Tomorrow, I will be at my one and only in-person event this year, the CCA Holiday Fair and Homecoming celebration!
In order to make room for new work, I will be retiring 4 jewelry collections, which will be marked 40% off. This Archive Sale is the deepest discount I've ever done, and once the remaining inventory is sold, it will be gone forever.
CCA HOLIDAY FAIR + HOMECOMING
Do you love a good petting zoo? What about food trucks galore and handmade goods from local artists and markers? If you do, don't miss out on CCA's Holiday Craft Fair and Homecoming event! We're throwing a street party on Hooper Street, so join us for a day of festivities, open studios, demos, and holiday shopping.
Date November 19th, Saturday
Time 11am - 4pm
Location 1111 8th St., San Francisco, CA 94107
Tickets Free and open to the public
October is coming to an end, which means that New York City Jewelry Week (NYCJW) is happening soon! Now in its third year, NYCJW takes place in the Big Apple every November.
The weeklong event, founded by curator Bella Neyman and marketing consultant JB Jones, celebrates jewelry in all its different forms through a wide variety of in-person and virtual programming. Programs include exhibitions, shopping experiences, first look at new designers, and lectures on everything jewelry.
One of NYCJW’s initiatives is Here We Are (HWA), which “highlights creators, and builds industry awareness around issues of diversity, inclusion, equity, representation, and allyship.” I was fortunate enough to be selected as a designer for the HWA x 1stDibs Marketplace.
This means that starting now, you can shop and collect my work on 1stDibs.com, a luxury e-commerce platform that connects collectors with well-designed jewelry, fine art, furniture, and fashion.
For the next few months, I will be adding more one-of-a-kind jewelry to my 1stDibs page, so don’t forget to visit and peruse the jewelry goodness!
It gives me such pleasure to finally announce the launch of not one, but two capsule collections! Both the Lumen Collection and the Lucid Collection will be revealed on November 5th, 9 am PST, in my online shop.
Subscribers to my newsletter will receive a special sale code the morning of the big reveal. If you haven’t signed up for my newsletter, now’s the time! Sign up by November 4th, 11:59 pm PST to receive the special code.
To sign up for my newsletter, simply click on the button below.
Last year, I took a few lapidary classes with the help of a scholarship from the Women’s Jewelry Association. Then I invested in equipment such as a trim saw and cabbing machine for stonecutting. For months, I immersed myself in cutting stone rough, grinding, polishing, and drilling. The fruition of my efforts are these two collections, which are made from hand-carved rock crystal and paired with recycled 14k gold when possible.
The Lumen Collection was actually ready to go in June, but I had to deal with health issues (hello tendonitis, back pain, and adult food allergy!), so everything had to be put on the back burner while I focused on getting better. The Lumen Collection with its soft curves finds inspiration in cold mornings and the luminous light of a new day.
On the other hand, the Lucid Collection is a reinterpretation of the acrylic jewelry I used to make in precious materials. This capsule collection pairs icy, faceted rock crystal with traceable brilliant diamonds. The gold bar piercing through reflects moments of clarity in your life, when you know exactly what to do, and you make singular decision that will change the course of your life.
Thank you for patiently waiting as I navigate the challenges and daily life of being a small business owner and independent jewelry designer and maker. I’m glad to have you along on this journey.
Don't forget to sign up for my newsletter by November 4th!
Jewelry Production Assistant Position at Olivia Shih
The jewelry studio of Olivia Shih is looking for a part-time jewelry production assistant to start in September or October. Based in North Oakland near Piedmont Avenue, this jewelry studio makes both bridge and fine jewelry and is dedicated to ethical metalsmithing.
Commensurate with experience
2 days a week
To apply for the position, please send your resume, portfolio of past work, and 2 references to firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information about the jewelry studio of Olivia Shih, visit www.oliviashih.com.
I've been quiet online for the past month or two, and that's because I've been designing a new collection call the Liquid Gold Fine Collection! You can catch a sneak peek of the collection at the JLP Virtual Showcase, an online event I've also been working on!
JLP stands for the Jewelry Loupe Project, which is a jewelry business development program spearheaded by the Women's Jewelry Association - Northern California Chapter. JLP selects emerging designers with promise, and provides them one-on-one mentorship with a Bay Area jewelry industry professional. My mentor was April Higashi, owner of Shibumi Gallery in Berkeley, California.
Due to the pandemic, we were unable to showcase our new collections at an in-person event, so the seven mentees came together and organized an online showcase! To see all the lovely, new jewelry from these seven emerging designers, visit bit.ly/JLPshowcase.
We have so much in store for you! The showcase includes
So head on over to the JLP Virtual Showcase, where you can see more of the Liquid Gold Fine Collection!
P.S. To enter the jewelry giveaway, simply fill out one or all of the feedback surveys at the bottom of each designer's page. Each filled out survey counts as one entry! 5 winners will be announced on February 14th, 2021.
If you didn't know, I'm Taiwanese and American! 🇹🇼 🇺🇸
Taiwan is a small country located to the southwest of Japan, to the east of China, and to the north of the Philippines. It's known for its delicious food and ultra friendly people. We have pride parades every year in the capital city of Taipei, and we elected the first female president in East Asia. Taiwan also has the moniker of "Silicon Valley of the East." If you're reading this gift guide from a smartphone or a laptop, its semiconductor chips were likely made in Taiwan.
Do you love bubble tea, also known as boba? It's originally from Taiwan. We practically have a boba tea shop on every street!
In celebration of my motherland, I've put together a gift guide of Taiwanese and Taiwanese-American small businesses, all located in the USA.
Building Block is a design studio based in Los Angeles and was founded by sisters Nancy Wu, previously a Nike shoe designer, and Kimberly Wu, previously a Honda concept car designer. Established in 2011, the studio offers simple yet stunning leather bags and accessories that are designed with intention. Looking for a timeless bag? Head over to Building Block.
Hello! I’m a jewelry designer and maker based in Oakland, California. I’m also an introvert, which is why I make jewelry specifically for soft-spoken folks with strong backbones. Our society often overlooks and undervalues introverts, but we lead such fascinating inner lives. The world needs more individuals like you.
Offer: Use code TAIWAN20 for 20% off Ready to Ship items. Bonus - Holiday Jewelry Sets are marked 20% off, no code needed. Limited quantities available. Offers expire at midnight of 12/15/2020.
Knotwork LA is built on a desire to create beautiful, useful things. Business owner Linda Hsiao is a freelance industrial designer with a passion for all things ceramic and wood. Each Knotwork LA object is made by hand, from porcelain catchall trays to silky smooth wooden rattles. If you’re still searching for a gift for the coffee lover in your life, Linda offers carefully crafted, one-of-a-kind mugs.
Formosa Chocolates produces luxury chocolates with Belgian techniques in the San Francisco Bay Area. Chocolatier and owner Kimberly Yang not only loves chocolate, but is also passionate about the nuanced chemistry that sets luxury chocolate apart. Fun fact - Formosa Chocolates is named after Taiwan, which was given the moniker “Ilha Formosa (beautiful island)” by Portuguese sailors in the mid-1500s.
Offer: Use code GIFTY10 for 10% off purchases over $50, code expires 12/22/20.
Taiwan Bento is a casual lunch spot in Uptown Oakland and is the brainchild of Stacy Tang, a tech worker-turned restaurateur. They offer mouth-watering popcorn chicken, beef noodle soup, and gua boa (Taiwanese sandwich). Their bentos are served with entrees like minced braised pork, Taiwanese sausage, and spicy tofu with shiitake mushrooms. Don't forget to top off your meal with their bubble tea!
Free Flow Botanicals
Patty Liu is a San Francisco native with a passion for holistic beauty and wellness. As a certified Clinical Herbalist, Holistic Beauty coach, and Reiki Practitioner, Patty started Free Flow Botanicals to help women live their best lives. She offers skincare products, holistic beauty classes, and more. Can’t find the perfect gift for a skin care junkie? I recommend Free Flow Botanicals’s gemstone massage tools!
Offer: Free US shipping on orders over $75.
The Wax Apple
The Wax Apple is about home. It’s about comfort. It’s all the things Juliana Hung remembers from spending time with her grandmother in the Taiwanese countryside. An industrial designer by day, Juliana thoughtfully curates a selection of Taiwanese objects such as rattan stools, embroidered linen clothing, traditional footwear, and shell ginger woven baskets. Each object is an inextricable part of Taiwanese culture and life.
And last but not least, writer Charles Yu. He is the author of four books and recently won the 2020 National Book Award for his novel, Interior Chinatown. The National Book Award is the highest honor for literary work written by US citizens. He has also written for tv shows like Westworld, and his fiction and nonfiction have appeared in The New Yorker, The New York Times, The Atlantic, and The Wall Street Journal. Shopping for a bookworm? Look no further.
And that's a wrap! I hope you enjoyed my Taiwanese Small Biz Gift Guide. Every purchase you make matters. Thank you for consciously choosing to shop small and to buy from BIPOC businesses this holiday season.
Kamala Harris made history this week as the first Black, South Asian, and female Vice President-Elect! Although I don't agree with her stance on every issue, I'm thrilled that she broke through so many glass ceilings in one go!
I, for one, am ready for the holiday season!
And I want to make sure you're well-prepared, too. Starting today, December 9th, through December 20th, The Crucible will be hosting its virtual holiday fair, GIFTY. Over 80 other Bay Area makers and small businesses will be selling things like gourmet chocolates, holiday greeting cards, glass ornaments, and of course, jewelry! Makers pours hours of care and thought into each object they make, guaranteeing not only unique gifts, but gifts that are high-quality and made to endure.
Artists and makers have had a tough go this year.
Due to the pandemic, many in-person shows and fairs have been cancelled, and small businesses are barely hanging on. It's more important than ever to buy local and support local artists, because where you spend your hard earned dollars will determine who survives the calamity that is 2020. Buying local gifts make incredibly meaningful gifts for your loved ones and your community.
So why not shop in your PJs this holiday season?
GIFTY is hosted completely online, which means you get to avoid the long lines and shopping crowds this year. Also, don't tell anyone I told you this, but I've just launched my holiday jewelry sets, which are 20% off regular prices and are available in limited quantities! Enjoy!
Amid all the news about the pandemic, Mother's Day almost slipped my mind! Although my mom lives an ocean away on the island of Taiwan, I'm grateful that she's in a country that takes the virus seriously and has fewer than 750 cases. I can't imagine the world without my mom.
If you have a mom, a grandma, or a wife who you are grateful for, now is the time to say, "Thank you. I see you." I think the desires and needs of moms often take a backseat to those of their children - in fact, I was sick all the time as a kid, and my mom would bundle me up and drive me to the hospital for checkups, medication refills, and allergy shots.
I looked forward to the hospital visits, partly because of all the attention the nurses and doctors showered on me, but mostly because I got to spend time with my mom. We would walk down a long flight of stairs to the hospital cafeteria after each appointment, and she would let me choose between Taiwanese meatball soup or a fried pork chop bento. I loved both and could never decide. I also never thought to ask if my mom was hungry or tired of the sterile hospital environment.
Luckily, I learned how to be more considerate as I grew older, and my mom never grew tired of loving me. This year, I'm planning on ordering flowers for her and calling her to chat. Because that's what my mom wants the most - a phone call.
Last week, a family friend bought two necklaces from me. One for her, and one for her daughter. Surprisingly, her young daughter paid for the necklaces! I don't know if they were gifts for Mother's Day, but I was glad to have both necklaces in stock and shipped them the very next day. It also made me realize that in my pandemic fugue state, I hadn't updated the Ready to Ship page of my online store in a long time.
I've been diligently adding ready to ship items to the page these past days, and it's finally ready! If you or someone you know deserves a pick-me-up this Mother's Day, take a look. Orders placed before midnight on Sunday, May 3rd should arrive in time for Mother's Day. The post office is running a little slow these days due to the pandemic, but I'll try my very best to get those gifts to you as soon as possible.
In the meantime, please stay indoors and call your mom. She misses you.
It’s devastating to see how fragile my small business is. This thing I have carefully breathed air into for the past four years has deflated over night.
Artists and makers are hard hit by this pandemic, as countless art fairs and wholesale orders are cancelled. My business has come to a near standstill, ever since my retail partners - jewelry galleries and stores - have been labeled “nonessential” and are forced to shutter. We were not ready for this. None of us were.
My anxiety rises in proportion to the amount of news on the novel coronavirus, a virus so new it has crippled our economy, shut down society, and pushed those in precarious circumstances further into poverty. The president says everything is a-ok, and I begin having nightmares.
For two weeks, I watch as the livelihoods of my artist and maker friends crumble. A fog settles over my mind, and it’s difficult to think straight. Productivity is as rare and as coveted as hand sanitizer. I wash my hands, over and over again.
I feel guilty about my inability to wrestle anxiety to the ground, when I have shelter, food, and savings, and others don’t. My therapist gently reminds me to be kind to myself, his voice barely audible above the phone static.
“We’ll get through this together.”
The pandemic has forced me to slow down. When it gets hard to breathe, I go on walks. I research small business loans, then take a break. I make sure to keep breathing as I do bookkeeping and think of ways to stay afloat during shelter-in-place. The more social-media savvy of us have already pivoted - they stay in touch with customers through DM’s and offer shelter-in-place sales to encourage social distancing.
In the middle of all this, I’ve picked up a funny habit of microwaving potatoes in four minute intervals, carefully flipping the potatoes onto their backs between each session. Microwave. Add butter. Eat.
I find comfort in reading an article by Scott Berinato about our collective grief around this pandemic. Because that is what we’re doing, grieving. We’re grieving lost lives, jobs, human touch, a sense of normalcy. We’re also anticipating grief to come. Things will never go back to normal.
With grief, comes a cluster of emotions. Denial, anger, sadness, and acceptance. Some days I wake up in the middle of a nightmare, scared breathless. Some days I feel myself softening and easing into a new routine. On the extra hard days, I work on being kind to myself. I hope you are, too.
David Kessler, a writer on grief, adds a final stage to grief: meaning. I recently brought groceries to an elderly neighbor. You can support local businesses by shopping online or buying gift cards. Help your favorite restaurants weather the lean times by ordering takeout. Keep in touch with family and friends.
I’ll see you on the other side.
Have you recovered from the holiday hustle and bustle yet? My brain is already up and running in this brand new decade, and I thought I would start the new year off with the Murmur Collection in a new satiny silver! Paired with 14k yellow gold ear wires, this pair of Murmur Pebble Earrings (L) are a showstopper at any Sunday brunch or family gathering.
Looking for a new way to express your personal style in the new year? Layer up on necklaces with the Murmur Pebble Necklaces (S) and Murmur Pebble Necklace (M)!
If you a take a closer look, you'll see that the edges of these Murmur Hoop Studs have been burnished to a shiny finish. This highlights the curve of the hoop, giving it that extra oomph. In my Oakland studio, we take pride in our meticulous handmade processes and attention to minute details.
Last but not least, we have the Murmur Oval Ring in the satiny silver. This statement ring is a miniature piece of sculpture for the hand and is a favorite of jewelry gallerists!