When I was (much) younger and asked my Mom what she wanted for Mother’s Day, she always replied “a hug and nice children”. Easy to give and I was happy to do so, but of course she deserved more than that. Even at a young age, I realized that being a Mom is not an easy job, and I was always looking for something special that would surprise and delight her. Sadly, my Mom is not with us anymore, but I still send her a (mental) hug on Mother’s Day.
For those who are lucky enough to still have their Mothers around, here are some recent finds that I think any Mom would love to receive:
Who doesn’t love kids’ drawings and paintings? They are so creative and honest. I have one on the fridge that my best friend’s daughter did of me and my dog 4 years ago and it still makes me smile every time I see it. Cleveland-based company Art-Charms, founded by goldsmith Chad Verhoff, make adorable charms, pendants and cuff links from your child’s drawings (using only recycled precious metals). They come in circle, oval, heart or square shapes with the drawing engraved into the charm. I love the idea, and the final results really do look like the original drawing.
Swedish-born goldsmith Mia van Beek started her company Formia Design in Stockholm in 2001, but fate and love brought her to the US, and since 2004, she operates her business out of Virginia. Mia also creates jewelry from children’s’ art, but with a different look. Her charms, earrings, brooches, pendants, bookmarks and key chains come in gold and silver, and instead of being engraved into the pieces, they are cut out of the metal. The idea for the art jewelry came to her when she was trying to think of a personalized gift for her 3-year old daughter’s pre-school teacher. Her daughter drew a scribble, called it earrings, and that’s exactly what Mia turned her daughter’s drawing into.
Zoe, founder and owner of Three Sisters Jewelry Design, used to be an attorney, but a series of life-changing events made her change course. She opened a photography studio in one of my favorite places on earth – Solana Beach, CA – and also started taking metal smith classes. Eventually, Three Sisters Jewelry (named after her three daughters) was born, and today, she creates a large variety of hand-stamped silver and gold charm bracelets and necklaces. My sister-in-law has a charm necklace from Three Sisters, the “gigi’s jewelry box”, which has a locket with the silhouette of her daughter and two hand-stamped charms with initials. It is absolutely adorable, and my niece loves opening the locket to look at her own profile.
Retired TV and movie costumer Suz of Polkadot Magpie turns metal scraps from her custom knife maker husband’s workshop into these adorable personalized hand stamped charms and pendants. They come in several different shapes: hearts, cats, stars, birds, bunnies, etc. The bunny charms have a very special story: Suz worked on the set of Crash with the late Dennis Hopper (whom she called “The Bunny”) and when he told her that his illness had taken a turn for the worse, she created these charms to help raise funds for ACS (and still donates the profits from the bunny charms to them).
Therese and Sandra, the two artists (and Moms) behind London-based company Joulberry create these darling silver fingerprint charms and pendants. When you place an order, you first receive a print kit so that you can take an impression. The charm is then created from the print, and can also be engraved on the front and/or back with your child’s name, birth date, or any other message you would like.
Charms can obviously be used in many other ways than on a charm bracelet – in scrapbooking, attached to gifts, on necklaces, etc. – and the other day, I came across a fabulous new way of using them that I have never seen before: attached to mugs.
These adorable mugs are made by French-born artist and founder of Ligne Ceramique, Jacqueline Igestedt. She began her career as a furniture designer and also worked as an interior decorator in Casablanca, Morocco. She now lives in Stockholm, Sweden and focuses her creative powers on ceramics.
The mugs (3.3” high) come in off white and black with either a heart charm or tiny glass beads, and can be used for both hot and cold beverages. Or be used as anything really – pencil cups, small flower pots, candy bowls, vases, etc.
So cute and creative! I especially love the ones with the heart charms. I have not been able to find them here in the US, but they are available online at Inreda.com.
We have talked before on this blog about the importance of storing your jewelry the right way (see the earlier “jewelry boxes…” post). Regardless of whether your pieces are valuable investments, cherished heirlooms or “just” have sentimental value, they deserve tender loving care and a form of storage that protects them. Having said that, the storage does not have to be bland and utilitarian.
Here are some unique jewelry boxes that are as wonderful as gifts as worth keeping for yourself.
This unusual jewelry box is a design by Swedish team Cathrine Olsen & Hans Edblad. It is made of raw concrete embossed with an elaborate baroque pattern. They come in two sizes, and the one-compartment interior is lined with silk.
Photos: Edblad & Co
Tetris-Inspired Ring Boxes
The super creative box by Austrian designer Gerlinde Gruber is the perfect holding place for rings to be given to (or perhaps by) the Tetris (or former Tetris)-obsessed. The box is made from 6 wood blocks and is held together by a paper loop (perfect for stamping or writing a message or greeting on). I think it’s adorable regardless of whether you have even ever heard of Tetris or not, and for those who are looking to surprise their special someone: it definitely does not scream “engagement ring”.
Photos: Stephan Friesinger
Pumpkin Coach Trinket Boxes
This small (3x3x1″) Cinderella-esque fantasy jewelry box is really intended to be used as a wedding (or party) favor, but I think it is perfect as a box for a young girl (or for older girls with a romantic side!). Made from hard silver pewter poly resin, they can hold your smaller trinkets and charms, and the pumpkin coach shape and rhinestone features adds a bit of fairy-tale glam to the design.
This gorgeous box is actually not a box at all, but a cake (not great for storing jewelry in, but I couldn’t resist!). The toasted almond cake by San Francisco designer Shinmin Li is just one of many amazing creations from her company I Dream of Cake.
Photo: I Dream of Cake
The Linley Architectural Boxes
Last, but certainly not least, the crème-de-la-crème of the bunch. The luxurious and elegant jewelry boxes by famed London furniture-maker David Linley (who is also the chairman of Christie’s UK) are intricately designed pieces inspired by some of the world’s famous architectural buildings (Monticello, The Casino at Marino, etc.). They look more like elaborate (and very stylish) doll houses, and house secret compartments and drawers to fit each jewelry type (there are also similar boxes for wine and cigars). These collectors’ items are rather large and don’t come cheap – the Metropolitan Museum of Art box below measures roughly 24x12x9″ and sells for over $38,000.
For quite some time now, I have been “collecting” names of artists, designers and manufacturers of charms and charm bracelets. Then it dawned on me: perhaps others could also benefit from this list, and find new favorite designers and styles? I asked a few friends, who all said YES! so I decided it would be a good idea to share it with you all.
You will see that it is a wide variety – everything from famous fashion designers to relatively unknown artists working out of their home studio. The list is constantly growing and I keep finding new and exciting designs all the time. However, I don’t put “just anyone” on the list – only original designs and I have to like them. So I guess you can say it’s a “curated list”.
As I mentioned above, this list is by no means complete, and I will keep adding to it on a regular basis. If you have a favorite designer you think belongs on this list (from anywhere in the world), please contact me and I will check them out and if I like what I see, I’ll add them.
Since charms come in several styles these days, I have created a little style “key” so that you can easily find the types of charms you are looking for:
European-style = bead charms Vintage = no longer in production, but can be found at auctions, etc. Traditional-style charms unless noted otherwise Traditional = Regular charms (with jump or split ring attachments. NOTE that traditional does not necessarily mean traditional looking bracelets; it just describes the type of charm Clip on charms = Traditional charms with a clasp attachment Italian charms = Modular link-style Craft = mini charms suitable for scrap booking, etc. Kids = charm bracelets for children Rings = interchangeable charm or bead rings, or rings with charms attached Earrings = interchangeable charm or bead earrings Necklaces = interchangeable charm or bead necklaces Mobile = cell phone charms Pre-made = already assembled charm bracelets, usually with the charms soldered on. Pre-made in parenthesis means it is the only type they offer, Pre-made on its own means they offer that in addition to separate charms Slide = slide charms Watch = charm watches
A Aaron Basha – Traditional (kids) Accessories & Beyond – Traditional (pre-made) Accurist – watch (European-style) Adamantus – Clip on Affinity - Clip on Ajda Lampwork – European-style Alengio - European-style Alex and Ani – Traditional (pre-made) bangles Alex Monroe - Traditional & Pre-made Alex Woo – Traditional (pre-made) Alia Jewelry – European-style Altruette - Traditional & Pre-made Amore & Baci – European-style, Kids Amore La Vita – Clip on AmuletGifts - Traditional & Pre-made (lucky charms) Analece Design – Traditional, Clip on, Anna Rose Jewelry – Traditional & Pre-made Anna Sui - Traditional (pre-made) Annika Bertilsdotter - Traditional, Clip on Annina Vogel – Pre made (from vintage pieces) Anson - Vintage Archive Jewelry – Traditional (pre-made), Vintage Art-Charms – Traditional (custom made from kids art) Ashley Pittman – Traditional (pre-made) Assya - Traditional (pre-made) Astley Clarke - Traditional (pre-made) Aurélie Bidermann – Traditional (pre-made) Avindy - Traditional (pre-made) Avon - Vintage Azendi - European-style, Traditional Azuni - Traditional (pre-made)
B Baby Phat – Clip on, Pre-made Baci Beads – European-style Bacio- European-style, Kids Badgley Mischka – Traditional (pre-made) Baglady - European-style, Traditional, Clip on Barbara Bixby – Traditional Basch - Traditional (pre-made) Bates & Klinke – Vintage Beau Sterling – Vintage Bell Trading Post – Vintage Belleek Living – Traditional (pre-made) Bellina Beads – European-style Betsey Johson – Traditional (pre-made) Betty Design – European-style Beverly K – Traditional (pre-made) Beyond Words – Traditional Biagi beads – European-style, Clip on, Kids Bill Levine – Traditional Bing Bang - Traditional (pre-made) Birdland Creations – Traditional (pre-made) Blee Inara – Traditional (pre-made) Blossom Copenhagen – Traditional Boho Soho – Clip on Bombay Duck – Clip on Bongo - Traditional (pre-made) Bon Bon Charms – Traditional Bonn Bons – Slide Bottega Veneta – Clip on Boxing - Italian Boucheron - Vintage Breadner - Vintage Brighton Charms – European-style, Clip on Bruno Zanetti – Italian Bugard Studio – Rings Bulgari - Clip on, Pre-made, Burberry - Traditional (pre-made)
C Carl Art – Vintage Carolee - Clip on Carolina Bucci – Traditional (pre-made) Carolyn Pollack – Clip on, Traditional (pre-made) Cartier - Vintage, Clip on Casa d’oro – Italian Cassandra Erin – Traditional (pre-made) Cath Kidston – Traditional (pre-made) Catherine Canino – Traditional (pre-made) Catherine Michiels – Traditional Cathy Dailey – European-style, Traditional Cathy Waterman – Traditional, Pre-made Cellini - Traditional, Vintage Chamilia beads – European-style, Kids Chanel - Vintage, Clip on, Traditional Charity Charms – Clip on, Pre-made Charles Horner – Vintage Charm Barn – Craft Charm Factory – Traditional, European-style, Pre-made Charm It – Clip on (kids) Charmco - Traditional Charmed Memories – European-style Charming by Ti Sento – Clip on Charming Life - Traditional & Pre-made Charmology - Traditional (pre-made) Charms UK – European-style, Clip on Charmworks - Traditional Chelsea Taylor – European-style, Clip on CherieO - European-style, Traditional Cherished Time Designs – Traditional, Pre-made Chim - Vintage Chloe - Traditional (pre-made) Creed - Vintage Christie Martin – Traditional Christy Lea Payne (CLP) - Traditional & Pre-made Chrysalis - European-style, Clip on, Necklaces ChuBo Beads – European-style Clogau Gold – European-style, Clip on, Traditional, Pre-made Coach - Traditional (pre-made), Clip on Coloured Rocks – European-style, Clip on, Pre-made Coro (Corocraft) - Vintage Courtney Simmelkjaer - Traditional (pre-made) Cousin Claudine - Traditional (pre-made) Crea - Vintage Crystalbead888 - European-style
D D for Diamonds – Traditional (pre-made) for kids Damas Jewellery – Clip on, Traditional (pre-made) Danecraft - Vintage Dangerous Goods – Traditional, Clip on David Andersen – Vintage David Yurman – Traditional DaVinci Beads - European-style Dazzlers - Clip on Dazzling - Traditional (pre-made) De-ani, Inc. – Clip on Deffego - European-style, Italian Diddi Design – Traditional (pre-made), Clip on Dinky Fingerprint Company, The – Traditional, Pre-made, European-style Dinny Hall – Traditional (pre-made) Dior - Clip on & Pre-made Disney Couture – Clip on, Traditional (pre-made) Dogeared - Traditional (pre-made) Dolce & Gabbana – Traditional (pre-made) Donatella - European-style, Traditional Doriwallace Jewelry – European-style Dower & Hall – Pre made & Traditional Dyrberg/Kern – Traditional (pre-made)
E Edblad & Co – Traditional (pre-made) Ecuus Designs - European-style Elco - Vintage Elle Jewelry – Clip on Elsa Peretti (for Tiffany) – Vintage, Pre-made Elsa Schiaparelli - Vintage Embracelets - Traditional, Pre-made Erickson Beamon – Traditional (pre-made) Essenza Beads – European-style Ettika - Traditional (pre-made) Evolve New Zealand – European-style Extasia - Clip on
F Fabergé - Vintage Femme Metale – Traditional & Pre-made Field & Rose (Laura Love Rose) – Traditional & Pre-made Fiorelli - Traditional (pre-made) Florenza - Vintage Formia Design – Traditional (custom made from kids art) Forstner - Vintage Fort of Providence – Vintage Fossil - Clip on, Pre-made Free People – Traditional, Vintage
G Garold Miller – Traditional (pre-made) George Jensen – Clip on, Vintage George Shiebler – Vintage Gioielli Italy – Mobile, Italian Giorgio Martello – Clip on Glassbeadstudio - European-style Glitzy Girls - Traditional (pre-made) for kids Good Charma – Traditional (pre-made), Necklaces, Kids GP Firenze - Italian Granchelli - European-style Gucci - Traditional (pre-made) Guess - Clip on, Traditional (pre-made)
H Halia - European-style Harrods - Mobile Heather Moore – Traditional, Pre-made Helen Ficalora – Traditional Hellobead - European-style Henry Dankner & Sons – Vintage HighChi – Tradtitional & Pre-made High IntenCITY – Clip on (kids) Hilla Design – European-style Hint Charms - Traditional Hot Diamonds – Clip on, Traditional (pre-made) Hultquist-Copenhagen – Traditional (pre-made)
I Ideal Jewelry Manufacturing Company (trademark Theda) – Vintage Individuality - European-style Intercast - Vintage Ippolita - Traditional
J James Avery Charms – Traditional Jay Strongwater – Clip on Jayposon - Vintage Jemma Lulu – Traditional (pre-made) Jennifer Zeuner – Traditional (pre-made) Jessica Elliot - Traditional (pre-made) Jewelart Sterling – Vintage Jewellery Tree, The – Traditional (custom made) Jill Schiff - Traditional & Pre-made JM Fisher Company - Vintage Jo for Girls – European-style, Traditional (pre-made) for kids Joan Rivers – Traditional (pre-made) John Hardy – Traditional (pre-made) John Lewis – European-style (pre-made) Jon Richard – Clip on, Pre-made, European-style JouJou - Clip on Joulberry - Traditional (custom) Joy Everly - Traditional, Pre-made, Kids Juicy Couture – Clip on Just Divine – Traditional (pre-made) Just J – Clip on
K K&Company – Craft Kalassmycken - Clip on, Pre-made (kids) Karen Foster Design – Craft Karen Hill Tribe Silver – European-style, Traditional KC Designs – Traditional (pre-made) Kelly Waters – Traditional Kieselstein Cord – Traditional (pre-made) Kinney - Vintage Kirks Folly – Clip on, Traditional (pre-made) Kit Heath – Traditional (pre-made), European-style (their own version, only fits their chains), Kids, Clip on Konstantino – Traditional (pre-made) Kranz & Ziegler – Traditional
L La Vie Parisienne – Traditional (pre-made) Lacey Ryan – Traditional (pre-made) Lagos - Traditional (pre-made) Landmark Beads – European-style Lauren Sigman – Traditional (pre-made) Les Néréides – Traditional, Pre made Leslie MacInnes – Traditional (custom made from kids art) Lilyme - Traditional Links of London – Traditional Linx & More – Tiny charms to go in their lockets, Italian Liz Claiborne – Traditional (pre-made) Lois Hill – Traditional (pre-made) LOLA of Paris – European-style, Clip on London Road Jewellery – Clip on, Traditional (pre-made) Loop Collection, The – Traditional (pre-made) Louis Vuitton – Clip on Lovelinks- European-style, Kids LovingTheBead - European-style, Clip on, Rings, Earrings, Necklaces LTD Art Glass – European-style Lucky Brand – Clip on Lulu Guinness – Traditional (pre-made) Lunch at the Ritz – Traditional (pre-made bracelets) Lutrick - European-style Luv Links – European-style
M M & B Vintage – Vintage, Traditional Magdalena Ruiz Pasieka – European-style Maisel’s Indian Trading Post – Vintage Maloa - Traditional (pre-made) Manolo Blahnik (for TOUS) – Traditional (launches in March 2011) Marc Jacobs – Traditional (pre-made) Marcus Max Design – Rings Mark Poulin - Traditional (pre-made), Necklaces MarMalaid – Clip on, Traditional (pre-made) Martick - Clip on, Traditional (pre-made) Maryann Wilkin Designs – Traditional & Pre-made Mathot Design – European-style Me to You – Traditional (pre-made) for kids Medical Alert Link – Italian (medical alert bracelets) Mercedes Salazar – Traditional (pre-made) Mi Lajki – Clip on, Traditional (pre-made) Michele Baratta – Traditional & Pre-made Mikey Jewellery – Clip on Milly - Traditional (pre-made) Molly Brown – Traditional & Pre-made Monet (aka Monocraft Products Company) - Vintage Monica Rich Kosann - Traditional, Necklaces, Pre-made Monserat de Lucca – Traditional (pre-made) Moritz Glik – Traditional (pre-made) Muano - European-style Muru - Clip on
Nagara by SeaZen – European-style Napier - Vintage Nelle & Lizzy – Traditional, Pre-made Nick Hubbard – Traditional, Pre-made Nicky Vankets – Traditional (pre-made) Nina Designs – Traditional Nina/STHLM – Traditional (pre-made) Nomination - Italian Nuvo - Vintage
O Oh la la – Traditional (pre-made) using ribbons instead of chains OHMBeads - European-style Ole Lynggaard – Traditional & Pre-made OneJewels – European-style for their own line of rings and necklaces Oriana Jewelry – European-style Oscar de la Renta – Traditional (pre-made) Otis Jaxon – Clip on Oxxo Design – Traditional, Clip on
P P & B Sterling – Vintage Page Sargisson – Traditional, Necklaces Pandora Jewelry – European-style Pastiche - Clip on Paul Morelli – Clip on
Peace of Mind - Traditional Pearl Affection, The – Clip on Pearls for Girls – Clip on Pedro Boregaard – Traditional Penny Preville – Traditional Perlamore - European-style Personality - European-style Personalized Boutique – Clip on Peruzzi - Vintage Pia Jewellery – European-style, Clip on Pianegonda - Clip on Pick Up Sticks Jewelry Co. - Traditional Pilgrim - Clip on, Traditional, Necklaces, Earrings Playboy - Traditional (pre-made), Mobile Pnut Jewelry – Traditional (but very unusual!), Pre-made Polkadot Magpie- Traditional Privileged - Traditional & Pre-made Pugster - European-style, Italian, Clip on, Traditional Puzzle Collection – Italian
Q Queen Baby – Traditional (pre-made)
R Raymond Yard – Vintage ReFlorence - Italian Rembrandt Charms – Traditional, clip on Reller - European-style, Traditional R.L. Griffith – Vintage Romano Passavinti - Italian Rosecraft - Vintage Royal London - Clip on RYLDesigns - Traditional RYRY - Italian
Sacred Charms – Traditional (pre-made), Clip on SarahDipiti – Traditional Saskia Rose Design – Clip on, Pre-made Satya Jewelry – Traditional (pre-made) Scribble - Traditional (pre-made) for kids Seidengang - Traditional (pre-made) Serena’s Beadery – European-style Shane Co – Traditional (w option to add clip on) Shanti - Clip on, Pre-made, European-style Siena Jewellery – Clip on Silver by Mail – Clip on Silverado - European-style, Kids Simstars - European-style Slane & Slane – Traditional (pre-made) SNÖ of Sweden - Traditional (pre-made) Sparkling Sage – Traditional (pre-made) Spencer - Vintage Spinning Jewelry – European-style, Rings Stella & Dot – Traditional Stephen Einhorn – Traditional, Pre-made Storm Jewellery – European-style, Clip on, Necklaces, Pre made Storywheels - European-style Stuller - Clip on, Traditional (pre-made) Style Naturale – Traditional (pre-made) Sundance Catalog – Traditional, Pre-made Suuz Design – European-style Svane & Lührs – Clip on Swarovksi - Clip on
T Talexia - Italian Talkatoo - Clip on (recordable!) Tarina Tarantino – Traditional (pre-made) Taxco - Vintage Tedora - European-style Temple St.Clair – Traditional, Pre-made TerraCast - Traditional Terranova - Vintage Thea Grant - Traditional (pre-made) Theda - Vintage Theo Fennell – Clip on Thomas L Mott – Vintage Thomas Sabo Charm Club – Clip on Three Sisters Jewelry Design – Traditional Ti Sento – Clip on, Pre-made Tiffany & Co – Traditional Timebeads - European-style watch beads Tina Tang – Traditional TLM (Thomas L Mott) – Vintage Tous-Traditional (pre-made), Toric joint Trifari - Vintage Trina Turk - Traditional (pre-made) Troll beads- European-style Truth - European-style, Clip on, Necklaces, Kids (“Truth Cutie”) Tur-Agamo - European-style
U Unodomani - Italian
V Van Cleef & Arpels – Vintage Verdura - Vintage, Pre-made Viva Beads – European-style Våga - Clip on
W Walt Disney Productions – Vintage Walter Lampl - Vintage We Three Designs – Traditional, Necklaces Wells Sterling – Vintage WellsWare - Traditional & Pre-made William Ruser – Vintage
X Xenox - Clip on, Pre-made Xixis Beads – European-style XOXO - Traditional (pre-made)
Z Zable - European-style, Earrings, Necklaces Zoppini - Italian