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A Jewelry Collector's Story

Gemstone Collection

As far back as I can remember, I collected jewelry.

It all began with my Father, giving jewelry to my Mother and me to mark occasions like birthdays and anniversaries. He always picked out interesting pieces  on his own- one of my favorites being a band of square channel set rubies for a birthday. I was used to seeing bands with round diamonds, so I especially loved that this was different. I think that began my quest for collecting jewelry.

I was lucky that we travelled as a family when Summertime came, and I began to seek out unique jewelry every new place we went. The thrill of the hunt for designs that I'd never seen before was always at the forefront of my brain, no matter where we went. I loved when I could take home something that was different and marked the occasion or place that we'd been. Everytime I wore it, I was instantly transported back to the place where I had found it, and got to relive the experience of where we had been. 

Years later, and I still love to collect jewelry. It's absolutely the very first thing that I think about when a Birthday arises... but these days I seem to settle for more practical necessities. Not to mention, my life is becoming more streamlined and clutter-free...so if I am going to buy something, it's got to be pretty special. And who has time anymore for that kind of search?! Maybe one day soon I'll devote an ENTIRE AFTERNOON to searching solely for a new sparkler to add to my collection. That would be amazing. I mean, the odds that I would be able to just focus on that are... slim to none. Just too many other online distractions to click on to lead me astray -like my four year old needs new cowgirl boots...but maybe one day it'll happen. I sure do love the hunt!
xox-Laura

 

Jewelry Trends from the Runway at Fashion Week

"Statement necklaces, arm cuffs, art school earrings and raw stones all made an impact on the runway this Fashion Week." Vogue

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It's always interesting to me to see how a Jewelry Trend starts on the Runway as a fantasy and emerges later as a staple!  Trends may come and go, but they often do find their way down the chain, eventually, and I am going to have fun seeing where these Jewelry trends pop up this year...

 
MINERAL JEWELRY 
Agates, Druzy, Stalagmite Crystals...a Mineral Jewelry moment is my favorite trend! I have been juxtaposing shiny objects with a touch of these rough, organic minerals in my own jewelry collections since the beginning:

Mineral Jewelry Trend on the Laura James Jewelry Blog

 
ARTY EARRINGS
Do you also love a big, bold statement earring?! This trend gives added leeway, so you can go out on a limb without a worry:
Arty Statement Earring Jewelry Trends on the Laura James Jewelry Blog

 
DELICATE CHOKERS
Finally, we're downsizing those 3" chokers of yesteryear and trading Goth for Glam with these wispy, delicate options:
Delicate Chokers Jewelry Trend on the Laura James Jewelry Blog

 
STATEMENT NECKLACES
They're here (did they ever leave?!) and they pack a punch...especially with their Pendants:

Runway Trends and Statement Necklaces on the Laura James Jewelry Blog

Now, I can't leave out the UFO Jewelry trend! That's right, there is such a thing. Think TOTAL FANTASY when you see this extremely Avant-Garde jewelry:

Fantasy Jewelry Trends from Fashion Week on the Laura James Jewelry Blog


That's a wrap for today! Now, quick, go through your own jewelry collection and see what's trending...or pick up a new piece or two. :)

xox-Laura James 

 

photos courtesy of Vogue Magazine

Copper Pumpkin Tutorial

Ok, this is officially one of the coolest uses of Metal I have seen in some time outside of the Jewelry realm!

With all of the Pumpkins we're seeing around these Fall days, I think this idea using luxe metallic Copper trumps them all!

Simply gorgeous.

DIY Striped Pumpkins with Copper on the Laura James Jewelry blog


Here's the one-step (!) tutorial if you'd like to make your own DIY pumpkins this Fall holiday season!

From Blog: HomeyOhMy

1. Apply strips of this copper tape down the sides of the pumpkins in between each groove, peeling the backing while at the same time smoothing over the tape your fingers.

Metal Pumpkin DIY Tutorial on the Laura James Jewelry Blog

That is IT! Have fun.

:) Laura

Copper Tape Pumpkins on the Laura James Jewelry blog

 

Finally, A Cool Jewelry Organizer!

Cool Jewelry Organizer Storage on the Laura James Jewelry Blog

Yes, it's true...there is definitely a lack of cool Jewelry Organizers out there in the world! It's actually of the top requests I got from customers when I had my storefront in Charlotte.

I pretty much had given up on finding one...until I came across this post for this very cool DIY jewelry organizer that you can create yourself if you love a craft project.

DIY Jewelry Storage Organizer on the Laura James Jewelry Blog

Finally...something functional that doesn't scream "i'm a jewelry organizer"! I especially am in love with the remove-able palm frond wallpaper from Chasing Paper that she used here...to me, it's the best part about this piece.

DIY Jewelry Storage Organizer on the Laura James Jewelry Blog

For those of you who want to DIY one of these for your room, here is the link to the tutorial from the post on the A Beautiful Mess blog.
(Please post a pic if you make one! Would love to see how it turns out.)

Have fun!
xox-Laura

Tutorial and pics from: A Beautiful Mess

A Willing Time Traveller
Harry Potter Time Turner Necklace


I recently came across an article"Collecting Is About More Than Just Stuff" that answered a big question for me: WHY am I a Collector?

Many of us collect something...and for me, it's Jewelry (big surprise!), especially jewelry with a vintage date :).  Bits of the article really resonate with me and shed light on why I have been collecting Jewelry all of my life. Well, I learned I am basically Preserving Memories. For What? I assume, when my brain (which is already overloaded with everything from the ins and outs of being a wife, mother to a spirited three year old, and a business owner) fails me in the memory department, I can count on something to instantly transport me back in time. Watching my toddler grow in leaps and bounds right before my eyes has made me more aware of Time than ever, and, believe me, I am a willing Time Traveller!

I credit my parents, who presented me with my first "real" piece of Jewelry for my 6th Grade Graduation, as the originators of my love for collecting Jewelry. It was a delicate, sparkling turquoise Blue Topaz ring set in gold. Two small, heart-shaped stones and two small diamonds. I have still never seen another color like it to this day. I cherished that ring, I was proud of it...proud that I was now responsible enough to be trusted to take care of something nice. Which only lasted a few years when my precious ring found its way to the Ocean Floor in the Florida Panhandle. It's been 20+ years and I am still not over losing it! The memory of this ring being my first, but also my first loss. The stinging memory (that keeps me aware and careful of what I am wearing to this very day!) is as clear now as it was all those years ago...
          I am diving under the shallow waves, frantically feeling deep into the sand, uncovering seashells...but not my Ring. The pit in my stomach. The helplessness I feel as I realize I am no match for the Tide, burying my precious treasure on its floor with all of the others. Why, why did I think it was a good idea to switch the ring to my other hand in the middle of the Ocean?! The security of it being on the other finger, which it fit more snugly on, that's Why. But, then that rogue wave hits me, and the ring falls from my fingertips just as I am transferring it to the safety of my larger finger...gone. Where's a Metal Detector when you need one?!

Like a song, Jewelry transports me through the years. I am instantly "there". Just touching the pearl choker necklace in my jewelry box, it's suddenly 1995 and I am excitedly opening its velvet gray box with my parents looking on, just before we jump in the car to my High School graduation...                                                                   My first real set of Pearls! I am overjoyed. This means I am an adult, at last, right? My dress is a soft off-white silk with a ruffle at the bottom that hits just above my knee. My strappy patent leather sandals are uncomfortable, but I can mush through since they are luckily not high heels. I can't stand it when my feet hurt, and since I'll be on them for hours, no staggering heels for me! My hair is long down my back and I am not, I repeat, not excited about putting on that generic navy blue cap and gown with its gold tassel hanging in my face! Uggg. A Uniform. An absolute death sentence for Creatives....

Ok, I am sure by the length of this post (if you are still reading this!), you definitely get the point! Wow, that was a fun trip down memory lane, thanks for humoring me and coming along. I think I could use one of those Harry Potter Time Turner necklaces pictured above!

How about you? What transports you through time?
xox- Laura

p.s: click here for the article that I mentioned at the top of this post

photo: Harry Potter #TimeTurner Necklace

2016 Jewelry Trends from Cannes!
Jewelry Trends at Cannes from the Laura James Jewelry Blog

Who else is a fanatic for Independent films? I'll take their artistic, raw beauty over big-budget movies, any day! I am equally psyched when the‪ #‎Cannes‬ Film Fest rolls around each year, and that's exactly what started this past week in France. Here are a few deets (and looks!) from the Festival so far...

Let me tell ya, (trend alert!) long dangle Earrings absolutely ruled the Red Carpet so far. It was hard to find photos of anything but, however, here is a good little mix from the Festival...

#‎JessicaChastain‬ looks incredible in this yellow number, and her diamond choker collar necklace (in the palm design that Cannes is famous for) isn't too shabby, either!

‪#‎BlakeLively‬ was swirling ALL over the carpet in a Cinderella-esque dress by Vivienne Westwood, but these diamond dangles are what stole the show not to mention her bump... PS: she's pregnant again!

‪#‎AmalClooney‬ had on the most fabulous Cartier Coral dangles...
and I absolutely loved the sublime ‪#‎JulietBinoche‬ in this edgier look, topped off with a cool sapphire pendant necklace.

That's a wrap for now, and I hope you enjoyed this recap of my fave looks so far in Jewelry from the 2016 Cannes Film Festival awards!

xox-Laura James

‪#‎jewelrytrends‬ #cannes2016