New Materials: New Work

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In my search for ways to make lighter, brigher earrings – it occurred to me that aluminum might be another fun avenue to explore. And so I ordered some. While I was waiting for that to arrive, I found the white limestone rocks during a trip to my local library. The green ceramic buttons came from a recent trip to Taos, New Mexico. Am I loopy or just having too much fun? I’ll let you be the judge.

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“Oh no! I’ve been Ma’med!!”

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Oh.  My.  God.  It’s happened again.

I took the afternoon to do some harmless boutique schlopping (that’s shopping/schlepping, k?) around parts of Dallas that generally remain pretty far west of my usual stomping grounds; namely, Inwood Plaza and Snider Plaza.  (I missed a few more plazas, like Preston Center and Highland Park, but I’m saving those for another day)  Despite the main MAIN reason of jump-starting my imagination and energy level while taking advantage of the lack of road congestion (and unexpected by-product of Spring Break!  Yeah, Mexico!), the main idea was to learn what new boutiques existed around Dallas that weren’t around five, ten, twenty-odd years ago.  To me, those boutiques of yore seemed to exist in much greater numbers (not too surprising, thanks to existing prior to online- everything and super high commercial real estate)  They were owned by high-energy, often eccentric gals who had ideas of their own about what to show in their shops – and would often give a local artist a chance to show their work on a consignment basis.   (I know this because I was one of those artists!)

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Knowing that these type of stores have slid mostly by the wayside, I still sallied forth hoping that in the well-paved, monied parts of Dallas there might lurk an undiscovered glittery mushroom, harboring a fairie-godmother with my name on her.  One who seemed capable of liking my slightly weird, one of kind handmade creations and would give me a chance.

It’s not that they don’t have beautiful jewelry – they do!  I just didn’t feel like they would be open to new designers.  Maybe I am being overly negative and need to push myself to do a pitch; I suppose the only thing that will hurt will be my pride (and it will hurt, soooo much!)

I did have fun and discovered some beautiful shops with lovely things, from designers all over the country, including an in-house jeweler.  I also enjoyed the undivided attention of one very knowledgeable young salesperson who seemed to have the right balance of enthusiasm and ability to listen.  These are rare qualities in sales-folk anymore.  (you might say I am being unkind, but this is my opinion and I can back it up with years of my own retail accessories experience.  It’s a special person who has a genuine interest in the making process as well as the human touch.  Usually you’re lucky to get one or the other.)

After such a lovely visit, I made the mistake of floating on jewelry dreams into one last accessory shop; it was one in a chain of such shops, and the salesperson was so bored I felt like I might have interrupted a nap.  She was kind and chipper enough; but when I thanked her to take my leave, she responded with a “thank you, Ma’am.”   If the drizzle and rain hadn’t dampened my spirits enough – that did the trick.

Just in case you’re in retail or you sell to others in any capacity, I would just like to say, “Never use ma’am.  It ages women no matter how old they are.  Better to use the sweet, southern gentile phrase, *dear.*”

It might sound overly douty or weird, but almost everyone likes to think they are someone’s dear; even men.

Thanks for reading; and  have yourself a nice evening, dear.

 

 

Bring on the Blue Skies (and Colors!)

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I am usually a huge fan of Dallas in the winter; consisting of bright blue skies and snappy temperatures that keep me clear headed and briskly active.  But this winter has consisted of a daily diet of atmospheric gruel; a cold, wet blanket of ‘meh’ …. not inspiring at all.  Unless a strong urge to nap can be considered inspiration.

So once I (force) myself out of the house and into the studio, I am desirous of color and light.  Experimenting on colorways for a new line and deciding how many items will form the new line (how many necklaces of what length?  How many earrings and bracelets?  Should I even mess with rings?)  Here is what has emerged in the last few weeks.  Most of it is not on my Etsy shop yet (though it should be) but please bear with me.  (they will.)

 

Happy Valentine’s Month

What does Valentine’s Day mean for you?  I can only speak for myself, but my general response generally runs the gamut of microemotional shades – as quick as watercolors fade into paper – ranging from alarm and fear, followed by worry, followed by silly joy, and then fading back down into resignation and disgust.

What is it, really?  A pre-fab, Hallmark Holiday with a bizarre history that somehow includes elements of a storyline involving cupids armed with arrows,  boxes of chocolates, roses, diamond jewelry, cards, and a dead saint.  At least half of this list is made up, out of place, or overpriced.

So in the past few years, gals (and a few precocious guys) have decided to start celebrating themselves – or at least the love they have for the people that they are, not who they *should* be or some perfect ideation of beauty – and called it Galentine’s Day.  While I generally hold my nose at attempts to re-name holidays with cute rhymes, I can’t say this one does any more harm to anyone than the original.  As such, to everyone, I say – Have a Happy Galentine’s Day!  Stay true to your personal selves and treat yourself, if you wish, with a locally made, non-diamond, non-rose, non-chocolate alternative.  Insert shameless self promotion here!  

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Hello, Again! This time I’m all alone…

So, this is awkward.  It’s been four years since I wrote a blog post about my own work.  More like five years, with months on either side of running a little ole retail store called Makers Connect.  (for anyone with burning curiosity, it was located at 10242 E. NW Highway).  For reasons I can’t explain but probably having a lot to do with vanity and whistfulness, I have continued to pay for the upkeep on the Makers Connect shop and the facebook pages, so feel free to go take a look.  We had lots of neat local folks’ work and some really fun times!  If nothing else, the photos are bright and colorful and should amuse your small kids if you have any.   Mom and I worked together most days, and my husband Steve and good friends Lisle, Pamela, Kim and others helped along the way.

It was a great four years, and I don’t regret one minute.  Now that we’re moving on, I am back to my roots; jewelry design.

Since February 2018, I’ve been hunkering down and getting *serious* about improving skills, acquiring mo’ better tools, and just generally ramping up my production of wearable products.  When it came time to decide what to call this endeavor, I decided to go with my old email address, which was also the title of this old blog, Truly Unruhly.  It’s a play on words with my last name, for anyone who didn’t know, and ensures the proper pronounciation thereof  (surprisingly an issue…. I know!)

This post is kind of a test to see if it even makes sense to continue to use this particular site.  I feel there was a pretty good following but all of you have probably wandered off  in the last four years.  Can’t say I blame you.

But stick with me now if you enjoy seeing what fun, funky jewelry I get up to making – along with shares of information and musings about other local artists, many of whom I enjoyed the pleasure of meeting at Makers Connect (and others who Steve and I have known for years.)

Just for fun, here are some images of new stuff!  Please chime in with comments if you have some helpful criticism or advice; and if you prefer the more modern media, feel free to follow along on instagram and facebook! Truly Unr FB bus header 4 part Clearer

 

 

 

Makers Connect is the place to find us now!

Hello lovely readers;

We so appreciate you giving us your time and energy.  We wanted to let you know that we’ve opened a brick and mortar store to continue the journey of creative discovery in east Dallas!  As such, we’ve created a new blog site that will be our new home going forward.  We hope you’ll follow us there.

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We are currently recruiting fresh talent to join us in this adventure; keywords being handmade, local, modern in sensibility, and earthkind.

We have met many artistans and feel a kindred spirit to the toil and love that you put into your work.  We want to help nurture and support your efforts by offering a lovely, clean, climate-controlled place to show your work.  We offer a standard 60/40 consignment arrangement and will be conscientious in tracking your inventory and paying on a monthly basis.

Please see our Vendor Page for more information and sign up.

 

 

2013 in review! This is fun to know.

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Thank you, WordPress Stat Monkeys!    Here’s to a great year for all you crafty, sly, ingenious peoples of the world.  Lets make and connect!

Here’s an excerpt:

A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 6,500 times in 2013. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 5 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

Two More Shows between now and Christmas!

Concrete Notions banner, pots on bench

Dear reader: yes, you, who are the avid follower of my blog.  You know who you are.

Here is the important news update you’ve been waiting for.  Since we don’t presume to believe we are garnering too much following, we sometimes fail to make it clear what’s going on in our world.  And then we feel horrible when someone who really did want to buy something says, “Oh, man, I missed that show because I didn’t see anything about it.”  I understand, and I thank you for your concern.

Saturday, Nov 9 – White Rock Local Market at GREENSPOT Location on Buckner in Greenspot / Golds Gym parking lot

Saturday Dec 7 – White Rock Local Market at LAKESIDE Location:  Garland road in Lakeside Baptist parking lot

small sedum square pot

Christmas is coming up fast (like mildew in the bathtub..one minute it’s clean and suddenly, weird orange stuff growing on your nice white calking!) so let’s just face facts.

Our concrete pots make really nice gifts for those hard to please, have it all, or just plain ‘not sure what to get them’ kind of folks on your list.  You know… the aunt who has everything but really loves to garden, the teacher who was so nice to your kid all year and still doesn’t get paid enough, the housekeeper who has done such a nice job making sure your house looks awesome during the holidays.  This one’s for them.

All Barry Manilow references aside.. we look forward to seeing you and helping you locate the perfect gift for someone special… or yourself.  Cheers!  Chris and Steve

fire stick pot