Designer Spotlight: Jewelry Studio of Wellfleet

I spend a good portion of the summer on the Outer Cape. There’s a lot of good here—beaches, oysters, artists—but not a lot in the way of good shopping. Nantucket it’s not. There are a few treasures though, including the Jewelry Studio of Wellfleet, owned by the very lovely local artisan Jesse Horowtiz. (I featured her sister Neile Horowitz’s Cape Cod silhouette necklaces in the Boston Globe this time last year.)

The shop, a charming green clapboard building in “downtown” Wellfleet, a former artist’s studio, showcases the work of about a dozen artisans of Cape Cod jewelry. Jesse Horowtiz’s pieces, which she hand forges, hammers, and casts (from real life treasures found on the flats) in the on site  studio, includes representational tokens of area beaches as well as more abstract but still sea-inspired works. Lyrical and beautiful, never kitschy.

Stop in if you’re out that way and if not, Horowitz has a few pieces of her Cape Cod jewelry available in her Etsy shop.


Jewelry Studio of Wellfleet, Cape Cod


Horseshoe Crab Pendant Necklace


Double Sprial Wave Bracelet


Wave Ring with Diamond


Gold Oyster Shell Stud Earrings


Crystal Necklaces


Cape Cod jewelry designer Jesse Horowitz


Cape Cod Necklaces by Neile Horowitz


The Studio at the Jewelry Studio of Wellfleet


I love the authentic, original plywood wall in in the studio.


Jewelry-making tools.



Jewelry designer Jesse Horowitz in action in her studio.


Trinkets on the work table.


Cast clam shell pendant  in progress.


Assorted stones and such waiting to be made into jewelry.


Shell cast in gold. I think she should sell these as individual talismans.


My special order “BlackFish” necklace designed by Neile Horowitz.


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Designer Spotlight: Erin Sullivan Objects

An email about Erin Sullivan Objects, a design line I had never heard of, popped into my in box a week or two ago. I scrolled through the images and immediately clicked for more. The pieces are stunning.

Erin Sullivan is a New York-based artist-designer who works primarily in bronze, creating objets d’art and accent furniture. The allure of bronze transpired through her interest in sculpture and intaglio printmaking while attending Sarah Lawrence College. She found herself more drawn to plate textures created through the acid process than the final printed paper. Sullivan first created  jewelry. Then her pieces grew in scale, to jewel-like objects and furniture.

Formally trained in classic sculpture, painting and drawing, Sullivan approaches her work as an artist more than as an industrial designer. Once her idea is on paper, Sullivan either sculpts a model using wax reproductions created from a natural object, or creates a three-dimensional rendering and rapid prototype. A mold of the final model follows, from which a duplicate wax positive is produced.

Once this wax is “chased” or reworked, with great attention paid to detail, “gates” or wax rods are attached to create channels for the molten bronze to travel through. The whole structure is then dipped, poured, devested, sand-blasted, welded, chased, re-detailed, polished and patinated. Depending on the size of the piece, the process can take three months from start to finish.

The Erin Sullivan Objects collection debuted about a year ago and includes 15 home furnishings and decor objects that are a cross between beautiful sculpture and functional interior furnishings. Each piece is a study of natural, beauty, sensual, spiritual and absolutely original. Sullivan is inspired by her world travels and interactions with indigenous cultures and rituals.



The design of these hooks is rooted in the ancient belief that an animal’s strength was concentrated in his horns. Such horns were once were used on the headdresses of kings as a symbol of power. Available in five sizes in steel, brass, and bronze.


Hex Table

Twenty-six white-lacquered hexagonal cells with polished brass honeycombs collide at three levels to form this coffee table.


Detail of Hex Table

Materials: Lacquer, polished brass, quartz crystal, and lucite.


Mushroom Shelves

A linear interpretation of natural organisms, these decorative bronze mushroom shelves evoke themes of nourishment, virility, and immortality.


Turtle Skull

As a collector, Sullivan’s inspiration can be traced to her many personal finds, including barnacles, feathers, and beetles. This sterling silver and bronze turtle, the scarab, and feather is a unique piece that reflects feminine strength and creativity.


Crystal Charm Malas

This latest collection of large scale wall hanging Malas, are strung with twenty-four white-lacquered beads. They symbolizes the double harmony of the sky and the earth. Each is adorned with a transparent-crystal charm that captures luminosity and reflects purity.


Detail of Rhomb Mala

Materials: Lacquer beads, crystal charms, and hand spun bamboo rope.


Feather, Scarab, and Snake Malas

The feather reflects the doctrine of animism, reinforcing the belief that everything is alive. The scarab (beetle) is an ancient Egyptian symbol that speaks to transformation, rebirth, and regeneration. The snake charm evokes yogic tradition, symbolizing the life energy of root to spine to crown.


Scarab Mala

Materials: Bronze, South American mahogany, and leather cord.


Alligator Table/Stool

This bronze stool is sensual and tactile in its approach to the varied patterns and fabric-like quality of natural skins, and balances function and organic form.


Center: Snake Table/Stool

Cast in one piece, the bronze serpent stool is symbolic of bodily awareness, death and rebirth, and the spinal column.


Artist & designer Erin Sullivan seated next to her Bubble Side Table design.

This spring, the Sullivan debuted a collection of cast bronze and plated stainless steel hardware and is currently creating a new collection of sconces that will incorporate new-to-her materials, including crystal and brass.

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Shop good design at StyleCarrot partner Burke Decor >

Designer Spotlight: Visiting Sea Bags In Portland Maine

Earlier this summer I visited Portland, Maine on a press trip at the fantastic new (and first) boutique hotel  in Portland, The Press Hotel (blog post coming soon). During my free time wandering the streets of this charming seaport city I saw a sign down by the harbor for Sea Bags Maine.


I had forgotten that Sea Bags, which makes colorful totes from recycled sails and rope handles is based in Portland.


I wandered down a dusty wharf road replete with pick up trucks and fishy smells.


Abandoned building with boarded windows and peeling paint has a great patina.

The Sea Bags shop and studio at Custom House Wharf, Portland, Maine.


The front section of the building offers lots of different styles of Sea Bags for sale.


I find the rope handles a bit too clunky, but they’re sturdy and authentic.

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Behind the racks of Sea Bags I spied sewing machines and supplies.


Women at the machines were constructing Sea Bags from sailcloth.


And sewing sailcloth appliqué designs, like this sailboat.


You can trade used sails for bags through the  Sea Bags recycling program.


A metallic gold star Sea Bag design.


Industrial size spools of New England ropes in natural and navy.


And more ropes.


Bins of materials


More Sea Bags accessories.

Read about Sea Bags’ newest retail stores in Rockport, MA and Cape Cod in The Boston Globe.

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Shop Sea Bags at StyleCarrot partner J.Crew >

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Designer Spotlight: Lauren Wells

The Most Stylish Bostonians 2015 issue of The Boston Globe Magazine hit newsstands on Sunday. This year I interviewed two very stylish Bostonians, Philip Saul of men’s lifestyle boutique Sault New England in the South End, and event planner/stylist/gorgeous girl Lauren Wells.

Lauren, who started out in advertising following graduating from UMASS, launched Lauren Wells Events via Facebook in 2013, after planning her own wedding the year before. She grew up in a creative household with a party planner mom and handy dad, so it comes naturally to her. She is incredibly talented, with a fresh, modern aesthetic that mixes an earthy and boho vibe, infused with fun.

I’ve included a smattering of images from her events portfolio below. You should also check out Lauren Wells on Instagram (laurenswells), which is where I discovered her last summer. I’m more than a little obsessed. I kind of want to be her in my next life.















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Just In: Jessica Biales Jewelry Collection Inspired by Matisse Cut-Outs

This isn’t the first time I’ve written about Jessica Biales and it won’t be the last. (Check out Jessica Biales’ signet rings and slice rings, which have been featured in Harper’s Bazaar, Vogue, and the Wall Street Journal and were for a time sold at J.Crew). Jessica is a close friend of mine from college, where she was the most refined, urban girl I had ever met. So many years later and her style hasn’t waned.

Jessica’s latest collection is called “Scissors” and was inspired by the Matisse cut-outs in the exhibit at MoMA that ended earlier this month,  Henri Matisse: The Cut-Outs. You can see examples of Matisse’s cut-outs that influenced her new jewelry collection below. As for Matisse, here is a description paraphrased from the MoMA site about the advent of the cut-outs:

Starting in the late 1940s, Henri Matisse turned to paper cut with scissors as his primary medium, which resulted in a new form of art that came to be called a cut-out. Matisse would cut painted sheets into forms of varying shapes and sizes—from the vegetal to the abstract—which he then arranged into lively compositions. 

The Jessica Biales Scissors Collection, inspired by Matisse cut-outs, includes bracelets, rings, earrings, and necklaces in sterling silver and 18-karat gold.

New York Jewelry Designer Jessica Biales Debuts Matisse Inspired Scissor Collection