Monday, January 31, 2011


The landscapes of Ireland are easily some of the most beautiful in the world. Located within the Wicklow Mountains in Glendalough are gorgeous lakes, and monastic ruins. Ireland is also home to featured jewelry designer Marika O’Sullivan.

Saturday, January 29, 2011


A National Historic Landmark since 1966, New Mexico’s Puye Cliff Dwellings is a remarkable site of carved rock dwellings that Pueblo Indians called home during the 12th century. New Mexico is also home to featured jewelry designer Pat Pruitt.

Friday, January 28, 2011


Brace yourself for the breathtaking scenery within Finland’s Karelia Lake Country.  The region consists of  60,000 lakes; Europe’s second largest waterfall, Kivatch Waterfall; and virgin tundra woods.

Finland is also the birthplace of featured jewelry designer Terhi Tolvanen.

Thursday, January 27, 2011


Today is one of those rare occasions where we visit two locales. Our first stop is the sacred Mexican region of Teotihuacán that holds ancient pyramids, ceremonial objects and fine pottery.

We will next visit the scenic Lake District of Argentina consisting of twenty lakes; the largest being Nahuel Huapi. This time of year is great for fishing, kayaking, and hiking.

Though Mexico is home to featured husband-wife design team Debora Gurman and Marco Romero, Gurman is originally from Argentina.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011


Located within the ancient Greek enclosure known as the Hellenistic Wall are the citadels of the Acropolis of Lindos.

This archaeological site still holds artifacts like gold coins and is rich with stunning ruins. Greece is also home to featured jewelry designer Katerina Krini.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


The largest cluster of islands (archipelago) in the Baltic Sea is the Stockholm Archipelago located in Sweden. This cluster of over 25,000 islands is a seasonal destination for many tourists who love the hiking trails of Finnhamn, or the tepid waters of Nåttarö. Sweden is also home to featured design team David Andersson and Martin Lasson.

Monday, January 24, 2011


Located near Lima, Peru is the port town of Paracas.  Known for its unrivaled beauty the locale bursts with scenery of rare birds, peaceful beaches and an ancient wharf.

The town is also a remnant of Andean independence and a conservatory for marine life.  Peru is also home to featured jewelry designer Gloria Gamio Álvarez.

Saturday, January 8, 2011


The Channel Islands National Park is perhaps Southern California’s best kept secret. Situated off the Californian coast the park’s extensive acres reach as far as Los Angeles, and house more than 2,000 species of fauna and flora. California is also the home base for featured jewelry brand JudeFrances.

Friday, January 7, 2011


There are many stunningly beautiful locations to discover in New Zealand one of which is Poor Knight Islands.

It is one of the world’s best locales for snorkeling, fishing, and scuba diving. New Zealand is also home to featured jewelry designer Vicki Mason.

Thursday, January 6, 2011


Today we visit what is known to be the Netherlands’ smallest city, Madurodam. Despite its size Madurodam has a number of interesting attractions including a wooden shoe factory called Klompenfabriek. The Netherlands is also home to featured jewelry designer Felieke van der Leest.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011


Brazil seemingly has no shortage of ravishing natural backdrops. The tropical island of Fernando de Noronha is one such locale with spectacular beaches and plenty of outdoor activities to enjoy. Brazil is also the birthplace of featured jewelry designer Miriam Chor Freitas.

Like her colleagues Ruth Baird (New Zealand), Haruko Sugawara  (Japan), and fellow Brazilian Claudia Lobão, Freitas enlists the painstaking art from of crochet to cultivate exquisite pieces of jewelry fashioned from copper, fine silver and 14-karat gold filled wires.

The California-based Freitas is the progeny of jewelry importers and after devoting her energy and time to a career in child welfare services she chose to make her mark within the industry that ultimately shaped her early life.

Her company, Miriam Jewels, emerged onto the California fashion scene holding within it a study of classic form born from technical complexity.

“We are a unique jewelry studio specializing in hand made crochet jewelry,” says Freitas. “We combine the ancient arts of crocheting, wire wrapping, knotting and knitting with metal wire. Our aesthetic blends the vivaciousness of Brazil with a laid-back California style.”

I enjoy the visual of seeming simplicity offset by the intricacy of the delicate weave patterns. The fashion jewelry collection is a striking combination of clean outlines paired with haute sensibilities that is highlighted in circle necklaces and heart jewelry accented with a lovely array of glass beads, Swarovski Crystallized Elements, seed beads, as well as carnelian, blue topaz, strawberry quartz, and tiger’s eye.

The ethereally feminine interlocking loops of metal wire are reminiscent of chain maille. Freitas’ designer jewelry is unquestionably another fine example that timeless and classic does not have to be bound entirely to convention.

“The highlight of our crochet jewelry collections is the Peruvian Crochet technique for which I traveled to Lima to learn from the experts in the art. This is a flawless crochet technique that creates perfectly symmetrical stitches,” says Freitas. “Our jewelry is bold and lavish yet elegant so that it truly reflects the highly sophisticated taste and sensitivity of every woman.”

With the welfare of children still very near to her heart, Freitas donates a percentage of her company’s profits to the non-profit organization Children in Need Foundation.
Photo 1 (top right): 14-Karat Gold-Filled Crochet Snake Necklace with Amethyst Beads
Photo 2 (center): 14-Karat Gold Filled Crochet Topaz Ring
Photo 3 (bottom left): 14-Karat Gold Filled Crochet Princess Cuff Bracelet with Seed Beads

Tuesday, January 4, 2011


Located in Salisbury, England is the centuries-old Cathedral of Saint Mary (a/k/a Salisbury Cathedral).

The 13th century structure contains the world’s oldest, faceless clock, and also holds an original copy of the Magna Carter.

England is also home to featured jewelry designer Becky Crow.


Can celebrities really take all the credit for impacting any one woman’s personal style? If you have ever seen InStyle’s “Transformations” feature then you know even a celebrity’s style sense greatly evolves with the help of professional stylists. To say that flair and panache is only synonymous with Hollywood ingénues is not a completely accurate representation.

Monday, January 3, 2011


Italy’s beautiful Isle of Capri is an astounding locale of natural beauty, and modern amenities. In addition to swimming, hiking, and a vibrant night life, a great place to visit is the 14th century monastery Garden of Augustus. Italy is also home to featured jewelry designer Misara (a/k/a Maria) d’Avossa.


I made my living as a clown at kids' parties for about three years. I just love making a fool out of myself.
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