Monthly Archives: February 2008

Oscar swag.

For the last couple of years I have been getting contacted by a promotions company in Hollywood asking if I wanted to participate in their Oscar “Swag” event (or Grammy’s, VMA’s…etc)

This is basically where they rent out a hotel ballroom and fill it with booths from all different vendors who can then show their stuff to the various “VIP’s” invited to the event. The celebrities can then have their pick of anything they want for free.
What do the vendors get out of this?
They get to take a picture with the celebrity holding their product, and tell everyone that “so-and-so uses our stuff and isn’t that so cool?”

While I’ve never been to one of these things myself, I have a feeling that the VIP’s run less along the lines of Brad & Angelina and more along the lines of “that guy who played Brook Shields boyfriend on that series that got cancelled 10 years ago”.

No thanks.

Crazy is in the eye of the beholder.

I get lots of emails from jewelry manufacturers asking if I would consider carrying their jewelry on my website. Usually it’s just variations of the same tired designs I’ve been seeing for the last 20 years.

Once in awhile, I get something like this.

These pieces are from a company in Spain called Gandolfi.

While I can’t really picture carrying any of these things on our site (some of these things I can’t even imagine anyone actually WEARING), I think you’ll have to agree that they are unbelievably original, and even beautiful…in a crazy mad-scientist kind of way.



Remember these things?

A few years ago I had a request from a customer to make one of these for her in 14k gold.

Before making a model for it I thought I would check first to see if the local casting company I use already had one.
Here’s the conversation between me and a guy who works there:

Me: “Hey, do you have a mold for one of those things people used to put inside of 45’s?”

Him: “What?”

Me: “You know, the little plastic thingies that went inside of the little 45 records.”

Him: “The what inside of what?”

Me: “The things! The plastic discs that go inside of 45 rpm singles!!”

Him: “Dude, I was born in 1981, I have no idea what you’re talking about.”

That was a true life exchange and a perfect example of why I try not to talk to people who were born after I graduated high school.

Remember rock jewelry?
Back in the day bands used to have very distinctive logo’s, and lot’s of cheesy jewelry for their fans to wear!

Didn’t own any myself, but I promise if I can find my “Kiss ARMY” membership card I’ll post a photo.

Rock on.

The Little Blue Box

Today is Valentine’s Day. Woo-hoo.

I was thinking about a certain jewelry company that’s EXTREMELY well-known…the one with the blue box. Now, most people understand that you’re not just buying a piece of jewelry from this company, you’re buying the BRAND. The box with the bow is a big part of that.

Some people will automatically spend more than they normally would for a comparable piece of jewelry just because it comes from THAT company, in THAT box.

I know of some local jewelry stores in my area that like to model themselves after the “box company”. In their ads and in the puff-piece interviews they invariably do for the local media, they tout the fact that they are an “exclusive” jewelry company that caters to “discriminating” people. People who appreciate the finer things in life.

This bugs me. It shouldn’t. I understand that they want to attract people of means, people who will spend big bucks for big ticket items. People who WANT to shop somewhere that’s exclusive.
I get that.
But it still bugs me.
It just seems so…exclusive.

The Grammy’s…

My unsolicited thoughts on last night’s Grammy’s:

Prince is REALLY short.

Beyonce and Tina Turner both looked and sounded great!

Kanye West wears some kooky looking sunglasses.

I seriously DID NOT know Andy Williams was still alive.

Although I’ve always been partial to screaming rock music, I just can’t get into the Foo Fighters.
Dave Grohl always looks like he needs a shower.
I really like Amy Winehouse. I know she’s a trainwreck, but that’s the first time I’ve

seen her perform and I have to admit I was blown away.

She wears funky retro jewelry too, so what’s not to love?

Our name…

I hate our name.

There, I said it.

My parents came up with it over 25 years ago, so in a way I’m kind of married to it.
Here are my main problems with it:
1) It’s long.
2) It’s kind of fru fru sounding.
3) It’s a hard name for people to type into an web address bar. It’s easy to mis-spell, and I don’t own the url’s,,…etc.

A customer of ours DID make us a really nice logo a few years ago

which I really like. But I’m still not sold on the name.

If I came up with a really good new name and if the url was available for it I would probably make the change, but so far none have worked out.

So if you ever call here and I answer the phone “Personalized Boutique” but sound slightly disgusted, please don’t take it personally.
It’s probably not you.


OK, for those of you who DON’T watch “LOST” (the greatest television show ever), I guess I should clarify that the dude in my avatar right now is not actually me but actor Jorge Garcia who plays Hurley on LOST.

He’s the best! And LOST is the best.
You should really watch it. You should rent the first 3 seasons and obsessively watch them over and over.
The only bad thing about LOST is that there’s practically no jewelry featured on any of the characters. When someone from a TV show wears a piece of jewelry we make, that’s pretty cool:

1) SJP with her signature “Carrie necklace” on Sex and the City. The one that started it all!
2)Eve wearing the blinged-out “DivaStyle” necklace we created for the now-cancelled WB show EVE.
3)One of our classic name necklaces worn by Ana Ortiz, who plays Hilda on the hit ABC comedy Ugly Betty.

But, if one of the characters on LOST started wearing one of our pieces?
Well, let’s just say that in the words of Coffee Talks’ Linda Richman, I’d be all verklempt!

Come on Kate, you’re off the Island this season…get a nameplate!

Am I a jewelry snob?

I like to think I’m a pretty open-minded guy, but I’ve been wondering lately if I might not be a little elitist when it comes to the jewelry we sell.
For many years now, people have asked from time to time if we make multiple-finger rings, like this:

I’ve always said no, because
a. I think they would be hard to make fit right, and
b. I think they’re insane.

Recently, a very nice girl sent me a pic of MTV star Lauren Conrad and a friend both wearing very tasteful 2-finger rings:

“Could you make something like this?” she wanted to know.
Well, I guess I could, but why am I so hesitant?

I put off for many years making those giant 10k gold “door-knocker” name hoops:

but they’ve actually become great sellers for us, especially internationally.

Soooo, am I going to start carrying multi-finger rings?
Maybe. We’ll see.

I’ll tell you one thing though, I’m drawing the line at these things:

First post…

OK, can I just say right up front that I’m NOT a jewelry guy? I work with jewelry, I design jewelry, I make my living selling jewelry…but a jewelry guy?

No, sorry, not me.

I can appreciate it when we make something really cool for someone, like this:

but do I get excited by jewelry? Not usually. But a lot of people do.
Get excited.
And who am I to deny these people their excitement?

So when customers send me emails saying how much they love their name necklace or bracelet or belly ring or whatever it is we made for them, and how good it makes them feel when they wear it…it makes me feel great!

I STILL don’t get excited.

But I get it.