Thursday, February 28, 2008


Another winter day in NYC. Actually, today was particularly horrendous. In an attempt to be positive, I am compiling my list of...


7. Wearing hats. I love wearing hats. I have a bunch -- knitted, brimmed, ugly, whatever. I have one particularly soft knitty number that I usually sleep in, too. I'm digging this one on the right, by Mi Scusi.

6. Using the cold weather as an excuse to be antisocial. I am a Cancer, which, if you care about anything astrology has to say, means that I am a homebody. It's true. I try to force myself to go out and mingle with the masses, but quite honestly, sometimes I'd rather just be home in my pj's. Luckily, the roomies force me to be social.

5. Soup! Today, I had an excellent Mulligatawny on 17th street. Oh, man it was delish. I love the delis in NY that have like 15 different kinds of soup to choose from. And I like making soup too.

4. Not feeling like I need be outdoors right now. This might not make sense. In a way, I'm not even sure if I understand it myself, but basically, when the weather is nice, I'm racked with tremendous guilt if I'm indoors. It doesn't matter if I'm at work, or sitting in my apartment. If I don't feel sunshine on my back, I feel guilty. I thought I was the only one who felt this way, but apparently not.

3. Blaming weight gain on the holidays. No further elaboration needed. I'll just continue to live in denial.

2. Jewelry Classes! This winter I decided to test out a class at the School of Visual Arts. In the past, I've always taken classes at the 92nd St Y and the JCC and been pretty happy with them. But I gotta say, I'm now a total SVA convert.

1. Using the cold weather as an excuse to go on vacation. New Orleans, here i come!!!!

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

New Website!

So, a little over a year ago, my fabulous roomie/partner in craft built me this beautiful website. She did a wonderful job on it, and didn't charge me a nickel (what a sweetie!) And while having the website has been a huge asset to my business, a year has gone by, and it still looks exactly the same. And it will continue to look the same, until I scrape together the $900 to take a Dreamweaver class and actually have the know-how to update it!

I went on the site the other day and realized that it's just not representative of what Sprout Jewelry has become. I needed a new site to represent the more experimental direction that my jewelry is heading in. So I built a new website (ok I cheated, and used templates!) And I vow to keep it updated. Now go look at it, and then come back here and tell me what you think!!!

By the way, my roomie, Bonnie, is a freelance web designer for hire, and you should definitely check out her work. As for her crafty side, well, those totally fantastic dish towels above are her design...and she makes really kick ass tee shirts, too!!

Sunday, February 24, 2008


I rarely make bracelets, and I don't really know why this is. For a long time, I didn't have a bracelet mandrel, so that had always been my excuse. However, I do wear a lot of bracelets, and since I've really been trying to wear more of my own work, it was high time to get started on wrist adornment.

I'm really happy with the bracelet I've been working on this week. It's a copper cuff that I basically destroyed -- in a good way. It's been reticulated (if it's even possible to reticulate copper) pierced, stitched up with silver "staples" and will probably get some patina on it before all is said and done. I'm trying to make it look completely deconstructed without being a mess. I'll share a pic of the work-in-progress, but the Great Reveal will have to wait till it's finished.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

It Snowed!

I am from "Upstate" originally, which in NYC is a general term meaning "any part of new york state above Westchester." When I tell someone I am from "Upstate" their eyes generally glaze over, and I can almost see the visions of dairy cows dancing in their heads. Then, we inevitably have a conversation that goes something like this:

Them: "Upstate? Get a lot of snow up there!"
Me: "yup, we do."
Them: "Lottttt of snow."
Me: "yup..."

The fact that I come from an area who's most notable quality is the fact that for half the year, we're up to our armpits in snow probably speaks to the reason why I now consider myself an ex-Upstater. (For another reason, see image above, which I took while home for the holidays.) I can remember trick-or-treating in the snow as a child. I also have a friend who went to college upstate and loves to recount to me how it snowed three inches on her graduation day.

The bottom line is, I am pretty damn familiar with winter, snow, driving through blizzards and all the non-traditional winter sports that fellow upstaters engage in (such as driving to an empty parking lot at night and doing "doughnuts" ie, spinning your car in circles on the ice). After twenty years of snow-filled winters, I don't generally feel anything other than a profound misery when I see flakes falling from the sky.

And yet, yesterday it snowed a few inches here in nyc. I woke up to a noise that, for me, sounds like home: the scraping of shovels against driveways and sidewalks. I laid in bed, thinking I was hallucinating, but when looked out the window, there it was -- a couple inches of snow! I love how when it snows in nyc, all the typical city sounds become somewhat muted - the subway rattling overhead, the high school kids screaming as they walk home, the car alarms screaming... It's almost peaceful...

Now that the snow has sat on the ground for 24 hours, things are less magical. The puddles are like mini sink holes, and once-pristine snow is now dirty slush. However, I woke up to another familiar sound this morning: tires squealing as neighbors tried to get their cars out of snow-packed parking spaces. I laughed to myself at the futility of these attempts. Getting a snowed-in car back on the road takes salt, a shovel, and a little bit of rocking back and forth -- any Upstater could tell ya.

Saturday, February 16, 2008


Its a problem I've talked about before: I love making the jewelry, but hate the time that is consumed by all the other little details of putting the jewelry out into the world. I obsess over what to name it. I take dozens of pics of each piece.... and inevitably decide I like NONE of them. I re-shoot. Upload to the laptop (or, these days, "craptop"). I tweak the colors in Photoshop, and then decide that they look better in the original version. I write, edit, and rewrite the little description that will accompany each piece when it's posted to etsy. Post on etsy. Post on flickr. Update the blog. With each visit to etsy, flickr, whatever, I inevitably get sidetracked and spend 20 minutes browsing other pages and eventually forgetting why I went there in the first place. So, long story short, that is the reason why I have much, much more jewelry sitting in ziploc bags in my "studio" than I have for sale online.

In a related story, here is a pic of a new piece. When it will actually get listed for sale remains to be seen... :)

Friday, February 15, 2008

Friday Wrap-Up

Thanks for the blog shout-out Ilse! Check out Ilse's blog here.

So, today is Friday, my day off from my "desk job," which means it's the day of the week spent working feverishly at my jewelry bench, and then racing to the Astoria post office at 4:53pm, hoping I can make it inside before they lock the doors.

Today will probably be more of the same. I had a lot of international orders this week: Canada, Israel, England and Greece. Canada and England are pretty common, but Israel and Greece?? I love thinking about people in exotic places opening up packages with my jewelry inside.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Oh Finally!

Hooray! I finally, finally, finally got my blog banner looking a little better. For some reason, getting the dimensions to look right was just really tripping me up. I still have more I want to do with it, but this will do for now.

Another big accomplishment -- got some more photos done. I've got this great new line that I'm really happy with-- all very organic shapes.

Monday, February 11, 2008

It's Lame, I Know

I thought non-stop insanity would die down now that school is done. But instead, it's just become a different kind of insanity. Like instead of studying and writing papers frantically until all hours of the night, I'm now frantically making jewelry until 3 or 4 am.

Today, for example. I literally filled orders from the time i woke up (10am) until about an hour ago (it's now 2am). What I've got to show for it is this nice stack of envelopes ready for the post office. It's exciting that I've been so busy, but a bit frazzling as well.

This was a big week -- I got picked up by two new stores, landed on the front page on of Etsy on Thursday night, and am featured in two blogs today. When it rains it pours, I guess. Bring on the storm!

Stumbling off to bed now.....