Inspiration – Displays, Deities and Dead Flies

Posted on Posted in Inspirations, Jewelry

In my last blog, I posted photos of my jewelry case at the Global Design show. I’d filled it with painted birch logs and beach sand. A bunch of people asked me about the display as its not the typical way of showing jewelry. I thought I’d share my inspiration and how I got there.

It’s thanks to Marie Helene Morrow of Reinhold Jewelers who said to me last summer that I should come and do a trunk show of my new pieces and that I should be creative in the cases. Reinhold has carried my work the longest of any other store, first with the 18K collection and then embracing my new oxidized silver line. When you make work that is ‘other-world’ inspired, you pray that someone will understand it. So when these were amongst the pieces that Marie-Helene got for the store, the deities heard my call.

Marie Helene, by the way, is the Athena of the jewelry world. With her encouragement, I packed my carry-on with bell jars (within which to hold my insect-inspired pieces), slate rocks (on which my silver spiders would sit), woven sisal rolls, and jewelry of course, and headed south to San Juan where Reinhold reigns. (See photos below.)

I’d wanted to bring sand. Who in their right mind would bring sand to the Caribbean? I figured too that it mightn’t have any aesthetic appeal in Puerto Rico. So I went with sisal. A few words of advice – sisal does not lie flat. It buckles a bit. So the next time around, I used sand that I bought from a floral/garden supply shop in New York. If you plan to do so yourself, be prepared to deal with black sand flies that hatch out of invisible eggs once they hit air. Yes, I was picking jumping black flies out of sand at the Philadelphia Trade Center during set-up the night before the show, thinking, ‘Great. Buyers who have a hard time with my insect jewelry are now going to bolt when they see the live ones.’ Already exhausted when these little pests appeared from nowhere, I packed up, planning to resume the chore in the morning. Good thing I delayed. In the morning, they all were dead thanks to a very short life span. Much easier to deal with dead flies that sit upon the sand than flitting, airborne creatures. I was truly grateful too that I hadn’t taken sand to San Juan. Imagine if I’d inadvertently introduced a pestilent species to the island that upset its ecology? Aye.

2 thoughts on “Inspiration – Displays, Deities and Dead Flies

  1. I love your displays! Of course you must have intricate, special display cases-how could you have anything else?

  2. Loved your Blog. Your personal stories are great love the Black Widow one.. I was a little thrown at going from jewelry to social politics to holistic remedy to personal tidbits back to jewelry. I love that is offers more than one thing. I was just trying to keep up and was entertained and was able to take in everything.. so it wasn’t overwhelming just odd at first and then I got it and went with it.. nice…


    Thanks for sharing

    Vincent G Palumbo

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