I’ve loved watching them grow, roots twining around rocks in their minimalist glass vase, like some kind of modern industrial lab version of a botanical illustration.
Next year, I’ll have to remember force a few pots in succession, so I can enjoy these fragrant narcissus from November through February. They’re one of my favorite ways to brighten up my workspace and bring some life and greenery in for the winter!
Want to bring some beauty into your day too? Here’s how I planted these paperwhite narcissus forcing bulbs, and what they looked like as they grew.
If you’ve been following my studio flowers posts, you might be wondering where my potted orchids and other houseplants live when they’re not blooming in my studio. Here’s a behind-the-scenes look at my living room plant shelves!
These east- and north-facing windows have the best light in my house, and that’s what the orchids I grow need to rebloom well. (Phalaeonopsis live mostly in the north-facing window, and Oncidiums and a few other higher-light types live in the east-facing window — Euchile mariae and Oncidium ‘Tsiku Marguerite’ have appeared in my studio, as well as a small sedum I keep as a houseplant.)
My vining tropical pitcher plant (Nepenthes ventricosa, I think?) hangs in the east window. Hopefully the Queen’s Tears (Bilbergia nutans) will visit the studio when it blooms this winter — the amazing green and blue flowers are some of my favorites! It’s a large bromeliad, and a “passalong plant” — it’s easy to pass an offshoot on to someone else. Mine came from my granddad. He’s been gone for years now, and I think of him whenever it blooms. I love decorating my home with the things (and plants!) that have meaning to me, like that one. It’s a lifelong project, never finished — I’m always editing, always changing things. But it’s so much more satisfying to have my home fit who I am, where I came from, and where I want to go. (Just like my personal style!)
If you enjoyed this glimpse into my secret plant life, you can see more of my behind-the-scenes studio flowers posts here! Don’t forget to bring a little more beauty into your world.
For the first time, I’m sharing some of my studio art projectswith you: one of a kind (or very limited edition) pieces that push my creative thinking in new ways. Think of it as an online (shoppable!) exhibition of my work — the pieces that go bold and strike out in new directions. This collection includes some small kinetic and articulated art sculptures for your home, such as the Flotsam Mobile(shown above) and a few sculptural hanging ornaments (shown below).
It also includes bold and more detailed art jewelry (like the Metal Mermaid Earrings and Pendantshown below) — still very wearable, of course, but unique. I hope you enjoy this peek into the kinds of work I create for exhibitions and gallery shows — think of it as an ongoing open studio show!
PS As you can imagine, handcrafted art pieces like these take hours and hours of time and focus. I don’t make many each year, and I rarely go back to a project. So if you truly love something, buy it now!
studio flowers: Oncidium ‘Tsiku Marguerite’ + the Hops, Fuchsia, & Laburnum Earrings (with a short video from my studio!)
This week’s studio flowers: my Oncidium ‘Tsiku Marguerite’ orchid is blooming! This lovely (and fragrant!) little plant is one of my favorites. It’s a joy to see it burst into bloom as my garden drips into winter. (Mine is from Seattle Orchid.) This vignette made a great backdrop for some photography today, as well as making me happy every time I glance up at it. (Okay, I left the iron flower frogs and the Heath Ceramics bud vase out of the “real” photos — but I love this behind-the-scenes view.)
Here’s a closeup of those tiny flowers! The dark leaf spots are pretty common for oncidiums in colder temperatures, and aren’t something I worry about. (I grow orchids for my own enjoyment, not for show.)
I choose my jewelry the same way I buy art: I love it and want it to be part of my life. When I’m not wearing it, I like to style it as home decor, to add a touch of shine and something special to a bedroom shelf, dresser, or even my home office studio. Here are three more suggestions for how to enjoy art jewelry in your home.
Best if: you’d like to use wall space or vertical space, and you want your art jewelry displayed like art
To display these earrings, I took the glass out of a simple modern frame, added a paper background, and stretched picture wire through small drilled holes. I’ve also added tiny nails or hooks to display necklaces and bracelets this way.
Pro tip: This one sits on a shelf in my studio, but they’re easy to hang on a wall. The simple, clean look would make a great addition to a gallery wall!
Pro tip: switching the previous week’s pieces for fresh new ones allows you to enjoy your options without feeling overwhelmed by choices — and encourages you to try new combinations of accessories with your favorite outfits.
6. With a mix of everyday objects from your life
Best if: you enjoy less-formal styling that feels uniquely you, not something from a generic magazine look
I’m inspired by everyday objects as well as art, and I love how styling can bring such disparate things together to create a beautiful, uniquely personal vignette. Here, my Short Fuchsia Earrings rest in a shallow celadon green dish with a tiny flower frog, carefully arranged with my Vine Bracelet, the pruners I use on my houseplants, and a small potted sedum. This is the kind of arrangement I might put together after caring for my plants, and enjoy all week. It looks casual but not messy, like my favorite shelfies.
Pro tip: pay attention to balance and how your objects line up (or don’t!) Here, the curved shapes of the dish and pot are balanced by the curving pruner blades, creating a grouping of three objects (often easier to balance.) The straight line of the necklace adds a modern touch to the styling, and the delicate pattern looks great with these small dangle earrings (just like it does as part of an outfit!)
I hope these ideas inspire you to find new ways to enjoy your art jewelry collection even when you’re not wearing it. Let your own glimpse of beauty bring a little more joy into your day.