. Since then, my beads have been in a box, my findings have been piled up on my workspace, and very little has come out of either (with the exception of some commissioned bridal pieces that I was honored to be asked to create). I’ve been seeking ideas and inspirations for redesigning my studio space into something more workable, but haven’t quite gotten the resources together. Although I sell my work, making jewelry is something I feel is a “me” project, and it’s hard for me to prioritize it over the other needs of home and family.

Still, I miss working. So last night, after fumbling through hundreds of tiny plastic bags, I decided to re-start small. It’s hard for me to put an entire necklace or larger piece together when I can’t see what I have to work with, but I can manage to match up a few stones into something pretty. Like earrings. I made citrine drops to match a necklace I already love and found two almost-perfectly-symmetrical faceted emeralds that needed very little help to become a stunning pair.  I also found a home for a single, random agate in the middle of a piece of leftover chain to make a very simple but striking necklace. (This sure would be a good place for a picture, huh? Coming soon …)

I’m so personally drawn to each of these that I’m not sure if they’ll end up in the store or not, but I do expect there to be more like them showing up soon as I make these small steps to get everything back in order.

Hey, look, it’s November!

•November 3, 2011 • Leave a Comment

The holidays are descending upon us like a fleet of FedEx pilots, so there’s no time like the present to start thinking about … well, presents. I’ll be participating in this year’s Tsunami Holiday Artist Market on November 27th, so I hope you’ll come by to check out the goods and support other local artists as well.

To make some space in the studio to prepare for that event (and fill up some space in my wallet as I stock up on supplies), I’m having a sale over on the Etsy store. Be sure to enter coupon code CLEANUP to get 20% off anything and everything currently listed. Ten previous listings were just reactivated, so there’s even more to choose from.

If you’re looking for something completely unique for that special person on your list, keep in mind that we love making custom pieces. With hundreds of gemstones to choose from, we can create jewelry that honors a birthday, anniversary, or any other meaningful date, or just represents the spirit and style of your lucky giftee.

Local Color

•July 29, 2011 • Leave a Comment

As much as I enjoy having the Etsy worldwide marketplace at my disposal, I can’t help noticing that most of my jewelry sales have occurred within ten miles of my home. With that – and the three-hour process of listing just a few new pieces online – in mind, I’m considering following the model of local artists like Melissa Bridgman and Elizabeth Alley and having myself an actual three-dimensional sale.

I’d love to hear some thoughts from y’all on the best way to do this. As a potential buyer, would you feel more comfortable going to an artist’s home or seeing the work somewhere more familiar, like a friend’s house? Would you be interested in seeing the materials available to design a custom piece? Would you consider hosting this type of event, and if so, would you prefer an open-house format or something a little more intimate and structured? Feel free to put your thoughts into the comments, or drop me a line.

In the meantime, you can take a look at the newest offerings over on Etsy, with some special peridot pieces for all the August birthdays out there …

Rosedrop Triple Strand Necklace


Trio Allegro Bracelet


Per of Pearls Bracelet


Per of Shells Earrings

And The Livin’ Is Easy

•June 13, 2011 • Leave a Comment

Ahh, summer break. Long days, lazy evenings, and weeks at a time with my beloved children enjoying interstate travel without me. It makes for some extra studio time, and some more ambitious design ideas. I hope you’ll like this week’s offerings …

Purple Reign Necklace

Marble Drop Earrings

Tara Necklace

Checkmate Necklace

Garnet Double-Loop Bracelet

Give It Away

•June 2, 2011 • Leave a Comment

There haven’t been a whole lot of new additions to the store lately, but there’s still been a lot of work going on in the There Was Eden studio. I’ve been making Mother’s Day and birthday gifts, and taking some time to work up pieces for my own use, including one of my new favorites, a necklace inspired by my birthstone and Chinese zodiac sign: an opal strand with a jade dragon pendant.

I’ve found that it’s a little hard for me to be inspired by pure commerce and that I get a lot more enjoyment out of the work when I have a specific person in mind. Last night’s studio time gave me the opportunity to make a commissioned piece for a Memphis friend (can’t say who or what, it’s still a surprise!) and to complete the project I promised to the winner of the first There Was Eden Facebook Giveaway. I asked contestants to submit the name of their favorite stone, and then used a magical computer randomizer to pick a lucky commenter who’d receive a pair of earrings inspired by their chosen stone. The big winner was Sundee Kuechle (say it with me: SUN-dee KEE-klee), who picked amber as her favorite.

One of the reasons I love Facebook is that it has brought me back in contact with people like Sundee, who was one of the first friends I made in Mrs. Malmberg’s class when my family moved back to Minnesota in 1986. We spent hours and hours in each other’s homes, playing, singing, reading, talking, dancing, and dressing up. Time and adolescence sent our paths on alternately diverging and bisecting routes, and even though we weren’t in constant contact, I always felt our friendship’s roots. Since being reconnected on Facebook, it’s been a pleasure to catch up on her life now and see that we still have so much in common.

So when I had a chance, after all this time and history, to make something on Sundee’s behalf, I was almost overwhelmed. Luckily, she gave me the best possible starting point. Amber is a perfect way to represent Sundee: warm, bubbly, sunny, natural. It’s not a stone I work with often, but her personality gave me a lot of inspiration. I’m very happy with the result and I was going to make a second pair to put in the Etsy store, but ultimately, I decided that a one-of-a-kind like Sundee should have a truly one-of-a-kind piece.    

Thanks for entering the contest, Sundee, and giving me the chance to call up so many happy memories. And happy 25th anniversary to our friendship!

Music To Your Ears

•April 28, 2011 • Leave a Comment

It was an all-earring, all-the-time studio night yesterday (not counting the new necklace I made for Kristy because I sold one of hers). I put a special focus on moms this week, and hope you’ll find something for a special mama in your life.

Mod Mix Earrings

Pretty in Pearl Earrings

Garnet Garland Earrings

Cerulean Swirl Earrings

Yo’ Mama

•April 27, 2011 • Leave a Comment

Mothers Day is extra-sneaky this year, what with May starting on a Sunday, but we here at TWE have you covered. Place an order between now and Sunday, May 1 and get FREE domestic priority shipping! Just use coupon code YOMAMA at check-out and the shipping fee will fly right off.

But wait, there’s more! If you don’t see just exactly the right thing in our shop, feel free to drop a line to discuss a custom order. We can adapt most of our existing pieces, create new items with similar colors, stones, or designs, or start totally fresh! Memphians willing to pick up their pieces in-person can place a custom order between now and Tuesday, May 3. Non-locals or anyone else wanting their order shipped have until the May 1 deadline for guaranteed Mother’s Day delivery.

Happy Mothers Day, y’all!

Return(ed) To Sender

•April 19, 2011 • Leave a Comment

If you’ve noticed that it’s been a bit quiet around here, you’re quite observant (and probably a little bored). As it turns out, last week’s studio night was stymied by a series of unfortunate shipping events, and it looks like this week’s will be, too, as I wait for a three-pound package to make its second trip from Oregon. Despite a pretty well-stocked stash of beads, it’s hard for me to get working when I know there are more supplies on the way. I fear finishing a piece and then, three days later, realizing that the perfect complementary bead has just arrived. Which is pretty silly, really. One of the things that’s so appealing to me about making jewelry is that you can almost always take something apart and re-do it without losing more than a dime’s-worth of supplies. If you’re willing to put in the time, anything is changeable. Which is a good thing for me to remember, in general.

In Bloom

•April 10, 2011 • Leave a Comment

During my last studio night, I created three very different necklaces. As I sat back and looked at the completed pieces, I couldn’t find any connecting thread between them. But the next time I went outside, I saw that everything fit together more than I’d consciously realized.

When we moved into our house, it was the first of February. We had no idea what was in store when the flowers and trees began to bud and blossom. Sometime in mid-March, however, our yard exploded in color. The pergola where we sat outdoors to read and talk and take our evening cocktails was practically smothered in purple wisteria. The snowball bush behind it was bursting with white. The Japanese maple between them sprouted beautiful dark red leaves.

This is now our third spring in this house, and the yearly cataclysm of color is no less inspiring, as you’ll see from the three pieces I made this week.

New Leaf Necklace


Snowdrop Necklace


Wisteria Double-Strand Necklace