Tag Archives: bracelets

Stash Confessions: Vintage and Retro Buttons

A while back I confessed to having a giant stash of socks for which I had no excuse. Today I want to show you another stash, my beloved vintage buttons. When I’m designing jewelry, it’s important to me to have a variety of styles and types of findings and embellishments. My creative juices flow best when I experiment with all kinds of colors, shapes and eras.


Many of these chunky bright colored buttons have become rings and a few others became the centerpiece for a necklace or bracelet.

I love military inspired fashion and accessories and tend to go to my brass stash when designing in that style.

Ahhh my vintage whites. Need I say more?

This is probably not even one tenth of my collection (just ‘fessing up here).

The detail in vintage buttons is amazing to me. Whether Deco chic, retro funky, or vintage sweet all can find there way into a design in my studio.

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In The Studio: Coral and Turquoise

I just added a few pieces of jewelry to my shop and I wanted to give you a preview here. I have been embracing the colors of coral and turquoise a lot lately.

Here’s a cuff bracelet with a vintage metal hardware piece as the centerpiece. I added turquoise patina to bring out the amazing detail.


I was getting a sort of western vibe so I chose cowhide leather with brindle hair for the band.

As you probably know, I am very committed to reusing and reinventing pieces and parts, mostly vintage, to create new pieces that work in today’s design. Virtually all of my jewelry incorporates upcycled items, most of which had nothing to do with jewelry in their original state.

For this necklace I took belt loops from an old pair of blue jeans, overlaid them with vintage lace and formed them into a cross.

A vintage button and swirly coral glass beads add a pop of color.

I do love crosses!

Another material I love to use when designing is items found in nature. We have a lot of trees in our yard and have done a few projects using the wood from them. It’s not often you come across a branch that yields heart-shaped slices, so of course I was elated to find and use this one in my jewelry designs.

Mixing rustic with a bit of bling, I paired it with a glass crystal drop (also vintage)for a simple, natural necklace.

I’ll show you a more colorful version of the heart slice in my next studio share.

Stay warm!


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Leopard Love

It’s been a while since I’ve posted an outfit so I decided to share what I wore to church a couple of weeks ago. I’ve shown this leopard vest in an outfit before, where I paired it with shorts, tights and a button down shirt.


It’s super soft and cozy so I reach for it every chance I get. It goes with any color and even works with print mixing. I love that it has both brown and black in it.


Here I have it paired with pants that have a tiny houndstooth pattern in black and white, and black boots. In the previous outfit I paired it with brown tights and brown boots. I chose a basic scoop neck top in cobalt for a pop of color and to dress it down a little bit.


Red leather gloves add more color and interest and were just enough warmth for the 40-ish temps that day.


I kept my jewelry simple with blue drop earrings and a bracelet from my own collection stacked with a couple of beaded bracelets.

One of the things I love about leopard and other animal prints is how it can make an otherwise stuffy outfit feel relaxed and playful. It’s impossible to wear it and feel like a bore! Are you a fan of animal prints? Meow.


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Wardrobe Reinvention + Shopping Checklist Printable

Everyone gets tired of their wardrobe from time to time. Clothing options can sometimes become boring for me even after it seems like I just shopped the mother lode. Right now I have other things I have to spend money on. Sigh. If I had Christmas money to spend right now, and I were going to do some clothes shopping, here are two outfits I would put right in my closet.



If you’re in the same boat ~ tired of your wardrobe, getting the itch to buy some new clothes but it’s not in the budget ~ allow me to share a tip I have used to reignite my enthusiasm for the clothing and accessories I have to work with. This is a great winter weekend project. You’ll need to allow about two hours (give or take) to do this exercise but it will be so worth it.

1. Pull out 4 or 5 of your favorite layering tops (underneath layer). Choose tops that have some kind of detail front and center like lace, shirring, cutouts, etc.

2. Pull out 4 or 5 top layer pieces > jackets, see-through tops, button-down shirts, low-cut tops, etc.

3. Decide if you want to put together dressy outfits or casual (or both) and choose 4 or 5 bottom pieces accordingly (pants, skirts, shorts, jeans).

4. Now comes the fun part. Take each top layer piece and pair it with any of the under layer pieces that coordinate in color or style, keeping them on the hangers or laying them down in sets.

5. Add a bottom layer piece to each paired combo.

6. This step is crucial and I urge you not to skip it: Try them on! Yes it will take time but think of it as a shopping trip. Combinations that look good on the hangers might not look great on you, and vice versa. Things like length of top, cling factor, fullness and structure dictate how they will fall and mesh together. This is where it takes patience but once you find a combo that works you’ll have an outfit that flatters and you will feel great in it.

7. In my experience, some pieces go with everything and some don’t work with anything. Those in the second category (I call them loners) are pieces that I either get rid of or, if it’s something I really love, make a note to find something to pair it with next time I go shopping.

8. This might be my favorite part of the whole process. Once you have decided what works together, lay out your winning outfits and go to your jewelry stash. Play around with different pieces, try out-of-the-box color combinations, layer up on necklaces and bracelets. Take a fresh look at your cache and use it to the fullest to bling up your outfit.

9. At this point in the process, it may be a good idea to take pictures of your outfits, because if you’re like me, once everything is back in the closet you’re likely to forget (or not see) the exact combinations you put together.

10. You will be amazed at the new outfits you discover if you think outside the box. Now you can look forward to the next event in your life, be it coffee with the girls, date night or Sunday church, knowing you will feel pulled together and polished.

Just because you don’t have any immediate plans to go on a shopping spree, that doesn’t mean you’ll never buy anything new again. With the eventual shopping splurge in mind, I created two shopping checklists ~ one for your clothing and one for your accessories ~ for you to print and keep handy to stay tuned in to your closet and accessory “inventory”.

Use this checklist to take inventory before you shop. Just write “Have” or “Need” in the spaces to help you decide what CLOTHING to buy.


Use this checklist to take inventory before you shop. Just write “Have” or “Need” in the spaces to help you decide what ACCESSORIES to buy.

Do you have any tips for overcoming boredom with your wardrobe? Do share!


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Junk Jubilee Jingles: Pictures and Stories Part 2

I’m back with more pictures and stories from the show that consumed the last 3 months of my designing time. And not just my studio time, to be totally honest. Many things are put on hold when I am preparing for a big show. Thankfully, I have a husband that is understanding. He knows by now that I get so crazy consumed by getting ready for the big event that there will be big heaping piles of laundry, take-out meals more than twice a week, and requests to please get out his tools and “do a little job for me”.

These necklace stands are one of those requests that he so graciously fulfilled.




My husband has willingly gone along with me to many shows and helped with set up, tear down and anything else I have needed from him. But this time when my best friend offered to go in his place, he happily bowed out.


We stayed up late talking all three nights at the hotel, even though we needed our sleep. I was just too keyed up to sleep. Do you know that feeling when you are just so exhausted but your mind won’t shut off? Yeah. So we had wine and chocolate, laughed and cried, and fell asleep in time to get about 5 hours each night.

When the show closed the first night, we headed out for our 20 minute drive to the hotel. About ten minutes into the drive, I heard a still, small voice nudge my mind with a thought ~ a scary thought. I asked Bobbi to grab my purse from the back seat and see if I had put the money bag in there. As she frantically dug around in my purse, my gut told me that it wasn’t there. Me and my gut were right. I pulled over and we searched everywhere before heading back to the fairgrounds. The ten minutes back seemed like an eternity. I just kept saying, it will be there, nobody took it, it will be there. I ran from the car to the building and tried the door ~ locked! So I ran around the building trying doors until one opened. I tried to calmly (not insanely) walk past the people lingering by the door. I got to my booth, checked the place I kept it, and it was there! I can’t tell you how relieved I was! I’m usually not a particularly forgetful person, except when I’m sleep deprived.

The next day it snowed about 3 inches, and as we were getting ready to close, people were saying that there were several reports of cars sliding off into ditches. Oh yay! Nighttime highway driving in an unfamiliar city…with slick roads! Another drive to the hotel that should have taken 20 minutes turned into an hour. I wasn’t taking any chances so I drove really slowly and we arrived safely and ready for the hot tub. A good soak while watching it snow from the hotel window ~ does it get any better?


Having Bobbi there gave me a much needed dose of girl time, but she was also extremely helpful. From rolling up her sleeves and helping with the heavy lifting, to offering valuable advice. It was her suggestion to pair necklaces and bracelets that coordinated on the necklace stands, to assist customers in putting together sets. I think they displayed great this way.


And now, for a look at some of the other wildly talented vendors’ booths.








I still have a few more pictures to show you and a vendor to introduce you to, but I will save that for the next and final JJJ post. I hope you’ll come back and read part 3.


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Leopard, Lace and Leather

It’s a rainy Saturday here and I love it. Candles glowing, windows open and Adele singing, ahhh so inspiring! I don’t typically post on Saturday but I got behind this week fighting off a sinus infection and now I’m raring to go so I decided to share an outfit that I showed a peek of in an earlier post.

Sorry for the cheesy smile!




{Damask Skirt: Old and a gift} {Leopard top: Old and a gift} {Red belt: Body Central $1.99}{Handbag: vintage THRIFTED $3.00} {Leather and Lace Bracelet: Tarnished Royalty here } {Lace, Pearl and Cross Necklace: Tarnished Royalty here }


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