About Me

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Stillwater, Maine, United States

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Year Long Vacation? Not quite!

So it's been quite some time since my last post. Wait, I can't even say 'quite some time' without laughing at my attempt to make myself not sound insanely blog-lazy.

Here it is: It's been over a year since my last post. Ha!

And no, I haven't been on some year-long spiritual quest in the red sea, nor did I visit the Caribbean and fall in love with an tanned, exotic, tribal dancer. The truth is, I've just been crazy busy. And I forgot about you. :)

At the beginning of 2010, I had the opportunity to open a brick and mortar artisan jewelry store in Hampden, Maine with 3 business partners. It was a challenge getting enough inventory made to fill the store up, when my etsy shop took up all of my time. Nearly everything I had on etsy was made to order. It was impossible to keep up with those orders, and find time for creativity and inventory build-up. So I had to close my etsy shop.

The store in Hampden was wonderful. I learned a lot of great things about business, and got my feet wet. The end of the year came, and 2 of my 3 partners, and myself, decided that our location was not optimal. Myself, Roxanne, and Anne decided to move to downtown Bangor, Maine and open an artisan gallery with jewelry and also art in other mediums. Bangor has a rapidly growing arts scene, and we really wanted to be part of that buzz.

On January 11th, Maine Jewelry & Art opened it's doors for the first time. It's right in the center of town, people walk by all day long, it's so busy and friendly down here! I'm really excited for what's to come for all of us. We have such a great working relationship, and we all bring a different dynamic to the gallery! Here's a few photos of some of the artists work we have featured right now. I'll post some of my newest creations in my next post. Which won't be in another year. I promise!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Creating a New Website

On Christmas Eve I received email notification that my original website, www.riversidejewelrydesigns.com, had been hacked into. The hackers had left phishing files in my file manager. Luckily, my web hosting company, Hostmonster, caught it and immediately suspended my website.

I was pretty upset. Not only did I feel violated, I thought Christmas Eve was a VERY unjolly time to be messing with someone's web presence. UGG! So my husband Dave removed the phishing files, Hostmonster reinstated my website, and Dave put in a reroute to my RiversideJewelry.etsy.com site while he works on recreating RiversideJewelryDesigns.com.

So at least theres some progress.

We had been talking about completely revamping the site anyway. I get all my orders through Etsy, so we were thinking of getting rid of the shopping cart feature all together. We're going to go with an Online Gallery/ Artists Portfolio. I think it's coming together nicely. I'll update you all when it's up and ready!

I hope you all had a fabulous Holiday! Happy New Year!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009


I know, I know. I should be ashamed of myself. I don't know the exact date of my last post, and I'm not sure I want to know. But I'm back now. And that's something- right?

It's been a busy summer! So much new stuff is going on! I've been heading our local jewelry guild, Jewelry Artisans of Maine, for the last few months. We have some exciting things planned for the future. On September 19th, we're going gem collecting at Mt. Apatite near the Lewiston/Auburn area. I've never been collecting before, but a fellow member has been several times. She has agreed to lead the pack! So exciting! We also have been doing member-run demos at our meetings. Last month we met at Anne's house for a pool party and Dichroic Glass demo. So much fun! My husband has really taken to the dichroic glass and fused glass part of jewelry design. I'm pretty sure a glass business is in his future... Here's a picture of our first attempt at Dichroic Glass Cabochons. The top three are mine, and the bottom three are Daves.
I've had a bunch of shows this summer. Preparing for shows doesn't really leave a TON of time for playing with new designs, but I've managed to get a few in there. I've started making chunky stone rings with more than just a cool band- Here are a few pics of my favorites:

What do you think? I guess that's it for now. I'll post some of my favorite new pendants on the next post! Thanks for sticking with me during this hiatus, guys! I really appreciate your support! Hope all is well with you and yours!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Monday Motivation

I've got a bunch of things lined up this week...

On top of my regular web orders, I have some local custom orders I'll be working on-

A 2 inch sterling silver cross pendant
A 5mm wide hammered sterling silver men's wedding band
A pair of Double Loop Earrings with Blue Goldstone
A pair of Hammered Triangle Dome Earrings in Sterling Silver
I have to oxidize a garnet ring I already have in stock

Plus, since it's the end of the month, I've got to get some new inventory ready for Bella Luna. My student is coming tomorrow for her weekly Introduction to Metalsmithing lesson. Thursday we're having a barbecue with some friends.

I'd also like to have my Metalsmithing Sensei (haha) over for a play date in the studio sometime this week! I just got a new kiln last week, and she's going to teach me enameling. It's something I've wanted to learn for a long, long time. I already have so many ideas in mind! I haven't even fired the kiln up yet. I'm waiting for a shipment of PMC, and then I'll get started!

I belong to a local group called Jewelry Artisans of Maine. We're comprised of hobbyists to professionals; glass artists to beaders to metalsmiths. The activity in our group has kind of died down in the last year or so. We had a meeting last Wednesday night and are planning on trying to become more active online, and as a group in the community. I have already set us up with a Group Twitter Account. If you're on twitter, follow us! Our username is: MaineJewelryArt . We have also set up a J.A.M Facebook Group. Feel free to join at http://tinyurl.com/ccnvwt. We're also looking into doing more tours and group activities this year. In the past we've visited a glass blowing studio, had a guest instructor teach enameling, gone gemstone mining, and much more! I can't wait to get started planning some new events. We're also looking for new members. If you're a jewelry designer in the Central Maine Area, and would like more information on joining, please contact Doris Ayotte at 942-9863.

This summer, Dave and I will be rewiring and insulating the garage so it can become my new studio! I'm so excited! It will give me a lot more room to explore sculptural metal art, and for new equipment! One of the best parts though, is that my current studio with become a nursery for when we decide to finally explore the possibility of adoption. So I guess my Monday Motivation is sculpture and babies. Not necessarily in that order. :)

I hope you all have an enjoyable and productive week creating in your respective mediums!

New Format

So as you can see, I've had a bit of trouble this month committing to this lonely blog. I've come up with a new format and structure to kind of help me stay on task. I have so many groups I belong to, so many ideas running through my head, and so many new business strategies I could be blogging about, that when it comes time to post, my mind becomes a tornado of ideas and it's easier to NOT blog than to sort it all out. Hopefully this new format will help me with that...
Here it is:

Jewelry Artisans of Maine
New Projects for the week
What's my motivation?/Finding my momentum
Etsy Maine Team
Upcoming Shows
New wholesale/consignment partners
Etsy Jewelry Sampler Team
I want to learn...
I want to teach...
Etsy Supplies Street Team
Business Tips/Strategies
Online Marketing
What did I accomplish this week?
What could I have done to be more productive?
Shops I love
Featured Local Artisans
Blog Giveaways
Goals for Next Week

Not only do I think that this will help me stay on task, but I think it will help this blog become a more purposeful tool in my business success, and maybe even yours! :) Thanks again everyone, for following this little online piece of my mind!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

The April Giveaway Winner Is....

Farmsteadlady! Congratulations, my dear! You can email me your address at amanda@riversidejewelrydesigns.com. I hope you love your Sterling Silver Corkscrew Earrings!

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Come on, kids- It's April GIVEAWAY Time!!!

In an effort to say "Thank You" to everyone who has been following me, and making these last few months in the jewelry business so rewarding and so much fun, I've decided to give something away! This giveaway was inspired by Chocolate and Steel, another very talented jewelry designer whose blog I follow!

One lucky blog follower will win a pair of Sterling Silver Corkscrew Spiral Hammered Earrings! I made a pair of these for myself, and I wear them almost every day! They're so much fun!

Here's how to enter: Become a follower of my Riverside Jewelry Designs blog, and...

Follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/RJDesigns and tweet about my giveaway. (1 entry)

Visit my etsy site at http://riversidejewelry.etsy.com/ and Leave a comment on this blog telling me which of my pieces is your favorite! (1 entry)

Join my Facebook Fan Page Group at http://tinyurl.com/cfmxjq and write on the wall! (1 entry)

Or, Purchase something from my ETSY shop athttp://riversidejewelry.etsy.com/ (2 entries)

Each of you could be entered into the drawing up to 5 times!

Please come back and comment when you're finished letting me know which of these things you've done! It will be a lot easier for me to keep track of what's what that way! I'll add your name to the drawing the appropriate number of times! I'll be announcing the winner on April 14th- so be sure to check back! If the winner doesn't comment to claim their prize within a week, I'll have to pick a new winner!

Thanks again everyone! I can't wait to see who wins!