Comments of the Week

September 16, 2011

It’s the second and final week of our Jewelry Design Challenge – we’ve shared 35 semifinal submissions on our community voting app, and you’ve shared your opinions on each piece of unique jewelry!  Here are some of our favorite comments.

Elinore and Amanda both love the nerdy style of Amanda Preske’s Recycled Circuit Board Cufflinks.  Perhaps they’re thinking of pairing it with our Geek Wrist Watch!

Elyse’s comment on the M2_RB Necklaces in the community voting app responds to some of the concerns of other voters. What do you think?

Ellinore was a concerned by the shape of Kathleen DiResta’s Modern Handmade Jewelry

While Joseph and Arthur stand behind the comfort and ease of wear of Kat’s designs. The interlocking rings can be worn alone or individually, and are sold as a set of two.

Corinne Saffell thinks her Dreamcatcher Necklace works well as a statement piece, and our voter Andrea agrees.  We’re glad Andrea associates “one of a kind, unique, and beautifully designed” jewelry with UncommonGoods!

Let us know which uncommon jewelry designs you love by this Monday, September 19.  The top 5 vote-getting submissions will be evaluated by our panel of guest judges, who will choose the winning design.  And remember, you can sign up to be notified if a piece you love is picked!

Maker Stories

This Just In: Embroidered Pouches

September 15, 2011

For more than a decade artist Jenny Krauss has been designing beautiful embroidered fashion accessories. During this time, she’s also enlisted the help of exceptionally talented South American artisans.

Although the women Jenny works with are skilled craftspeople, many had previously been unable to find sustainable income due to economic circumstances in their country, Peru. By embroidering bags, belts, and other accessories under fair trade guidelines, these women are now able to achieve financial stability.

Jenny’s latest creations, the flowers and circles pouches, were designed with the help of this artisan group. The artisans collaborated on the style and patterns, while Jenny requested certain colorways and oversaw the process.

Continue Reading…

The Uncommon Life

Say What?

September 14, 2011

We all screw up. But men do it more. Well, at least they’re the ones saying “sorry” all the time. Copywriter Nina Mozes offers tips for guys to give that apology a ring of sincerity.

So guys, here are a few tricks to imbue your present apology with staying power for as long as it takes you to mess it up again.

This phrase is universally recognizable:
“I don’t want you to do the dishes, I want you to want to do the dishes,” she said.

And then the guy says, “Who wants to do the dishes?!”
And then the girl says, “That’s not the point! Tonight you’re sleeping on the couch!”
And then the guy says, “Baby I’m sorry. Do I still have to sleep on the couch?”

OK, maybe that’s just rough dialogue from the movie The Breakup, but don’t tell me you don’t recognize it from real life.

Now here’s where Vince Vaughn went wrong: he tried to apologize without having any idea what he might or should be sorry for.

That’s step 1:
If you don’t know why you’re sorry, either:
a. Pretend you do, or

Pick a line to write in the card:
a. I see how my actions hurt you, and I’m very sorry.
b. You’re so totally crazy, but I’ve come around to your irrationality and apologize for triggering it.

Vince should have taken responsibility for his carelessness and pledged to do better in the future.

In one of these ways, Step 2:
a. I could have handled the situation better, and from here on out I plan to be thoughtful of your needs and to think about the ramifications of my decisions.
b. It’s totally your fault, but now I know what pisses you off and there is no way I’m going to let you unleash that wrath again.

And of course, no apology is successful without an attempt to buy someone’s love.

Like buying lingerie, here’s a gift for her that’s really for you:
My Phone is Off for You Handkerchief

Nothing says “I’m cool with you moving in now” like a place to put her toothbrush:
Black Nickel Bathroom Holders

A stamp that literally says “I apologize” doesn’t replace the card, but it sure helps says “I’m thinking ahead to my future mistakes and saying sorry for my past ones.”
I Sincerely Apologize Message Stamp

Next time just don’t screw up in the first place.


Comments of the Week

September 10, 2011

Each week we share a few of our favorite comments from our community voting app here on our blog. This week’s comment selection is special, since our app is chalk-full of great jewelry designs from our Uncommon Jewelry Design Challenge!

Here’s what our voters are saying so far!

Glad you love Denise Harrison’s Beer Speak Jewelry, Sarah! I know what you mean. I could go for a refreshing summer ale right about now.

Continue Reading…

Maker Stories

Beauty in Boulders

September 9, 2011

New York City designer Anna Rabinowicz studied Industrial Design as an undergrad, went on to earn an MFA in Design and an MS in Engineering from the Product Design Program of Stanford University, and has a background in technology and medical device design. Of course, with this high-tech, industrial background, it only made sense that Anna’s next step was to start working with multimillion-year-old stones.

Anna works with agate, an exceptionally strong mineral formed from cooled lava as it changes over millions of years. The volcanic rocks look average from the outside, but crack them open, and you’ll see something extraordinary–beautiful patterns of color created by water rising and falling within the bubbles in the rock over time.

The stunning stone has been incorporated into jewelry for centuries, worn and treasured to symbolize truth and inner beauty. Now, in this age of technology, Anna uses her knowledge of modern design and production to bring the age-old talisman to a new generation. Her Agate Drop Necklace is a way to own millions of years of natural history for only $120.

Continue Reading…

The Uncommon Life

Say What?

September 8, 2011

Know a new or returning student? Copywriter Nina Mozes offers tips for how to congratulate that special someone who’s entering that bright world of homework, tests and gym class.

Having an end-of-summer bummer?

Chin up, the kids are going back to school! Time to CELEBRATE. And just pretend like you’re excited for their new milestone in education.

So. How do you say: I know you’re dreading going back to school, but I’ve been looking forward to this for months?

Here are a few ideas:

I know you needed school supplies, so surprise! Christmas is in September this year.

I signed you up for after-school activities. That way you never have to come home! It’s going to be a great year.

If you get suspended, mommy’s gonna have to quit her day drinking and that will make her very upset.

You’re gonna do great! Just don’t screw it up.

It’s a great year to make friends. And if you don’t – no worries, kids your age suck anyways.

Drive the point home with the wisdom of intellectuals:

Mark Twain: “I have never let my schooling interfere with my education.”
Sure, but considering that Twain couldn’t hold onto his finances, I’m sure he regrets not taking an accounting class.

Oscar Wilde: “Education is an admirable thing, but it is well to remember from time to time that nothing that is worth knowing can be taught.”
That is so true – what’s that? You don’t know who Oscar Wilde is? Get on that bus.

And for the serious students:

Ronald Reagan: “But there are advantages to being elected President. The day after I was elected, I had my high school grades classified Top Secret.”
You work hard enough, you do enough things right, you’ll get to pretend like your mistakes never happened. Shoot for the stars, kid.

Send them off ready to carpe diem. …That means seize the day. Jeez, doesn’t anyone take Latin anymore?

Want to send them off with more than just kind words? Check out these great gifts for students.

The Very Best Totally Wrong Test Answers

4 Function Ruler Pen

Revolver Journals

Gift Guides

Last Days of Summer

September 7, 2011

The sun is still shining, the AC is still on, and we might be able squeeze in at least one more trip to the beach. No matter how you long you try to hold on to the lazy days of summer, it’s time to admit that the season is coming to a close. But don’t worry, before back to school bells ring and leaves start turning, there’s still time to have a little fun with these clever toys and activities for kids.

Continue Reading…

Design, The Uncommon Life

Naughty or Nice?

September 3, 2011

Ciara said: “These are HILARIOUS! Perfect for my little brother WHO SPIT GUM IN MY HAIR!!!!!”

These Little Lumps of Coal are a cute way to get back at someone who has been picking on you, without being mean. Made from organic cotton, the squeezable little lumps are much cleaner than the real deal.

Do you have a little brother who deserves a lump of coal in his stocking? Does your little one need a reminder that Santa knows whether they’ve been naughty or nice? Visit our community voting app and tell us whether these lively lumps should join our lineup before the holidays!

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