Thursday, December 31, 2015

Moments in 2015



If you do not yet follow @jasminblancstudio on Instagram, well, what are you waiting for? There's been plenty going on over there in 2015, from little glimpses into my studio life, ceramic and jewelry work to an indecent amount of pet love. I assure you all of the above will continue to pop up.. The reason I like this network is, that it allows for a very easy way to share my work with you, to allow you to peek into my studio, get a better understanding of work processes, techniques, my aesthetic and essentially my world. It is very difficult to truly get to know small studio businesses online, but I feel that by sharing part of my life with you, it helps you to grasp the true nature of my work, the love and care that is being poured into it every moment of each day...

And this goes out to all of you, reading these lines, accompanying me on my journey, supporting me every step of the way with your encouragements and purchases: THANK YOU! I would also like to celebrate the fact that 3 new shops are stocking Jasmin Blanc creations; I'm over the moon about having you around!

Here's to a powerful year, I enjoyed it!

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Lady pie


About two months of survival mode, living on salads and spaghetti alternatively. Variety is key, right?
I don't know, but when I am on a creative wave, something clicks and I just find essential aspects of human existence so useless. When a rush period comes to an end, I fall back on the ground, and I remember how much I enjoy quality food. Fine, well planned, carefully made food. Simplicity. Home-made with just a few ingredients, using bold spices, and ingredients, yet keeping tastes minimal and soothing.

I enjoy crazy serious work times and in other days I find enormous pleasure in jumping around in my kitchen, dancing to silly songs, wearing PJs throughout the day while baking. And what is better than eating cake or pie for breakfast the next morning?

I made this lady crust, in all honestly, because I did not have enough dough to cover the entire pie, but it actually turned out to be quite goofy and nice. Poppy seed and sour cherry filling, I can hardly think of a better combination...


Lady Pie
-poppy seeds & sour cherries-

Ingredients:
for the dough
300 g flour
150 g butter
100 g icing sugar
2 egg yolks 
1 whole egg 

for the filling
400 g ground poppy seeds
70 g ground butter cookies
200 g sugar
1 tbsp honey
10 ml water
zest of 1 lemon
1 tsp cinnamon
+
300 g sour cherry jam/conserve
(but you could also use frozen sour cherries mixed together with gelatin, perhaps, for a less sweet version) 

Crumble the butter with the flour and the sugar and mix well, then kneed together with the 2 egg yolks. I love this step. When you have a nice even lump of dough, cover it in clear wrap and place it into the fridge for about half an hour.
If you happen to have an all time favorite pie crust dough, you can always just skip this step and make your trusty recipe. Me, I'm still searching for the perfect recipe for this step.

Line a pie pan with parchment paper and fill it with the dough, taking care to leave some for the lady (or whatever shaped) cutouts. I usually place another layer of parchment paper on top and fill it with either dried chickpeas or beans while pre-baking the crust to prevent it from rising in the middle. Bake for about 15 minutes at 170 C grades.

Until the pie crust is in the oven, mix together poppy seeds, cookies, cinnamon and lemon zest. Heat up water with sugar until the sugar melts, and take it off the stove. After a it has cooled a little you can add the honey as well, stir so it mixes well into the syrup. The reason why honey should not be brought to a boil is that it looses its nutritional qualities. Mix the syrup into the dry ingredients.

When the crust is out of the oven spread the jam out on the bottom, then spread the poppy seed filling on top. Roll out the  leftover dough and cut out whatever you wish, I have found these gingerbread ladies first in my cupboard, and was too lazy to dig for anything else. Goofy girl-power, well, why not. Place your cutouts on top of the pie, whisk one whole egg, and then using a kitchen brush cover them with the egg mixture.

Bake for another 25 minutes at 170 C grades.


Oh joy! Free-time and a good oven are my best friends right now.

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

refuel


It is such a blessing to be able to spend each day doing what I love, and yet I too feel weary after intense work sessions, crazy holiday periods and wholesale deadlines. What I do, comes so deep from within my heart that I sometimes feel like the well needs to be filled up again...

What do you do, after having given so much of yourself?

Days should be lived to their fullest, events experienced to their furthest extent. After all, we only get one chance at it all, and we may never get a second chance on today. This thought strikes me in my calmest days, in my silent moments. And I fall on my knees with tears in my soul. Is this it? I ask at times of despair. Why is the past called this way if it doesn't pass.

Being kind to ourselves is so essential. Most of us will give until we don't have anything left, and then we will give some more. And yet I ask, is it helpful when one sacrifices oneself over the process of giving?

Giving. It is such a magnificent notion, is it not?
I realized it never has to stop. My dearest friend, whom I often refer to as my sister, has asked me to organize a small group activity in one of the children homes in town. I was so physically exhausted after a very long work period, giving so much of myself, and yet these two hours have meant the world to me, spending time with children who may not have started off with their fortunes high over rooftops in life, but who have the freedom to still become whoever they wish to in their wildest dreams. I made star and heart shaped ornaments out of clay, and we painted them together with acrylics.

It was merely a few hours of my life I gave to this event. And yet it felt so liberating. Is that not a wonderful conclusion? One that needs to be celebrated with a smile coming from deep inside the soul?
Giving should never stop. When you are weary giving into one direction, try pouring your soul into another. It will give you the strength you need to move forward and be renewed in what you think you've lost.

I often get lost in my thoughts and I feel like big measures should be taken, when in fact the simplest steps give way to the most meaningful paths.


Ending the year...


This time of year is so magical, so filled with symbolism.
On the night before Christmas, I was walking Zsemi and I marveled at the grand full moon reigning over the clear winter sky. Did you know that the December full moon is called Cold Moon?

I could almost feel part of a winter fairy tale, closing my eyes...

I've heard the words: mercy and compassion so often this time of year. Two so very important words to our human experience. Has it ever occurred to you to be merciful and compassionate first of all to yourself, or you are aiming on orienting all your energies towards those around you claiming that to be more important? Is that selflessness, or self ignorance? I don't believe one can be good to others, if one does not know how to be kind to oneself.

Giving ourselves some space and moments of silent prayer to reflect upon the year that we're so close to leaving behind is essential to moving forward. New year, new me... That is one big load of crap. But I do believe that the whole point of moving forward is to learn from the past, seal it with a smile and aim to always be a better version of yourself.

Change is in my bones. It has never been difficult for me to embrace it. Being rooted in your very own spirit, and knowing you are never alone, even when you seem to be, is what grounds you, but it is also what gives you wings to fly.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Christmas Wish



I don't know what I did to deserve all the support you've been generously granting me this year, dearest customers of Jasmin Blanc Studio, but I thank you for it from the bottom of my heart. I cannot even begin to express how amazing all of you have been, and how much I received and learned... All that sweet feedback, kindhearted thank you letters and appreciation photos I received from you all, fill my soul with so much joy and gratitude, I am ever so lucky to have you along my journey!

I hope those ceramic ornaments glow gracefully on your Christmas trees, and I also hope that whoever will receive a Jasmin Blanc gift on your behalf, will be happy to have had such a thoughtful gift. And I thank you, truly, for choosing me as a maker of those gift... I am honored!

With all my heart, I wish every single one of you, reading these lines, peace, a calm mind and open heart. I wish you to find light in the smallest of things and recognize miracles in places you've only found confusion until now.

The fury crew and I wish you and your family a blessed, merry Christmas!

With all my love,
Erika

PS. I'll return with an update of the horizontal Christmas tree, a situation I very much foresee. ;)

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Sunday




"In every important way, we are such secrets from each other. " - M. Robinson

Friday, December 18, 2015

Christmas Market - 18-24 December


Don't miss out on quality Christmas shopping, you guys!
Come say hello to me from 18-24 December, in Iulius Mall, Cluj Napoca.

Hope to see you there!

Thursday, December 17, 2015

kittelicious


I painted the very first miniature cat figurine about 3 years ago. Never have I imagined for them to grow into such a success. Yet they have, and my customers absolutely love ordering them as gifts for friends and family, people they truly care about.

I have 2 studio cats and an apartment cat, so I know how close they grow to one's heart, they become members of a family and they are so very difficult to part with, should life ask them back. So we all like to keep them in our hearts and forever in our memories...

Gift giving is so much more meaningful if one truly takes the time and goes the extra mile to find something meaningful for a dear one... That is what my wonderful customer did. She ordered a figurine portrait a couple of months ago, and returned with a whole list of kitties for her loved ones for Christmas. This order was an honor! Truly!

Thank you!


Monday, December 14, 2015

December studio days


My poor Christmas lights are tirelessly twinkling in fog and in sunshine, no snow unfortunately in my corner of the world, not this year... This period is hectic and twisted, and most of the time I have no idea what day of the week we're at. The post office is crowded and tense, everyone seems to be more in a hurry, than at any other given time of the year. Traffic is mad, and apparently the gas pedal and the honk were both added to cars to be pushed continuously... Even though all of it is a day to day experience that I cannot escape, I prefer not to be a participant in this madness, and observe instead. It is amazing how detachment from the obvious gives way to explore the tiny hidden miracles in life.

Last night after the lights went off I started listing all the things (and by this I don't refer merely to the tangible) I was grateful for in that very moment. I think I may have required all night for the process, but I went on and on with it, until I fell asleep with a smile on my face.

I believe we are granted as much good and bad as we allow into our lives. Energy is a fine, logical thing. And when I feel drained I try to remind myself to observe where exactly my emotional energy flows and whether it needs to be balanced out or can be left to balance itself out.


Sunday, December 6, 2015

Chestnut cookie recipe


In Transylvania Santa comes on December 6th and the Angels pay their visit on Christmas Eve, when baby Jesus was born. They are the ones announcing the good news through their gifts to every little boy and girl. Oh how I love this time of year... 
I am a summer kind of girl, but growing up, December used to be my favorite month of all...

One of my sweetest childhood memories is from the weeks coming up to Christmas. I was born barely a year before the revolution, so growing up in the very first years of the change of regime after the communist era, I was not granted many luxuries; none of us were...
My parents could not afford a VHS, but they inherited a vast collection of wonderful cartoon slides and a very old slide-projector, today very fashionably called a vintage USSR projector, from their families. So my mother used to hang a white bed linen on their bedroom wall, she used to roast chestnuts for this occasion and we would all lay in bed, watching cartoon slides, eating chestnuts and having a rad time!

Happiness does not require much, time well spent together and people who love one another is all it really takes, I find. Simplicity has always been more precious to me than anything. Gifts are absolutely useless if we cannot be there for each other... 

As a gift for the Transylvanian Santa's arrival, I'd like to share with you one of my go-to cookie recipes (well, truth be told, all my cookie recipes are go-to's), which is incredibly simple to do and good for pretty much all occasions; eaten for breakfast with a cup of milk, as a snack with your afternoon coffee or simply for therapeutic purposes when sadness strikes.



Chestnut cookies

250 gr. butter
250 gr. flour
250 gr. chestnut puree
1 tbsp castor sugar
2  tbsp honey
3 eggs
1 tbsp rum
1 vanilla bean
1 tsp baking powder
1,5 tsp winter cookie spice***

I don't think there's anything more simple to bake than cookies. You just need to cream up butter with the sugar, honey and the eggs. Add chestnut puree and mix well. Swift in flour with the baking powder. I personally prefer to mix the dry ingredients in gently by hand (but it can also be done by an electric blender). Add in cookie seasoning, rum and the vanilla.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, and add chestnut sized mixture with a spoon. Make sure you leave space between each bump of dough, because it will spread.

Bake in a preheated oven for about 10 min at 180 C (or until the rim has darkened a bit). Transfer the cookies onto a cake rack and let them cool completely.


  • For extra therapeutic effect mix white chocolate chips into the dough, or alternately sprinkle the top of the cookies with sliced almonds.

*** I prefer making my own pumpkin spice (or as I like to call it, winter cookie spice) blend. I mix 2 tsp ground cinnamon, 1/4 tsp dry ground ginger, 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg, 1/2 ground cloves, 1/4 cardamom. I nearly never buy ground spices. Instead I look for these ingredients in spice stores, and ground them at home; I find their flavor to be so much more intense and real.

Sunday


"In the end, dear friend, it is always between us and God, not between us and them."
M. Teresa

Friday, December 4, 2015

Wishes


It always happens, yet I never seem to learn.
They say one must be careful what she wishes for, because she just might get it. I wished for life around me, work to do, situations to solve so that I would keep my mind distracted, my hands busy, and my energies focused. In. Another. Direction.

For the next holiday season I have a resolution. Either to hire an intern, or to organize my life in such a perfect way that I would be able to sanely handle it all. I am anything but organized, yet I usually seem to be so at home in my beautiful mess... up until November comes... After that my beautiful mess becomes fairly impossible to untangle.

Notes and colorful post-its everywhere. Maaan, I need to learn to say no sometimes.
Or perhaps I should have better wishes... Dare to wish, instead.
Walls are built for reasons. Protection mainly. Yet I have no walls high enough to save me from myself. Fatigue makes me vulnerable. And I don't like being so. This is the dangerous kind of vulnerability. Not towards the world. But against myself.

What do you do when you are out of breath, out of tears and out of answers?

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Zsemi


Sweet crooked bum... I realized I never actually followed up on her story over here.
My gal', my pal, my ginger soul. We live at the same speed, as they say. She is loud and happy, and would never hurt a living being, yet she relentlessly quarrels everyone she meets.

I will not go into the state she was in, when we have found her, because even just the thought of  it breaks my heart into a million pieces, but instead I wish to celebrate life. And second chances. And all the wonderful people who have helped us in those very rough first weeks. Strangers. Strangers sending heartfelt messages to support her...and me. Total strangers contacting me and donating for the cause. My customers, who might have been postponing placing an order, have jumped to help, as I used all proceedings from my shop during that time for her surgeries and treatments. The trust and the solidarity these strangers have shown towards me, was humbling and shocking even. I remember struggling to find words to express my gratitude...to find thoughts even simply just to understand what was happening.

At first the intention was, to save her poor soul (and legs), help her to recover, and when she would get strong and healthy enough, find her a loving home. My life (and lifestyle) at a time was not really suitable for caring for a puppy permanently. She appeared in our lives out of nowhere, a life at the time, which was scattered and filled with uncertainties. So seemingly time and space were not right for such a change.
We've lived so much together, and I kept putting off looking for that loving family for her. She adjusted to my changes seamlessly, and I soon couldn't imagine not having her around... I realized that perhaps I am just as much a loving family as any other...


From what I experienced, towards the west of the world, these situations are normal. In the society I happen to live in, however, a dog is often,  just a dog. And I expected people not to understand my reasons for getting so attached to this loving soul. And while that may have been true at times, the love and support me and her, we've been given exceeds those by far. 

I thought I was a cat-person before I met Zsemi. I soon learned I am an everything person. Period. Except cold reptilian type...those are only nice from a distance. Like half a kilometer would be a reasonable distance, I think. :)

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Chirldhood memories


Too often I see people going crazy with decorating over the holidays...
I have one simple rule and that is the "less is more" notion. This is not to say I am a minimalist, because I am not even close to being one. It's just that I believe simplicity is key in pretty much everything. I grew up, being told that when Christmas comes, everything goes. The more colors and shapes the better... Like certain women, when they are pregnant, they binge eat just because they have the impression that the baby bump serves as a great excuse and disguise for belly fat. But everyone can tell the difference between love handles and babies, just like almost everyone can tell the difference between simplicity and kitschy clutter.

I created the "Childhood Memory" heirloom set inspired by the simplicity of holiday ornaments, that used to decorate my grandmother's Christmas tree. As much as I love her regardless, I believe it is safe to objectively state that her behavior and lifestyle have not served as much inspiration in general, but her taste in Christmas decor was filled with dignity. Tiny apples, pine cones, acorns, paper-cut snowflakes and walnuts have humbly served as baubles and she had cut a baby's face out of an old magazine, dressed her with fabric and made wings from different type of paper, and DIY'd her into a tree topper angel. Splendidly organic. Humble. And peaceful. Not casting a shadow over what is truly important with all the glamour and glitter. I was aiming to recreate all that with a Jasmin Blanc twist, in feminine, delicate and subtle ceramic heirloom ornaments.



Saturday, November 28, 2015

Henna hair dye

I have been meaning to write this post for a while now.

My hair has always been a delicate subject to me. I have never dyed my hair and never have I intended to dye it. For some reason I was assuming that I would inherit dark-hair-at-the-age-of-70 from the side of the family that I seem to have inherited all my physical traits, and never have I expected to see gray hair to appear in my twenties, ever. Yet it appeared and as much as aging in general is not a subject that bothers me, that of aging hair had thrown me off balance and really made me contemplate my options.

I am trying to eliminate artificial products from my life as best as I can, so the thought of covering my head with para-phenylenediamine (used in most conventional hair dyes, but also in chemical photographic developing and as a vulcanization compound, scary, right?) was out of the question.

My natural hair color is a deep dark brown, so in the very beginning I was advised to try to color the couple of gray hair that grew out with a green walnut infusion, which made my hair shine, but it did not darken it. Perhaps, had my hair color been lighter, it would have helped, but it left me looking for other options.

Indian women, and their beautiful hair...So inspiring...
I discovered henna, and dozens of articles, tutorials and testimonials later I found Beachcombers on Etsy, a shop owned by a husband and wife, in love with the wonderful ancient art, selling body art quality organic henna powder. And though I was scared to death the very first time I did it (every time I look at this photo it makes me laugh out loud) I grew to love the result and the fact that it lacks chemical components.


I decided to write down my experience, to help those who also debate whether to try it or not. Instead of eating an entire bar of chocolate to calm yourself (like some of us), just read this guide to know what you can expect. There are a couple of important aspects that are good to keep in mind.

1. Quality

Henna is RED. Remember that when you see Henna Hair Dye listed in different colors or hues, and labeled as natural product. These companies are either lying or they are entirely ignorant. The henna leaf  releases a red dye, and blond/black henna dyes are botanically impossible.
When choosing henna it is incredibly important to make sure it is certified organic, and body art quality. This means that it is free of metallic salts and other compounds and so you'll make sure there will not be any cross reactions when applying store bought hair dyes (like you'll end up having smoke come from your hair) or allergic reactions. Organic henna is by no means an allergen.

2. Protect your skin and surroundings

Henna stains everything. Literally everything it touches. So make sure you cover your forehead, ears and neck with a bit of olive/coconut oil and wear clothes that you won't mind ruining accidentally. And use gloves when applying the paste on to your hair.

3. Time

You will want to free up quite a few hours for this purpose. Henna dye takes quite a few hours to set, so depending on the color-intensity you want to achieve, you would have to leave it on your hair anywhere from 2- 7 hours. I usually leave it up for 4 hours. Also, keep your head warm, as the color will set more effectively. I usually wrap my hair in clear plastic wrap and then in to a dark colored towel.

4. Henna will not coat your hair

It is good to know, in advance, that henna will not coat your hair. Instead it builds on your own color. So if you have roots, highlights or just some gray hair, the dye will have an entirely different intensity throughout your hair. And depending on your original hair color it will result in a different kind of red. Basically the lighter your hair is, the more your head will be carrot colored (good to know, blondies!).

5. Orange hair 

If you've washed the mixture out of your hair, dried it, and your hair is orange, don't freak out. It will darken over the next three days. In the beginning it is very bright and intense, but the color deepens as time passes. And what is great about it is, that it does not fade out entirely, so often you'll find it is enough to touch up the roots.



Mixing henna

- organic henna powder
- lemon juice
- essential oil (optional)

For those with a more sensitive skin, you can divide the juice quantity into 50% lemon and 50% orange. The orange juice is less likely to irritate your scalp. Regarding adding essential oils to the henna mixture, this is totally up you. Henna has sort of an algae smell, it is rather powerful, and many find it too much. Personally I have no problem with that, it does not bother me. Yet lately I have been adding a few drops of pure lavender essential oil, and I love the result.

I never follow any particular measurement. I just add citrus juice gradually and stirr well until the mixture becomes the thickness of  mashed potatoes, then I cover the bowl with plastic wrap and leave it for 16-20 hours. Right before applying I add a bit more juice to achieve sort of a thick pancake batter consistency and I add the essential oil.

Another tip that I personally find important is that henna works best on clean hair, so I always wash my hair the day I intend to dye it.


Dying hair with henna is a wonderful alternative to conventional hair dyes. You don't have much color option, but I find it a good compromise, if the dye I choose to use helps and nourishes my hair and gives it such an amazing shine. If someone had told me even just a year ago that I would end up being a red head, I would have laughed at the foolishness of me being anything other than natural walnut brown. But now that I became red(ish), I have to admit, I like it.

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Do you see what I see?


Even though I had merely a couple hours rest, I woke with an immeasurable joy in my heart, the unconditional type, that carries you through the entire day regardless of how it turns out to be. I have been humming this melody ever since I opened the blinds to discover that today is our first official snow day. There is something so breathtakingly beautiful in the beginning of each season, the anticipation and the welcoming of something new is so thrilling to my restless soul...


And as a delightful way to celebrate these glorious snow-days, I'd like to invite you to head down to the main hall of Iulius Mall, Cluj Napoca, and do some early holiday shopping at the Jasmin Blanc booth. You can find my work there (close to Sephora) from 26-28 November from 10 am to 10 pm. Look for lustrous ceramics, I promise to shine! If you are out of town this weekend, don't worry, as you will have another occasion right before Christmas to dive into Jasmin Blanc dishes and jewelry 18-24 December.

I don't do many craft fairs, so these rare occasions are an awesome opportunity for those who prefer retail shopping instead of the online, touching and seeing ceramics in person is an amazing experience from what I understand from my customers. They say that as great as my photos are, nothing compares to actual interaction! So come, see for yourself. I'd love to meet you there!

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

magic




We have had the most breathtaking sunsets these past weeks... I cannot remember the last time November was so colorful. But this one managed to endlessly bewitch me. I looked up from my workbench to be dazzled by the fierceness of  the passing sun...

Cinnamon scented thoughts



It starts to be that time of year, when my hands smell like oranges, my oven keeps debating whether to bake the honeyed slices of pumpkin or the cardamom cookies first, the whole kitchen looks like a sweet mess with traces of flour, cinnamon and bits of dried fruit... Despite the extra long working hours, I must confess, I absolutely love this time of year. Almost no sleep is yet again, my best friend, but opening up the kiln to a gloriously lustrous ornament bunch is so much more gratifying than sleeping. I loved Courtney's definition of her pre-holiday weeks. So true... But as the fire joyfully sings in the fireplace, my sweet fury crew is happily sleeping on pillows scattered everywhere, I hastily paint away on cat portrait orders with a calm heart and a joyful soul right into the night. There's no load of work, lack of sleep and tiredness that could make it all feel bitter...

I am continuously overwhelmed by your love and appreciation, my dear customers. Allowing me to be even just a tiny part of your holiday through the Jasmin Blanc ornaments and gifts is pure magic to my heart. I am ever so grateful for your support...



Sunday, November 22, 2015

Family



Change is a funny thing...
Especially the one we feel is taking negative directions.
I think most of us, at some point in our life we've found ourselves in the situation when we seem not to recognize someone around us. We might have thought we knew that person. And perhaps we really did at one moment in time. Or perhaps they never fully revealed their true self to us. And then we feel disappointment and bitterness, because we feel we've been deceived.

This is especially sour in very long friendships or inter-familial relationships. Over long decades you interact with a person on a daily basis. And then you wake up one fine morning, and it turns out not to be such a fine day after all. In fact every day turns out to be so from that moment on.
In the beginning there's struggle. Difficulty to understand the reason behind this change. Then there's pain. A powerful new wound, cut deeper by each new nonsense that we fail to get. Then there is disappointment. When seeing the decay in a person's character, they loose so much dignity that it merely leaves you feeling sick to your stomach....and when you get through this roller coaster of feelings and everything in between, after your rage and confusion have subsided, and after your emptiness slowly regains its mass, you sit and wonder if there is anything you can do. Slowly you will realize that the best action is to distance your expectations of what that person used to be and accept the road their character went down on. Be merry and grateful that you've had the privilege to know the person you once looked up to, and stop expecting them to be as inspiring and have the same integrity they used to have. Our anger often puts a barrier to adopt such an attitude, but it is a process... and processes only require progress, they, by no means, require immediate success.

And above all, what we absolutely need to do is forgive. Forgive them for taking crooked decisions, forgive them for being unrecognizable, forgive them for not being able to cope with the anger that had somehow built up in them over the years, forgive them for not being able to control it and so forgive them for being weak.

Eventually forgive yourself for all the times you were unable to handle it gracefully and forgive yourself for some of the times you were unable to forgive.

Sunday


the problem is we think too much, and we feel too little...

Friday, November 20, 2015

a winter gift guide


Of all clay bodies I prefer porcelain the most for the purpose of jewelry making. It speaks strength and elegance to me like no other... If it had a gender, it would most likely be feminine. Just like stoneware would surely have to be masculine. 

[mermaid] earrings// [gold bay] studs// [knot] studs// [cobalt waves] ring// [golden geometry] espresso cups// [divine] necklace

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Studio days


Rings, rings and more rings...They are probably my favorite piece of jewelry along with earrings. I made quite a few these past weeks and have not had a single cut or bruise on my hands. I was even surprised about that. Then I was putting a quick salad together for lunch the other day, and for the sake of wounds I ended up cutting my finger along with the tomatoes. Apparently someone had sharpened the knife that used to cut like a stick...

But anyway, I will soon add different color choices for the [STONE] ring to the shop. For now I am heading on to painting some of your custom cat pendants, to ship them as soon as I possibly can to insure arrival by Christmas. I will keep you updated.



In the meantime, over in dreamland...


Monday, November 16, 2015

Sunset


Oh world, why don't you see that God has nothing to do with all the dark deeds that have happened lately all around the globe...? Why can't you see that your hateful messages and opinions regarding prayer take root in the same point that generated those actions? Why can you not distinguish between fundamental and dogmatic religions and faith, pure as it should be? Why can you not see that active prayer and love is all we truly have and need... to once again act as human beings... together. As one.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

if I had a child, I would...


...teach him that there are negative and positive actions. And each has its consequence.
...show him to love all and frown not on the person but on their behavior.
...teach him not to condemn a whole nation or race based on the actions of a small group.
...read the bible with him and let him contemplate the Scripture. Who am I to proclaim to know what was meant to be written and understood by it?
...teach him the difference between religion and faith.
...teach him not to mistaken prayer with wishful thinking.
...teach him, that a life is a life and none is more prestigious than the other, regardless of whom it belongs.
...show him what love is.
...forbid him to grab a weapon in the name of (someone's)good to fight the wars of the selfish.
...encourage him to seek justice not with his fists, but with his heart.
...work hard each and every minute of my life at showing him that answering hatred with love is the only way to bring change about.

If I had a child, I would stand by as his heart got broken by all the cruelty that is going on in this world, but I would stay calm at the certainty that I taught him everything he needs to put the pieces back together and be able to trust and love again instead of contributing to creating even more hatred.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Two for Thursday



I'd trade nice fingernails in for working with metal any day. So much for ladylike hands... but I wouldn't have it any other way.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

One meter


(foggy gray November morning)

Silence is beautiful to me, but I fear the times when I feel overwhelmed by it. When it sits heavily on my shoulders, pushing me down, instead of allowing me to float peacefully. I fear the times, when it will be all I have, surrounding me entirely, pressing against my chest.

Leaving work the other night, I found myself in such a thick, suffocating fog, I barely saw one meter ahead of me. Especially since the headlights lit up the dark opaque air, had I not been familiar with every turn and bump in the road, it would have been incredibly hard to drive. Is that not an enlightening metaphor for life? Rarely do we see further than a meter ahead, despite our constant ambitions to preview everything in our near and far future. And yet, that meter, always ONE meter, is enough to go down any road. And perhaps we can merely go slow as a turtle, but slow steady steps is all it takes to get to where we need to be going. Without having the ability to envision the rest of it, progress can still be made.

Monday, November 9, 2015

Sneak peek: new jewelry collection


Oh my, I cannot wait to officially launch my new jewelry collection. A very, very special one at that, featuring porcelain and sterling silver, having been inspired by an abundance of wonder-like feelings and named through a beautiful friendship! I just had to share a little teaser, hoping to spark your interest and curiosity...

Love,
E.