Friday, August 27, 2010

what inspires me.....

I have been  working every possible moment I have in my studio these days preparing for the fall shows.  I have a trunk show in October and The Best of Missouri Hands show in November (more details to follow).  So I need a lot of beautiful things to sell, especially jewelry (as opposed to Judaica). 

What inspires me?  Well, my approach to designing jewelry in very different than Judaica.  For jewelry, I have to go back to my roots.

First, I research.  I look at everything!  I see what the metal clay artists are up to.  Most of this research is on the web.  I look at artists I admire and also those I don't.  I want to see what everyone is excited about creating.  I get ideas about trends in style as well as technique.  Maybe a new way to add a bail to a pendent.  Of course, I never copy, but use my own style to interpret the technique.  I always take a look at my old metal clay technique books too.  Sometimes something old looks new again.  That's also why I go through my old sketch books.  I interpreted my old wire wrapped designs into metal clay!

Now it's time to research the fashion trends.  I was a knitwear and sportswear designer for years so I am very interested in fashion.  I'd like to think my jewelry is timeless design, but I can't help to make designs that relate to whats in.  It's just fun for me.  So I look at sportswear, couture as well as accessory and jewelry trends.  My favorite places for high end jewelry designs, Barneys New York!  For real trendy, young jewelry you have to check out Urban Outfitters, (of course it may fall apart by the time you get home). Ideas can come for high and low end, so I look everywhere.

Finally, I always take some time to design for me.  It may sound silly, but some of my best sellers have come from this approach.  I just bought a new dress for the Jewish holidays.  It's a solid purple Susan Monaco,  from my favorite boutique in town Essential Elements.  The dress is understated, so its perfect for jewelry. I designed these link chandeliers to wear with it.  I think that a necklace with the earrings would be way too much, but lots of chunky silver link bracelets will look great! Stay tuned for these to show up in my fall collection.

I never make jewelry that I myself wouldn't wear.  I've tried to honor a customers request when I didn't like the idea and I am always disappointed with the result.  So trend or not, if I don't like it, it's not going to happen for rachels things.

Well, I better get back to the studio, I have a lot of work to do.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

I'm featured on a metal clay blog

Check out
My whimsical house mezuzah is featured on this blog.  It's so cool to see my work accepted into the metal clay artist community.  I have admired the work of so many of these artists on these blogs and to be featured with them is a great honor.

setting goals

How do you work?  I like to set goals for myself.  Some goals are clearly not ones I will realistically be able to accomplish but I set them anyway.  Having a goal gets me on a schedule and gives me the drive I need to complete work.

I have a big show coming up in in November.  For a show you need enough work to make a nice display and give customers a chance to browse and select.  I recently purchased a large iron earring display which holds 75 pairs of earrings.  So the goal is to have at least 65 pairs available for sale.  And, I would love for them all to be different from each other....but that is the unrealistic part!  If I can have all my pieces for the show completed by the end of September then I will have the month of October to organize and style the display.

I have about 40 pairs of earrings completed, 15 more in clay state, drying and then off to the kiln, and 10 more to complete this weekend.   After the earrings, I will make more necklaces and bracelets.....but they take a lot longer to make!

Friday, August 6, 2010

so many houses for sale......

Yes, it's a buyers market, there are so many houses for sale in my neighborhood.  But these are different kinds of houses.  They are my handmade, one of a kind, tiny fine silver pendent necklaces, which depict some pretty special fantasy buildings.  Check out the new varieties in my ETSY store.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

mezuzah project-july

OK, I know it's Auguat 1st, but last month was crazy.  I won't go into the gory details, but I was really out of it for most of the month.  Let's just say that I wasn't physicaly able to produce any work, so the mezuzah for the month is debuting a little late.
I am vey very proud of this mezuzah. I actualy started working on it in June and I spent more time on this piece then any other.  The mezuzah is an art piece which depicts a whimsical house with a front stoop, tree, and hanging swing.  As with many of my designs it is meant to be hung indoors as there are cut out windows. The mezuzah probably not like any other you have every seen, and like all my designs is made individually by hand is is one of a kind. 
You can find this mezuzah for sale, as well as others, at my etsy store.