Thursday, January 27, 2011


I just realized I have neglected to blog about my new jewelry class! 
Well, I signed up for the Advanced Jewelry Techniques but had to down grade to the Intro class. It turns out I am a bit rusty... it has been 2 years since I was in the studio working with metal. 

And, starting a new class in a new arts center was a bit intimidating. I need to learn my way around the studio here. It is totally different than the Art Center in Little Rock, but I will save that for a different post.

I dove right in and decided to start a bezel setting. I have all these groovy vintage buttons that are broken. Although broken, they are still beautiful and I am putting them to good use!

Here is my progress so far...

Last night I cut out the bezel and added the bail. Then, I had to clean up my solder and polish the piece. I am missing next weeks class because I will be in Tucson. I will keep you updated as I progress on this project. I really hope to be making more designs like this in the future. It is amazing what you can do with a sheet of metal. I get really overwhelmed by the possibilities and can't focus on all my thoughts. I hope to do a lot of sketching during my upcoming trip. Tucson will be a great place to find inspiration!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Bella Vita Redux

2011 Spring Designs
I am in the process of re-doing my website... again! Hopefully it will be the last time for a while... hopefully!!

I just wanted to keep you all up to date. 
My new site will be very straight forward and easy to navigate. I am hoping that by changing selling platforms I will be able to upload jewelry more often. I am a one woman show and sometimes that proves to be too much work for me. I am still going to sell my jewelry designs on line, I am just going to go about it in a different way. So, bare with me. And, check my blog or my facebook fan page for any news or announcements.

Now, on to exciting stuff!
I leave for Tucson market on Monday and I couldn't be more excited! In celebration of this (and to make room for new materials) I am marking down everything on my website ( 20%. In addition to that there are still some great pieces on facebook that are 40% off. 
Shop now, the sale only lasts until Sunday. Please email me if you have any questions at all,

Sale excludes all custom orders.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Annual 40% off Sale!!!

It's that time again!
Check out my facebook page for all the great jewelry that is now 40% off. 
If you need more information on any of the pieces please feel free to email me, Directions on ordering the jewelry are inside the album. 
Want a sneak peak? Scroll through the images below!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Bella Vita's Interpretation of the Pantone Color Forecast: Spring 2011

I hope you enjoy this post. It is my blog contribution to my friend Catherine's blog. Be sure you check out "The Fashionable Traveler's" too! I hope to get her as a guest blogger on here soon.
Pantone Color Forecast, Spring 2011

The folks over at Pantone say that “Honeysuckle” is the color for Spring.
They say, “Flirtatious Honeysuckle is a feel-good hue that brings a festive
sense of playfulness to this season’s palette. This vibrant pinkish-red for both apparel and cosmetics makes consumers feel alive, and is a perfect post-winter pick-me-up. the quintessential neutral that consumers can rely on to coordinate with everything in their closet.”  
I have to say I agree, I think Honeysuckle is a beautiful, playful hue that will complement  and revitalize any skin tone and/or hair color. I am also excited about Peapod, Beeswax, Russet and Silver Cloud. I think those colors will make beautiful combinations in clothing or jewelry. The blue hues, Regatta and Blue Curacao, in my opinion, are beautiful standards in Spring color forecasts. Turquoise was the “color” in the forecast for Spring 2010.
Now that we know the colors for Spring what precious and semi precious stones will we use to compliment the clothing designs of the season?

The Color for Spring: Honeysuckle

This dress design by Peter Som was my favorite in the Honeysuckle collection. Vermeil and Fuschia Chalcedony Earrings by Bella Vita Handmade Jewelry.

Mystic Carnelian and Chrysoprase necklace by Bella Vita Handmade Jewelry

Coral Rose and Beeswax combined together for a warm color combination. I got to do a little shopping this weekend and selected the beads in the picture above. They are jade and resin in beautiful hues of yellows and oranges. I haven’t decide exactly what the design will be. Hopefully I’ll get to share it with you in the future.

The warm set:
Russet will be beautiful with anything from jaspers and agates to chalcedony and jade. This is also a great accent color for the rest of the collection.
Regatta and Blue Curacao can easily be match with any variety of turquoise as well as blue apatite or blue chalcedonies.
Lavender will be great with a lighter amethyst stone.
Silver Cloud another great accent color whether used as a stone or the metal components.
So what stones will you be sporting this Spring?

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

hope and happenstance

  So, today I...
woke up at 6, hit the gym at 6:30-ish, came home and cleansed myself, ate breakfast and chugged a cup of coffee, met my banker (for the first time, I have a banker!), ran home, threw my jewelry in my car, made a mad dash for the city to meet with a potential client, got my jewelry in said clients shoppe, treated myself to a celebratory diet coke and veggie sandwich at my new favorite spot in the city, relaxed for a moment in the car in the parking lot of my "desk job," put in my 5 hours there, started my new jewelry class, and finally at 10 p.m. came home to a nice dinner prepared by my beau and a glass of wine... now I am blogging about it because I know someone out there cares!

  I needed today, I needed today like soup needs a spoon. Christmas sales/events were so busy that I didn't get to enjoy any of it... well I enjoyed it but now when I look back it is all a big blur... even my own Christmas celebrations with my family are blurry. After Christmas sales I took a two week break from Bella Vita. Which was more like torture because all I could think about was all the "stuff" I wasn't getting done because I was on "vacation." What have I become? I guess this is what happens when you come from a family of entrepreneurs and when you have been blessed with hands that are meant to create. I think I was put here on this earth to create beautiful pieces of art that decorate the human body and today that was proven to me.
  First, I met with my banker and he made crunching numbers fun and exciting and left me wanting another lesson in basic finance. Then I met with a shoppe owner that was interested in setting up a wholesale account with Bella Vita and we did just that. It was so amazing to me to go to a meeting with two organized women that do what they say they are going to do. I don't think store owners realize the power they have over artists. I have had two disheartening experiences at local shoppes lately and it just left me wondering "why?" My Mom tells me I need to get over it and not take things so personally... if I could only remember that every time I get turned down... or every time a server screws up my order (a whole different story, I'd love to tell you about it sometime)... I'd probably be rich or something like that.
  Then, later this evening, I started my Metalsmithing class and remembered how much I love what I do and can't wait to learn new skills.
I was a little worried about how I'd be holding up at class tonight. I am an early bird and am usually in bed by 10 p.m. I preferred the day class but realized I needed a refresher before I jumped in with all the "old school" jewelry makers at this Arts Center. I show up for class to find out my teacher has taken a job in Chicago and will be moving soon... long story short, I get the best of two instructors and instructor 1 that got a new job decided to toast the class with a glass of red wine! How perfect is that? How perfect is that for me? Jewelry and red wine, I'm set. 
  So, I found myself sitting around a work table with 9 other women sipping a glass of wine sawing sheets of metal.
I know these events probably don't make a lot of sense to you, but to me they are stepping stones to my happiness in this new place where I live.  I am not that far from home but I am that far from my circle of "people" in my familiar land. First and foremost I miss my family, my Mom and Dad and my sweet little Grandmother that collects all of those groovy antique buttons. Then I miss my friends, my girls nights with JeanAnne and Bekah, and my morning walks with Maureen and Arlo, and my dinner parties with the Little Rock Girls! Then I miss my bead/jewelry family that I am so familiar with in Little Rock. Especially the bead store that restored my passion for jewelry design and the driving force behind that business, Mrs. Ellie Roy.
  Today gave me hope that I will establish some familiar routines in this foreign land called Oklahoma... but will hopefully be back home in Arkansas in a few short years. Thank you for listening and I hope you enjoyed. If you can relate or have advice, by all means share it!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Saturday Thrifting, Sunday Rearranging

  I should be doing this...

but, I just can't focus on it... So instead, I went thrifting and had lunch with friends! 

This is sweet baby Quinn, we hung out Saturday. Her parents are good friends of Matt and I and they live in Oklahoma City. Quinn is about 2 months old. Very very sweet baby!
  I pretty much took Friday and Saturday off as my "weekend." So on Sunday I hit the ground running! I locked myself in my studio at 8a.m. and came out at 5 p.m. I rearranged my work tables to make a more enclosed area for me to work in. I also had to make room for my new rusty shelf and my new magazine rack.
Rusty shelf... Matt didn't understand why I HAD to have this. It is perfect for my bead trays and I talked the guy down to $5!
Magazine rack... $5!!!!
And this sweet little print... I was more drawn to the frame than the print, $6. 

I purchased this basket storage device at The Container Store 2 years ago when I started Bella Vita. I used to keep ALL of my beads, tools, findings etc. in here... wow! I think this is also the only "new" piece of furniture I have purchased for my studio/office. On top is an antique thread display, makes a great storage device for all my vintage goodies!
My new "business" area...
Cleaned up, organized shelves full of goodies.

The overall doorway picture... looks a little hectic.

  Now that everything is sorted and put where it needs to go, I can start doing inventory. Eek! 
It really isn't too bad, just time consuming.  I hope to get started in a few minutes and could very well have it done today. 
  Tomorrow I start my Metalworking class at the Arts Center here in Norman. I am sooooo excited! I will definitely be taking photos and blogging about my progress and projects. In my free time I am working on a very special blog for The Fashionable Traveler's blog. It is going to be all about Pantones color forcast for Spring 2011. You can link to The Fashionable Traveler's blog from my "blogs I read" links. Ciao!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Earring Giveaway!

How about a giveaway! Tell me your New Years resolutions that you are GOING to stick to. Mine are: to be more positive and less whiny (mostly to Matt), to make everyday count and to procrastinate less... and the usual exercise and eat healthy. I will draw for two winners at the end of today! Good Luck! Spread the word too.

Monday, January 3, 2011

I am sorry!

I am sorry! I have neglected my blog... I promise I have fun things in store for future posts. The holidays were extremely busy and then I took a week off for vacation. I have a lot of new topics I have been brainstorming and a handful of guest bloggers that I can't wait for you to meet. I will return!