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beautiful jewelry: bracelets, necklaces and earrings

GIVEAWAY: Mujus Jewelry. These Sustainable Accessories Empower Women

Almost four years ago, while attending an Accessories Council holiday gift ideas event, we were first introduced to Mujus Jewelry, a stunning handcrafted jewelry brand with sustainable connections.  We were so captivated by these gorgeous jewelry pieces, we highlighted their eco-friendly jewelry again the following year.  That was too long ago, so we’re back to share some more of our favorite pieces from Mujus Jewelry and offer you, dear readers the CHANCE TO WIN a piece from the jewelry brand that empowers women.

Mujus Jewelry pieces are handcrafted in Ecuador by artisan women who are either single mothers or heads of household. Mujus Jewelry Founder, Paola Delgado created the brand to reconnect with her culture and create a more meaningful life for both the women in Ecuador and for herself. By making these beautiful pieces, these women gain financial independence, strength, and an amazing sense of self. Mujus Jewelry’s Working Mother’s Program not only teaches these women the art of jewelry making, it allows them to work from home to spend more time with their families.

As we’ve mentioned before, the jewelry pieces are carved from Corozo Nuts, seeds from the South America tagua palm tree that are known as vegetable ivory. It is incredibly durable and lightweight and boasts the same luxurious smooth texture as ivory, giving you the same luxury without having to harm any Elephants. Doesn’t that sound like a must-have for your jewelry box? Well, here’s your chance to win. We are happy to offer you the opportunity to win one of our favorite pieces from the collection, the Gema Bib Necklace ($69.00), in one of the following colors – Monaco Blue, Teal, and Yves Blue.

The Gema Bib Necklace is versatile and has an aura of its own. The 18″ eco-friendly necklace with 3″ extender, can be worn with an evening gown, or can chic up a basic summer tee shirt. Paola named this necklace Gema, which in Spanish means gem because let’s face it, the necklace looks like it’s made with raw gems. Each piece of tagua nut is hand-sewn together to create this beauty. It takes months to master the art of placing the tagua nut pieces at the right angle, to create the perfect collective shape. So, ladies, are you ready to win? To win the blue color of your choice, enter via the Rafflecopter entry form below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

E. Shaw Jewels: Give Mom Something Special this Mother’s Day

Are you thinking of last-minute Mother’s Day gifts for the moms in your life? Who better than a mother and daughter jewelry making duo to give the wonderful mothers you know the perfect gift! E. Shaw Jewels offer unique jewelry featuring precious gemstones and one-of-a-kind designs, all handmade by mother and daughter, Eva and Elizabeth Shaw. Whether you select the gift option yourself or give the moms on your list a gift certificate to select their own gift (E. Shaw has all the birthstones available), both you and your Mother’s day gift recipients will not be disappointed in this amazing fine jewelry brand that is made in America.

Not sure if the moms in your life would love a bracelet or necklace? Gift her with an E. Shaw Jewels Jasmine, Luau, or Clear Sky Wrap Bracelets, $125.00. These versatile pieces, made with a variety of assorted gemstones, convert into five layered bracelets, a long necklace, or a doubled necklace. As with all E. Shaw jewels, they can all be worn alone or layered with your favorite jewelry pieces. If your mom is like ours, maybe she’s a huge fan of earrings. E. Shaw Jewels offer several amazing natural and raw gemstone earrings, as well as polished gemstone earrings. We love the Soleil Hoop Earrings, Delta Earrings, and their famed Tassel Earrings (which are available in a variety of styles, gemstones, and lengths).

Want to gift the mom in your life a complete set, why not try one of the Over the Moon Necklaces, and matching Over the Moon Earrings. Give her either the 14-kt gold-filled or sterling silver and sparkling cubic zirconia necklace and pearl earrings or go extra special and give her both pieces encrusted with diamonds.

Would the moms on your list love an E. Shaw Jewels piece? Would you love one or two pieces for yourself? Head over to their website, visit the NYC-based store at 107 Sullivan Street, or one of the retailers that carry E. Shaw Jewels.

Handmade Magnificence: Amber Poitier Leather Jewelry

We have highlighted and celebrated several artisan jewelry designers. So many gorgeous pieces in all their handcrafted glory have captivated us nd captured our hearts but one recent discovered has us completely spellbound, so much so we’ve written and rewritten this post because we felt we weren’t doing the collection enough justice. Several weeks ago, we were lucky enough to be introduced to the jaw-dropping line of Amber Poitier Leather Jewelry, a high-end contemporary jewelry brand that is the brainchild of jewelry designer, Alicia Appleton.

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The breathtaking collection boasts handcrafted interlocked pieces, modern silhouettes inspired by 17th and 18th-century European architecture, and the picturesque Ivory Coast. During a gallery style presentation entitled Breathe.Pray.Love, Appleton presented her handcrafted pieces, constructed of wood, metal, leather, and acrylic. The collection, the first Amber Poitier Leather Jewelry collection, was inspired by the famed movie, a metaphor of the jewelry designer’s journey.

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“Breathe being a representation of letting go of her twelve-year stint in corporate fashion (exhale) and embarking on a new path (inhale). Pray depicts Appleton’s search for direction, peace and happiness. Ultimately, Love is exemplified in the collection that showcases her renewed passion to create.”

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The fashion forward collection is the epitome of avant-garde style. Available pieces from the elegant and sophisticated collection include neckpieces (they’re too stunning to just be called necklaces), earrings, and bracelets and cuffs for women, and cuffs for me. While the leather and hardware are imported, the pieces are designed, dyed, cut and assembled right here in New York City.

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As you can clearly see, there are lots to drool over in the Amber Poitier Leather Jewelry. Favorite pieces include the striking Aurora Neckpiece, the innovative shaped Ava Basket Earrings (we love its stunning 3D shape), and the Lexi Adjustable Leather Bracelet. To learn more about Alicia Appleton and the Amber Poitier Leather Jewelry collection, head over to www.amberpoitier.com.

Mujus Jewelry: Accessories with a Purpose

Last year, thanks to the Accessories Council, we were introduced to a fair trade jewelry, Mujus Jewelry, at the preview for their Holiday #ACTopPicks, and we’re happy to get reacquainted with them again. The contemporary jewelry and accessories line, designed by Paola Delgado, is crafted by artisans under fair trade practices in Peru, Ecuador, Vietnam, and other stunning destinations. You can’t help but fall in love with the eco friendly jewelry pieces made from Tagua Nut, a seed from a tree similar to a palm that’s widely known as a sustainable ivory alternative. It’s amazing to see how these ordinary seeds are transformed into the colorful, bold, jewelry designs that Mujus jewelry is known for.

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The first piece we were introduced to was the Bam Bracelet (see first image in the top left corner), a bold and lightweight bracelet featuring polished teardrop-shaped Tagua seeds that are strung together. It was love at first sight for us, and from then on, and it wasn’t difficult to all for other designs like the cascade of color that is the triple strand Niagara Necklace, the eye-catching and modern Sol Color Ring and the Ventana Ring (both of which are made from recycled Tagua), and the Fiesta Necklace, a wonderful mixed material necklace made from a combination of Tagua, bombona seeds, and coconut.

Of course the styles we’ve highlighted are just a sampling of the gorgeous jewelry the artisan brand has available, all of which make excellent Christmas gifts for yourself, and of course loved ones. Would anyone on your list love a piece or two from Mujus Jewelry this holiday? What are your favorite pieces?

Holiday Gift Guide: Gift Ideas for Artisan Jewelry Lovers

We’re always on the hunt for gifts that are extra special, not because they’re the most expensive, but because the people we are gifting will really love what they receive. As the holiday and gifting season draws near, we’re finding that people are really interested in getting gifts that celebrate the likes, style, and personalities of their friends and family. Today we share gift ideas for those who love supporting small business, jewelry lovers, and artisan supporters with connections to a few celebrities. If any of these sound like someone in your life, keep reading on to find out about the giftable products from the Artisan Group. Let’s get ready for some wonderful gift ideas for Artisan jewelry lovers.

NECKLACES

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  1. Sassy Belle Wares Funky Fashion – Dress Form Necklace: fans of Vampire Diaries, Law & Order: SVU and Parenthood may recognize some of this designer’s jewelry unique jewelry pieces on their favorite characters. This particular necklace boasts a statement wood pendant and Czech glass beads in black, gold, and silver. Retail price: $40.00
  2. Hope Anchored Designs Gold Bar & Ruby Necklace: this minimalist style, hammered gold bar necklace features two gorgeous rubies and is one of many pieces inspired by the designer’s love of travel, culture, and gemstones. With many bracelets gracing the wrists of several celebrities, you can’t go wrong with this designer. Retail: $84.99
  3. A Bead in time Jewelry Wire Spiral Beaded Necklace: you’ll love this unique handcrafted necklace made from metal, wire, and beads. Everything is handmade by designer Dale Ellison, who geometrically cuts and hammers sheet metal before she begins beading. Retail: Contact shop owner
  4. Bare and Me Necklace: if the “ampersand” symbol has a special place in your heart, you’ll love the jewelry from Bare and me. We love the simplicity of this dainty, hardwired necklace, which is available in 20 gage beaded wire in 14K GF or Sterling Silver. Retail: Contact shop owner
  5. Susi d. Jewelry Horseshoe Layering Necklace – who doesn’t need a bit of luck in their lives….we certainly could use some. This simple, yet stylish, hammered horseshoe necklace boasts an understated elegance that compliments everything. It is available in sterling silver, 14k gold filled, rose gold filled. Retail $36.00

EARRINGS

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  1. Hippie Chick Jewelry Flight of the Dragonfly Earrings: when we think of dragonflies, we think of the elegance and grace with which they flitter about, a characteristic that is perfectly captured in these gorgeous earrings. Featuring natural brass, painted lampwork beads, and Swarovski crystals, these stunners will capture the heart as well as the eye. Retail $34.00.
  2. Helen’s Adornments Sterling Silver Earrings with Tear Drop Links: lampwork glass beads, Sterling Silver tear drop links, and Sterling Silver Ear Wires combine to create these beautifully delicate earrings, a modern classic to soften any hard edge look. Retail $39.50.

BRACELETS

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  1. Horse Feathers Follow Your Arrow Silk Wrap Bracelet: when you need a bit of empowering, look no further than your wrist at this hand sculpted from reclaimed fine silver and hand dyed silk wrap bracelet for some positivity. Available in a variety of silk wrap colors, this makes a great gift for any stylish bohemian. Retail $51.00
  2. Hole in Her Stocking Black Champagne Boho Wrap Bracelet: a lovely wraparound bracelet made of black glass beads and champagne metallic seed beads strung on silver toned memory wire. Retail $20.00

PINS AND HAIR ACCESSORIES

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  1. The Glossatteer Vintage 35mm Slide Pin: Not every piece of  jewelry has to be made from traditional materials. The Glossatteer’s transparencies collection of very cool jewelry, like the above pin, is made from 35mm slides, vintage negatives, and model train figures. A wonderfully unique gift for someone on your list. Retail $30.00
  2. Raven Boutique Pink Flower Hair Clip:  that super stylish person on your list will love this eye-catching hair clip. Boasting soft, satiny chiffon flower petals, sparkling stones, and curly Ostrich feathers, this stunning headpiece will make any  outfit perfect in every way.  Retail $20.00

Any fan of unique and special accessories or artisan jewelry lovers will adore these pieces we’ve highlighted, you may even find yourself falling in love with a few for yourself. We advise you to check them all out, you won’t be disappointed. Happy holiday shopping!!

 

Making a Statement with Artisan Jewelry

My visiting cousin introduced me to an amazing artisan jewelry designer that I’ve become completely obsessed with. You guys are well aware of our love of statement jewelry pieces and that we love highlighting handcrafted accessory designers, like our recent piece on The Artisan Group. And like the pieces from this distinct grouping of artisan jewelry designers, the following Designs by Nadia jewelry pieces are amazingly affordable, even with the beautiful workmanship. This very special collection of handcrafted jewelry boasts the most natural materials, with pieces made from coconut shells, wood, seeds, stones, scrap metals, sea glass, and sea stones. Since each piece is handmade, they are truly one of a kind.
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Our absolute favorite piece is the above Leather and Feathers Neckpiece (as you can see, we tried it with a few tops) – we loved how it dressed up a white tee and, of course, had to accentuate the robin egg blue stones. Which pairing do you guys prefer? Another favorite is the Coconut Drops Necklace shown below:

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Why is this necklace called coconut drops? Because the stunning hand-painted leaves are made out of the shells of coconuts. We love the pop of, and the variety of colors in this piece. we also love the dramatic length and the fact that the copper can be manipulated to be worn wide or narrow (as seen above). We’re not done yet, other great pieces include the artistic Cascading Flowers Leather Neckpiece directly below.

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Although these flowers look like wood, they are actually handcrafted out of leather, and painted this rich burgundy hue; and because they are made out of recycled wire, it too can be manipulated by the wearer – wear it to the side or straight forward. Last but certainly not least is the duo-colored Carnival Coconuts Neckpiece, which actually comes with matching earrings (you can select either the red or yellow earrings). This piece is available in many colors, but we love this color combination.

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Like the above Coconut Drops Neckpiece, the Carnival Coconuts Neckpiece and Earrings Set is also made out of the hardened coconut shell. Besides the stunning colors, we love how it sits on the neck, its simple yet extraordinary silhouette. well, these are the pieces we’re currently obsessing over. Any favorites among our choices?

Happiness is Handmade: Accessories from The Artisan Group

We were going to highlight the handcrafted accessories items in this post for Valentine’s Day but then we realized, these beauties could and should be worn every day, so we decided to highlight them as such because you shouldn’t have to wait until Valentine’s Day to give or receive a beautiful gift. We once again bring you the unique pieces from the artisans of The Artisan Group, stunning jewelry, and one or two bath products that work very well as gift all year ’round.
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  1. Kim Jakum Designs – a sweet necklace with single five-petaled, fine silver flower, accented with a gorgeous 3mm, blue spinel gemstone that sits on a stamped silver bar. Two words come to mind when looking at this piece – sweet, and charming.
  2. Of Nature Designs – this stunning necklace features vintage and recycled materials. We love the pop of turquoise color against the copper, and the addition of the crystal as a pendant.
  3. 2 Little P’s – love the texture of this uber-romantic Tree Bark Heart Necklace made from precious metal clay and pure fine silver on an oxidized sterling silver ball chain. Since these darling pieces are made by hand, one at a time, no two will feature the same design.
  4. Simpli Stamped – not only is this pretty Blood:Water Mission charity Necklace charming in its simplicity, it also benefits a great cause. 50% of the purchase price will be donated to Blood: Water Mission and help change lives
  5. Seth Papac Jewelry – sometimes an androgynous piece sets the right tone for a look. We love this Torn Inside Circle Pendant for this unisex appeal, rugged aesthetic, and modern artistic feel.
  6. Vitrine – we love the elegance and femininity of this Druzy Drop Pendant Necklace and how it adds softness to the textured stone. The eye-catching druzy stone hangs from a lightly textured, 14K goldfilled stick, and delicate gold chain.

 

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  1. Creations Made by Lola – we were introduced to Kumihimo, the ancient Japanese form of braiding materials through pieces like this Queen Of Hearts Kumihimo Bracelet. The bracelet is made with Czech glass crystal beads in shades of red, black, and white, finished with a silver plated swirl clasp or an antique silver toggle clasp.
  2. Olivü 426 – people fall in love every day, so it doesn’t have to be Feb 14th to enjoy the benefits of the Falling in Love Gift Box. Make every date night special with this set which includes a massage oil (blended with rose petals), classic lip balm in Cupids Kiss (a blend of strawberries and champagne), and hand-poured goats milk soap.
  3. Dune Jewelry – have you ever been to a beach so beautiful that you wanted to take it with you everywhere you go? Provide your own sand or have Dune do it for you and create a stunning piece like this lovely Silver Plated Sandollar Bracelet, which is set on a spring hinged cuff bracelet, filled with your choice of sand & polished to a final domed finish.
  4. Bizzy Fizz – it may look like dessert, but this cute, heart-shaped, He Love Me fizzy bath treat will make you feel delicious. It is packed with shimmer, rose petals, milk powder, and topped with a real rose bud, just what you need to feel loved, and smell decadent.
  5. Carol Raeburn Jewelry – if you’re looking for handcrafted jewelry made with natural gemstones, you’ll love this designer. These dainty Golden Amber Earrings boasts natural rainbow moonstone, Baltic Amber, and gold-filled beads and findings.
  6. Karla Wheeler Designs – we love this All You Need is Love copper etched cuff because we can rock it as an everyday piece. To get its unusual look, it’s been darkened with liver of sulfur, sanded for contrast and treated with Renaissance Wax to protect the color. A great piece every day of the year.
We continue to be wowed by the talent and passion of the artisans from The Artisan Group. We appreciate the fact that because these pieces are handmade, we can be sure to own beautiful, unique pieces. So if you’re in the market for a gift for someone special, whether it be Valentine’s day, birthdays, etc, start with these designers.

Hilary Park’s Spring 2012 Jewelry Collection – Divination

I went out of my event comfort zone and headed to Williamsburg, Brooklyn to get a peek at the new Spring 2012 jewelry collection from designer, Hilary Park, and it was completely worth it. The limited edition, one-of-a-kind handcrafted,  Hilary Park’s Spring 2012 Jewelry Collection, called Divination, is inspired by the four elemental muses – Earth, Air, Water and Fire as well as travel and the zodiac signs.

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Hilary (pictured above) has developed a wide range of silver and goldsmithing skills which have allowed her style and designs to mature into a stunning and wide-ranging collection of handmade artifacts. She enjoys transforming the gossamer lightness of a feather into wearable metal earrings (like the beautiful gold Feather Earrings above), or the fine embroidery of an antique Mexican tapestry into intricate saw work for the Four Petaled Cuff with Trim. Because it’s all handcrafted, Hilary Park can customize length and width to suit everyone’s preferences.

 

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Hilary believes stones have magical healing properties and we can use jewelry to alleviate challenges. Following this belief, she gifted each guest with a beautiful Citrine Pendant – Citrine is a fitting talismanic device for any individual looking for a career in fashion or art journalism – perfect for this Blogger. Some of the things Citrine also promotes abundance and prosperity, dissipates negativity, increases creativity, and enhances mental clarity – I so need that in my life.

To get better acquainted with Hilary Park jewelry, visit her boutique at 94 S. 1st Street, between Berry and Wythe, Williamsburg, Brooklyn.