Summer is Fiesta time

When summer roles around, I enjoy creating my “Fiesta” line in which I incorporate as many brightly-colored, fun gemstones as I can find.  The colors just scream summer to me.  When wardrobes get more basic due to the heat, my accessories stand in the gap and brighten things up!

Of course turquoise is a favorite all year, but it sure says “summer,” doesn’t it?  Added into the mix are coral, amethyst, lapis, chrysocolla, jades, and every other bold, brightly-colored stone I come across.  I mix in some fabulous Hill Tribes Silver, and they are ready to “fiesta!”

We don’t have a lot of parties planned for the summer so far.  I’m hoping that some spontaneous ones pop up for us.  Memorial Day weekend is the kick-off of a season of outdoor fun, and there always seems to be lots of get-togethers on the calendar from now on.  Until the invitations come, I will continue to be ready for the party with my jewelry!

 

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My Claim To Fame

May 26, 2008

The View Mug

In the Fall of 2006, a local woman was going to be visiting her friend in New York. This friend just happened to be a producer on “The View.”  Since this woman was going to attend a taping of the show, she brought along gifts for her producer friend and for the hosts.  One of her objectives was to get some autographed pieces donated for the Menominee Animal Shelter auction.  Since the goal was to help the Shelter, and knowing that the ladies were all animal lovers, she decided to bring a set of my “Paws and Bones” jewelry line to each of the hosts of the show.   In return, I received a mug, signed by the ladies, which I am very proud of!
I don’t know if Barbara, Joy, or the others ever wore their gifts.  I like to imagine that they did.  But even if they didn’t, it doesn’t matter, because they made the journey.  And I have a fun story to tell…my little claim to fame. 

Today was cool!  I had an assignment for one of my classes to investigate myself on the Internet.  When I google my name, nothing. I guess I don’t exist.  I will blame this on taking my maiden name back after the divorce last year instead of taking it personally.  But when I typed in Sweet Annie’s Jewelry, the #1 Google result out of over 600,000 was my press release for the grant I won from Urban Hope for my business plan.  The second result was this blog.  Yea me!  I don’t know if this will ever happen again that I’m #’s one and two on Google, but it was cool to see…especially after not having any hits I could find for my name.  I don’t know how their whole rating system goes, but I still got a rush from seeing it.  Too bad my website isn’t fully-functioning yet.  Getting to the webdesigners place and getting it finished is a priority for me after the school term ends this coming Friday.

Sweet Annie’s Jewelry exists in the world!  Now I have to find a way to make me personally exist, too…at least on Google.

 

Amethyst

 

This week I was involved in an event called a Celebration of the Arts at Wausaukee High School in Wisconsin.  I was invited along with a group of other artists to give presentations throughout the day at their school, which includes all grade levels K-12.  The dance academy from my town was there, as was a professional musical piano team, paid for with multiple fund-raisers.  Class by class the kids came through and were shown by us what we do, how we started, and they were given an opportunity to ask questions and see us demonstrate what we do.

I was so pleased by the interest of the kids.  Girls, boys, younger, older…it didn’t matter, they were all great to spend time with.  I made tons of earrings and gave away a lot of beads!

At the end of the day, when I was hauling my stuff back to my van, a girl who had hung around with me during the afternoon offered to help carry things for me.  While we were walking out, she told me that the schools art and band program were both being cut for next year.  I shared that it is being considered at our school, also.

What is happening to our world when the arts don’t matter anymore?  I feel so badly for the students that will never know the fun of marching with the band during halftime, or having their artwork hanging on the walls of the art room at school.  What about the joy of smearing paint around?  I still love it – give me some acrylics and a pallette knife and I’m a happy woman!

I am sad for the kids who are currently in schools like these all over the country and for the ones who will never know these programs in our towns.  Being an artist is who I am, and learning to make music was one of the greatest gifts of my life.  I’ve been delighted to be able to allow my children to experience making music, also.  At least I have been up to now.  While my kids will still be in an artistic and musical home, what about the ones that don’t have exposure to things like this outside of the schools? 

 

Italian Fantasy

One of the most difficult aspects for me in being a jewelry designer is the business aspect. While marketing ideas come easily, and I enjoy this part, the nuts and bolts stuff doesn’t.  As an artist, I have a more free-flowing mentality, so a really structured work day does not suit me.  However, as a single mom, college student, businesswoman and etc., I have to have some structure in my life. And now that I got a part time job to help out with extra expenses that have been cropping up, getting better organized is absolutely imperative.

I”ve been reading more about getting organized ( again, LOVE the concept, but I’m really easily-distracted from the task!), marketing my website, improving my blog, social networking and in general just really overwhelming myself.  Last night I went to bed thinking “Forget all the rest of this stuff…I just want to make jewelry!”  But here the vicious circle comes in.  In order to make more jewelry, I need to sell jewelry to afford to buy the beads I crave.  I could not possibly wear all the jewelry that I want to make.  There are people who want my jewelry and keep me making it. It seems foolish not to pursue something that I love that can also provide an income stream.

Creative time, or non-structured time, is some of my most productive.  Unfortunately, sometimes it’s 10:00 p.m.  Or 2:00 a.m. It can happen anytime of the day, and it’s not easily scheduled in.  Sometimes when I have the mindset of “I have to make jewelry” I can sit at my table and nothing works.  Nothing apeals to me.  I start things and hate them.  Or I break crimps, drop beads, and just mess things up.  So this time tends to be a total waste. 

So, can a creative, non-structure lover like me create a life where there is enough structure to keep all the balls in the air, yet provide enough creative time to just it happen?  I can’t fit into a cookie cutter system someone else creates, but my old way of doing things just isn’t working as well as it needs to .  So I will be attempting to re-arrange my life in a way that works better.  Is it possible? Check back in to see how things progress..

 

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