Saturday, October 4, 2008


Now Open! Studio 206 Jewelry is finally available online!

Here's the dish:

While not everything is 'up there', there is enough to see what Studio 206 is all about, and more will be added a couple times each week, so stay tuned. There's also a section where you can request items. So for all you fans out there, find your PayPal number and start shopping! Christmas is in what, 80 days?

Studio 206 started after a class in stained glass when I started making picture frames and little angels. Along with some pendants made with techniques learned in the class, I frantically made enough merchandise for the local craft fair. The rest is history. This fall is my 8th anniversary, and I've moved from stained glass picture frames (they were pretty cool!) and custom windows to silversmithing and set stones. There was even a detour into pastel painting (I'll be back to that one for sure after the holiday season!).

Along the way there have been an amazing group of people who have become regular customers. To think that they like the results of my tinkering enough to request custom pieces is so affirming. There have been stained glass windows for a restaurant and several homes, jewelry for several bridal parties, a couple mother-of-the-brides, proms, and Christmas gifts. Even a retail store joined in the fray and regularly bought jewelry to display. My paintings made it into a couple shows this summer, even winning an award at an international exhibit in Tacoma, Washington. A gallery in St. Louis hosted an open house featuring my pastels in September, and I've even sold a couple of them.

So the next chapter has begun, and I've already made my first internet sale. Everything I read says that the Internet is the next venue for art sales. For people in my generation (yes, my birthday was yesterday! I'm now officially in my forties) who phoned a store and then went to look at things in person, this is a little weird. But I started this blog, have a website for my paintings, and now a cyber venue for my jewelry.

It's very enervating, and a lot has happened in 8 years...

ut I'm still waiting for the day when I see my jewelry on a complete stranger.

Thanks to everyone who has supported me in the past, and an advanced thanks to the customers-yet-to-be.

Pastel (and whatever) Guy

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Glacier Ice

Here's a pretty pile of blue. Here's what was going through my head as I developed this design:

  1. I wanted to use this Peruvian Opal that I found at a bead show a year ago (the light blue beads that look like candy in the photo above).
  2. Silver always goes well with blue - brings out the coolness.
  3. I really like making random patterns.
  4. I also really like the look and idea of a 48" necklace that you can layer (or not)

So, I made a palette of colors that could go in this piece. I don't often use the seed beads (the itty bitty ones), but they gave space between the opal pieces, making them stand out since there is such a differential between the two. I added some milky glass stones, too, in order to expand the color range a tad. Now it could be worn with pinks, too. Usually I use the milky glass with lavender or pink crystal.

The result is a right pretty piece that matches my wife's eyes...

The next dilemma was to come up with a name that would be catchy but not too kitsch-y. Robin's egg is too cliche, light blue is boring, ice blue is a tad over-used, too. Even though it reminded me of my wife's eyes, naming it after her wouldn't mean anything to anyone but the two of us. Hmm. Glacier Blue. Caribbean Blue. Cerulean Blue. Ocean Blue. Sky blue (boring). I think I like Glacier Blue.

My Etsy site is coming along! In fact, this little pretty is on there for purchase if you're interested...

Until next time, when I have some hammered silver earrings to share...

Pastel (and Jewelry) Guy

Sunday, September 28, 2008



Envy, leaves, grass, emeralds, olives, and jade are some of the things that I think of when I see green.

Oh, and celery.

Don't forget frogs, wintergreen, Christmas trees, soybean fields, and the carpet in our house. (Seriously. What were they thinking?)

Neither my wife nor I can wear much green because it tends to make us look sick. I guess that's the Scandinavian ancestry showing through. But green is such a great color. It's cool because it's the fern grotto at the bottom of a waterfall. It's the complicated photosynthesis equations I had to memorize in Plant Physiology (I'll admit to actually enjoying that in a nerdy kind of way). But most of all, it's the energy of living things. In the summer, there are millions of leaves all busily converting light energy into sugars. In the spring there are hundreds of little baby grasshoppers trying to make their way. In the winter, there's the rush of the holiday season (Christmas for us), with the endless shopping, filling jewelry orders, and decorating our Christmas tree. (OK, trees. As in 4 or 5). And the fall? Hmm. Today, I noticed the tiny shoots of green grass sprouting in my lawn's bare patches. (Of course, I also noticed the green aphids on my azaleas - grrr!)

As I look back on a weekend of an outdoor art show with perfect weather (I was a spectator for once!), a NHL preseason hockey game (our first ever in person!), seeding the grass, and hours and hours (like about 8!) of grading papers, I feel fortunate. That's it - lucky. I feel green all over with leprechaun-ish luck for the job that will always dish out the green no matter what the economy does. But most of all, I appreciate my wife, my kids, and my family.

Oh. right. ...and my art. Because without that, I'd be seeing red instead of green.

How lucky are you today?
Pastel Guy