Archives

Maker Stories

Takeoffs and Landings: A Conversation with Jerry Moran

August 15, 2017

Although we know him best for his handcrafted accessories, Colorado creator Jerry Moran is much more than just a jeweler. For much of his adult life, in fact, Jerry was a self-described “ordinary guy” working in the aerospace industry, getting up close and personal with planes—not necklaces—on an everyday basis. Now Jerry pays tribute to his beloved aircraft by crafting his goods from their disused parts, giving retired planes otherwise primed for destruction an opportunity to brighten the lives of jewelry enthusiasts and aircraft aficionados alike.

To celebrate the induction of a selection of Jerry’s wares into our growing assortment, we engaged him and his wife, Mary, in a brief back-and-forth, digging deeper into the details of what drives him to create (and how he got started on jewelry in the first place). Read on for more on Jerry’s fascinating background, including an account of the pair of earrings that started it all, plus a few words of wisdom courtesy of—surprise—rugby.

Continue Reading…

Gift Guides

Our Guide to 20th Anniversary Gifts: Three Cheers for China

August 14, 2017

Give us a two! Give us a zero! What’s that? Two-zero, otherwise known as 20! Congrats on making it through two decades of partnership, complete with highs and lows. How, according to tradition, should we celebrate your 20th anniversary? With gifts made from china, of course. We scoured the depths of UncommonGoods for our finest porcelain offerings, coming up with ten favorites that cover a good chunk of ground, from geometric serving sets to Zen-inspired decor. Read on for our top picks, plus one item featuring this year’s modern material, platinum.

Continue Reading…

Gift Guides

Our Guide to 15th Anniversary Gifts: Crystal Clear

August 10, 2017

 

We’ve tried to be as faithful as we can so far to the original intent of the traditional list, but with the 15th anniversary, it’s proven just a tiny bit tough. Though the type of crystal you’re really supposed to look for this year is crystal glass, otherwise known as lead glass (eek!), we’ve stretched the truth a little and included all kinds of crystals in our 15th anniversary gift guide, from quartz to Himalayan pink salt. Read on for our top ten crystalline picks, including jewelry, mugs, and soaps, plus one watch for our modern crew.

Continue Reading…

Maker Stories

Meet Lee Ann Jones, Winner of the 2017 JCK Tucson Design Challenge

August 9, 2017

Photo by Josh Huskin

Back in February, UncommonGoods partnered with jewelry industry authority JCK on the second annual JCK Tucson design challenge, pitting emerging jewelry designers against one another in (fun, friendly) competition. After much deliberation, our panel of judges—which included UncommonGoods Jewelry Buyer Sharon Hitchcock and Paula Lee, Accessories Editor for O, the Oprah Magazine—settled upon a winner whose designs embodied the spirit of creativity and fine craftsmanship we value here at UG. Jewelry lovers, meet Lee Ann Jones, winner of the 2017 design challenge and founder of the Lee Jones Collection.

Lee Ann’s winning design.

A former lawyer turned full-time jewelry designer based in San Antonio, Texas, Lee Ann blew us away with her Diamond Fairy Dust Necklace. (Trust us, there’s been a whole lot of ooh-ing and ahh-ing over her samples here at the office.) Masterfully crafted from 14k gold, Lee Ann’s winning adjustable necklace incorporates two tiny cylinders “dusted” with diamonds, one hidden discreetly at the nape of the neck. Elegant, subtle, and—best of all—sparkly, Lee Ann’s winning piece is now available for purchase at UncommonGoods, along with her equally stunning Double Heart Diamond Necklace, which features diamond-studded hearts in place of her winning work’s cylinders.

To celebrate her win and welcome her to the UncommonGoods family, we spoke with Lee Ann about her history as a jewelry designer, what inspires her, and more. Read on for her answers to our questions, and—as a bonus—some pictures of her very cute dog.

Continue Reading…

Maker Stories

This Just In-spiration: Meet Kelly Decker

August 7, 2017

There’s something undeniably satisfying about uncovering a bit of buried treasure, even if that only means digging up a hunk of broken dinnerware in your backyard. Thanks to Kelly Decker, though, whose Hidden Crystal Candles are now available in three scents at UncommonGoods, you don’t even have to get your hands dirty anymore. All you need to unearth a special treat is one of her long-lasting candles made from 100% American-grown soy wax (hand-poured by the maker in California), which melt down over the course of their 5o hour burn time to reveal one of three hidden stones. Each stone has its own special meaning: rose quartz, symbolizing love; moonstone, signifying good luck; or amethyst, representing spiritual growth and healing.

Here at UncommonGoods, we like to take the time to welcome our newest makers to the fold, and Kelly is no exception. Read on to learn a bit more about what inspires her—and where she keeps her own special crystals, other than tucked inside candles, of course.

Continue Reading…

Gift Guides

Our Guide to 10th Anniversary Gifts: In Your Elements (Tin and Aluminum)

August 4, 2017

Congratulations! Together, the two of you have weathered a decade, and it’s time to celebrate in style. This year, the traditional list gets a little elemental, highlighting two oft-overlooked metals, tin and aluminum. But don’t settle for a roll of foil or a DVD copy of 1996 Kevin Costner rom-com Tin Cup—have a look at our top ten picks to celebrate your ten years instead, and discover a world of metallic goodies, from reclaimed cookbook stands to matching bracelets to centuries-old games redesigned. And worry not, modern friends; we haven’t forgotten you. With diamond jewelry your designated gift, you’re bringing the bling for the first time this year—and our pick will help you get a little personal, too.

Continue Reading…

Gift Guides

Our Guide to Ninth Anniversary Gifts: A-Tisket, A-Tasket, A Woven Wicker Basket

August 1, 2017

Ah, year nine—merely 12 months away from year 10! It’s a milestone in its own right, and one you deserve to celebrate in style. Tradition dictates that willow, the material most often used to craft wicker, is the gift to give for your ninth anniversary, but… well… we don’t sell a lot of willow, and we fudged it a little. Luckily, we’ve got plenty of woven wares on offer, from handcrafted baskets that symbolize friendship to edamame grow kits that come with wicker bowls to bread-warming blankets that aren’t made of wicker at all, but sure do look like it. Read on for our top ten willow-inspired picks, plus, as always, one modern gift, this time a reprise of (vegan) leather.

Continue Reading…

Gift Guides

Our Guide to Eighth Anniversary Gifts: From Stoneware to Sculpted Bronze

July 30, 2017

As you inch ever closer to your tenth anniversary, the gifts you’re giving start to seem a little more permanent. From delicate paper and cotton wares in years one and two, you’ve graduated to materials with some heft, at least on the traditional side of things. Consider the options with which you’re presented to honor your eighth anniversary. Bronze? Pretty sturdy. Pottery? Breakable, sure, but only if you make a grave mistake and, say, trip and fall while carrying your prized llama mug—otherwise, the stuff tends to stand up pretty well. Modernists, meanwhile, are faced with linen and lace for their eighth anniversary—both fine materials that speak to the strength of your bond. Read on for ten of our most uncommon takes on both bronze and pottery, from virtually indestructible “candles” to nostalgic handmade keepsakes, plus: one heartfelt lacy find.

Continue Reading…

Pin It on Pinterest