Sunday, November 2, 2008

Make your choice and VOTE!

This election is one that brings many questions, concerns, party lines, opportunities for both good and bad - no matter WHICH person or party or issue you vote for. I'm not promoting either party or candidate; I simply want Americans of all flavors to exercise their right to vote!

If you don't make your opinion known - by VOTING - you may as well not have an opinion. Nor a voice. Check out this video, with some famous folks saying the same thing: "Don't Vote" campaign

America is not perfect - NO country is, despite how much we love our respective countries. But we can each try to make it better, by making considered decisions on putting them on the line on November 4th.

I love America. I love it for what it has been, what it could be, for the opportunities it gives us. There are horrible events and periods in the past, which we, today, cannot change. Just accept and go on, looking to the future.

If you don't vote, you can't gripe about the results-!

Friday, April 4, 2008

Modern Metal Masterpieces!

Having decided as a child that she would be an artist, Danielle Miller took metal as her medium of choice after discovering her passion for metals in high school. Her passion for the material led her to study metalsmithing/jewelry at Tyler School of Art at Temple University.

She has been actively selling her jewelry since 1994, adding motherhood to her list of accomplishments along the way. Danielle has had an online shop on since 2007, as well as participating in shows.

Her clean, simple geometric forms create elegant and comfortable jewelry with a modern, playful twist.
Many of my pieces have kinetic elements designed to attract and engage the wearer. The kinetic elements that I incorporate into these structured pieces add unexpected fluidity and movement. Pearls or stone settings may spin like a propeller, slide freely across wires like an abacus, or rock to and fro like a see-saw. These articulated parts rely on the wearer for motion, which can be a simple turn of the body or a deliberate manipulation of the movable parts. This dynamic aspect of the work creates an intimate and unique relationship between jewelry and wearer.

These concepts are easily seen in her work, such as the Bubble Charm Necklace, shown at the top of this post, which has matching earrings, the Baby Bubble Earrings and the Cascading Bubble Earrings.

Danielle Miller's work is meticulously handcrafted using traditional jewelry making techniques: hand-fabricating, soldering, casting, forging, etc. in her home studio, which she is justly proud of.

Check her website and blog to keep up with Danielle's work and activities.
And don't forget to check out her wonderful shop on Etsy, DanielleMillerJewelry.

Monday, February 18, 2008

A Renaissance Artisan: CelticGoddessJewelry

Celtic Goddess Jewelry was started in early 2001, and has been selling on Etsy for 2 years and still counting! Andee Harston is a Buddhist pagan living in the Orlando area and a wonderfully charming and stimulating young woman. Andee creates and sells celtic and pagan inspired jewelry, including wonderful tiaras, art (painting and photography) and bath and body products. The latter are available in her 2nd Etsy shop, SacredWaters, which is temporarily closed, due to Andee’s recent travel.

I met Andee while she was putting together a promotions pack for members of our Street Team on Etsy: the EarthPath Artisans Street Team (EAST). She had designed very cute containers and was diligently soliciting items for inclusion and assembling the packs for distribution. We stopped at Starbucks for coffee and had a marvelous brainstorming session. I found Andee to be cheerful, intelligent with a sharp humor and very creative.

Looking at the pieces in Andee's CelticGoddessJewelry shop confirms this and the feedback from customers is universally positive, even enthusiastic. There are so many lovely pieces in her CelticGoddessJewelry shop that it's hard to narrow it down for a feature.

I strongly encourage you to visit her shop and browse through its beauty and positive glow. You will find many non-pagan-specific pieces, as well as pagan oriented, and all lovely!

Here is an convenient Mini Ritual tin, for performing rituals while traveling! Check Andee's shop for all sorts of pendulums and pendulum charts, as well!

Andee's tiaras or crowns are incredible, such as the Harvest Goddess piece shown above and the "Tatiana" crown (perfect for a renaissance faire or a bride!) shown here.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Thought for the Day: What's in a Word?

Most people don't think about the simple power that words have. They simply use them and move on, never thinking about how the words they use came to have the meaning they do.
By "meaning", I mean the emotional context (the CONnotation), as much as the actual definition (the DEnotation).
You hear someone upset and cursing a blue streak and may be shocked. But think about it: a word (or phrase) is only a collection of sounds until we (society or individuals) give those sounds a definition with an associated emotional context.

A colleague on Etsy made a profound post on her blog yesterday (click here for the post, pointing out a specific instance: how do people react when someone says they are a witch or mentions witchcraft? Revelate said:
Words are powerful. They are tools and are loaded with energy. Words can bring on intense emotion. Spilling tears, steaming anger, delirious joy and belly laughs can all result from words. The energy attached to a single words can create a vivid picture in your mind's eye. You may feel emotion and be transported to a different place with the energy of one single word. A fine example of this attached energy is found in a related group of words; Witch, Wicca, and Witchcraft. To many they immediately are negative, words that stir up ideas of "the devil" and of animal sacrifice. What really bothers me about the negative attachment to these words is the fact that the ideas of Wicca and Witchcraft being practices of devil worship and causing harm to living beings is ignorant.

If you are pagan, Wiccan, druid, shamanic, Buddhist, Taoist or a member of any non-mainstream spiritual path, I'm sure you have encountered these reactions. If you are a member of a mainstream spiritual path (Christian, Jewish, Moslem), you may have used those words in a negative context or reacted in a negative way, without even realizing it. Or realizing why...

Please go to RevelationsNorth, Revelate's blog, to check out the full post - you won't be sorry!

I believe that most people are inherently good, in that they do not go out of their way to cause harm to another person, physically or emotionally. I may be wrong. People in groups tend to react differently; they get caught up in the "mob mentality" and become dangerous. But, please, THINK about the way you react to certain words or phrases. If it's a negative reaction, examine the reason. It may be valid...but it may NOT.