Saturday, July 4, 2015

Handmade House

Today we'll leave the house we've been staying at for two weeks and head just a little further up the coast. Although we look forward to enjoying a new location (on a peninsula we've never been to), we're also sorry to go. It a delightful place to stay.

This house was hand built (everything but the plumbing and electric) by the original owner, a Mr. Tibbetts, in 1950. It's solid and sturdy with windows and a wide porch spanning the front of the house the looks out over Linekin Bay. (That's Lin - e - kin with a short e in the middle.) Its open and airy with cathedral ceilings in all but the one back bedroom that has a storage loft/attic of sorts.  And high on our list…it comes with a beach.

I'm finally settled, a lot more relaxed and even managed sailing yesterday without too much anxiety or pain. My knees were achey after hiking around Pemaquid Lighthouse and I couldn't keep up with the boys but the doctor says I can do whatever I feel like doing.

Then came the great news from my endocrinologist. She got the results from my most recent blood test and I'm doing well enough that she cut back on both of my medications. That really buoyed me! Light at the end of the tunnel!

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Maine Magic

Graves disease makes relaxing difficult. My mind races. I am prone to anxiety. My joints ache and kayaking, something I normally find very relaxing, is physically difficult. I'm not sure that my personality or my preferred activities is suited to wait I am suppose to be doing.

Looking north west over Linekin Bay.
Most certainly the baked goods here in Maine do not make sticking to my anti-inflammatory diet very easy either. (These people can BAKE up here. And that comes from someone who grew up in the heart of PA Dutch baked good heaven, ok?)

But I have managed to do some of the things on the proper road to recovery list as well. I've sketched, engaged in beach combing, tide pooling and cairn building, and just generally marveled at "God's handiwork".  Come on Maine - work your magic.

Ocean Point

Boothbay Harbor 

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Change in course

While a re-charge was certainly in order after completing the anthropologie order earlier this year, I hadn't planned on one lasting months. Today in fact my family and I were suppose to arrive at the island of Saint Helena in the South Atlantic Ocean via royal mail ship, a trip we had been planning for well over a year. It was heart breaking to have to cancel the trip.

The view looking west across the South Atlantic when we were on Saint Helena in 2013.
But after an emergency trip to the hospital in March, I was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease. And although I'm undergoing treatment, and the endocrinologist says she feels I'm in a good position to go into remission, the recovery time frame could very likely stretch into next March. And since I am still symptomatic (irregular heart rhythm, anxiety, muscle atrophy, sore joints) it was decided that the rigors of getting to Saint Helena (24 hr. flight to Cape Town followed by 5 days at sea), not to mention being on an isolated island without specialist doctors for 4 weeks, probably was not the best course of action. Clearly we are just not suppose to go this year but oh, how sad that makes me.

Hiking to distant cottage in 2013.
We had planned and planned. We were scheduled to volunteer at SHAPE; I was going to be helping develop new jewelry designs  and we were going to visit with friends we haven't seen since 2013. And now instead here I am, adjusting to the fact that, in all likelihood, I will be managing a disease for the rest of my life.

I'm currently working on beads made from recycled paper made at SHAPE. 

The decision was made that if stress reduction was an important part of me getting to remission, we'd do one of the things we knew had worked for all of us in the past - head to the Maine coast and stay for as long as we could. So we're packing up - painting supplies, kayaks, sailboat and all - and leaving this Saturday,  to "take the waters" as it were.

I'll be posting on Instagram if you're interested (@gwilliamson).

On a business note…the shop will stay open June 20-July 20 but orders will not ship until July 20, when we return. If you place an order by this Thursday it will ship Friday. It you've already placed an order it will ship Friday.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

And its outta here!

The Anthropologie order shipped yesterday! Can I tell you what a relief this is, can I just tell you?

 It was a lot of work and the last month ended up being a case of "if it can go wrong, it will go wrong".  But I will tell you this, I learned a heck of a lot about wholesale, about business and most certainly about myself.

And this was a calm day...
Fragment Drop necklaces in verdigris - anthropologie is calling this "blue motif"
Out to Sea earrings
Hemisphere earrings in process
I purchased some IKEA bins ahead of time and they were really helpful for storing and moving things around.
My mom and my husband did the barcoding and packaging last Saturday.  

This is 227 pieces. And to think the buyer originally was talking about 4000 total with pieces "to all doors"! Instead they're carrying my work as a web exclusive only and you can also see some of the pieces on models throughout the website. 

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

I tend to repeat myself

This line incorporating some of my flat shapes  has finally come together (more earrings and short necklace to follow). I've been drawn to repetition of line and shape all my life and I think it certainly comes through here. 

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Keeping it straight

I am more dependent than ever on calendars right now. I have a good bit going on and conversely dwindling brain space. I like the paper calendars that you write on. Call me old fashioned but I just haven't gotten the knack of keeping a calendar on my phone.

I keep one in the kitchen, a very detailed one at my desk, a jewelry order only one and in my studio…an inspiring one on the wall right at my work table.

This year as last I chose Francesca Lancisi's calendar. The images are soothing, abstract organics and you can download and print them for free!

I can't help but see these translated to big polymer beads.

If you'd like to know more about her check out her fantastic new website, her blog or  her Tuscan studio tour on the Elite 16 blog.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Saved up

I have a few new pieces posting to the shop this week.

I'm considering creating and selling a tutorial for the Three Piece Convertible earrings (two piece pair below). Belle Armoire asked to publish one and I've also had a couple customers ask about one. What do you think?
for the Three Piece Convertible earrings (two piece pair below). Belle Armoire asked to publish one and I've also had a couple customers ask about one. What do you think?

I've written tutorials (one for the book, one for Belle Armoire) but with those I had some guidelines from the writer/editor.  It would have to wait until after the anthropologie order of course but I'd like to take more time to mull it over in my head.

I'd love to hear your thoughts - what do you expect from a tutorial that you purchase? What have you liked and not liked about tutorials you've purchased?