Eilisain aka Lisette in Gaelic

Welcome to my blog, where I document my process in making jewelry, muse on the influence of art and the joy of making beautiful objects.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013


grrr, I wish I had cable! Just the clip alone gave me shivers and almost brought me to tears.  I feel so lucky to not face the same struggles the First wave of feminist fought; though we fight our own now, at least now we don't even need to consider that we can't apply for any job we want.

if you have cable, WATCH this! I'm going to try and watch it online somehow.

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Tuesday, February 26, 2013

How jewelry can help you

Several weeks ago I was watching one of my favorite fantasy movies, Neverending Story, and it hit me that really, the story and main character would not have achieved his goal if it weren't for the Orin (means "light; pale; pine tree; fair, pale").  In essence a piece of jewelry, adornment was the main ingredient for his success.  The Orin guides him and leads him in the right direction.  How powerful is that?

Most of the time, the average person does not think about how their jewelry will aid them throughout the day - but if it's gone - then for some reason we are at lost and upset.

I like to think of my jewelry in that way, as a talisman and an aid in guiding you in your daily life.  Such as the Resurrection Beetle ring; beetles have long been associated with rebirth and awakening your soul.  Beetles also teach us how to communicate effectively and solve problems by thinking creatively. 

18kt gold plated bronze beetle ring with crystal quartz.
Next time you put on your jewelry or deciding what to wear, think about what guidance you need in the day.  Perhaps it's strength, confidence, creativity or peace of mind.  Whatever it is, be more aware and you will begin to notice how your perspective changes with your jewelry!

Thanks for reading.
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Monday, February 25, 2013

So much Past inside my Present

 Perfect lyric from Feist song for the title of this post!

I'll have to get this book when it comes out; it's wonderful to see a movement of young adults appreciate the beautiful quality of handmade goods and loving the library.  
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Saturday, February 23, 2013

Sneak peak of Poseidon Collection

Winter has certainly provided me with the time to work away in the studio while the cold air swirls outside...or inside, as the heater isn't working in Art Avenue! ha but I'm not complaining, I've got two little heaters in my studio space.

Okay so enough of weather, I'm very excited to provide you with a sneak peak of the Poseidon Collection.  This collection is sea inspired, in a kingly and godlike manner, thus named after the Greek God Poseidon however it is a collection that I made with the intention that it is affordable and wallet friendly.

I started working with brass because it is so rich and golden but not as costly as real gold.  And it works so well with the matte black of the electroformed coral.  And knowing me, I can rarely ever let a piece of jewelry go without adding rough gems to it! Purple and black are one of the best color combinations, in my opinion.

The Poseidon Collection is set to release in about a week, and will be exclusively sold in select locations  (TBD) and through my website. 
Instagram shot of the Poseidon cuff: brass, amethyst, sterling silver & electroformed black coral.

Aquamarine chips, sterling silver and electroformed black coral.

Along with the new collection I'm releasing next weekend, I'll be working on a fancy fashion lookbook and video! Finally, those two projects have been at the top of my list for a long time.  So stay tuned my dear readers and thank you for visiting.

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Friday, February 22, 2013

Don't forget!

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Wax, it's HOT

Some more great photos Aileen Devlin took of me for Art Avenue promotions.  We're still getting the casting studio set up, one step at a time. I'm just SO happy I got my wax inject working with the air filter.  It's amazing how quickly all the costs add up for a studio!
Me, being very careful not to squirt hot wax on my hands. 
close up, keep a plate underneath to collect wax!
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Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Fashion in stages

When I was 11 years old, living in California, my teacher asked us what we wanted to be and to create a portfolio.  I decided I wanted to be a fashion designer.  I sketched ten designs and was so thrilled about it.  Sometimes I still consider that dream but in a sense I'm doing that now with my jewelry.

She wrote at the bottom of the essay that hopefully one day she'd be wearing one of my designs...I hope that's true!

Anywho, enjoy this great video of two young designers and how they found inspiration for their Fall 2013 collection.  
The Making of a Collection, Part 1: Ohne Titel Finds Inspiration for Fall 2013 in Chelsea Galleries - The Cut

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Saturday, February 16, 2013

My top 5 creative business resources

Photo courtesy of Design*Sponge Biz Ladies series
If you're like me, being more of a person that enjoys making more than business planning, it can be so hard to know where to start and really making yourself be business like.   However, over the years I've become much more confident and I now believe that I can run my business.   And the way I got here was with the help of other creatives and business-like people.

So I here I'm going to give you my top 5 resources, most of them are run by women who are in the creative field which is a double whammy for me. 

1.  Design*Sponge Biz Ladies:  Whenever I read a post from Biz Ladies, I feel and know so much more than I thought I knew.  They give advice from everything to how to drafting blog posts, contact PR companies, business planning, advertising, how to photograph your work, wholesale, retail etc.  Just the avatar alone (Rosie the Riveter) We Can Do It gets me revved up to get working!

2.  Designing an MBA:  Megan Aumen is a true business woman and metalsmith.  She really analyzes the market and how a customer thinks.  She is a champion for all new kinds of technology, like Pinterest, Instagram and Facebook for creatives to use instead of rejecting.  I also love how honest and sincere she is; when you read that despite how successful she is, she has her ups and downs too, it's oddly encouraging to me. 

3.  Tara Gentile:  I heard about Tara through Megan, now wonder there! Tara is also just as savvy as Megan and gets in the head of the customer and the maker.  When I read her posts, I'm much more informed and thoughtful about how I interact with my customers.  I love her tagline too, Maximize your impact, minimize your effort. 

4.  Art Biz blog:  I recently wrote about Alyson and her takeaway from Nick Cave.  Alyson knows how the creative person thinks - we avoid anything regarding growing our business, 'cause it's no fun! But when I read her advice, I immediately get to working on my contact list and business goals.  She also knows how emotional artists can get when it comes to selling our work and that, often we take it as personal rejection.  

5.  Kari Chapin:  I've bought both of Kari's books, Grow your Handmade business and Handmade Marketplace, both have been a bible to me over the past 6 months.   Kari provides step by step processes for setting up your business, as well as practical advice from a slew of successful creative business people.  The book is very easy to digest and she gives really thoughtful questions to ask yourself in the process.

I hope that my recommendations provide you with new resources to grow your own business and get you motivated for the future. 

Thanks for reading!
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Thursday, February 14, 2013

All the World's a Stage

and all the men and women merely players - William Shakespeare.

Yesterday I received my copy of Savage Beauty, exhibition book of Alexander McQueen's fashion and runway shows.  Alexander McQueen was more than a fashion designer but a true artist, his work and shows were a canvas for him to express so many concepts, ideas and points in history.  

I devoured the book last night and took away some new ways to think about my own jewelry and the concept behind each collection.  I want to emulate the way Alexander took bits and pieces from history, his own life and that of nature into making his definition of how he saw the world.  

Here are several of his pieces that I'm truly in love with:

It's A Jungle out There Winter/Autumn 97-98, Alexander McQueen. All photos courtesy of Met website
Elect/Dissect, Winter/Autumn 97-98 (House of Givenchy).  All photos courtesy of Met website.
Widows of Culloden, Winter/Autumn 06-07. All photos courtesy of Met website

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Monday, February 11, 2013

what heaven looks like

This is what I imagine heaven to look like.  I think in another life I could've been an astronomer, the unknown and outerspace fascinates me.  I hope you enjoy these great photos from the Hubble website - you can see loads more there!

 Light Echo  Illuminates Dust Around Supergiant Star V838 Monocerotis (V838 Mon)
Source: Hubblesite.org
I have this same photo is my sketchbook, one day I plan to make a brooch based on it!

A Giant Hubble Mosaic of the Crab Nebula
Source: Hubblesite.org
The Crab Nebula

Jet in Carina
Source: Hubblesite.org

Crab Nebula:  a Dead Star Creates Celestial Havoc
Source: Hubblesite.org

HH 2
Source: Hubblesite.org

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Saturday, February 9, 2013

I collect things...

this video is such a silly spoof on art videos and fashion videos in general.

FASHION FILM from Matthew Frost on Vimeo.

it's good to laugh at ourselves and not get too serious.  Enjoy!
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Sunday, February 3, 2013

6 things to learn from Nick Cave

These past several weeks I've been researching and going through my books to get tips and methods on how to be a better artist and boost my creativity.  Since graduating from art school, I've been on my own in the studio and it's been such a strange, good and uncomfortable change.  Now, I have my own space and quiet time to really focus...but it's been so hard.  I think I have a bit of ADD, I'll get started on a project and then get up and rearrange my hammers or tidy up the casting station - basically avoiding my work!  And I know it isn't because I don't want to work, I think it's because I'm a bit scared and intimidated by my new schedule and space.

With that said, at night I read and try to learn how I can focus my attention and be more productive.  I recently found in my folder of important articles a great blog post by Alyson Stanfield of Art Biz Blog, she is an amazing and business savvy woman. The article is 6 things Nick Cave Said That Made Me Pay Attention, and the tips are wonderful. 

One of the main tips Alyson talks about that stuck with me most is Live your art and Prepare.   I have had it in the back of my mind to visit and research taxidermy and bone preservation for a long while now...and I haven't done it!  It's a very essential part of my jewelry in that I want to know how to collect and preserve animal bones and parts.  Also, preparation, constant testing and rearrangement would really benefit my jewelry; it is a part of my research but I want it prepared constantly.  I'm going to post these tips that Alyson took away from Nick in my studio and remind myself to challenge myself, evolve, grow and push myself everyday.

Here is a short video about Nick Cave and his visit to the Seattle Museum last year.  Hope you enjoy!

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Saturday, February 2, 2013

ECU Metals Guild Valentine's day Sale

I'll be selling my jewelry at the ECU Metals Guild Valentine's Day sale in front of the Dowdy student store on the ECU campus.  I hope you'll come by and visit if you're in the area!
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