I found out Jwinai through Wallpaper Magazine. You don’t have to be a subscriber to get on Wallpaer’s e-mail list. Their issues are well laid out although all of the furniture and merchandise they show is affordable. They are best at architecture. I do wish they hadn’t gotten into fashion but they did.
Here’s what they say about Jiwinaia:
“Jiwinaia: There’s something spooky about the Milan-based jewellery label’s most recent collection – new to Dover Street Market London this Autumn. Korea-born Marisa Jiwi Seok’s latest offering features freshwater pearl earrings hand-painted with bright enamel. Pairs resemble floating ghosts or freaky frowning clowns. Boo!”
“Happy & Sad Clown Chunky Earrings in 18-ct gold plated rhodium and brass with baroque pearls hand-painted with enamel, by Jiwinaia.”
More, with a spider theme working for Halloween.
This is a link to their page but most of the fun pieces are sold out. I wish them well.
What do the best bars and rock shops have in common? They all have a gravel parking lot. Whenever you hear gravel underneath your wheels in the desert, you know you’re going to have a great time. Don’t fear for your vehicle though, as you only have to go fifty feet off pavement. And that distance will take you very, very far into a wonderful rock, mineral, and jewelry world.
Wendi “Ace” Elkins, singlehandedly owns and runs Minerals Unlimited in Ridgecrest, California. It sits next to a Salvation Army thrift shop and is one the finest rock and mineral stores in the Southwest. Its been operating for seventy years, always family owned. Minerals are neatly arranged in alphabetical order in dozens and dozens of wooden drawers, all of them inviting you to tour our rocky planet without leaving Ridgecrest.
A tremendous rock yard exists outside, with rough of all kinds and descriptions.
Working under the moniker of “Jewelry by “Ace,” Wendi fashions jewelry as a creative outlet for herself and to show off the many rocks and minerals her store offers. This description and picture is from her website:
“This lovely slab of native silver in calcite was mined from the Alhambra Mine, in Grant County, New Mexico. I used sterling silver wire to compliment the design. I had to let this one “talk” to me for several months, to make a complimentary wrap, but I think it was worth the wait.”
Wendi and I commiserated over static photographs being unable to convey the sparkle of jewelry and of rocks in general. You have to see in your hands the play of light from her designs to see how special they are. Another reason to go in person.
You never know what you’re going to find at this store. I pulled out a drawer at random and it produced a stunning display of violet fluorite with cleaved octahedron shapes.
Stop in Ridgecrest whenever you’re in Southern California or traveling to nearby Death Valley. You may want one thing but you’ll carry out many more. She sells online, too, so check her website or give her a call. Make sure to phone before visiting in case she is out of town at a distant rock show.
And if you want to buy an entire rock shop, not just a rock, talk to Wendi. Running the store has become tiring and Wendi is considering serious offers on her business. She has worked at Minerals Unlimited since she was eight, on the payroll from 16, the owner since 2003. During this decision making time, however, the store remains fully open and operating and there is no thought of closing. There is a tremendous inventory here, built up over decades with a great deal of material no longer available and unique to this shop. If you buy the store, you’ll have a head start on running it because everything is labeled!
Ridgecrest is centrally located to the historic mining districts around Randsburg to the south and Ballarat to the east. Nearby Sequoia National Forest to the west offers great rockhounding, especially along Highway 178, and the eastern side of the Sierra Nevada mountain range is revealed by heading north on U.S. Route 395. Starting at Ridgecrest itself, guided tours organized by the Maturango Museum go out in spring and fall to visit Little Petroglyph Canyon. There, rock art images by the thousands were etched into canyon walls and boulders by native people long ago. Plan well ahead for this bucket list tour.
Ridgecrest is a relatively small, quiet town, supported economically in large part by the Naval Air Station called China Lake. Its role is ongoing and vital, its decommissioning practically unthinkable, lending stability to this tranquil desert community. If you are near base at twilight, you may hear the lilting sound of “Retreat” over loudspeakers. This marks the lowering of the flag for the day. Cars on base stop and park for this short interlude. People get out of their cars and face the flag or the direction of the music.
A unique shop. A unique town.
127 N Downs Street
Ridgecrest, CA 93555
I enjoy writing for Catalogs.com. Some derisively call such sites content mills. But as a writer they are an opportunity to take on a variety of interesting and challenging work. Below is a recent article of mine. The assignment required certain key words and a link to the featured merchant but nothing more. The article title was “Creative ways to decorate with museum replicas.”
This article took two to two and a half hours to write from scratch. It may not be perfect but that’s not what I was aiming for. I want the piece to be in “substantial compliance” with what the editor wants. And I want to be efficient with my time with respect to what I am getting paid. The less time the better, unless the writing suffers.
Creative Ways To Decorate With Museum Replicas
Decorate with museum replicas to enhance your home or office. Well curated pieces bring a style and élan no local import store can match. Classic jewelry, sculpture, mobiles and more, will make an impression on you and your guests. But don’t limit looking to yourself. Think about a handsome gift for a friend. Or just a bracelet to brighten their day.
Stunning sculpture demands the right presentation. If you have a grand piano to place a Beethoven bust, great. If you don’t, think about a stand. An import store might have something appropriate but don’t stop there. The proper stand takes some looking for but that’s part of a process, a fun one, that matches your collectible to found items. Besides flea markets and thrift stores, consignment stores often have odds and ends that might work. You say the kids will knock over a stand? What about a different approach?
Does your home or office have any wall niches or alcoves? They’re not terribly difficult for a cabinet maker or a skilled handyman to make. Basically, you remove the drywall between studs, leaving a 16″ to 24″ gap in the wall. At this point a decorative shelf can be installed, with a backing of whatever material you think would make the alcove attractive. A rounded top to the alcove is a fine touch, instead of simply squaring up the opening. Small doors can be added to really bring attention to your alcove and your artwork.
Of course, no house altering work is required if you are thinking of photographs, prints, or posters. Hanging most artwork is fairly straightforward unless you have a heavy piece or are attaching art to something like a brick wall. Then, a knowledge of anchors is essential. You still have that handyman (or handylady) around, don’t you?
To decorate with museum replicas means thinking like a museum and using any and all spaces. Hang a mobile from the ceiling to float and twirl above your guests, giving movement to an otherwise static room. Pick a theme like art exhibitions do. Perhaps a room dedicated to a hobby like aviation or horses. And then start assembling your collection over time.
You don’t need a room of pieces, of course. Sometimes just one thing will do. Like a large table globe for the study or office. A scale model of a helicopter to grace a work desk. Perhaps a classic, ornate chess set sitting on a simple table. Or a peaceful Buddha resting on the third shelf of a bookcase.
Speaking of cases, presentation cases can be found through certain dealers. Sometimes jewelry fairs have people selling exhibition boxes to the trade. You can buy these to show off your museum replica necklaces, earrings, and bracelets. A lighted display box with a mirrored interior would be a spectacular case to encase your treasures. And what fun lighting it up for your guests!
You are limited only by your imagination once you start thinking of possibilities. You can begin with the house entrance and work inward. Does the door itself need a detail? Or would a pair of lions, sitting like bookends, one on either side of the door, perform a welcome for your guests? While a standard import store will provide only limited choices, and many bland at that, a museum company store is well worth checking out for the fun, the unusual, and the well-considered piece.