Artist Spotlight #3
Gardens Of The Sun
I've talked about this company before, but in an effort to really do them some justice I thought I would start at the beginning.
One of the decisions I made in my thirties was to start adulting. Okay, maybe not completely, but when it came to shoes, clothes, and jewelry, it was time to stop buying things that would wear out - were cheap - or didn't fit with who I am. While shoes and clothes were easy... I had to have something I could climb a tree in, hike a trail randomly, or go for an impromptu bike ride (dinosaurs on it was a plus, as was anything vintage or celestial), jewelry has never been something I've really paid attention to. For over 10 years I've worn one thing consistently, my skeleton key ring on my middle finger... that's it.
I had no idea that jewelry could be ethical or unethical, I simply knew I was allergic to nickel (like so much of the population) and that earrings from kiosks in malls weren't cutting it anymore.
Cue a work trip to San Fransisco, a gemstone booth, and a nice chat with a rock hounder to clue me in to what I should already know... I love rocks, and I love them raw and natural... so naturally gemstone jewelry would be my cup of tea. While sparkly things will sometimes catch my attention, I've been dragging rocks home since I was a kid. I've been fascinated with finding crystals, geodes, and pretty much anything nature made. I've also always been intrigued by artisans that can craft things from metal, and soon the two began to form into one love.
My journey to a good jewelry maker was far from over. Through friends I slowly started to follow interesting craftsman/ and women, late night searches of the internet yielded more winners, but it was a quick trip to Offbeat Bride that lead me to the discovery of Gardens Of The Sun and their beautiful work. I had been photographing a unique engagement ring, fully designed for the bride by a groom that felt like she created the moon and stars. So excited to marry her he could hardly wait for the artist to finish so he could get down on one knee. In an effort to do the ring justice I wanted to gather some inspiration (hence the perusing of Offbeat) on other people who had one of a kind rings. I found a perfect post about why people are opting away from the basic diamond and on to something special. The article went on to highlight creative jewelry makers who thought about sourcing their rocks ethically and Gardens Of The Sun was featured as having perfected this technique.
I visited their website for days, entranced by the beauty they create. I knew two things immediately, I had to share their stuff with Christina (who also loves unique jewelry) and that I was going to save up for a couple pieces to add to my new jewelry collection. I knew my collection would be small, so I wanted quality pieces over quantity.
The treat that followed my first purchase was nothing short of amazing. Here's my blog post on that experience.
With beautiful packaging, a note to me personally from my earrings, and so much care and thought put into the whole experience I began to save up to treat myself to a few more pieces I was eyeing.
This is a good place to mention again that this isn't an ad. They don't know I'm writing this, I simply had to share. If you have someone unique, special, a unicorn, in your life and you want to treat them to a one of a kind, thoughtful, and truly remarkable experience (because purchasing from this company is an experience) I can't recommend them enough. I get so many comments on my earrings and feel incredibly grateful for the three sets I now own.
Or if like me you want to take some time to treat yourself, because damn it you work hard and you are worth it, and if you don't know that about yourself no one will... I would go check them out today!
My last two earrings came together, both different types of Garnets (I'm a January baby) that I treasure so much.
Thanks to Christina, who took the pictures below when I made her sit with me while I unwrapped the package. She simply had to see for herself what fun it was just to get it in the mail.