Welcome To My World

Just living is not enough. One must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower. ~Hans Christian Anderson

Life's Best Recipe for Success


Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving

"Tonya Davidson is an artist, entrepreneur, coach and mentor. She helps other artists better their techniques and business skills by empowering them to live creatively from the inside out. Her ezine goes out to over 11,000 subscribers. If you want to learn to create a life you love, sign up for a FREE subscription at http://wholelottawhimsy.com. Be sure to check out her blog at www.tonyadavidson.com for more articles like this one."

Thank you Tonya for sharing your very special words with us this holiday season.

Five Ways to Make Gratitude a Part of Your Everyday Life

I just love Thanksgiving. It's my favorite holiday. I love thinking about all the things I am blessed to have in my life. I find myself pinching myself. How could I be this blessed! However, I must admit that I am filled with more joy when I participate in a weekly thanksgiving. So I'd like to share my tips.

1) A Gratitude Bowl

Pick a beautiful bowl in a central part of your home that can be used as a receptacle. Cut up small pieces of paper and place near the bowl with a pen. Every time you walk by it, write down something you are grateful for.

It's a snowball effect. The more gratitude you express the more aware of other blessings you will become. Then more blessings will come as you are attracting them with your gratitude vibrations.

When the bowl is full, make an offering if you'd like, by burning them in the fireplace. This way you make room for more blessings.

2) Carry a Tiny Notebook

Jot down any idea, thought, quote or creative spark that comes your way throughout the day. As you open yourself and become receptive to blessings, more and more will come. Give thanks as you write these ideas and thoughts down and acknowledge their presence in your life.

3) Exercise your Creativity

By performing an act of creativity you are expressing gratitude for your gifts and talents. You are welcoming a habit of being creative and giving attention to your genius. Energy flows where attention goes.

4) Weekly Summit (Sunday Summit)

Once a week write down 30 things you are grateful for. They can be tiny or substantial. No matter the week you've had or your doubt, you'll be blown away by how blessed you are after recounting them. This exercise gets easier and easier every week with practice. Plus it gives you 5 or 10 minutes to sit quickly, reflect and meditate on your week.

5) Express your Gratitude Verbally

Every chance you get, tell someone or something (dogs, trees, flowers, etc) how much you are grateful and blessed for them. I stop those in military uniform, I write notes to wait staff, I waive and mouth thanks to the person that lets me into traffic in my car, the person that holds open the door for me, the lady at the post office, etc. It makes it real when you verbalize it. It rubs off on others. My 15 year old is possibly the most polite person I know. Parents and coaches tell me this all the time. We didn't instruct him to say thank you to everyone, he just does it, because we do it. It's infectious.

Join Tonya on Facebook and take the 7-Day Gratitude Challenge. Go to her home page, copy and paste the challenge into your home page and post your gratitude!

I love these facts about Thanksgiving:

102 brave people set out in 1620 to cross treacherous seas for 66 days in search of freedom. (Thank you for being so brave to seek religious freedom)

The pilgrims were befriended, when they needed it most, by Squanto, a Pawtuxet indian, how to cultivate corn, extract sap, catch fish and avoid poisonous plants. (Thank you for reaching out and helping the settlers).

Govenor Bradford wanted to celebrate the pilgrims first corn harvest and invited the Native American allies to join them in a food fest for 3 days

George Washington issued the first Thanksgiving proclamation which was repeated on one or more occasions by other presidents

Sarah Josepha Hale campaigned for a national holiday for 36 years by publishing numerous editorials and letters to govenors, senators, presidents and other politicians (Thank you for your efforts over 36 years and not giving up on this national holiday)

Abraham Lincoln heeded her request and in 1863 made it a national holiday

I realize that there is controversy with every historical accounting. As a native american myself, I understand that this wasn't a rosy picture of pure love and joy between the settlers and natives. However, if it makes us stop and reflect on the things we are grateful for, I'm all for it!

Thanks Tonya!!!

Friday, October 1, 2010

A Bit on Pricing

Last week, Jess of http://www.rosyrevolver.com/, asked some of us if we would participate in a blog discussing the issue of pricing our jewelry.  It seems that everyone was in agreement that this is the most difficult part of selling, especially in today's market.  The following is a great article in a newletter written by jewelry artist Eni Oken.

Everything she says, was reiterated in the blogs on this subject written by
these artists:  Check them out for their input at their respective blogs or go to http://www.rosyrevolver.com/  for some great reading!!

Nova of Sweden

Alice Istanbul Designs (that post coming soon)

Sissy & Jack's (post coming soon)

Bella-Bijou Jewelry

Blue Piranha

Devine Designs Jewelry

You may also be interested in a nifty downloadable jewelry pricing tool invented by jewelry artist Eni Oken - the Jewelry Price Calculator for Excel.
http://www.enioken.com/ or http://www.jewelrylessons.com/

Important Elements of a
Jewelry Pricing Formula

In my opinion, using a jewelry pricing formula is just the first step in arriving at the final price of a piece of jewelry.

First, I use a calculation to determine a base price that ensures I won't be selling the piece at a loss.

Then, once I've determined that base price, I adjust the final retail price to more accurately reflect the value of the piece to my particular market.

The key is to be sure that any jewelry pricing formula you use compensates you for
your supplies

your overhead expenses

your time.

The Second Step in My
Jewelry Pricing Formula

After using my formula, I add an important second step: Adjust the resulting price to reflect:

the overall outcome of the finished piece

how easily I could replace all of the elements in the piece if I wanted to make a similar item

what I believe people in my target market would be willing to pay.

Of course, these three points are mainly subjective, and require a bit of experience with your intended market. But I know I can't drop the final retail price below the base price the formula gave me, without losing money on the sale.

My Jewelry Base-Price Formula

It's a simple equation:

Base price =

(cost of materials + packaging) x 4
+ your pro-rated hourly labor rate

then + 10% of that total for overhead costs.

An Example of Using My Formula:

For this example, let's say that:

you made a necklace using $5 of supplies

your packaging (tag, box, bow, bag, and business card) for this piece totals $1

the necklace took you 30 minutes to make

your hourly labor rate is $20 (of course, your own labor rate may be much different, depending on your medium, your speed, and your skill level).

Now let's calculate:

1.First, figure out your pro-rated labor cost:

Your 30 minutes of labor equals half an hour. So half of your $20 hourly labor rate equals $10 of labor on this necklace.

2.Next, add up your cost of materials:

$5 of jewelry supplies + $1 of packaging = $6 subtotal.

3.Now multiply your total cost of materials by 4:

$6 x 4 = $24.

4.Then add your pro-rated labor rate to that:

$24 + $10 = $34.

5.Now figure your overhead, which is 10% of that:

$34 x .10 = $3.40

6.Finally, add the overhead to our $34 subtotal:

$34 + $3.40 = $37.40.

7.Our base price for the necklace is $37.40, which we'll round off to $37.

That means we can't price the necklace below $37 without losing money on it. Now we can adjust that retail price up a little or a lot - depending on the uniqueness and overall outcome of the necklace, how easily we could replace the components if we wanted to, and how much our intended market would be willing to pay.

Does That Seem Like
a Big Markup to You?

Many jewelry artists price their work by simply doubling the cost of their supplies - charging $10 for that necklace made from $5 of jewelry supplies. Unfortunately, it's impossible to have a profitable business with that kind of pricing. It doesn't cover all of your costs.

When you sell your jewelry, you need to be paid for the time, effort and craftsmanship you put into all the various aspects of your jewelry business, plus the cost of all of your overhead expenses, if you want to stay in business.

Your overhead expenses include things like your jewelry business website fees, jewelry displays, tools, insurance, merchant account fees for accepting credit cards, receipt books, digital camera (and its batteries) for photographing your work, jewelry magazines, workshops, etc.

If you're in business, your jewelry has to pay for all of those expenses as well as your jewelry making supplies.

And after all the expenses are paid for, you'd like to have a little left over to pay yourself too.

That's what I like about my jewelry pricing formula - by finding the base price, I know I'm not losing money when I sell my jewelry; and the final price more accurately reflects what the piece is worth to its buyer.

Why Multiply x4 in This Formula?

Thanks for asking!

Multiplying your cost of materials + packaging x 4 in my jewelry pricing formula sets your retail price high enough so that if you sell your pieces at wholesale or on consignment to a shop, you'll still make a profit.

Wholesale and consignment prices are typically 50% to 60% of your retail price. So the $37 retail-priced bracelet in this example would be wholesale-priced at $18.50.

The shop owner who buys it from you at wholesale would then turn around and retail-price the bracelet at $37, and sell it to a customer who comes into the shop.

Your $18.50 wholesale price gives you a much smaller profit margin on your bracelet. So wholesale pricing usually requires the shop owner to purchase a minimum quantity of 6, 10, 12, (or however many) items at a time.

When you make and sell multiples of an item, your manufacturing and selling costs are lower, and you make up for the smaller per-item profit by selling more items at a time.

In contrast, when you're selling jewelry pieces one or two at a time to individual customers (at shows, home parties, etc.), you'll need to charge retail pricing to stay in business.

That extra money you receive when you sell your bracelet to a customer yourself (retail-priced at $37) gets eaten into quickly by booth fees, party hostess incentives, travel expenses, wear and tear on your displays, and other costs of selling directly to the public.

So multiplying your cost of materials + packaging x4 gives you the minimum retail price you can charge without losing money.

It also clues you in to the minimum wholesale price (usually half of your retail price) you can charge without losing money when you sell your jewelry to shops or other wholesale buyers.

This article is reprinted from Eni Oken's newsletter.

This is a ton of information and you need to weigh all of the options and choose which one works for you - just don't underprice yourself and others.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Autumn Leaves Jewelry Drawing

 My friend Carolyn--AutumnLeavesJewelry.com--is having a drawing to give away a fantabulous ring. I'm joining the contest and I hope to be the proud owner of another one of her beautiful pieces soon! Visit her Web site to see how to enter the drawing.

http://www.AutumnLeavesJewelry.etsy.com/ or http://www.carolynartist.blogspot.com/

 Love you Care:O)

Friday, September 17, 2010

The Greatest Give-A-Way ever

A Red Creek Jasper Necklace.
Sterling Silver, filigree.

Dapped and textured chains.



Check out this wonderful, generous give-a-way on the following blog:

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Todays Sneak Preview

Copper and Turquoise Shelf Necklace

This necklace was so much fun to make.  It is all handmade by me with the exception of the chain, of course.  I used beautiful chocolate/copper stick pearls, hand formed copper dangles, gorgeous chunks of turquoise and miscellaneous charms.  The base of the necklace is like a bookshelf, hence the name.  I hand sawed and forged the piece of copper into this shape and I love it.  The chain has one piece of hand forged copper wire formed into a circle with a sterling silver dot on top near the base.  The necklace hangs approximately 18 inches long.  I've worn this piece a few times and everyone stops to look and rave about it.  I will be making more but each one will have its own personality as they are all one of a kind.  Look for this piece soon in my etsy shop!!
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Sunday, September 5, 2010

Etching, Etching, Etching

A fun, funky ring

 Free hand drawings on metal

The fruits of our labor

My good friend, Madeline, and I have been working like crazy all week on our metal etching. We have been invited to do a trunk show the weekend before Thanksgiving in Tucson, AZ. We are very flattered indeed, however, it takes a large inventory to put on a good show and we are off and running - or etching as the case may be. My pictures don't do our work justice but for the moment it's the best we have. It has been both gratifying and frustrating to work with metal etching. It is a very labor intensive process. We are working with chemicals that require special attention to dispose of, to say nothing of the mess involved!! We've been through several pairs of rubber gloves and rolls of paper towels since this little venture began and we aren't through yet. Aside from all of the cons, there are lots of pros which make it all worth the extra effort. I hope you enjoy the pictures and there will be more soon.

Thanks for stopping by for a peek. I truly love sharing my thoughts and words with you and hope you will leave me a little comment or two once in awhile. Have a great week and take tomorrow off - it's Labor Day!!

Make the most of yourself, for that is all there is of you - Ralph Waldo Emerson
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Monday, August 30, 2010

What a Beautiful Site!!

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Who would have thought that we would become so attached to our electronics that we would become unable to communicate without them. My cell phone battery died yesterday and I went to charge it and guess what - I couldn't locate my charger.....oh my. We have no land line up here in Pinetop so without my cell phone, I am unable be in contact with the outside world (unless Of course, I choose to get in my car and drive somewhere, which was not an option because I have tons of work to do here at the house). I emailed John, who is in Green Valley for a few days and asked him to bring my back up charger with him when he returns to the mtns today. I spent hours searching my purse, suitcase, grocery bags, drawers, and any other place I think the little wanderer might be. I KNOW I am much too responsible to have left it at my brother's house last week while visiting Santa Fe.......right!! Oh well, I finally resolve myself to the fact that it really doesn't matter because if there is an emergency, John can call a neighbor to contact me and I go on with my life. I actually became accustomed to not strapping it to my hip everytime I took a step because, God forbid I would miss a call while attending to other duties. Ever onward I say.....John will be here in a few hours and all will be right again. I decided to attend to the laundry in between etching silver and cleaning my studio.....I'm unloading the laundry shute (or is it shoot or chute?) and guess what to my wandering eyes would appear - you got it.....the missing phone charger. I just stood there and smiled for a minute, knowing full well that it would appear eventually, just not sure where or when. So - the great charger mystery is solved and life is back to normal - whatever that is!! Just one more of life's little adventures and so now it is comfortably resting in it's little space and charging up for another day.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

The Wind Beneath My Wings: Bette Midler Live in 2008

Beautiful day at home today and I thought this was a perfect way to tie it all up. Dedicated to my best friend and spouse.....you are the wind beneath my wings for sure:O) Love you.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

More Santa Fe "stuff"

Today was so much fun. Sandy and I toured the fabulous Georgia O'Keeffe Museum here in Santa Fe. What a great artist she was and definately ahead of her time.

I am brain dead right now and need to get to bed so I am alert for my trip back to Pinetop tomorrow. I will fill you in on the details of today's escapades later. Thanks so much for dropping by.

The 100th person to sign up as a follower of this blog will receive a gorgeous pair of copper, etched earrings. Picture to follow so sign up now and tell all of your friends:O)

Please leave me a comment if you read my blog so that it won't be a monologue:O)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Blogger Buzz: Show off your Followers

Blogger Buzz: Show off your Followers

August 23, 2010


Sadly, our fun, family filled weekend has come to an end and we are on our way back to Santa Fe. What a great gathering or two we enjoyed these last few days. The weather was unbelievably gorgeous. The sun was shining the entire time. We were invited to participate in a celebration of marriage of our cousin, Carolyn Sylvester and Don Bolton. The event was held at their lovely home atop the highest mountain in Pine, CO. They have a 360 degree view of nothing but beauty-WOW. It is a challenge in the wintertime but I'm sure it is worth every effort it takes to keep it going.

Next, we had a blast at my great nephew's 1st birthday party. His Mom worked herself to the bone creating the cutest birthday cake I've ever seen!! I'll be posting pictures of all of this when I get home. Again, I re-connected with family that I haven't seen in many years. I miss the days when families lived in the same town and you could run up the street to grandma's house and she would always have a cup of chocolate milk and a donut waiting for you. Actually, the donut shop was on the corner just one block from her home and when we were old enough, we could walk to the shop and pick out our own donuts. When I would attend church with her, she would always take me for a nice walk to the local hotel coffee shop and we would enjoy our time together, she with her coffee and me with my chocolate milk and donut.....Oh, how I miss those special moments. My other grandma lived next door to her (remember, everyone lived in the same town) and I loved to visit her as well. She had a very large conch shell that sat on top of her bookcase. Whenever I visited her, I immediately ran to pick up that shell and listen to the ocean play in my ears, I miss not having my family nearby but life does go on doesn't it???

Ok, back to reality, We just enjoyed lunch at the Dog Bar & Grill in Cuchara, Co. It is really quaint and definitely worth the trip off the freeway and traffic where everyone is in a big hurry to go who knows where. It kind of reminds me of Cheers where people take the time to talk and be friendly to each other. We ended up here because Sandy and I wanted to check out LaVeta, CO where one of our favorite quilters lives and films a television quilting series-Ricky Tims. We are a bit confused right now because upon arriving at our destination, it looks like his shop is closed up. As soon as we can receive wireless internet I will be checking on this. At any rate, it turned out great because we've been able to enjoy a wonderful drive through the mountains and had a great burger for lunch. All's well that ends well, right!!

It is beginning to rain a drop or two as we continue on our journey so I will sign off for now. Life is good so enjoy the journey!!

Oh, I almost forgot. My blog title, Meditate and Motivate came to me from the latest edition of O Magazine. She has pages of great information on self improvement and motivation – check it out.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Colorado Rockies

On The Road Again....Again

Enjoyed a beautiful day Thursday running errands in and around Santa Fe.....I LOVE this town. Sandy and I took Kitty to the vet for some repair work and she will stay there until we return on Tuesday. She broke a tooth and they need to remove it – animals are expensive to maintain but their unsolicited love in return is worth the price I guess.

We left bright and early today for Denver. 8:30 am is bright and early in my book, although I'd been up and functioning since 5:00 am.. Ask anyone who knows me and they will tell you that I am NOT a morning person. I am a night owl and can work way into the wee hours of the morning with no trouble – until I try to get up in a few hours:O). I always have trouble sleeping the night before any trip for fear that I won't be ready in time. You know how it is....the car is packed the night before, the purse is sitting by the bag of snacks right next to the garage door (inside door of course:O}) and a million things run in and out of your brain all night long. Finally, we drive out of the neighborhood and I fall asleep – no, I'm not the driver on this leg of the trip!!

We just passed through Pueblo, CO so it won't be too much longer before we reach our destination. I think Colorado is so beautiful with her majestic mountains and bright blue skies. My father was transferred from Idaho to Colorado the year I graduated from high school in 1962. I lived in Lakewood, a suburb of Denver, for 2 years. I met my husband, John, at the Air Force Academy in 1963 and we were married in 1964. We enjoyed a wonderful career in the Air Force until his retirement in 1993. Enough about me for now but coming back to Colorado sure brings back some vivid memories of days gone by.

I've been busy lately working on some new designs in copper. It seems like recently, with the cost of silver escalating, that more and more artists are turning to copper as their metal of choice. I have always been fond of copper and have used it in my creations for years – nice that now it is finally becoming popular. My friend, Madeline, and I are working feverishly to prepare an inventory for a trunk show we have been invited to do in November. I am very excited and will keep you posted on our progress. We have been busy etching LOTS of metal and now need to put it all together. Very fun!!

I'll upload some pictures when I return home next week. In the meantime – you all have a great weekend and always remember.......................a smile is worth a thousand words!!!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Gathering Momentum

Hello out there in blogger land - I have something very special to share with you today and I hope you enjoy...

I subscribe to Whole Lotta Whimsey's ezine and this article was in today's edition.  I know many of us relate to what Tonya is writing and I just felt the need to share it with all of my fellow smithers and metal artists.  I know you will enjoy and I suggest you subscribe (it's free!!) to her ezine newsletter for more wonderful, helpful information.

Gathering Momentum

Yep, my family is a bit football crazy. Growing up in Colorado where our lives revolved around sports and the outdoors gave me an early love for athletics, not to mention competition. I have fond memories of watching football with my parents. I loved how my dad thought they could hear him as he shouted to the tv and how my parents danced together after touchdowns!

There is a football player in our city who draws big crowds at games. He is phenomenal! He led his team to the State Championship last year largely due to his skills. My son and I frequently talk about his style, technique and form. This player knows how to hold the ball, run the plays, move his hips, but the key...the secret...is his ability to keep the momentum.

When his opponents are trying to tackle him, he never stops moving his feet. He is constantly moving....momentum! You'll see him enter a mass of opponents trying to tackle him, and out he comes, and there he goes. Score!

Sometimes we need to first slow down in order to excel. Clarity is key. This means gathering our intentions, making a plan, and a system of how to execute that plan without having to stop.

Let's head into the fall of 2010 by gathering our desires and intentions so we too can gain some momentum for our most important season for sales and promotion as artists.

7 Ways to Gain Momentum

1) Meditate and Get Clear

Just spending 20-30 minutes sitting quietly and allowing yourself to focus on you, without thinking about kids, laundry, bills, groceries etc. Take time to put pen to paper asking yourself what is my intention this fall. What do I really want for myself and my business? Write down any desires and ideas you might have for things you'd like to accomplish in the next 4 months. Write down anything that comes to mind. There is no limit. You can always edit later. Do a complete mind dump.

2) Prioritize

Decide which items on your list are things you really want to accomplish this Fall. Remember it's only 4 months, and 2 of them have major holidays that will take time away from anything on your goal list. Pick your top 3-5 goals and make them as specific as possible. Keep it doable!

3) Mind map out your goals

Mind mapping is a great technique and if you haven't tried it, I highly recommend it. Simply start with one of the desires or goals you wrote down. Write this in the center of a large piece of paper and put a circle around it. Then write the major categories of tasks that will be required to accomplish the goals around that stated goal. Then branch off spokes of those action steps to further bubbles of action steps. Keep breaking it down to bite size action steps.

Studies show that the connection to the subconscious is through the right side of the brain which thinks in pictures. So as you sketch out your map, include as many pictures and drawings as possible. Cut them out from magazines if needed.

4) Do a Time Audit

Spend a week writing down how you spend your time. At the beginning of every hour write down how you spent the previous hour. Be honest and include all internet surfing, phone calls, unnecessary errands, etc. At the end of the week, take a good look at how you spent your time. It'll be an eye-opener. I bet you'll find the Pareto Principal in effect. This means you spend about 20% of your time producing 80% of your success.

5) Identify bad habits

Now that you've done a self-assessment, what would you be able to accomplish if you took more of that wasted time and spent it on activities that truly served your goals?

90% of our behavior is habit. So if we identify our bad habits, and we decide what's unacceptable, we can make a concerted effort to change those bad habits. We can choose to change or alter our bad habits.

For example, if I want to work out everyday, then I need to go to bed one hour earlier to compensate for getting up earlier. That means I need to give up that silly hour of needless drama on Bravo tv, from 10-11pm. If I really want to watch it, that's what the DVR is for and weekends or free time.

I also used to worry about missing a customer's email. So I'd check it every 10-15 minutes. This was a disruptive habit. I would stop and handle it right away as if it was a crisis. I was always in reaction mode. I realized, after reflection, that it took me longer to get back to the flow of my "genius" work and often I couldn't be creative.

So I set up systems or scheduled times that I am able to check my email. I then do batch all my replies during that time. This leaves me with some extra time during the day and less mistakes to fix.

6) Set a schedule and make systems

The key to success is scheduling your time. We creative types dislike schedules. We tend to want to go with the flow of things, but this can lead you off your action steps and onto other things that waste your time.

If you want to create everyday, do this first thing in the am or after working out. Once you start working on email, paperwork, bills, etc, your left brain is engaged. It's really hard for it to let go and let your right brain have it's creative time.

Also try working in 40-50 minute segments starting at the beginning of the hour. This is uninterrupted time, dedicated to whatever action step you are working on. Set a timer and when it goes off you can then return calls, emails, check facebook, get a drink, and stretch your legs. You'll be amazed how much clarity you'll have and how much you get done when you are working with systems!

7) Keeping your eye on the prize

Celebrate each success! I have an employee that walks through our warehouse exuberantly exclaiming yippee after actions are completed. At first it was surprising, but we all quickly learned to love it. For one it raises everyone's spirits. It makes you smile. We often associate negative emotions with mistakes, but we don't celebrate enough the small or even medium size achievements. Associate emotions with completed actions no matter how big or small.

Surround yourself with anything that reminds you of your success. This could be awards, a chart showing your sales each month, hits to your site, increased bank account, new customers or galleries, etc.

Make an inspiration board. This is also called a vision board or treasure map. Cut out pictures of things you want to accomplish, inspiring words, places you want to go, etc. Put this in a prominent place so you can see it everyday. We are visual and it's a great reminder....keeping our eye on the prize!
Tonya Davidson is an artist, entrepreneur, coach and mentor. She helps other artists better their techniques and business skills by empowering them to live creatively from the inside out. Her ezine goes out to over 11,000 subscribers. If you want to learn to create a life you love, sign up for a FREE subscription at http://wholelottawhimsy.com. Be sure to check out her blog at www.tonyadavidson.com for more articles like this one.

© 2010. Whole Lotta Whimsy. All Rights Reserved.
Just a short note about my trip to Santa Fe today....It was a gorgeous, bright, sunny day and the brilliant yellow flowers along the highway made for a perfect picture frame of a day.  I arrived in good shape in a little less than 6 hours, made a few stops along the way to take pictures.  I will share those with you tomorrow.  It is midnight here and I am zonked out.  
Enjoy the article I've included and let's all begin to gather momentum in our daily lives.  I know for sure that I waste WAY too much time on tasks that do not matter (like checking my emails every 15 minutes).  FOR WHAT????
Hugs to all and remember - you make a big difference in my life so thanks for being there!!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

I can't believe it has been 6 months

I know, I know - it has been forever since I last posted.  I don't know where time goes.  I have been so busy reading, learning and creating that I have neglected you.  I am so sorry and I will really try to do better.

I am leaving on a trip to Santa Fe, NM, tomorrow and will return on 8/27.  I am going for two reasons.  First, to visit my brother and sister-in-law and next , to check out Rio Grande Tools and purchase some metal:O)  When I arrive in Santa Fe on Wednesday, I will just relax for the evening.  On Thursday, my sister-in-law, Sandy, and I will go visit the Georgia O'Keefe Museum and look up my good friend, Mr. Armando Pena.  I absolutely love his art and have several of his works displayed in my home.  He is such a genuine person and always willing to teach - that is his forte!!  I got to know him in Tubac when he was the signature artist several years ago.  I look forward to his return each year. 

I have been doing quite a bit of work in copper lately, mostly etching.  I love it.  I am able to incorporate many metals and combine them in very artistic ways. 

I have been a jewelry designer for about 10 years.  I am self taught for the most part, however, I have studied under metal/wire artists Tracey Stanley, Kim St. Jean and Sharilyn Miller.  I love the way each of them manipulates their metal and accessorize their pieces!

I have a passion for jewelry, and creating beautiful pieces is truly an addiction with me.  I create one of a kind pieces that can be handed down to the next generation as they are built with love and much attention to quality and detail.  They are definately works of love from my heart and soul to yours.

I specialize in fine and sterling silver as well as copper and brass metals.  I would describe my style as all over the map, but I gravitate toward southwestern designs using multiple connected elements.  I enjoy working with stone, pearls, leather, copper, silver and often combine them all into my pieces.

I am always reading and learning new techniques and it would be an understatement to say that I am a tool freak!!!  I LOVE tools and am a collector of many.

To see some of my works, please visit the Galleria Eclectica at Moseman's Metalwerks in Show Low, AZ or check out my shop at http://www.thebearaffair.etsy.com/.

I live in Green Valley, AZ during the winter months and race up to the mountain of Pinetop, AZ in the cool summer months.

I love hosting jewelry making parties in your home or mine and am always available to host a jewelry party where the hostess can earn money towards many gifts or jewelry items. 

I love my passion of jewelry creation and metalsmithing and hope to take you along on the journey to enjoy my future endeavors.  Hop on and let's get going.

Until the next post - remember:  Don't follow your dreams....chase them!!

You are my inspiration so please leave your comments and suggestions so that I may become a better person.  I promise you that you will make a difference!!

Cheers, Sally

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Grandma's on her way!!

Yesterday I packed, today I travel and tomorrow I collect Grandma hugs from Kait and Ryan.  I am very excited to be getting on a jet plane, traveling to New York and enjoying the company of my family.  We will be celebrating Easter together and then I will be helping out while my son, David, is away on business for a few days.  I haven't seen the grand babies since November so can't wait to witness the growth and development.  I just wish our families didn't live so far apart.  Our oldest son and family live in the D.C. area and will be moving to California in May.  We are very excited about their move and will enjoy having them on our side of the US.  Jill and Larry are the parents of Noelle (17) and Haley (13)  Our younger son and his wife, David and JoAnn and children, Kaitlyn (18 months) and Ryan (6 months)  will be moving to North Carolina soon and that will be closer as well. 

Anyway, I need to go take care of last minute "stuff" and hit the road.  I will keep you posted on  my activities.  I'm hoping that I will get a chance to see Larry and family while I'm in NY but if not this trip, then we will see them in Calif soon.

Before you were conceived, I wanted you. Before you were born, I loved you. Before you were an hour old, I would have died for you. This is the miracle of life!!!


 Hugs to all, Sally

Friday, March 26, 2010

Santa Fe Beadfest

 I just returned from beautiful Santa Fe, New Mexico, where I attended the  Beadfest which was held in the Santa Fe Convention Center and the historic La Fonda hotel in downtown Santa Fe. If you weren't there, you missed a wonderful opportunity to enjoy the show in a charming southwest setting...including 8 inches of gorgeous white snow on Friday night! The snow didn't slow any of the beaders or the vendors down and we all enjoyed everything Beadest and Santa Fe had to offer! Make plans to attend the show this time next year, you will be glad you did!!

I took 5 different classes taught by Kim St. Jean.  We created beautiful bracelets, necklaces and pendants using cold connections, etching and fold forming techniques.  I loved every minute of class and Kim is such a great teacher.  She was recently voted one of the ten best teachers and I can see why.  More on that later....

It's late and I need to get some much needed rest so I will continue with this conversation later.

Happy days to all and to all a good night!!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day

Daily Puppy

Check out the Daily Puppy at the bottom of this blog....It will melt your heart.

Sunday, February 7, 2010


I warned you!!   I told you from the very beginning that we weren't a good fit !!  Your  beads didn't function the way I wanted them to so this is what it's all come down to - RIP.  Now I can relax and begin another piece......

Monday, February 1, 2010


Is it possible that my site does not allow comments?  I am sure that someone is reading this at least once in a while - dontcha think???  Let me hear from you if that is the case, and I will feel like my time is worthwhile;)

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Check this out in my etsy shop

Today's Adventure

I saw this darling little bracelet in a magazine recently and thought I'd give it a try today.  I didn't really have the right color beads but I wanted to experiment anyway.  I had this beautiful fish focal bead that I'd purchased last year from a bead maker in Austria and I was dying to make something with it.  I cut my wires and I pounded, sawed and riveted as per the instructions THEN I went to try it one before heading out to the garage (husband's studio) to proudly show my DH what I'd created.  Well, I think it might fit my 12 year old grand daughter if I'm lucky but she probably isn't interested because it isn't very colorful - so - I will search out some of my senior friends in the neighborhood and see who it fits so I will have some idea of sizing when I post it later.  You know, some days are just like a box of chocolates and that's exactly where I'm headed!!  Toodles my dears and happy smithing!!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Great giveaway to check out

www.IlluminatedPerfume.etsy.com is offering a wonderful giveawy - check her out!!

Monday, January 25, 2010


http://www.etsy.com/shop/devinedesignsjewelry.......Check her out, she was just featured in the Wire Jewelry Magazine Gallery!!! Congrats Cindy

Happy Birthday Daddy

My Dad, Jack W. Sylvester, would be 91 years old today, he passed on to the next chapter in his journey 2 years ago. I miss you, I love you.

A Beautiful New Year

Happy New Year everyone. I know I'm a few weeks late but I want to send love to all anyway. I have just experienced a wonderful two weeks traveling. John was attending a conference in Las Vegas for 1 1/2 weeks so I accompanied him. We took the Airstream and stayed out at the RV lodging at Nellis AFB. It was a beautiful facility. We also had the pleasure of meeting up with one of John's AFA classmates, Allan Herzberg. We'd seen him at the reunion in November but before that it had been years---lots of catching up. He's single so I think he enjoyed the companionship and the meals. He told me he usually eats box dinners-yuk...

Anyway, while John was conducting business during the daytime, I spent my time researching and reading up on silversmithing and jewelry design. It was an opportune time for me to just "chill out" and re-group after the holidays. I really was able to relax and reflect. I took the time to realize just how fortunate I am and what a wonderful life I've been living. I became so filled with enthusiasm and excitement that I thought I was going to burst right on the spot. I spend hours sketching and thinking about pieces of jewelry I want to create.....I am so happy to be home again and back in my studio that I could just scream with delight - maybe I will (no one in this neighborhood would hear me anyway-tee hee).

So my little chickadees-love to all and take the time to thank God for the gifts you've been given and use them to make him proud. Off to pour a cup of tea and get busy....yippee!!!! Hugs and love, Sal