Sunday, December 12, 2010

She kissed a frog...

Here are some snapshots from Karina and Chris' wedding this past October. Karina envisioned something simple and elegant, thus this vintage Swarovski crystal and pearl ensemble worked perfectly with her lovely lace gown.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

We have only just learned that our emails for info [at] izzyandbuds [dot] com were stuck in cyber space for more than two weeks!

As it will take some time to reply to all of your messages, your patience and understanding is greatly appreciated. 

If you do not receive a response in the next few days and you require an immediate reply, please feel free to resend your email.

xoxo

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Portobello West Holiday Markets

Izzy and Buds Jewelry Designs will be at Portobello West Holiday Markets for the next two weekends! Please note - due to show scheduling conflicts on the first weekend, we will be there ONLY on Sunday, November 28th.

On Saturday, November 27th, you can find us at the Dunbar Holiday Craft Fair. After a three year hiatus, we look forward to our return there!

Please check out our Events page for more details.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Corey and Melissa's Big Day


I am so giddy to finally see the wedding photos from Corey and Melissa's big day, that I can forgive her for...
  1.  Waiting until the eleventh hour to place her custom order for wedding day jewelry for herself and the entire bridal party!
  2.  Her bridezilla 'tude just days before the wedding when she suddenly decides that she needs to have her Jr. bridesmaid's earrings shortened AND shows up late after FINALLY committing to a time and place!
  3. Not sharing that their wedding was featured in the photographer's blog posted more than a month ago, after WEEKS of harassing this techno-challenged bride to post some photos on our Facebook Page
Congratulations to the newlyweds - you both look absolutely gorgeous and thank you for giving Izzy and Buds Jewelry Designs the privilege of adorning all the lovely ladies in your party!  xoxo

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

The Upside


clammy, icky day
morn turns to night early on
fun boots make me smile

Monday, August 23, 2010

Crystal Made Clear

While flipping through some wedding magazines, I came across this informative feature on how to distinguish Swarovski crystals from other "like" components used in jewelry design. This makes for a nice follow-up to our blog entry, Knock It Off published this past May.

Crystals by Swarovski...why settle for anything less?  

Monday, August 02, 2010

Brides and Balls


July has come and gone and now we have just one month left to enjoy our days (and evenings) of this blissful summer weather.

Not only have shows and festivals kept us busy throughout June and July, but orders for bridal jewelry are on the rise.  As a small business challenged to find a market for those who appreciate unique, avant-garde designs in Vancouver, there is no denying our niche market has become jewelry for weddings both near and afar. What an honour it is to be a part of such a momentous event and thank you to all the brides for entrusting us to design the perfect adornments for your big day!

Speaking of big days...

Cinderella's appearance at the Prince's grand ball is coming up at a production by the Dragon Diva Operatic Theatre.  Izzy and Buds Jewelry Designs will bejewel the princess-to-be with a spectacular Swarovski crystal ensemble, sure to make her the "belle of the ball"!

All the custom designed pieces will be available for sale after the show with partial proceeds going to The Cinderella Project.



Friday, July 09, 2010

Hot for Harrison

The Harrison Festival of the Arts begins tomorrow in Harrison Hot Springs, BC. The sizzling hot temperatures we have been experiencing of late, definitely warrants a day at the beach to cool off and enjoy the festivities.

On Saturday night, we will be celebrating the Spanish way with music and dance from Poema Flamenco. We first had the pleasure of watching Karen Pitkethly dance in 2006 and are looking very forward to being mesmerized by her again.

Look for Izzy and Buds Jewelry Designs under the PINK tent at the Art Market.

Hours:

Saturday, July 10 from 11:00 to 19:00
Sunday, July 11 from 11:00 to 17:00

Friday, July 16 from 11:00 to 17:00
Saturday, July 17 from 11:00 to 19:00
Sunday, July 18 from 11:00 to 17:00

Sunday, June 06, 2010

Pink in the City


Izzy and Buds Jewelry Designs are happy to once again support the InspirationALL Talent and Modeling Group fundraiser, Pink in the City for the Weekend to End Women’s Cancers, benefitting the BC Cancer Foundation. 

Put on your party dress and best bling to join us for an evening of delicious cocktails and canapés served up by some deliciously charming male volunteers - all for a great cause and a fabulous time!

No bling?  No problem!  Contact us for a private showing.

Date: Friday, June 25th
Time: 17:00 - 21:00
Location: Canvas Lounge, 99 Powell Street, Vancouver, BC
Theme: "Dress to Impress"

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Knock It Off

swarovski crystals fall colorsExecution of a great creation involves a discerning sense and quality ingredients. ART - whether it be culinary, visual or wearable, it must begin with passion.

Jesee's love affair with Swarovski is a key element to the shimmering success of our jewelry designs. There are many faux Swarovski components out there and to the untrained eye would be a very sad disappointment if ever compared side by side to the real thing...it literally pales in comparison.

Stuart Freedman of Fire Mountain Gems wrote the following article on how to identify real Swarovski crystal. Before one starts to shop around for crystal jewelry, one should first know what they are buying.  As the old adage goes, "You get what you pay for".

Swarovski (Swore-off-ski) crystal components are regarded as the highest quality machine cut and polished crystal beads in the world. The demand for luxury products unfortunately can create a host of imitators. The imitators are all over the Internet and at every bead show that we have visited.

The Swarovski company creates its glass with a special compound that imitators cannot duplicate. This special compound creates the incredible brilliance of their product. The delicate color palette is another quality that sets Swarovski crystal components apart from others.

With so many crystal beads and components out there, how can you tell if the crystal you are purchasing is actually a Swarovski crystal component....or an imitation?

Here are some tips that can help you determine which crystals are genuine:

1. Swarovski crystals are generally not strung when offered for sale.

2. Look for the original Swarovski packaging. Dependant on size, the bulk packages will range from 10 gross to 1/2 gross, in well-branded, sealed envelopes. The newest Swarovski bulk packaging is sealed with an authenticated silver toned hologram saying "CRYSTALLIZED."

3. Swarovski crystals are perfectly uniform. Since they are machine cut, each crystal is the same. This means that the height, width and slope are consistent. A hand polished imitator bead will not have as uniform a cut. You may also notice different dimensions from bead to bead.

4. Swarovski uses machinery that precisely cuts each crystal. According to Swarovski, "cutting hard materials such as crystal and gems, in such a way that they have a hundred identical facets in several directions, is a very complicated task; each direction of the reflected light must first be calculated by computer, then this has to be simulated in 3D, optimized and finally converted into control programs for complex machinery." This is just part of the technology that gives Swarovski crystals their unbelievable flash.

5. The precision cutting of Swarovski machinery allows each crystal to have its facet juncture "pointing up". This means the facet junctures all meet at precisely the same point. This is a similar aspect of diamond faceting. See the illustration above.

6. AB finish Swarovski crystals have a uniform surface luster. There are no swirling marks from the vacuum process that produces the AB finish, and generally there are no scratches. The "imitations" often have scratches, swirl marks ("oily" looking surface). Some of these imperfections, in the "imposters", have to do with the lower quality of the finish. See the illustration above.

7. When you look inside the crystal, you will see no bubbles. If you see any bubbles, you know immediately that it is a fake.

8. Because of its special glass compounds, Swarovski crystal will out-sparkle a bead of lesser quality when placed in a side-by-side comparison.

Your best bet is to buy from reputable suppliers known to be Swarovski distributors. Just because they display the logo does not mean they are true distributors. We have seen many vendors incorrectly (and illegally) displaying the swan logo of Swarovski when selling beads at shows.

Monday, May 03, 2010

VGH Spring Craft Market

A wonderful little market with a variety of great artisans and a whole slew of Mother's Day gifts to choose from!

Partial proceeds from the show benefit the VGH & UBC Hospital Foundation.

Sunday, May 02, 2010

This photo from noted Indian designer, Manish Arora's 2009 Spring Collection captured my attention, as it reminded me of our "Siren" earring from 2003. LOVE the shades of BLUE!

Saturday, May 01, 2010

Lobe Wonder-ful

Two and a half years after we posted about this innovative product, we have finally received feedback from a reader who suffers from droopy earlobe syndrome. Thanks to this surgery-free option she can now adorn her ears with pretty, shiny earrings once again!

Previously known as the Ear Lift, the Lobe Wonder continues to do its magic...

"Okay. So I did it. I went to the "Lobe Wonder" website and I purchased said otic marvels. And damned if they don't work! You had to buy a minimum of 2 packages but even with shipping and $ conversion, I spent less than C$17 for something like 120 little ear patches. I've tried them with big hoops (!). It's been years since I've worn any hoops. Then I tried studs. Worked for them too. I am one very happy camper. Thanks for leading me down the lobe-prosthesis path!"
~Laurel Bailey, Owner - Naked Soapworks

Friday, April 16, 2010

The Road Trip

Our trip to the Wild Rose Country last week was short and sweet, but defintely worthy of our efforts.  The long, white-knuckle drive through the Rockies was challenging at best, but the fun really began just outside of Calgary when a freak snowstorm left us trying to navigate in blizzard whiteout conditions during rush hour!  Just when we thought it couldn't get any worse...there was an electrical storm too. The street signs were completely covered with snow, which made finding our final destination near impossible.  Note to self...pick up a GPS before the next trip.

The most incredible part was waking up to a beautiful sunny day the next morning with barely a snowflake in sight. We heard stories of how folks out there have seen it snow in Calgary every month of the year...wth? Ugh, I'm good, thanks.
 
The Portobello West Market itself was good fun with groovin' music and energy.  Our bling rings were quite popular, as were vintage Emerald AB chandeliers - both pairs were barely on the rack thirty minutes after Jesee finished making them.

We lucked out as far as neighbours go, when we set up shop next to Amber Chernipeski from the Farm Girl artist.  LOVE her work and we couldn't wait for the end of the show to do our trading - one of the benefits of mutual art admiration :o)

I noticed that crowds of women were stockpiling dresses from Elroy Apparel. Upon closer inspection snooping, I understood their fascination with this unique line of organic clothing that is now on MY wish list. Leanne McElroy designs rock! I just may need to head out to the Portobello Vancouver market on the 25th...?

Of course we couldn't leave Alberta without a jaunt to the Real Canadian Liquorstore to pick up some Segura Viudas.  It was quite a trip walking in there and being forced to buy in multiples of six to get the better price. Gotta love the Stupidstore concept that essentially gave me two bottles of cava gratis!

So here's a bubbly toast to Calgary and hoping that we make it back for another trip soon!

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

This blog has MOVED!

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Friday, April 02, 2010

Izzy & Buds at Portobello West Calgary

We're excited and looking forward to our trip to Calgary, Alberta for the Portobello West Market on next week from April 9th to 12th.

Come out and see us at Booth #41 (across from the DJ)...mention this blog post and receive a free pair of earrings (retail value $20.00) with a minimum purchase of $50.00.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Bon Appétit!

Le Creuset 'Flame' cast iron collection + vintage poster in designer Wary Meyers' kitchen
Photo Credit: xjavierx on Flickr

It was long overdue...we finally started our collection of Le Creuset cookware when I gifted Jesee with a 5.2L Round French Oven at Christmas. Choosing the colour was a piece of cake, as Flame is the original colour from this longstanding product line and also happens to be Jesee's favourite colour.

We mulled over what should be the first dish cooked in this vibrant orange vessel, agreeing that it should be memorable since our children would be inheriting this culinary legacy. The choice was almost too obvious when we decided on Julia Child's Bœuf Bourguignon. I remember being amused by her kitchen blunders on her cooking shows, and watching Meryl Streep portray her so accurately in Julie & Julia, rekindled the love for some classic French cooking.

Not one to ever follow a recipe as written, Jesee added his own touches here and there. It resulted in all of us feeling as if we had died and gone to heaven; sadly there was barely enough for leftovers the next evening *oink*

We have since enjoyed numerous fragrant and flavourful stews in our beloved enameled cast iron pot including one of our all time favourites - Estafado de Pulpo. I'm so glad I invested in our Le Creuset casserole, as it only encourages more lovin' in the kitchen.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Don't Try This at Home!


I was absolutely dismayed when I saw the pile of jewelry rubbish Bridget gave to Jesee for "repair".  What I saw were casualties of a jewelry cleaning mishap from using a harsh chemical cleaner specifically designed for silver...imagine that!

He did his best to restore the once shiny and lustrous jewelry (which incidentally was purchased just a short time ago), but sadly the results were not successful. The chemicals had eaten away and destroyed the silver.  Jesee would need to re-create the pieces.

There is no need for this type of cruelty, please love your sparkly treasures and handle with care.  Follow these quick, easy and safe instructions and your jewelry will stay shiny forever.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

With Glowing Hearts

 

In a mere seventeen days, Izzy and Buds Jewelry Designs will have our own "storefront" at the Qortezan Artisan Market, a showcase of handcrafted items from local vendors displayed specifically during the Vancouver 2010 Olympics.

The opportunity for local artisans to proudly present their craft to an international audience of this magnitude is crazy! Just imagine the exposure!

The market is ideally situated in the designated pedestrian corridor where we will be mingling with athletes and visitors from near and afar. Free entertainment for the whole family including nightly concerts will just be a stone's throw away at the David Lam Park. As each day passes, it's hard not to get swept up in the excitement and fun we are about to experience.

Go Canada Go!

Saturday, January 23, 2010

A Tale of Two Restaurants

One night during one of Vancouver's famous torrential downpours, we popped into La Taqueria for a quick bite to get out of the rain and warm up.

The countless online rave reviews prompted us to try this little hole in the wall.  It was a fantastic finger-licking experience, as we devoured authentic tacos of Cochinita Pibil (pork in achiote and orange sauce), De Lengua (braised pemberton meadows beef tongue) and Rajas Con Crema (roasted poblano peppers with creamed corn, sour cream and mexican cheese).

Service was friendly, attentive and efficient and yes indeed, they are the best tacos in Vancouver!

Another hidden gem we need to give a shout out to is Pepe and Gringo's up in Squamish. On our way down from Whistler after a great weekend of Christmas sales, we met up with friends who recommended this because it had something for everyone - always a good thing when you're too tired to give much thought to what you really feel like eating.

The day seemed to never end, as we cautiously drove in the foggy winter conditions on the winding, unfinished highway of the Sea-to-Sky. We arrived cold and consumed. After reviewing the menu and reading that they served both Chicken Vindaloo and Butter Chicken accompanied with naan bread and rice, it was a no brainer...or was it?

Jesee and I had been listening to the eastern flavours of the Buddha Chillout Lounge which is what fostered our craving for Indian food in the first place, but who in their right mind orders Indian food from a restaurant called Pepe and Gringo's in Squamish, BC?

In short, our meals were incredibly flavourful, perfectly spiced and well presented. It far exceeded our expectations and I had to ask our server, "By any chance are the chefs in the kitchen Indian?".  We had our "a-ha" moment and continued to lick our plates clean.

Once again, cheery, friendly service and honest food will surely bring us back for another go at this neighbourhood fave (tucked away behind the Chevron station).

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Profundo


When I first heard Maria Callas singing "Mon Coeur S'Ouvre A Ta Voix" it rendered me to near tears. Although, I didn't have a complete understanding of the lyrics, the emotions that she evoked from within completely caught me off guard.

Passion.

♫ ♫ ♫

During the tranquil and restful Christmas holidays, I stumbled upon this awesome video of Bebo and Cigala. Listen, watch and feel - soon you will understand my love affair with Spain.

Passion.