Wednesday, June 3, 2009


Today we're in Vancouver, Canada taking in the natural splendor of Queen Elizabeth Park. I am partial to all things floral, so I'd take a peek inside Bloedel Floral Conservatory with all of its birds, and exotic plants, including bromeliads.

I'd particularly like to have a meet-and-greet with the conservatory's lively Cockatoo named Charlie. Canada is also home to featured jewelry designer Constantina James.

James' company, Simply Sublime, is perfectly named.  Her exquisite 14-karat gold-filled, and 24-karat gold vermeil designer jewelry, particularly the hammered gold, chain-link necklaces bring to mind Italian-made jewelry.

Drawing from her managerial experience in fashion retail, as well as assistance from her husband Stuart, James was poised to spearhead a jewelry line.

Within three years, her fabulous fashion jewelry has been featured in magazines including Flare, People, and Lucky; and television shows CSI: Miami, Men in Trees, Battlestar Galactica, and Smallville.

This past February, The Academy Gift Bag Committee included pieces from Simply Sublime in its enviable Oscar® gift bags, given to Oscar® nominees.

"They saw my line in a New York online boutique and asked me to include 40 pieces," James said while preparing for the Oscar® event. The Country Music Awards quickly followed suit by requesting Simply Sublime jewels for its gift bags.

All of Simply Sublime's pieces are handmade; James and her superlative staff use Italian sterling silver, tourmaline, citrine, turquoise, pearls, garnets, and Crystallized Swarovski Elements to create the incredibly feminine jewelry. For her nature-inspired Chablis Bracelet, and Shamrock pendants James incorporates real leaves dipped in 24-karat gold.

The elegant collection of jewelry is not without famous clientele including Anne Heche, Jennifer Aniston, Britney Spears, and Taylor Swift.

James donates a portion of all sale proceeds to the Canadian Down Syndrome Society in commemoration of the life of her brother, who was born with Down's Syndrome and died at age 16.
Photo 1 (top right): 14-Karat Gold-filled Chablis Bracelet with Venetian Glass and Gold-dipped Leaf
Photo 2 (bottom left): 14-Karat Gold-filled Dangling Hoop Earrings with Turquoise
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