Treasures for body and mind

30 September, 2012

Oh the Humanity...

Note to self- don't wear those new rings and to-die-for bracelet to church again.  Their beauty distracted me throughout the service.  Some jewels are like that...

Same day, different distraction...afterwards, my shirt's topmost button fell open and exposed my breasts to a new couple at church.  The wife brought it to my attention.  As I frantically put the girls away, she continued, "It doesn't matter.  My husband is blind."  

Wearing all of it out to dinner tonight.  Plus a safety pin.   


20 September, 2012

A Taste- But We Have to Wait for 14 December

Check out the new Hobbit trailer....  Hobbit Trailer

"Three Rings for the Elven-kings under the sky,
Seven for the dwarf-lords in their halls of stone,
Nine for Mortal Men doomed to die,
One for the Dark Lord on his dark throne,
In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.
One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them,
One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them
In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie."

In fairness, The Hobbit is about a reclamation of homeland and treasure, not the sacrifice of self for world.  The Arkenstone, or The Heart of the Mountain, is Thorin's heart's desire in The Hobbit. Can't wait to see it.
****Sorry- the link has been closed.  Sorry all.****

Navajo Jewels- for $500

Here's a recommendation for a $500 splurge! 

Isaiah Ortiz hand carved these geometric, futuristic earrings from silver blocks.  An award artist with international following, Mr. Ortiz continues the family tradition of silver smithing by making contemporary pieces. 

The Silver Plume Gallery

Sedona Indian Jewelry

The first sight of Mr. Ortiz' bracelets will make your knees weak...

Sedona Indian Jewelry

19 September, 2012

What Would You Buy For $500?

InStyle, my favorite fashion magazine, polled its readers, the majority of whom said that said that, if they were to suddenly have $500 for jewelry, they would spend it on a major item instead of a bunch of cheaper trinkets.  That got me thinking- what can $500 buy?  Stay tuned for the answers...and if you have any suggestions, post them, and let's all take a look!

The first item is...Ylang23 has a limited edition charm by Todd Reed for $480.  Made of 18 karat gold, sterling silver, and three tiny, rough diamonds, it measures little more than a half an inch across- perfect for a dainty necklace or a charm bracelet.  It is the least expensive Todd Reed piece you will ever see, and the proceeds for its sale go to charity, celebrating Ylang23's 25 year anniversary. 

Ylang23 Todd Reed charm

18 September, 2012

Shout Out!

Yesterday, a young woman at the grocery store was wearing a Heart of the Ocean necklace with jeans and a graphic t-shirt.  The crystals flashed a zillion rainbows, and it was a jawdroppingly beautiful piece of flash.  She obviously loved her necklace, and she ROCKED it.  I'd have taken her picture, but she was a little shy of the stranger (me) who stopped to tell her she was doing it right!  Her happiness and sparkle made her look better than Kate Winslet.     

Kate Winslet in Titanic
BTW- the Heart of the Ocean is a fictional stone made up for the movie.  After the movie, Asprey and Garrard made a saphire and diamond version, and Harry Winston made a Heart of the Ocean with a blue diamond unlike the movie's necklace.  Ms. Gloria Stuart, who played the older Rose in Titanic, wore it to the Oscars when she was nominated for best supporting actress.

Gloria Stuart wearing Harry Winston's Heart of the Ocean with a blue diamond.

17 September, 2012

Lost Summer

Gentle Reader, thank you for your continued patience.  This has been a busy, transitional summer. My eldest prepared for and went to university at Virginia Tech.  My youngest went to summer camp, adapted to being an only child, and began junior high.  My wonderful man had unexpectedly dramatic minor surgery that shut down a month.  We have not been to the beach.  We have not been to the pool.  We've sailed and kayaked locally because we have not left the area except to prepare for college and go to the mountains over one weekend.  I've swivelled my attention from my job to retiring; the process is more like dealing with a cancer than ripping off a band aid.  I'm in the resume, job hunting process and started my final Graduate Gemology class.  This summer was lost...but I am finding myself laughing again.  It promises to be an exciting fall!

In honor of this transitional season, I offer summer/fall transitional colors.  I've just discovered Iradj Moini, and my inner magpie is blown away.  His motto seems to be "Go Big or Go Home."  I'm in love.

Aquamarine, moonstone, and citrine

Citrine, emerald, and turquoise since more is more.
That slurping sound is me drooling; I'm dehydrating. 

16 September, 2012

Riots in the Middle East

The world is at the table of ideas like it never has been before. That's the good thing.  The bad thing is that violent incidents like this week's riots and terrorist attacks will continue until the world is free from those who leverage religious belief for their political gain. That will only come with more free speech, not less.  In the meantime, we shouldn't hate Islam, Muslims, Jews, bad movies, peaceful purveyors of bad ideas, or free speech.  Save that for those who use violence to respond to ideas they dislike.         

14 September, 2012

Back In Black! (You Knew That Title Was Coming...)

For Black Friday, the last two items in the bejeweled back series...   

Are these fallen stars worn by a space princess or a noose and barbed wire?  Mandy Wu's compelling piece confounds and alarms at multiple levels.  

As different as day is to night, Alexa Leigh's sweet rhodium and diamond chain will decorate your front and the back simultaneously, sparkling coming and going, attracting attention to the nape of your neck and the delicate ringlets at your hair line.  

Hopefully, this week's obsession helped you rethink the jewels in your collection.  Tie your opera- length beads into a knot and drop them down your back, suspend a pendant between your shoulder blades, hang a chain where no chain has gone before.  If you like the results, send me a photo at, and I'll post it later.    

13 September, 2012

Back Again!

And here are enough necklaces and brooches (and the one by Arianna Cerrito is both) to last a week.  Look at how different they are from each other!    

Anna Molinari



Theresa Brar

Zorah Rahman

Ivana Spoljaricpravinakit

Arianna Cerrito

12 September, 2012

Back to the Obvious

Most harnesses and body chains lack subtlety and style- they are oversexed and tacky.  

However, Cornelia Webb's harness of silver and pearls, seriously accentuates the sweep of the back and the shoulders.  Completely appropriate for public wear, it scandalously hints rather than screams.

Cornelia Webb
Ware's beautiful jewelry slyly approximates an angel's wings; this is a harness  of necessity- the wings have to stay on somehow.  
Designs by Sonia's necklace approaches the same vibe from the opposite direction- it is NOT a harness.  Don't go there.  Seriously- get your mind out of the gutter.

Designs by Sonia

11 September, 2012

September 11


Please pray for the families of those who lost loved ones in NYC, Pennsylvania, and Washington D.C. on September 11 in 2001.

Please pray for the service members, CIA, FBI, police, members of the public, and all others who served and are serving, protecting the United States from further attacks. 

Please explain to your children why September 11 is important- they did not see the planes slam into the Twin Towers, and pray for our unity as a nation to defeat those who want to hurt America and Americans.  

Please be kind to each other in remembrance of the kindness of strangers during our grief.  

10 September, 2012

Looking Back ...Looking Forward

The back bejeweled is subversively erotic.  Nothing is censorious.  Skin and muscles offset metal and stone, inviting sensory exploration.  Naked skin is not necessary; a clothed, bejeweled back decorates and calls attention to a normally unnoticed portion of the body, like being let in on a secret.   

This week celebrates the decorated back, from juxtaposing backs for fronts to sell jewelry to "conventional" back jewelry, like harnesses or vertebrae, to those pieces that rethink the back's space with brooches or necklaces to leave an  impression going as well as coming. 

Today it is about the back standing in for the front...


Africa Rich

Dreams of Norway
Kitten Hawk


Michelle Oh
Pipe Dreams

Rene Walrus


07 September, 2012

Black Friday

An old, sweet bangle... a circa 1868 Austro-Hungarian black enamel and silver bangle,  elaborately engraved.  The engraving on the inside reads: "Herbert Beaumont Leadam - Dec. 5. 1868 - Of such is the kingdom of Heaven."  Wear it and remember Herbert and whoever it was that wanted to keep his remembrance close. 

02 September, 2012

A Tale of Passion

I have a passionate relationship with Bogetta Veneta...usually passionately angry.  Grossly overpriced and invariably inaccurately marketed, Bog V rakes in the cash misrepresenting its jewelry in a way that would put a small jeweler out of business.  That makes me crazy!  And the prices Bog V charges...whew!

So imagine my embarrassment when I fell madly in lust with this necklace.  I love this piece!  It makes me swoon with desire.  The big stones, the in-your-face outrageousness ("Of course it's fake- duh!"), the pop-in-your-mouth color- love it all.
I don't love the price, a whopping $2,000 for silver and CZ.  Snort! As if!  And Bog V did not change; it markets the CZ stones as zircon.  Danger signs all over the place, as there always are with Bog V.  Sigh.   

But I love this necklace enough to look for something reasonably priced like it.  I do not support buying knock-offs; that is taking money out of someone's pocket.  Usually artists who develop jewelry charge higher prices for better items.  To illustrate this point, I recommend you  read about Wendy Brandes' ongoing issue with Top Shop.  Top Shop stole her swear rings idea and design, selling cheap junk after her initial risk, capital investment, and marketing. Click on the link to her blog on the right if you want to follow the ongoing issue OR order the real deal from Ms. Brandes.

ANYWAY- September's InStyle, like a fairy godmother, showed me the necklace of my dreams.  R.J. Graziano's necklace is not a rip off clone, but something similar that feeds  my lust for sparkling, colorific, "duh!" inducing bling without making me feel broke and stupid.  It's on the web from $110 to $45 or you can call the company at 212-685-3737.  I can get two, and still feel smart.  It's like discovering Bog V's gorgeous necklace has a smarter, kinder brother who wants a healthy relationship.  Beautiful sparkle and money in my pocket!  Sweet!    

Ebay!  Cool!
Bog V... we knew this would never work between the two of us.  Thank you for helping me grow and mature as a jewelry fiend but I'm taking R.J. home.