Thursday, December 30, 2010

almost a new year...

Despite good intentions, I haven't kept up with blogging! I got sick a couple of days after Thanksgiving and am just now starting to feel like myself again after two rounds of antibiotics and lots of cough medicine.

When I've had the energy these past weeks, I've been crafting things and adding to the Etsy and ArtFire shops. Here are a couple of the latest items...

A yin yang keychain. The stones I used are said to have metaphysical properties that help balance yin yang energies.

Amazonite wrist mala bracelet. This has 27 main amazonite beads, 6mm round, with a 10mm round amazonite bead serving as the head bead or guru bead. The wrist mala bracelets can be worn just for the sake of being a bracelet, no other purpose involved - or they can be used as malas or prayer beads to use while saying mantras or affirmations, meditating, counting for relaxation, and so on. Traditional malas have 108 main beads, so the number of 27 main beads used for this wrist mala bracelet is significant because it's a subset of 108. I've been enjoying making wrist mala bracelets, and we have several listed in the shops now - not only this amazonite one, but also angelite, rose quartz, black onyx, black tourmaline, bloodstone, green aventurine... as well as ones that incorporate stones for the seven major chakras. And we'll be adding others in the future.

As this year comes to an end and a new year is about to begin, I'm spending time this week trying to get more organized - but it's a challenge! Being more organized, however, is going to be one of my goals for 2011.

Whatever your goals for the coming year, I hope you achieve them...

Sunday, November 21, 2010


Our 16-year-old cat passed away in mid-June. I blogged about it here in an earlier post. When Chance died, it was the first time in our marriage that we had no animals in the house - and it felt strange. Not only was there the adjustment to Chance being gone, but there was also an adjustment to having only two human people in the household... and no sounds of purrs or meows or wild gallops through the house, no furry creatures to pet or talk to or cuddle.

Several weeks ago, we adopted Chloe. She's a little over a year old - about 15 months. She is sooo sweet. She's timid, and it took her a while to start trusting us and get used to being here, but she's settled in nicely and is enjoying being thoroughly spoiled by us.

My husband taught her how to play fetch with her catnip mouse, and she LOVES it! She brings the mousie to us to throw and she'll chase after it (or sometimes even catch it in mid-air) and trot back to us with the toy in her mouth, dropping it at our feet and waiting for us to toss it again.

In non-cat news, Subtle Harmony is now settled in nicely at ArtFire. We have no plans to leave Etsy, we just wanted to expand to include other venues. The new facebook page is gradually gaining fans (see the right column for a quick way to check us out there). Several new items have been posted in the shops recently, and there's more to come soon.

I'm still not organized about blogging regularly... so in case I don't post here again in the next few days, I'll go ahead now and wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanks for stopping by. ♥

Thursday, November 4, 2010

new happenings...

The move is official, and the SpiralSpace shop on Etsy is empty (for the moment, at least!) and everything is now at our new Etsy shop, Subtle Harmony. You can click here to visit the shop.

And... Subtle Harmony has just opened an ArtFire studio! Most of the products are the same at both shops, but there are a few differences. I hope you'll check out our shop on ArtFire by clicking here.

If you've visited the blog before, you might notice it looks a little different. I know nothing about how to do website stuff, but I've been playing around with the blogger design, trying to help this little blog transition a little from SpiralSpace to Subtle Harmony. I didn't scratch this one and start over with a new blog with a new name... but maybe that would be the thing to do. Decisions, decisions!

Despite my good intentions, I haven't blogged much these past months. My ArtFire studio has a blog feature, and I've posted one entry there since opening shop. Maybe I'll finally get better at keeping up with blogging.

Thanks for stopping by. ♥

Thursday, October 21, 2010


In making decisions about business and the future, my husband and I decided to open an Etsy shop under a new name - Subtle Harmony. I'm in the process of listing all of the products from the SpiralSpace shop into the new place. I hope you'll stop by the shop to check it out - SubtleHarmony on Etsy.

We'll soon have a Subtle Harmony shop on ArtFire too, but I'm still in the process of setting things up over there and don't have any listings yet.

With the new shop and the new name, there's a new facebook fan page too - you can check it out here.

Here are a couple of the newest items in the shop...

Thanks for stopping by! ♥

Sunday, September 12, 2010

hummingbird treasury...

When I first started visiting Etsy, I had no idea what treasuries were. Then I found out more about them - but I was intimidated about trying to put one together.

Well, this weekend I decided to finally give it a try. I love hummingbirds - so I decided to use hummingbirds as the theme of my first treasury. I still feel a bit intimidated about curating a treasury but it was a lot of fun to do, and I'll definitely be doing more!

I'm going to try to post here using a generating tool from Whale Shark Websites. I'm hoping this will look okay, but I realize different browsers can do different things... so if you see gibberish (or nothing at all), I apologize! If you'd like to click directly to the treasury on Etsy, just click here.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Labor Day...

When I was growing up, from kindergarten through high school, the first day of school was always the day after Labor Day. I must admit I always hated Labor Day! I didn't want summer vacation to end, and starting a new school year always kicked up my anxiety level. (Social anxiety was part of my life even as a child.)

Those days were a long time ago, though. My college and grad school schedules were different, so no more day-after-Labor-Day first day of classes. And it's been years and years (and years!) since I've been a student on any campus.

Still, even after all this time, Labor Day marks a "new beginning" during the year for me, much in the same way New Years Day does. Actually, it's only recently that New Years has started catching up for me, in terms of feeling like a time for taking stock, evaluating, starting new things.

I guess maybe Labor Day, for me, still beats New Years Day to some extent - because today I'm brimming with ideas for some new projects and I feel that sense of energetic excitement about new beginnings.

I have been - my life has been - going through a lengthy period of transition and change. The process is still ongoing, and it's... well, a whole bunch of different emotions all swirled together. An important person in my life has said a few times recently that I'm in the process of metamorphosis, moving out of a cocoon into the freedom of being a butterfly, my true self. I think that statement fits, even though it scares me!

There are so many great shops on Etsy, and as I was browsing recently I found a wonderful shop that's new to me. The Midnight Orange is the shop of a fantastic artist with many pieces that really speak to me. When I saw this one, I made one of those impulse buys and purchased it right away. I knew I needed to have this, because it fits so well what I'm going through...

The piece is Into the New by TheMidnightOrange and that's the photo from the listing. She arrived last week and she's perfect! I love shopping on Etsy.

One new thing that will be happening fairly soon is a new Etsy shop for me. I'm not sure when it will officially open - if all goes as planned, it'll open by the beginning of November. My SpiralSpace inventory will be moved to the new shop, and there will be other items there as well. I'll be posting more information here as things progress.

Thanks for stopping by. ♥

Thursday, August 19, 2010

catching up...

Obviously, I still don't quite have the hang of this blog - I didn't realize until today that I had comments waiting for moderation! I thought I had things set up to appear right away when someone commented. And since I'd had a few comments show up I thought it was going along okay. But no! I am so sorry to those of you who left comments and they didn't appear until today. I'm thrilled about every visit to the blog and each comment that's left, and I hate that things weren't showing up the way I thought they would... and that I was so slow to realize it.

An item from my etsy shop was featured in a blog today! Molly Brandt, who has a wonderful blog called The Red Sunflower, chose my chakra bracelet set as one of her favorites for the week. Thank you, Molly! The entry is here. The chakra bracelet set sold earlier this week, but I'll be adding more.

I make several things related to chakras, and sometimes I wonder if I have too many chakra bracelets in the shop. But working with chakras has become so important to me, and I love the various crystals and stones that relate to the various chakras, and I enjoy wearing chakra-related jewelry, and I enjoy making chakra-related jewelry... so I'm sure I'll continue to make chakra-related items. The most recent chakra bracelet I made is a bit different from the others I have.

Most of the bracelet is black obsidian, to represent general grounding. Then I used slightly smaller beads, one of each, to represent the colors of the seven major chakras. The row of colored stones is set off on each side by small sterling silver beads.

I find that I need to ground myself quite often these days - I guess that's why it's on my mind a lot lately! And what is on my mind often finds its way into the things I make.

Thanks for stopping by. ♥

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

keeping up...

I'm not doing so great at keeping up with my blog! I sometimes wonder how other people do everything, time-wise. I've read books on time management, I've tried various calendar systems, I've tried making lists and prioritizing and all sorts of tricks and tips... but I can't seem to find the time to do all that needs to be done. Or all that I want to do.

Although I haven't blogged in a while, I have been working on my aromatherapy studies and I've made more items for my etsy store. Sometimes when I make a jewelry piece, I design it with a certain idea or theme in mind. (As with the night sky necklace in an earlier blog post.) Sometimes those themes or ideas come from the metaphysical properties of the stones I use.

Here's a bracelet I made this past spring. I call it Harmony.

I don't name all my pieces, but sometimes a name seems to fit - and this was one of those times. I used amethyst, rhodonite, and aquamarine. All three of these stones are said to help bring about calm and peace... inner harmony.

Thanks for stopping by. ♥

Saturday, July 24, 2010

missing Chance...

It's been almost 6 weeks since our cat Chance died, and we still miss him terribly. He was 16 years old, totally sweet and fun and loving, and completely spoiled.

We've talked about the possibility of getting another cat or two at some point, but it doesn't feel like the right time yet. Not only do we miss Chance because of missing him and his wonderful, loving presence, but these past weeks have also seemed strange because this is the first time in over 20 years of marriage that we haven't had any animals. It makes the house seem... odd, and even a bit unfamiliar in some way.

Making the jewelry and working on the etsy shop have helped keep me busy during this time of grieving and adjusting. I've needed something to do, something to focus on, and this has been a big help. I can lose myself to looking through my gemstones and charms and findings, deciding what to put together next, working out a design or a theme if it's going to be that kind of piece.

It's been therapeutic.

One of the other things to help during this time has been aromatherapy. Many, many days I have used oils or blends - either in an oil burner or aromalamp, or in a carrier oil to use for a soothing massage - to help with my emotions. I've reached for oils such as cypress, sweet marjoram, lavender, bergamot, or orange to help with grief. Lemon, grapefruit, petitgrain, melissa, roman chamomile, peppermint, and juniperberry are others that I've found especially helpful during this time. Marge Clark at the wonderful Nature's Gift Aromatherapy has some great synergies for emotions, and I've found them helpful and effective, not only in dealing with this particular situation but in several areas of my life. (I'm not affiliated with that company in any way... I'm just a very satisfied customer).

Reiki has also helped me a great deal during these past weeks. Whether I'm doing a self-treatment or seeing another Reiki practitioner for a session, the healing energy has been in aid in soothing the grief and making my way through this time of adjustment and transition.

Other things have helped too, but I'll stop for now before this becomes too very long.

Loss... of animals, people, jobs, friendships, dreams... is hard. When you're dealing with grief and loss in your own life, I hope you'll find your way to whatever helps ease the pain and soothe your soul

Thank you for visiting. ♥

Sunday, July 18, 2010

night sky, moon and stars...

Saturday I listed a new piece of jewelry in my etsy shop. I hand-strung a necklace of rainbow obsidian and snow quartz, and included an antiqued pewter charm of a face-in-the-moon and stars.

I wanted the necklace to represent the night sky. The rainbow obsidian chips are the dark of the sky at night, with the beads of snow quartz being the light of the moon and stars.

The starting point for me was the charm with the stars and crescent moon - just looking at it makes me think of the night sky. I knew I wanted to use a combination of light and dark beads, and the shape of the stones was important to me too. The round translucent white of the snow quartz reminds me of looking at a full moon, so I chose those beads (although moonstone would also have worked great). But I didn't want to use round beads for the night sky, I wanted a contrasting shape. I looked through my stash of gemstone supplies, and the rainbow obsidian chips seemed to be a perfect fit.

Light and dark... the moon and the stars and the sky.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

green line jasper...

My latest listing in my etsy shop is a bracelet I made yesterday from green line jasper. I love green line jasper - I think the bands and swirls of greenish-gray make it an interesting stone. I added a sterling silver spiral to the bracelet...

As you might guess from my shop name and blog title, I have a special fondness for spirals. The spiral is an ancient symbol that can hold so much significance... the cycle of life, the cosmic spiral, spiraling inward, spiraling outward, a symbol of the spiritual journey, a symbol of the feminine or the goddess, a symbol of the journey of life itself. I love the flows and whirls and swirls of spirals too, the way they look. And in my own life's journey, the spiral symbolizes some of what I've gone through.

So... I have a thing for spirals.

One reason I chose green line jasper gemstone beads to use with the spiral in this bracelet is because the beads themselves remind me of spirals due to the somewhat swirly patterns the stones have. Green line jasper has a semi-translucent grayish green banding, each stone's pattern unique with the bands flowing and swirling to create varying shades and lines. The stone is formed when green and black needle-like pieces of tourmaline become embedded into the quartz.

Now for some metaphysical properties of the stone -- and as a disclaimer, this is for informational purposes only, no healing claims are being made, nor any claims about a stone's effect on any particular individual...

Jasper in general is said to be a very nurturing stone, helping in times of stress, as well as assisting with courage and determination. It is also believed to be a protective stone, absorbing negative energies. Because of its color, green line jasper particularly resonates with the fourth chakra, the heart chakra.

Thanks for stopping by. ♥

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

getting started...

I've procrastinated about doing this first post -- I wasn't sure what I would write. But finally I decided the best way to get started would be to... simply start. So here it is. My first post on this blog.

To learn more about who I am, just click on the About Me tab at the top of the page. There are also tabs for a page to links, as well as a page with book titles (and some CD and DVD titles too, for good measure).

Being involved with my etsy shop, SpiralSpace, led me to start this blog. (A link to my shop is on the right). The very first item I sold was a rose quartz bracelet -- and since rose quartz is one of my favorite stones, it was especially meaningful to me to have it be the first item someone wanted. I have another bracelet like it available now...

In The Complete Guide to Crystal Chakra Healing, Philip Permutt says that rose quartz "is like a bubble bath for the emotions." I really like that description. Rose quartz is such a gentle, soothing stone... I think the bubble bath comparison just fits.

Thanks for stopping by. I hope you'll visit again. ♥