Thursday, April 17, 2008


I am stuck.  I am once again in the throes of another collection.  It is like some bizarre disease. This collection is a hybrid of free form and structure.  It all started with these freshwater stick pearls that I made some time ago and it has quite taken me away.  I did manage to get them (the earrings) up on the website.  I have been horribly remiss about keeping pace with the designs I turn out.  I cannot seem to get them to the website as I make them, so I get stuck in this morass of designs all over the place and then chaos descends.  When am I going to get organized?!?

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Creative Chaos

It is raining today in Amsterdam. Go figure. It was the most bizarre thing, 2 days ago when I woke up, the sun was shining and it was warm enough to venture forth with a light jacket on. By mid afternoon, the sun turned to rain and the rain to snow. I have never seen such crazy weather in my entire life and I have lived all over this planet. Truly bizarre. On the other hand, there is something about this weather...maybe it is because I am one of those types of people who loves to curl up with a book on a rainy day, so I see the forced confinement as an opportunity to create...which brings me to my point. I am in the midst of about 4 collections now and I am ready to scream. They are not coming together as I'd like. I keep having these ridiculous bursts of creativity. My problem is that I don't know when to stop. When is enough enough? I'm running out of materials for chrissakes! Sometimes I drive myself insane. I mean, how lucky am I, that I have all these idea to translate, but I just get stuck with: where is this going? Have I done this before, in the past? Who cares, let's do it again.

Just once in my creative life I would like to have order, not chaos. I am truly a sick individual, because I thrive on this chaos. I mean, you all should SEE my studio. I take 3 hours to clean it up, put all my extra stones and materials in their neatly compartmentalized places, and within another hour, I have embarked on 3 more projects and my studio is in shambles again and I have no more table space to work in. How do I know that I am a sick individual? This is how: It gives me such a thrill to walk into my studio and see all my projects in various states of completion. I feel like I've accomplished something. I guess for me, it is not always the destination, but the journey that keeps me so happy.

On that note, I FINALLY got my pearl collection posted to my website. Once again, I am plagued with photography issues, but I think the pearls and finished pieces are nicely depicted. Not perfect, but you can see their beauty. Stop by and check it out. I think you'll like them. It is a smallish collection but it is quietly subtle, luxe and organic all at once. Hope you love it as much as I do.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Feeling Green

I just happened to come out of my normal, regular, everyday design fog today and realized that February is almost over. Where on earth does the time go?!? I have been in the process of finishing up with another mini-collection that I need to shoot and write copy for and post it to my website. Phew. It has been fun. Still not looking forward to the photography, though. I'll post a FAB-U-LOUS pair of earrings I just finished. I am soooo in love with these babies right now. I have a feeling these will sell like hotcakes. I hope you all love them as much as I do. They are made of Peruvian Opals, Emeralds and Turquoise. I don't know what it is about this particular stone that I continue to come back to (I'm talking about turquoise)...even when it is not "in season" or "on trend". It is such a warm, beautiful stone. Emeralds are my birthstone, so naturally, I gravitate towards them, too. Emerald holds alot of fire, I think. The Peruvuan Opals are just a nice, soft, pale blue with veins of brown and green and gold running through, they have so much character. But, if you put all three together, the combination is really very sophisticated. I inevitably end up with some turquoise in just about every collection I create.

I just get such a positive energy vibe from these stones, not to mention I just get lost in my work and forget what day it is. I'm running a big sale on my website, so stop by and check it out. I'll be leaving the sale items up for a few more weeks, before I pull them to make room for new stuff. After a while, it is just time to move on. Sometimes, after all the work of getting them up, I just get tired of looking at them and I have truly moved on to the next design in my head.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Photography Blues

So, I was messing around with the husband bought this fancy Nikon with all the bells and whistles, and after a few hours of running around the house trying to find suitable surfaces, and props, and lighting in which to shoot my projects, I realized: I really don't know what I'm doing. My web designer seconded that notion. Who would have thought that photography was such a technical endeavor? I mean, gawd. Anyway, I have decided to undertake a few courses so I can become conversant in this arena. In the past, I have used a professional, but, it's not always feasible, nor is she always available, not to mention I'm in Europe and she's in the US...which means I'm going to have to learn photoshop...(can you hear me groaning?)

Actually, all complaints aside, it is interesting to see the good shots come out right. When I'm posting some of my work, you'll see some good stuff and some bad stuff (photos, I mean!) I just get impatient, because in my mind I should be able to just take the picture and get on with my life and this process is so time consuming and it takes away from my design time...such is life as a jewelry designer.

But it is one of my New Year's resolutions, to become competent with the camera. Until then, bear with me ...

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Settling In

So, we have finally arrived at our new place in Amsterdam and are pretty much settled in. This city is absolutely amazing. It is truly a city of artists and it has completely inspired me and my work. In fact, I am in the throes of 3 whole collections right now, and I am feeling a bit disorganized - which, for me, is quite normal and discombobulated...(I just wanted to type that word because I like it!)

Anyhow, I have shot a few of my latest pieces and will publish these shortly. As I mentioned in my last entry a while ago, I am into the baroque Tahitian pearls, and they are some very lovely chunks. I am also feeling a call back to my "basics", which is a really ornate style of jewelry, with lots of sparkly stones and gold mesh chains. I'll throw a shot of those up, too. It just feels so good to be designing again. It's like a monster of creativity is upon me and I can't translate the designs in my head into real pieces fast enough. Needless to say, my sketchbook is getting quite a workout is almost exhausting.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Late but always worth the wait!

So, I am a complete zero when it comes to all things web. I never thought I'd ever bother with hosting a blogspot, but I have been so inspired by other designers and thier blogspots that I thought I'd just go for it...I mean, what the hell, right?

I have been away from the design world for a while, but, hold on to your hats because SiRA.O is back! Anyhow, I started my jewelry design company in early 2003 in Oakland, California...way back when the $#%^ hit the fan in the dotcom world. I lost my super paid job, had to figure out a way to pay the bills, and figured this was the perfect time to give in to the creative spirit that was about to just bust out.

Anyhow, I started making jewelry for myself and for family members for Christmas, since I couldn't afford to buy gifts that year. People were walking up to me on the street trying to buy my designs when it occurred to me that I might actually be on to something, duhhhhhhh.

Got plugged in pretty quick, and started hitting the San Francisco fashion circuit peddling my wares with much success. I never knew that owning my own business would be so much work. But I have to say that I am a designer at heart, and I don't have much interest in the business end of my business, it takes away too much of my "creative time". One day I do hope that I can pay someone to do the drudge work for me!!!

Ok. That was so 5 years ago. Skip to present. I have been on sort of a hiatus, well not really, but sort of. Had a couple of kids and took off to live in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. Can you say, "One of the most beautiful places on this planet?" I mean, crystal clear, blue water and white sand beaches for hundreds of miles...let's not talk about Zanzibar, where I managed to go to "get away from it all" about twice a month. I was just bombarded with creative opportunities, and I managed to fill 2 sketchbooks with sketches from my inspirations and environment. I met crazy interesting people and learned to speak a little bit of Swahili. And good times were had by all. I did do some jewelry construction and filled a few orders while over there, but found it difficult to source quality materials and would think it would be relatively easy to do since we were just across the Indian Ocean from India, where almost all gemstones go to be cut. However, just before I left Tanzania, I did one really nice collection using local flavor that is on my website now at Check it out. I did the photoshoot there too. You'll see what I mean about serious visual inspiration.

Well, I am back stateside now and am re-establishing my business as web only for now, I don't have the time or energy to chase boutique accounts, fill crazy massive orders and do tradeshows. I think this web thing will be the perfect forum for me to do my creative thing without having to pander to the dictates of seasons and trends. But, check this out, I am about to take off to Amsterdam for 2 years. I expect this to have a pronounced effect on my designs. Stay tuned. I want to hear what you all think!

While I was in Zanzibar I met the most incredible goldsmith/artist...I mean the things this guy could do with metal, had a huge impact on me and my design world. I am going to be spending the next few years learning these techniques. I think it will be very interesting to see what comes up and out...I rarely have preconceived collections, but rather eruptions, and they do tend to work themselves out. Now I just have to figure out a way to finance this little project...I just know the equipment alone is gonna break the bank. Wish me luck...I'll be needing it!

For now, I am really into pearls. South Sea and Tahitian pearls to be precise. The big, baroque, perfectly imperfect pearls that make a statement. As soon as I can get some of these pieces shot, I'll post some photos. I'd like to get these up on the site as soon as I can in time for the holiday buying season. I wish I could just fill a tub and bathe in them, they are soooo delicious!