Monday, October 26, 2009

New house, new studio, new angst, same old Red...

Hi All:

Ok, so I'm moved into my new house and my new studio....which is yay. Here are some pics of the new place:

Spent a month between Sept. and Oct. doing nonstop shows and now am in the midst of a month-long break. Well, not really a break I am working frantically on my websites, taking pics of new things, working on new designs and items for Christmas.

I have yet another Fall show this coming weekend - which is also Halloween, and hubby and I spent the better part of yesterday carving truly ambitious pumpkins - of which are pictured below.

Prepping for what looks to be a particularly harsh winter this year, another month of nonstop shows awaits me along with shoveling our massive driveway and corner lot by myself....yikes. Hello, snowblower. I am going to reward all my hard work with a visit home for the Christmas holiday to California.

Let's see, here is a preview of new designs:

Cleopatra Necklace

Amber Crystal Bangle

Harlequin Cloisonne Necklace

Ok, that's all for now folks - gotta get back to it.

-Leah :-)

Friday, September 11, 2009

I swear I haven't dropped off the face of the Earth!

Hi All:

You few, completely awesome people... that read my random thoughts, musings and rants. I know I have neglected you all shamelessly - and should be flogged for it. But, I swear I have missed you terribly and will endeavor to keep more up to date on this.

I haven't been idle in my silence - here is a quick recap of the last couple months:

I moved.
I am still unpacking.
I finally finished my degree.
I am frantically working on new designs and collections for Fall/Winter and have a sampling for you:

As always - any and all feedback is welcome and appreciated.

Leah :-)

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Labels, labels, labels....

Hi all:

Yeah, that title may seem to imply that I am obsessed with design labels...which those of you that have actually met me in person know is patently untrue. I like matter if it cost a buck or many many many bucks...haha. Anyway, this week was spent immersing myself in logos, labels, packaging, etc for both Wind Dancer and Reyna Red.

Matt (awesome older brother) helped by finishing the new logo for Wind Dancer so I then could order new earring cards and business cards...but the rest of my packaging I do myself with a little Photoshop and design magic...and a trip to Office Max for Avery labels by the truckload.

I even have wee shopping bags with the logos now...and I managed to create comb cards myself with a little luck, MS Word, my lovely printer and blank index cards. Now I have to price everything for the show....looks like I added another here in Bellevue for June 6-7 but am still confirming that with the organizers.

Oi, back to work...just 2 short weeks to pull this all together.

P.S. I had a brilliant flash of a new designs for upcoming Wind Dancer collection...Amulets for 2009...look for previews hopefully next week

-Leah :-)

Monday, May 11, 2009

New products and new combined logo!

Hi All -
I posted the first round of new products on Etsy - Bridal hair combs! Now these combs are not just for brides, but for anyone that likes pretty sparkly things in their hair. Have just a few up so far - but have a bunch of different styles and sizes check back for those.

Here's the handy dandy link to the collection:

Here are a few pics:





And my brother finally finished up my new logo for Wind Dancer, a little more edge a little less little old lady...hahah, only kidding. Anyway, the ex helped out with the change to my Etsy banner so that is all done. Double sided business cards have been ordered and FedEx is holding my new displays captive again....still trying to figure out how to connect to the internet so I can take credit cards at upcoming shows using my cell phone, think a trip to AT&T is in order.'s the new banner.

And that's it...back to creating! More new stuff tomorrow and throughout the week.
Leah :-)

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

New designs up and coming...

Hi All:

Busily working on new designs since a couple of shows coming up with my favorite time of year...Wedding season. haha.

Been ordering up a storm - needed new business cards (double sided for both lines), rubber stamps and bags for packaging, new displays because after 4 moves over the years, my old ones are really battered.

Ordered tons of new supplies type stuff: chain, wire, lovely gemstones, etc....had to do something besides homework to keep myself from going stark raving since pretty much flat on my back in pain. Pulled something, not sure what...and have been working on earrings for short bursts throughout the day.

Have posted several new things to Etsy:

Some are below - check them out.

-Leah :-)

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Wind Dancer is sponsoring a giveaway!

Hi all -

I am sponsoring my first giveaway - check out Cafe Handmade, cool virtual craft fair and giveaway of delicious things from talented artists around the globe.

Go here to enter to WIN - a pretty pair of earrings specially designed for this event. OOAK!

Winner will be selected on May 10th.

-Leah :-)

Friday, May 1, 2009

Summits of Awesome on Etsy

Hi All -

I awoke with anticipation today, and ran into my studio to log onto the computer...because it's the beginning of Etsy's Summits of Awesome. Can I get a woohoo? WOO HOO! Oh yeah! A couple days of summits on everything from Branding to promotions, and social networking sites, a shop critique in there too.

So here's what's on the agenda for the next couple of days as your favorite redheaded jewelry designer seeks to mind meld with all those lovely crafty people at Etsy to help bring Wind Dancer and Reyna Red to the next level.

Fri - 10:30am was the Networking thru Social Networking sites. This was a truly invaluable session, lots of get resources scribbled mad-bomber like on my steno pad next to the laptop.

Fri - 1:30pm Branding/Identity - how to differientiate myself from the thousand of other great jewelry artists...I mean yes, my mum thinks I'm special but how to make the internet community at large think this too?

Fri - 6pm - Critiques with the Sassy Team on Etsy - the mavens of cool, the harbingers of hotness if you sellers like me with suggestions on how to improve our shops and give other advice.

Sat. - 9am Product Lines - Learning to optimize product lines - what to offer and how to market those products effectively. So far my giant human billboard approach hasn't worked, although I have got some pervy comments along with phone numbers. Nice!

Sat. 1:30pm Selling Online - Tips to help sellers link and connect with potential customers in the great wide expanses of this lovely world called the Internet....without nudity and 900 numbers.

Sun. 10am - Craft Booth Display - How to present a fun and professional craft booth to draw the eye and steal customers from your neighbor (I'm only kidding!) But seriously...a craft booth display could be a very covert way to take over the world. uh oh...and there's my neurosis showing....quick, look over there!!

So anyway...that is my weekend in a nut shell. Well that and working on new luxury items for my Bridal collection....on the hunt for truely spectacular gold fill chain for a citrine and rock crystal necklace I am work on.

And now onto the abject begging portion of the blog post - Check out my amazing designs at

Leah :-)

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Ponderings while I sit here sorting gemstones...

Hi All -

So I've said those dreaded words to hubby again...."honey....can you pick me up some more bead boxes?" Yep...I think I may have a problem. I am currently sorting all the gemstone beads I got on my trip earlier this month. And I find that I have managed to purchase another 4 bead boxes worth. this rate I will soon grow out of my expanded space that I was so thrilled to have picked up a couple of weeks ago. Oh well...we all have our problems I guess. haha.

My birthday was a few days ago so Mum did what she always does...threw some moola my way which went to sterling findings and some more gemstones. Hubby just rolls his eyes comments necessary. Hey, the way I see it...he has his man cave and I have my studio. At least my space is organized. So there!

The countdown has begun for the end of my degree...just 3 more classes. Can I get a woohoo?!! Then I will have even more time to work on jewelry...which means I will more than likely go back to school for my Master's degree. I don't do well without 50 things to do at once.

So back I go to sorting and designing...more new stuff coming soon.

-Leah :-)

Monday, April 20, 2009

I found Mecca in New Mexico

Hi All -

So I'm back from my whirlwind tour of my inlaws across 4 states and 7 days...and have finally caught up with chores and sleep and generally schlebbiness. The trip itself was mostly uneventful, meeting the in-laws for the first time, cleaning out hubby's storage space, and a tiny bit of sightseeing.

But in New Mexico I found my new favorite place...a gemstone importer with amazing prices that is housed in a 7000 sq. foot warehouse. Bead strands of gemstones of all kinds dripping from the walls EVERYWHERE! I thought I'd died and gone to heaven. After an hour or so and several hundred dollars later...hubby and I went to dinner in Santa Fe.

So now I am home...spent the last couple days working on a paper for an international business class I am taking. So that's done and so I have tonight and part of tomorrow to work on pictures and new product.

Check out my Etsy at:

-Leah :-)

Sunday, April 5, 2009

The call of the open road...

Hi All -

I am off to a road trip in just a few days...I will try to update along the way with pics and stories of my travels.

My route takes me from Omaha to Tucson through Denver and Santa Fe and where ever else strikes my fancy. A wee vacation to visit the in-laws...woo hoo. I am excited to see if I can find some cool new beads along the way.

Went to a bead show here in town yesterday, hubby went along...he's such a good sport. Wow, the slowing economy working in my favor with supply costs...everyone offering low, low, low prices. Picked up some gorgeous micro-faceted crystal rondelles in a bunch of spring colors as well as some lovely briolettes and these amazing heated, banded agate curved links. In tones of reds, black, white, greens, yellows...they are awesome!

Can't wait to work with them. The next couple days are filled with picture taking of the new stuff I've made over the last week or so. So look at Etsy for that.


Saturday, March 28, 2009

A sudden abundance of free time....

Hi All:
So some of you may know that I was laid-off from my "real" job this week...exclamation of sympathy are appreciated, but I am really ok...

Looking at this as an opportunity to pour more time and energy into Wind Dancer and Reyna well as providing more study time for school, which I am so close to being finished with.

So far I have been a "woman of leisure" without a 9-5 job leash for a couple of days and I like it. I have taken the opportunity to cleanse the palette so to speak, by changing my studio/home office into a pure studio.

Big thanks go out to my understanding hubby who helped me move heavy furniture all over the room in different configurations before I found the one I like. And didn't complain at all....well not much. haha.

So here are pics of the new studio setup...soldering station, woo hoo...and the studio mascots (black and white cats in one of the pics)...

Leah :-)

The mascots - Munchkin (black) & Piglet (white).

Soldering station - yay!

More space - means more work done.

See, I am working...well, when I am not blogging.

Monday, March 23, 2009

The urge to hug the FedEx guy has passed...

Hi All:
So Friday came with some lovely surprises in the shape of new gemstone briolettes, my new light tent (for when Mother Nature can't seem to give me natural light to work with), and my new and extremely large soldering board (because setting fire to my new design tables would be bad). With all those new cool things to play with... Whew!

Boy, was this a busy weekend. Highly productive too....cranked out about 20 new pieces that I am frantically trying to add to Etsy as we speak.

Here are a couple in the meantime - check back for more as the day rolls on.

-Leah :-)

Thursday, March 19, 2009

The armoured car of shipping cartons...

Hi All:

Jeez...I may actually get in the habit of posting every day. haha, maybe not...we'll see. Anyway, had a small noteworthy thing happen just a short while ago, I got a shipment from a new supplier in India.

They were recommended to me by a business contact, much better prices on semi-precious briolettes, and way more selection than stateside. So I gave them a try for some mixed faceted chalcedony, rose quartz, carnelian and these amazing elongated navy blue chalcedony faceted spikes.

So the doorbell rings this morning, and it's the mailman with a delivery confirmation to biggee. He has a bunch of stuff for me and hubby, and one of the things is a strange looking little box. So I sign and take everything inside. The strange little box is from this new supplier and it is about 4 inches by 5 inches and quite heavy...I didn't think I ordered that much.

Anyway, it was the amoured car of shipping cartons. Once I got through all the protective layers, I found a solid aluminum box that was wrapped in bubble wrap, newspaper and then sewn into cheesecloth and sealing wax was on all the corners and seams. Once inside the box, more newspaper and bubblewrap covering a 3.5 inch by 3.5 inch bag with my gems in them.

Holy there is sealing wax everywhere. Oh well...almost the weekend...

Still have insomnia, so last night's project until 3am was a sterling silver collar with light blue chalcedony faceted drops and smoky quartz, with earrings to match.

Insomnia bites, but at least I have been productive. New pics will have to wait until this weekend probably.

As always check out my Etsy store -

-Leah :-)

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Miles past O'Dark Hundred Jewelry making...

Hi All:

So, first off a little background...I am an insomniac. So there are times that I am up - mind whirling with a host of different things other than sleepiness - until the wee, and sometimes beyond wee hours of the morning. These insomniac jags come and go and vary in length but usually follow the need to get work done that I don't seem to have time for during daylight or even normal evening hours.

And so following such an insomniac episode last night - I tend to babble more than usual, so just hang in there with me...I have a point.

What was my point, again? Oh yeah! So I was up until about 3am-ish, snuggled under a black blanket I made into a snuggie without any stitches, pliers in hand, watching a Gilmore Girls marathon. I spent an hour or so hand-wrapping links to make pair of truly delicious earrings. Think dripping gems in yellows, greens and corals....there you go.

Have to take pics and post those bad girls up here...but when you are up till past O'dark hundred and then still have your eyes pop open at 745am every morning like annoying sadistic doesn't make for mid-morning motivation to take pictures.

And since now - my babbling has reached epic proportions...I need a nap.

-Leah :-)

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Prom/Wedding season means...more Etsy listings!

Hi all:

I have been working on new stuff...a lot more slowly than usual I have a working day scheduled for Saturday - just me, good tunes, bare feet and a ton of work in the studio.

Here are pics of what I have finished so far...more upcoming for my Bridal/Wedding/Prom collection. So check back -

I love feedback - so feel free to leave some.

-Leah :-)

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Marathon Shopping

Hi All:

So my lovely sleep in till noon plans were thwarted at about 8am by a tiny cat whimpering at the door. Hubby slept through it...I wish I wish. So stumbled out of bed to wake up to a couple of episodes of Gilmore Girls until hubby made the good coffee, and plans to venture out began to take shape.

The Cost Plus' in Omaha are closing down and I have reaping the benefits of deep discounts and the selling of really cool fixtures for my studio...and today was no different. We walked into a nearly empty big box store to 80% off...yay! So a couple more small fixtures, a case of assorted wines (yay), exotic spices and chocolate for hubby, and some background/displays for pic taking. This was followed by lunch and onto Borders to spend ridiculous amounts of money on reference materials. Then it was onto Menards for random hardware schtuff...steel wool, cleaners, Rouge, wood block. Lusted after a bench vise...and more rotary tool ooo engraver....

Then the final stop for brass and steel ball chain and connectors for an idea I had for a new line of cute earrings. Started a new brass bracelet out of retaining rings....but then couldn't get motivated to finish. I was able to finish 2 prom/wedding sets on new pics of those tomorrow.

And so now winding down....
-Leah :-)

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

New studio set-up...I need a 12-step program

Hi All:
I know I know...I keep posting pics of my studio, and keep re-organizing it.

I have established that I need a 12-step program...and my hubby agrees.

So here I go is welcome. Love the new setup and wish I had more than half a room.

-Leah :-)

Friday, February 20, 2009

Spring Cleaning - BOGO Sale!

Hi All:

Wow, two posts in as many days....probably don't want to get used to that though. haha. Anyway...just stopping by briefly to shamelessly plug my Clearance BOGO sale going on now in my Etsy store.

All Clearance items are *Buy 1 get 1 Free* So come and shop early for best selection - more items being added soon. Sale will continue until my Clearance section is picked clean...Spring cleaning for me means deals for you.

Remember you still get 10% discount on regularily priced merchandise if you put "Blogspot" in the notes to seller.

-Leah :-)

Thursday, February 19, 2009

I am a Twit and joined a Cult apparently...

Hi All:

And if that title doesn't get you nothing will. I bet ya'll clicked in here expecting to hear some Jerry Springer-esque story about crazy baby daddy drama and whatnot...sorry to disappoint you.

Just checking in with my somewhat limited readership to give a small update on my goings on. I set up a Twitter account and have apparently already gotten myself a follower. Woohoo. And I discovered that my brother Twitters randomly from in front of a coffee shop. haha

So feel free to "follow" me on Twitter - wddesigns is my handle.

I also joined the Craft Cult ( - which is an awesome way to advertise without breaking the bank - watching visits and views go up on my Etsy -

Now for some shameless begging for sales - I can plead too if you so desire...but let's try the discount approach first to save my knees.

I'm offering a 10% off discount to anyone that purchases from my Etsy store and put in the notes to Seller "blogspot".

-Leah :-)

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Contradictions taking shape...

Hi All:

My Contradictions collection is taking shape...working on more new stuff to be posted this weekend, so look for that.

Really liking different hammered techniques on copper and steel along with deeply faceted gemstones, such an element of surprise that is very modern and sleek...with just a hint of the 30's thrown in.

Will post more soon...


Sunday, February 1, 2009

Busy Busy Bee....

Hi All:

I have not been idle - just finished posting some new items on Etsy today. And business seems to be picking up a bit this month which is encouraging after a bit of a slow holiday season.

New collection in the works for Reyna Red - Contradictions.

Contradictions are about the contrast between the expected and unexpected. Life is about textures and contradictions: hard and soft, rough and smooth, shiny and dull...and it's the contrast that really makes something interesting. This collection combines textures and contrasts metals with faceted and unfaceted stones for beautiful depth and strinkingly unique art pieces.

Here are some pics of new things...check out the rest on Etsy at:

Friday, January 16, 2009

Studio pictures - at long last

Hi all:
I've been a bad girl and haven't been blogging much. School work is keeping me pretty busy as I finish up my degree. Down to the last few classes now, the end is in sight.

I thought in the interim from making new things...I would post pics of my new prettier and way more organized studio.

Leah :-)

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Holiday happenings...

Hi All:

I've been lax in writing over the holidays, but I have not been idle...I promise. I didn't get nearly as much work done on my new lines as I'd originally planned...caught up as I did in re-organizing my space. Which it needed....BADLY. We're in military housing which is short on space and really short on storage, so I created my own. And with all the building, took most of one whole weekend. Combine with that the disaster area that followed in the midst of organzing boxes of schtuff (man, do I have a lot of craft stuff)...and the holidays were over in the blink of an eye.

Still downloading pics of the finished room(at least for the time being, although I am dreaming of a new design table...that to come later) and will post those later this evening.

My husband and I are house hunting too so hopefully my days of having to double duty my office (I work from home) and my studio are numbered. Ah, wouldn't that be nice?

And my poor husband will hopefully get a man cave of his own and I will be able to actually see into the guest room again.

haha, anyway...that is the news from my little corner of the universe. But more tidbit...I am being featured in Southern Belle's blog on Monday, January 12th as a featured artist. So that's really cool. Etsy has been such a great community...I'm really enjoying it. So check out Southern Belle at

Happy New Year everyone!
Leah :-)