Posts Tagged ‘3rd Ward District’

Why Statement Earrings Are A Must

Ayesha Mayadas

Hi everyone! Confession time: I have a thing for statement earrings. Working at 3rd Ward Jewelry has really only reinforced this love of mine. But is that a bad thing? Of course not! Every woman needs a great pair of statement earrings.

First of all, what is a Statement Earring? I like to describe the feeling that I have when I wear them, rather than give a specific definition. When you put your favorite pair of statement earrings on, you feel like you can conquer the world, you feel beautiful, and put together. They may be earrings that are a bit more bold than you normally wear, but regardless, you feel fabulous. Statement earrings have made a recent comeback. Have you ever heard that styles cycle about every 30 years? Well, the 1980’s and 1990’s statement earrings are back with a new twist! I thought it would be great to share some of our favorite statement earrings from 3WJ.


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Sterling silver earrings by Christy Klug

We love these earrings on Jenny because of the way that the earrings contrast nicely with her dark hair. These earrings are perfect for the individual who likes a simple design and light feel in the Summer. Christy Klug also offers many other designs that are equally beautiful, but different in the design. These earrings offer a soft texture and shine and unexpected shapes adding detail to the design.


Sterling silver and gold plated earrings Terry Fromm

Sterling silver and gold plated earrings Terry Fromm

Pictured above, I am wearing sculptural earrings by Terry Fromm from Houston, Texas. Fromm is known for these unique pieces such as these that have so much movement. We were particularly taken with this pair of earrings because of the elongated shape and glossy surface. These earrings definitely transform an outfit from “eh” to “wow.”


A gorgeous pair of gold, diamond, and sterling silver earrings by Ayesha Mayadas of New Jersey

A gorgeous pair of gold, diamond, and sterling silver earrings by Ayesha Mayadas of New Jersey

These earrings are hand crafted so beautifully. Diamonds and texture adorn the surface of this sterling silver and gold clad earrings. These elegant earrings fit Jenny’s style perfectly.

Wondering what type of statement earrings are best for your style? Stop by and try on a selection of earring styles to find the pieces that you feel the most “you” in! For Jenny and I, when choosing earrings that fit our personal style the most, we tried on a small collection of jewelry to find the pieces that best suit us. Personally, I found that I enjoy wearing a more delicate pair of statement earrings to match my shorter haircut. For instance, the pair of earrings by Sharon St. Don that I am wearing below, are broken up by the perforations in the shape, portraying the perfect visual weight for my taste.


Earrings by Sharon St. Don

Oxidized sterling silver earrings by Sharon St. Don


Again, I think that everyone needs a great pair of earrings to make the week start well! My favorite aspect of statement earrings is how they can transform an outfit from night to day, from drab to glam, or just give you that extra “something” to your outfit. Pop on by this weekend to try on some earrings or other statement jewelry pieces to match your fancy.

Have a great afternoon, friends!


P.S., here are some fun things to check out: 

Ethical Metalsmiths – Keep up with  Metalsmiths that are keeping it ethical.

No Real Jewelry Blog – This blog is a great lifestyle blog source that I found yesterday while listening to the weekly Being Boss Podcast. Check it out!

This interior design website! – We love to stay inspired. This website has serves as inspiration time and time again.

If you are into Podcasts, check out Invisibilia while you are at work this week. This is a fascinating look into the inner lives of human emotion and thoughts.

This food blog, Healthyish is fantastic! It is a blog for the foodie, mixed with beautiful design and photography.

         

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Artist Spotlight – Bikakis and Johns

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Hi there! How has your week been?

This week we have been brushing up our design skills and enjoying having many visitors who not only have spent time in the Third Ward, but also at Lake Michigan. At 3WJ, we appreciate being so close to Lake Michigan. I thought it would be fun to share some work by the dynamic duo, Bikakis and Johns today for our Artist Spotlight! Doesn’t this artwork exude the serene, timeless feeling of being near the water? Bikakis and Johns’ website describes “each piece (as) inspired by the past, styled for the present and destined to become an heirloom in the future.”

Bikakis and Johns are two artists, working out of a self proclaimed “airy studio,” in Brooklyn, New York with two unique backgrounds. Myron Bikakis is originally from Athens, Greece and spent his early years as a student, traveling in pursuit of archeological studies. Bikakis has also participated in various extensive expeditions globally. He inevitably ended up at the Jewelry Arts Institute of New York, which a focus on ancient jewelry techniques. While at the Institute, he and Johns crossed paths. Mark Johns is originally from Florida and pursued a wide range of interests over the years, including music, athletics, and a Masters in English. The duo began working together and eventually became what is now known as “Bikakis and Johns.”

Bikakis and Johns have work in multiple galleries across the country and are particularly known for practicing the ancient techniques of jewelry making. These include working in 22-karat gold, using granulation, and stone setting. The process of granulation consists of surface decoration with small spheres of precious metals, or granules. The contrast of the warm gold is a beautiful combination with the cool tones used in the stones, giving the work a timeless presence.


Website: Bikakis & Johns Jewelry

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Your Ultimate Guide to a day in the Historic Third Ward District

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Is there really anything better than meandering around the city on a Summer day on your day off? I don’t think so. The only thing I don’t love is going to a city district and not knowing what to do! That’s where we come in – I always take my Milwaukee guests to the Historic Third Ward and will share my favorite go-to spots in the area. Summer is halfway over, so take advantage of the warm weather by spending a day in the beautiful Third Ward District.

Morning

To get in the mood to explore the area, flip on my favorite local station, 88.9 Radio Milwaukee, to catch up on Milwaukee music and events as you drive into the Third Ward District. If starting your day in the morning, you have to stop in Holey Moley Donuts to enjoy freshly made, classic donuts. My favorite is the cinnamon and sugar donut paired with freshly brewed coffee. Now you are ready for the rest of the day to explore.

Known for arts and fashion, the Third Ward is a key destination for shopping when you are in Milwaukee. Spend your morning walking along Broadway Street while you are here! I love Shoo Inc. and Lela’s for some unique digs. Before we were located in the Marshall Building, 3WJ shared a store space with Shoo for many years. Let me tell you, they have the best shoes in town! Gentlemen, we didn’t forget about you. NL Suits is a custom clothier that will create a one of a kind, made to measure suit just for you. Don’t be surprised as you find yourself immersed in one of Milwaukee’s best areas for shopping as you walk along Broadway Street.

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Lunchtime

Next, be sure to pay a visit the Milwaukee Public Market! The Milwaukee Public Market is a collage of great eats and local treats. This space has it all – food, drinks, and gifts. You will see locally printed t-shirts and, if you feel so inclined, fresh cheese curds to indulge in. If you enjoy fresh seafood, you will not go wrong with St. Paul Fish Company. Side note – I grew up on the East Coast with fresh seafood at arm’s length and this seafood passes the test. The Milwaukee Public Market also has yummy hummus and falafel from Aladdin,  tacos from Margarita Paradise, or delicious almond biscotti from the C. Adams Bakery.  Before you head out, be sure to try some fresh juice from The Green Kitchen. The Green Kitchen serves fresh smoothies and juices, salads, and sandwiches.

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Afternoon

I always like to get moving right away after lunch when spending a day in the city. There is a beautiful riverwalk located just across the street from the Milwaukee Public Market that takes walkers along the Milwaukee River. If you are feeling adventurous, there is also the option to sightsee along the river by kayak! Clearwater, a local outdoor goods retailer, rents out kayaks to give the adventuresome folks out there the unique experience of seeing the city by river. Following the walk around the Milwaukee River, stop by Colectivo to relax a little bit before dinnertime.

Dinner / Evening

For dinner, I recommend Cafe Benelux or the Wicked Hop. Cafe Benelux has some of my favorite appetizers and drinks in the Third Ward District. Some of the perks of the Wicked Hop would be their amazing Daily Specials and a beer list that will not disappoint. Both places offer patio seating so you can take in all the glory of the Third Ward with a tasty plate of food and beverage in hand.

Next, I would personally like to invite you to Gallery Night (and Day)! This evening takes place every so often in the Historic Third Ward. Galleries and store owners keep their doors open for customers to enjoy a glamorous evening on the town, appreciating artwork. This month, Gallery Night is on Friday, July 21st and Saturday, July 22nd. Yes, 3WJ will be open! If you plan your trip to the 3rd Ward District on a day that Gallery Night takes place, you are in for a treat. Here at 3WJ, our favorite way to top off an evening of gallery-going is to head up to the top floor of the Journeyman Hotel to relax with a handcrafted cocktail. This is a beautiful space worth checking out. Be sure to wear your favorite bowtie or cocktail ring.

The Historic Third Ward District has a lot to offer. It has food, shopping, art, and unique scenery. I can’t tell you how much I love spending time in the Third Ward either with friends or on my own during the Summertime! Be sure to visit us at 3WJ when you are visiting the area!


Events and Places:

Gallery Night and Day information

Milwaukee Public Market information

Hotels to Stay At:

The Iron Horse Hotel

The Pfister Hotel

Journeyman Hotel

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Jewelry – A Personal Collection

Space-Home

Hi again! Chelsea here. Jewelry making and collecting is a multifaceted world that most people have been a part of at some point in their life. Recently I realized that I have started a small jewelry collection of handcrafted pieces from other artists, which is quite an exciting realization for a metalsmith. I realized that I have been curating, or intentionally piecing together, a small collection of handcrafted jewelry. This had me thinking about what it is that makes us want to collect pieces from artists. Is it that sparkle that jewelry always seem to have? Is it a connection to the artist? These are things that I have been considering the reasons why we collect jewelry. I even went to my Facebook friends in my quest to answer this question. You are probably thinking, “well Chelsea, what a simple question to ask. Who doesn’t enjoy a small gift?” But this question intrigues me, so we are going to get into it!

In the lifecycle of jewelry collections, artists and jewelry suppliers both have important roles. Collectors eventually curate a growing collection of jewelry deserving of recognition and metalsmiths and jewelry suppliers are at the beginning of this. These jewelry items have stories – they may be a trade between artists, were gifts from a loved one, or a treat to one’s self. These handcrafted, artisan made pieces are collected for numerous reasons and are given a story by the individual wearing the piece. Jewelry galleries often have a special role in the life of jewelry as well. We are given a glimpse into the life story of the collector.

The Jewelry Supplier’s Unique Role

Within 10 minutes of being at 3WJ today, a man came in asking about engagement ring options for his fiancee. His nervous excitement about his purchase was evident as Mollie discussed the possibilities with our curious customer. How lucky are we, as a jewelry gallery, that we were a part of such an important part of this man’s continuing story with his future partner in crime. Jewelry can be such an intimate, personal experience. I was reading an article the other day by Marketing specialist, Jim Ackerman, that talked about how jewelry stores have a special place in the world because they are able to experience purchases that are often times emotional experiences for the buyers. How true is that! Yet again, another reason why I love working in jewelry and metalsmithing.

The Most Important Player

As you read before, the artist and jewelry suppliers have unique roles in the life cycle of jewelry. The most important role however, is that of the jewelry collectors. Jewelry collectors may be gallery owners or the average person who simply enjoys handcrafted jewelry pieces, but without the individuals who appreciate handcrafted pieces, there would be no jewelry business. I have been asking friends on Facebook why and how they collect jewelry and some interesting things came up! Many people seem to collect jewelry in order to remember an event or an experience, such as traveling due to the size and practical wearability. Others seem to collect specific pieces of jewelry – earrings, brooches, statement pieces or rings. In my Facebook survey I asked friends why they collect jewelry. A friend of mine, Frida Chametz, is an Artist and Architect based out of California. She has been collecting  jewelry for years and was taught by her mother how to invest in jewelry that has meaning. Frida responded to my question,

…Why specifically jewelry? Jewelry is – 1. Small, 2. Valuable, 3. Practical (because it is usable), 4. Something you would actually see and enjoy everyday – everyone loves beauty, huh?

I totally agree. I think that the practical aspect of jewelry is huge! I think that traditionally many people have often gifted jewelry to each other due to the precious materials included in it, but jewelry is quite practical as a gift because of it’s size. Because of jewelry’s wearability, it is a constant reminder of an experience or of another person. Handcrafted jewelry collector, Sarah Enwald said,

It’s an intuitive, personal response to a piece or pieces. Sometimes I find an artist I like and will go back to them. I like to find unique pieces that stand out, but also through the passage of time, become associated with me.

Finding an artist that you really like, and then going back to their work as a part of your collection is a key way to connect with makers as a collector. I think that a reason that many people collect jewelry is because it is a way to appreciate a slower way of living. “Handmade” is the way to go. One jewelry collector said that she purchases pieces that have to do with her interest in helping people, so she purchases jewelry through a Fair Trade company. A metalsmithing friend, Dew Humbert III, collects all kinds of art, but mostly collects brooches in support of other makers and to remember them. Humbert III said,

I find brooches to be extremely intriguing for their ability to be be more creative expressions of work compared to other jewelry forms. Anything can be a brooch and I’m interested in what a person does with all of that possibility.

Artists have a different perspective often times as to why they collect jewelry pieces, and this is an interesting perspective as to why a specific type of jewelry piece may be desirable over another to an artist. Dew is known for initiating trades amongst artist friends, which is another reason why many people collect jewelry.

My Thoughts on Collecting

In my collection, there are timeless pieces I have inherited, jewelry that I purchased on a whim that caught my eye, or in more recent years, more intentional purchases that I appreciate more. I often collect jewelry from artists that I have had a personal connection with or have found inspiring. Basha Harris is a local metalsmith who I went to school with and is someone who I find inspiring in how she not only works with art, but also works in the community. Harris has had a special influence on my early life as an artist, so without hesitation, I invested in pair of her sterling silver silver earrings. I have a pair of black, steel studs from artist Maia Leppo as well. Maia is an artist that I met briefly at the ZOOM Symposium in 2016 and I fell in love with the simple shapes and quirky, cool feel of the designs. My most recent jewelry investment was a pair of earrings from Laura Wood Studios. I was able to take a workshop at Arrowmont School of Arts & Crafts with Woods and was quite taken with not only the artist, but also the artwork. These are some of the pieces that I invested in intentionally due to the quality, love for the jewelry pieces, and appreciation of the artists. I collect because of personal relationships built with an artist, the feeling I get when wearing the piece, and the desire to support artists who inspire me as a maker.

Jewelry is Universal

In conclusion, I think that jewelry is an experience that is universally felt by many people. It is something that is personal. I do not think that there is one reason why people collect jewelry, but many. I think that jewelry is something that people collect that really does enrich our lives. It is clear through my interviews that people have different reasons for collecting – some for remembering a memory, some for the craft that they see within the artwork, others because of the personal style statements, and more. As a metalsmith working in a jewelry store, I see how fortunate we are to be a part of these experiences for many people.

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Interacting with Jewelry

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Today I have been reflecting on the fact that when it comes to a good environment, I think that 3WJ is up there. After being invited to join 3WJ this Summer, I decided that this warm, yet sophisticated space is an environment I appreciate and had to be a part of. 3WJ does their utmost to serve our customers to the highest standard – today that has looked like designing custom bracelets for an up and coming wellness center.

Remember when I said I would introduce myself to you? Let’s get to it. I live in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on the East Side and am currently pursuing my BFA in Jewelry and Metalsmithing and a Certificate in Community Arts at the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee. In the future, I plan to do production style jewelry work and teach workshops on jewelry and metalsmithing.

Why Metalsmithing?

When I was in High School, I took a Intro to Jewelry class with my art teacher, Deb Mortl. The class was my favorite class over my four year high school career, but I did not realize at the time that there was such a thing as a “Metalsmith.” I moved forward thinking that I would go to school for Art Therapy. I was working at The Cedarburg Coffee Roastery as a barista and I met an amazing Metalsmith named Karen Locher, who invited me to be an apprentice for a handful of months. It is crazy how small interactions with customers turn into something that can change your direction in life. Metalsmithing takes attention to detail and is a very personal medium to work with, as it relates to the body. I love this and I wanted to continue working in this manner. When I took an Intro to Metalsmithing class at UW-Milwaukee, I realized that “metalsmithing,” in fact was a career worth pursuing.

What the future looks like (for now!)

I think that in my future, life will look similar to many of the Metalsmiths that 3WJ carries. This is one of the reasons why I feel so lucky to be working at the 3WJ – I get to see the ins and outs of the gallery world and what galleries expect of metalsmiths. Interacting up close with a lot of the jewelry work has been a beautiful experience so far, and this is one thing that 3WJ sees is an important aspect of the wearer’s experience with jewelry, too. Seeing the impeccable craft and time that many of the artists put into their work and think is something that is not only valuable for myself as an artist, but also for jewelry admirers.

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Here is a face to put with the words you are reading : ) Credit: Caitlin Driver

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Earrings made this Summer.. more to come for the show! Model: Sophie Beck

 

Trunk show in August & Inspiration for it

Come to my Trunk Show in August! Mollie generously invited me to do a Trunk Sale in August as a part of my time here at 3WJ, so obviously I gladly accepted. I have already begun working on a line of earrings for the show and will continue to make, make, make. My work in the past has been inspired by objects I see in the manmade world (such as children’s furniture or the backs of trucks), or objects in the hidden, natural world (such as deep see creatures and fungi).  In addition to this, I have recently been quite taken with the interactive qualities of jewelry and the versatility of certain jewelry designs. The idea of play and interaction with jewelry caused my interest in making different types of chains that are able to be manipulated by the wearer. You can expect a playful show filled with interactive pieces and colors that remind you of Summertime.

I will keep you updated on how the show is coming along in future posts!

Until next time…

 

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