Showing posts with label Pearls. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Pearls. Show all posts

It's About Time!

I'm so happy everyone else has finally figured out what you and I have known all along! 

Pearls ~ They got it goin' on!


Pearl's popularity and revitalization up-tick started a few years back and has been steadily climbing.
 
The recent jewelry shows in Las Vegas solidified Pearls as one of the hottest trends happening right now. 

  

Proof they're where it's at trend-wise 
is evident all over the internet, too.

Pearls on Trend

Here's a few things which are hot and happening 
in the pearl-world right now. 

According to a September 1st, 2021 survey in National Jeweler Magazine, 


It's exciting how many men are embracing the pearl as their gem of choice (Yay!!) and how consumers aged 25-35 are also sparking the pearl engagement ring trend, too! 

LOVE IT!!

Freshwater pearls in shades of blue and gray handknotted on black silk cord and spaced 3/4 inch apart with a silver tones pewter medieval cross pendant

You just Googled, 
'men wearing pearls', 
didn't you?!  

Told ya!

I think it's cool.
Has been for a long time. 

Alice Cooper wears a pearl around his neck.
 
Want to see a really cool pic of him wearing his leather and pearl necklace while playing guitar on stage with Johnnie Depp?
 
Hop on over to Glide Magazine 
and check it out!
 
I attended Alice's Christmas Pudding 
 in Phoenix many year's back 
and he had one on.
I was in the audience 
sitting right behind his Mom. 
(That was cool!)
 
Have you ever seen Steven Tyler drenched in Tahitian pearls?
 
Google that one!

Lucky for us, 
the pearl jewelry trend 
shows no signs of slowing down. 



  
Since I'm overjoyed that pearls are everywhere right now, 
I thought I'd show you some cool pearl jewelry 
that tickled my fancy recently.
 

But first, before I show you the 
drool-worthy pearl loot, 
here's some tips on how you can up-cycle 
your own pearl jewelry for a fresh look.

If all you have in your jewelry box 
is a classic strand of 

Pearly Whites


Bring them up-to-date with some fun and ultra stylish chains!

'Chains and Charms'

The jewelry industry's 2021 buzz-phrase.


Put on a few chain necklaces of different lengths that feature various pendants and your favorite pearl strand and you'll have today's hottest layered necklace look down pat! 


And, what's every pearl strand's best friend?

Why the pendant, of course!


Add a pendant (or two!) 
to your strand of pearls. 

It's a fun and easy way to pep 'em up!


Colored gemstones are shining brightly 
everywhere right now, too.


It's never out of style to mix in some 
bright colors with your pearls!


And then there's Earrings!

Long woven pearl drop earrings - MiShel Designs

Long and lean pearl-drop earrings are tickling wearer's shoulders as they tease our eyes with their beauty.







And, hoop earrings of all shapes and sizes 
adorned with pearls can be seen 
everywhere these days.

For Fall and Winter 2021 - hoops of all shapes are hot and hoops with pearls are beautifully showing their trendy luster.



Check out page 14 of the CPAA's August 2021 issue of #THISISPEARL
to see some really cool pearl hoop earrings.

Okay - now it's time to show you
 my latest pearl jewelry obsessions:

This beautiful necklace literally stopped me in my tracks - jaw on the ground!


Of course it's by Todd Reed!

Yep. AMAZING

Hop over to his Instagram page and check it out!


And Lika Behar's Kristen Cuff's are another obsession I have!
 
They're big, bold, chunky and FUN!

Check this out from her website - GORGEOUS!!
I would seriously wear this everyday!
 

You should see the one in bright silver - it's an award winner!
Check out her website for more options on this cuff.


And of course, pearls and turquoise together are popping up everywhere now.
  
It's high-time everyone caught on to this super cool combo. 
 
I mean, what's not to love, right? 

Little H is one designer that's been doing this trend right for quite some time now.

I mean, just look at this!

 
Go check out all her other cool pearl jewelry, too. 
She's another fav of mine!


Well that's all the Drool-Worthy Pearls I have for you today. 

Let me know what your favorite jewelry trends are right now, I'd love to hear!

Until Next Time,

Peace, Love and Pearls Baby!

Cheers,
Shel



Michelle (Shelly) Buettner is a Certified Pearl Specialist through the Cultured Pearl Association of America (CPAA) and she holds a Graduate Pearls Diploma from the Gemological Institute of America (GIA).  In addition to creating her own jewelry line she is also a freelance copywriter for the gem and jewelry industry who can often be found fawning over pearls in her spare time. Follow Shel’s jewelry blog at MiShelDesigns.net or her copy blog at ShellyBuettner.com. See what she’s snapping over on Instagram @pearlgeek or connect with her over on LinkedIn

Pearls ~ Today's Hottest Jewelry Trend

AH, PEARLS!

Since pearls are my favorite gem, I'm loving the fact that they're showing up everywhere these days!

What more could a pearl-girl ask for, right?! 




I love how jewelry connects us to people, 
places, or certain times in our lives.

Meaningful jewelry is one of the phrases that echoed through the halls at the jewelry shows in Vegas recently, too. 





The Colosseum in Rome 
has this beautiful cross, 
which was challenging to photograph 
from where I was able to stand, 
but the ancient, rustic ruins inspired me 
back in 2012 & 2013 to 
create pearl jewelry that 
reminded me of my time in Italy.




Quite often, when I see pearls 
~ especially large, beautiful, baroque ones ~ 
I think of Ancient Empires
 and the important role pearls have played in our history. 



I believe this is why I like seeing pearls 
used in interesting, some-what rustic looking ways. 



I love seeing pearls mixed with textured metals
 or mingled amidst ancient coins, crosses, and other relics.



A couple of pearl trends that are hot right now are hoop earrings.


Hoops Are Trending - Big Time!


Personally I think Hoops, just like Pearls, 
are ALWAYS on trend. 
 
But then again, I can be seen wearing 
the same simple pair of sterling silver hoops daily. 

For years...and years.

Hey, when something works, you stick with it, right?

Another hot trend in pearls is

Baroque Pearl Shapes


Jewelry featuring baroque shaped pearls is one trend that's growing in popularity with no signs of slowing down soon.  (Yay!!)

I feel they're some of the most interesting and beautiful pearls around!



So tell me, 

What's your favorite type of pearl?

Your favorite piece of pearl jewelry?

Do you see yourself wearing any of today's 
hottest pearl trends?

If so, which ones?

Let me know in the comments below or hop on over to Instagram and let me know. 

I hope you've enjoyed our little Pearl-Time.




Until Next Time,

Peace, Love and Pearls, Baby!!

Cheers,


For your further Pearl enjoyment,
I've included a few links to some fabulous resources such as:






~ ENJOY ~ 



Michelle Ludlam-Buettner (Shel) is a Certified Pearl Specialist through the Cultured Pearl Association of America (CPAA) and she holds a Graduate Pearls Diploma from the Gemological Institute of America (GIA). In addition to creating her own jewelry line, she is also a freelance copywriter specializing in the gem and jewelry industry who can often be found fawning over pearls in her spare time.  Follow Shel’s blog at MiShelDesigns.net and ShellyBuettner.com or see what she’s snapping over on Instagram @pearlgeek.




Let’s Talk Earring Wires,…Shall We?



The unsung heroes of earrings, ear-wires are what most people think of as ‘just hardware’ for their beautiful earrings.  Alas,…they are not.  At least not in my opinion. And, once you read this article and start noticing earring wires, you might change your mind and quite possibly your ‘ear-wire’ opinion (or form your own).

For starters, although I prefer to start with a positive instead of a negative comment, I’m going to share with you my dislike of ‘store-bought’ (i.e. traditional/manufactured) earring wires. 

(Manufactured Earring Wires - Compliments of Pinterest)

They are, to me, the bane of practically all earrings; distracting from the most beautiful designs and, for lack of a better term, ‘trashing’ them.    

(Oohhh,….I’m feeling the flack from this sentence already!)

Have you ever seen a pair of the most beautiful earrings with your favorite gemstone or the most unique and intriguing design that stopped you in your tracks only to see them hanging from a pair of sterile, manufactured, cheap-looking earring wires, thus mucking up their astonishing beauty?

Admit it.  You've noticed.   

They distract from the designer’s beautiful work of art which takes hours of intricate work, skill and education. Not to mention patience – some of these beauties take days or weeks to create, start to finish!   And, if you’re the kind who notices, they completely take away from the overall beauty of the finished piece of jewelry.

It’s as if you’re viewing this gorgeous painting in the Louvre and then you happen to notice the frame and it’s some slick, manufactured looking, no character square piece of #*@!$ engulfing this fine work of art.  

Yes, I probably should have used my inside voice there, but seriously folks,….I’m calling ‘foul’!!



Here’s a solution:  

If you’re a jewelry designer, create your own.  




I’d wager to bet that if you are capable of creating beautiful works of jewelry art, a simple earring wire design is going to be a breeze for you.  

Or, if you feel you don’t have the time for this, as time is money and the most efficient way of doing things saves money, purchase some well-crafted, quality, hand-made ear wires from another designer or someone who does this on a regular basis (No, I no longer do this).  




Another thought is to make a few different ear-wire designs on your own, consistent with your style of jewelry / earrings and have them cast in bulk, thus ensuring the same outcome time after time.  
They're bound to become a ‘signature’ piece in your designs, just as your clasps or your logo tags may have become and will help set your designs apart from others’ and make your jewelry distinguishable.

Having clients who mentioned how they prefer my simple ear wire designs over ‘store-bought’ ones; sayingthey add a touch of class to the design and feel stronger and of better quality, makes me feel I am delivering the best over all product and design to my customers.


 I’m quite curious to know how many people really do notice the ear-wires of earrings.

Whether you’re someone who loves wearing earrings, a seasoned jewelry designer, or a retail or boutique establishment, please jump in and leave a comment below telling me what you think.  

Who knows,…maybe it’s just me.

Until Next Time,

Peace, Love, Pearls and “Great Earring-Wires”, Baby!!


Cheers,

~Shel~


Please join our fun community of jewelry lovers by signing up for our monthly 
Pearls! Newsletter.
 (trust me, we talk about more than just pearls!)

It's packed with all sorts of 'Pearl-Fect' goodies each month, from the latest jewelry news and fashion trends, to exclusive online products, events and promotions.

And, receive Our Free, Pearl-Facts Info Sheet when you sign up HERE.



Michelle Ludlam-Buettner (Shel) holds a Graduate Pearls Diploma from the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) and is a Certified Pearl Specialist through the Cultured Pearl Association of American (CPAA).  In addition to creating her own jewelry line, she is also a freelance e-commerce copywriter specializing in the jewelry and travel industries who can often be found fawning over pearls in her spare time.  Follow Shel’s blog at MiShelDesigns.net or see what she’s snapping over on Instagram @pearlgeek

Questions and inquiries welcome at Shel@MiShelDesigns.net

Wholesale Inquiries please list "wholesale" in the subject line.



Returning to the familiar,...

Quiet for quite some time now to work on 'work', I've been asked recently if I will be returning to jewelry making and designing with pearls and to updating the blog with pearl and jewelry information any time soon.

The answer to these questions are, "Yes". 

In response to the above, I've been asked a few times lately about pearls and the 'do's and don'ts' of designing with them and thought I'd reach back in the archives and give you one of the 'good ones'.

The original blog post is 'here', with even more Q and A's, but here's the answer to one of the most frequent questions I receive in regards to designing with pearls.

Q: Can I 'liver of sulfur' my finished wire work piece with my pearls, or do I have to oxidize my metal first and then create my piece?" 

Great question!  And, safety first here, always follow the manufacturer’s instructions on any solution(s) you are using whether it’s Liver of Sulfur, Silver Black, etc. and always wear protective eye gear.  
 

Here’s my answer:  You should not place your pearls or other porous gemstones (such as turquoise, etc.) or fragile beads (painted, AB coated crystals, etc.) into a solution of Liver of Sulfur.  
 
Technically, you should oxidize your metal (silver, copper, etc.) prior to working with or assembling your piece.
  
Now, have I ever placed my finished piece along with my pearls into a solution of Liver of Sulfur – yes.  
 
Should I have? No, not really.  
 
Why did I do it? Because I was lazy (just stating the truth here folks!) and I wanted to see what would happen to my pearls. 
(Granted, I didn’t do this with my ‘super-good’ pearls!!)
 
So, what happened? 
 
Well, my pearls came out just fine after about a 30 second dip in some LOS. Absolutely perfect. Not a problem at all. 
 
See?
 
Pearl, Turquoise and Sterling Silver Wire
Wrapped Pendant "Freya"
Before and After an LOS Solution Dip

Although, another time, when I left my pearls in some LOS solution for a couple of minutes, one of them had a dullness to their nacre that wasn’t there prior to the LOS dip and one time it even turned a white pearl a rather dull, gray color. 
It was hard to see right off the bat, but in certain lights you could tell it had lost its original white color and that something was a bit ‘off’. 



It's a bit hard to see here in this photo, but the pearl on the right has lost
a bit of it's beautiful luster. If I had a before and after pic, it would
probably be a lot easier to tell the difference.
 
So, if you have poor quality pearls with extremely thin nacre or chipped nacre (think large hole pearls that have chips around their holes, etc.) you will want to LOS your metal prior to assembling your jewelry if at all possible. If not, then a quick ‘dunk’ might be okay – but then it might not. So, ‘dunk’ at your own risk,…or well, at your pearl’s risk! 
 
A great alternative if you cannot oxidize your piece until it’s finished and you have stones in your design that you are afraid may be affected by a Liver of Sulfur solution is the eco-friendly, boiled egg method
Yes, you can boil an egg, peel it, cut it in half and pop it in a seal-able plastic bag or plastic Tupperware type bowl, seal it up, and the sulfur in the egg yolks will eventually oxidize/blacken your piece without harming your stones/beads.  Now, this does take time,…20 minutes to 2 hours or more, it just depends on the eggs.  So, this is not for the impatient crafter, but it is a great alternative that doesn’t harm your beads/stones (at least none that I know of so far anyway). 
 
*One word of caution if you use Silver Black to blacken your work: don’t let it touch any of your pearls/beads/stones.  Or anything else for that matter – clothes, fingers, your desk, etc. - I’ve had it turn mine black,….well, dark gray/brownish. It wasn’t pretty. So if you’re just using a dab of Silver Black to blacken some stampings you’ve done on metal and you’re just touching it to one small area, that’s fine, just make sure you avoid all of your pearls, stones, beads, etc. 

Okay, so now you're ready to go and have a little 'blackening' fun with your silver and pearl designs, right?! 



Go ahead - be brave and have fun! 

Until Next Time,
Peace, Love and Playing with Pearls!!  
Cheers,
~Shel~