PHOTO SLIDESHOW: Local Metal Artists F. is for frank Introduces 2011 Jewelry Collection

March 9, 2011 by · 1 Comment 

Hand-made jewelry doesn’t get much cooler than F. is for frank, a Dallas-based design studio that specializes in metalworks. Sculptors Shannah Frank and Casey Melton combined their friendship – and love for metal works – five years ago building custom metal designs and architecture. Jewelry had always been a personal, fun project on the side.

Shortly after beginning their journey into custom metal designs, the market, like most, hit a recession as people and designers were cutting back on custom pieces. This ended up being a type of creative blessing explains the duo. Instead of designing trinkets and charms on the side for friends and family, they made it a regular part of business. Now the two play around with jewelry molds on a regular basis, finally editing down to hand-crafted pieces they’d wear themselves.

This week F. is for frank proudly announces their third collection of jewelry since launching the line three years ago. Though they mostly work with pewter, this line branches out to include yellow and rose gold plated pieces. Melton says they are also playing with mixed metals and encourages customers to do the same as they introduce a new collection of mix-and-match charms and chains. Rabbits, Day of the Dead skulls, or fishing weights anyone?

Just three years in, F. is for frank already sells in boutiques around the greater Dallas area and on the West Coast in shops around L.A. They look to expand their reach after the launch of this third – and possibly most eclectic – collection.

F. is for frank launches its new collection at a trunk show this Thursday evening at We Are 1976 from 6-8 p.m.

ARTS BLOG: Are You A Baroque Freak?

November 10, 2010 by · Comments Off 

Posted by Petya Kertikova

No doubt fall is the fashion season. All fashion events and reviews are during the fall. A perfect example would be the New York Fashion Show, which just ended a couple of weeks ago.

During fall there are lots of colors women can mix in order to look fashionable and still be creative. Of course, orange, green, yellow, and brown will dominate because of the association with the season itself.

Speaking of colors, clothes, and entire outfits, jewelry was and will always be the perfect accessory. As all women know, a simple necklace can make an entire outfit look fabulous.

They are many different types of jewelry depending on the material used, the shape, the color, etc., but one will definitely be fashionable forever. And that is the Baroque type of jewelry. Not only the shape,colors, but as well the royal story behind it, make women go crazy.

This fall especially, the Baroque jewelry is a total hit. Now, it is up to you whether you will give it a try and feel the historical magic of wearing that fine decorative jewelry.

Big D Blog: SMU Alumna Creates Stylish Jewelry For a Cause

May 1, 2010 by · Comments Off 

Posted by Sarah Pottharst

SMU Alumna Elizabeth Carlock is currently selling jewelry created by women in Africa associated with Akola Project of the Ugandan American Partnership Organization (UAPO).

The pieces consist of handmade beads created with recycled paper and other sustainable African materials. The beads are made in multiple colors and sizes and are placed in the jewelry pieces occasionally in fun, alternating orders; the necklaces vary in the number of strands, and some even come attached to a cute piece of pattern fabric.

Prices vary between $10 and $75, depending on the style and type of jewelry.

Many of the women who made the jewelry peices are refugees, widows and victims of genocidal horror. They also have multiple children and no way to support their family. All profits made in the selling of these pieces will go straight to the Akola Project.

Dallas Farmer’s Market Provides Something for Everyone

April 5, 2010 by · 1 Comment 

By Natalie Blankenship

Most people head down to Dallas’ Farmer’s Market expecting to see buckets full of brilliantly colored fruits and vegetables while farmers offer up slices of their locally grown pineapple and cantaloupe. Who knew you could also go to the market and pick up a piece of jewelry or walk away with a mosaic mirror just shipped in from Mexico?

Located on 1010 South Pearl Expressway, the farmer’s market has an enclosed shed tucked away near the back for items other than fresh produce or plants. Inside the 26,000-square-foot, newly-remodeled building, shoppers can find just about anything: A counter stocked with silver jewelry imported from Taxco, Mexico; A store with aroma therapy candles, soaps, scrubs and body sprays; An African store with T-shirts, wood products, leather products and oils; A store selling Mexican imported mirrors, paintings and pottery; A counter selling glass products; and even a sausage company.

New vendors are appearing, but old vendors will remain selling their products. Restaurants are being built as the building moves towards hosting more food and food related vendors.

Stephanie Heard, an employee of a soap shop called Abundantly Aromatic, believes that the city is doing a lot to get more customers to the market.

“They’re doing a lot of marketing and getting a lot of new vendors our here to make it grow, so the more people out here, the better the business is,” Heard said.

The idea of enclosing part of the market and adding air conditioning and heat unit happened about three years ago. At first, vendors ranged from soap to silver. The shed is currently about three quarters full, but is growing rapidly. Food vendors and restaurants predominately fill the indoor portion, but vendors like Silver Springs Design have been there for 16 years and are here to stay, said Dallas Farmer’s Market customer service employee Liz Scoggin. Soon, the building will have a Greek restaurant, a Bar-B-Q catering company and other food venues, Scoggin said.

The Dallas Farmer’s Market opened as a city owned and operated market in 1941. It underwent a $15 million renovation in the 1990′s, which included a new resource center and the indoor shed, according to the Dallas Farmer’s Market Friends Web site. The Dallas Farmer’s Market Friends organization works to raise money for development and promotion of the Dallas Farmer’s Market, according to their Facebook page.

Owner of Silver Springs Design, Audrey McGarity has been importing and selling silver jewelry out of the Dallas Farmer’s Market with her husband Johnny McGarity for 16 years. She became interested in selling jewelry after her daughter moved to Taxco, Mexico, otherwise known as the “Silver Town,” to be a silversmith and an artist.

The McGaritys spent nearly 13 years selling silver jewelry out of an open-air shed at the market alongside the fresh produce. They had garage-type pull-down doors with no heating or air conditioning.

“It was kind of rustic in here,” McGarity said.

Some SMU students don’t realize that the farmer’s market is a quick 10 minute drive from campus. Others are unaware that items other than fruits and vegetables are sold. A Plano resident, sophomore Steven Kitt says he went when he was very young but all he remembers seeing are stands with different farmers selling their produce. Kitt was surprised when he learned that artisan items, jewelry and other items non-food related are sold at the farmer’s market.

SMU sophomore Idean Saki says he has never been to the market, but he’s heard from his classmates that it’s a great place to go to pick up cheap locally grown fruits and vegetables.

George Jackson, a sophomore attending  Richland College in Dallas, lives in an apartment building so close to the market that he can actually see it from his window. Jackson said that he goes to the farmer’s market frequently to buy his groceries and to browse the indoor shed. It’s very uncommon for college students to go to the market, Jackson said.

“No one my age goes there,” he said.

When Jackson first stumbled upon the indoor shed, he was drawn in by the local free range meat and the knife sharpeners.

“It reminded me of going to horse shows and going to the exhibits, they have all the same artisan stuff,” he said.

Because the enclosed shed is going to be mostly food related, McGarity is looking on the bright side and hoping the restaurants will bring them more customers as well.

“We’re hoping it’s going to help everybody,” McGarity said. “I think it’s going to get better.”

According to Heard, owner of Abundantly Aromatic, Renee Mitchell makes all of her products in her kitchen and in her garage. She has been at the market for about eight years, but has sold her homemade products out of her home for even longer. Her business has continued to grow with her booth at the farmer’s market, a booth in Coppell and a recent contract to have her merchandise at Central Market, Heard said.

Sometimes it’s difficult for small businesses at the market to advertise. Abundantly Aromatic has both a Web site and a page on Facebook. Not only do they have their business name online, but they also have a more efficient way to bring business in.

“Her products are just repeat customers coming back,” Heard said. “It sells itself, basically.”

Crafting Etruscan Jewelry: Metal Techniques

February 20, 2009 by · 1 Comment 

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