Where do you usually design?
I usually design within my home. My husband travels frequently, and when my kids are gone to school and work, my house is really nice and quiet. I put on my favorite XM blues station, turn on my lamp, and let the colors (and the blues!) take control!
What are your favorite materials to use?
My favorite materials are pearls. First, pearls are such a feminine gemstone. Second, they come in such a variety of colors and shapes in the industry that you can have pearls to match just about any outfit you desire. I don't use them exclusively, but typically you will find pearls included in whatever I've made.
What tips do you have for selecting the right necklace for an outfit?
Selection of a necklace is a combination of elements. First, color is obviously the dominate consideration. One thing I really advise is if someone is wearing a monochromatic outfit, select a piece of jewelry that brings in different colors. Conversely, if your outfit is colorful, pick something simple and plain. Second, the neck of the shirt affects the type of necklace a woman should select. Third, if you select a necklace that is really noticeable, let that one piece stand alone. I see many women who load on the jewelry. There is such a thing as too much.
What two accessories turn a plain outfit into a head turner?
A plain outfit is the perfect canvas for a necklace and a purse. A plain outfit lets the beautiful colors Mother Nature puts into her gemstones stand out and bring focus to a woman's face. And since every woman carries a purse, why not make that something unique and special as well?
How do you keep your jewelry and accessories looking new?
There are different tricks to keeping your jewelry looking new. First, you can go to jewelry supply stores such as Lonnie's on Main Street in Mesa and buy different polishing clothes called "Sunshine" cloths. These are wonderful for keeping any metal clean of tarnish. Do not use these on pearls. Pearls are very sensitive stones. You can also buy ultrasonic cleaners, that use one of two kinds of liquid cleaners, depending on the type of stone involved in the jewelry. There are also home cleaning tips: toothpaste will clean sterling silver; if you have copper jewelry, once you polish it, you can coat it with Johnson's paste wax or Turtle wax, buff it, and the wax will keep the the copper from tarnshing. Just be sure to keep fingerprints or oils from getting back onto the copper as you are coating the copper with the wax, as these spots will tarnish under the wax coating.
What is the biggest trend in fashion accessories you currently see?
This spring the monocromatic look is still popular, but instead of black, the colors are beige, white, and gray. I've noticed shell accessories are making a come back because they contain the colors that are popular in this spring's palette. Myself personally, I would use these colors to show off a fantastic colorful piece of semi-precious gemstone jewelry.
What accessory do you recommend every woman should add to her wardrobe this spring?
I would say a beautiful strand of pearls. I've noticed that many designers are returning to the very classic feminine lines of the 60's/Jackie O era, and nothing says classic like pearls. And I wouldn't even stay limited to white pearls. Black pearls are wonderful, and of course, as I stated earlier, pearls are died every color in the rainbow and come in every size and shape.
Interviewed on 2006-02-02