Seeds and Natural Jewelry for the Natural you!

Seeds and Natural Jewelry for the beautiful and Natural you!

When it comes to jewelry there is a vast amount of options from shiny metals to chunky plastic and even 100% natural… yes, as in made from plant seeds natural.

What kind you ask?

Here is a little sampling of the fun, colorful and stylish jewels you can find at Sur Design Studio made out of nature’s sprouts.

Purple Crocodile Earring made out of the Tagua seed

Purple Crocodile Earring made out of the Tagua seed

How about accessorizing with the Manila Palm seed, this is a small slender seed with delicate marbling from the Philippines.

Anita Necklace & Long Strand Necklace/Bracelet made from Manila Palm and the Tagua seed.

Anita Necklace & Long Strand Necklace/Bracelet made from Manila Palm and the Tagua seed.

What about a seed that is believed to bring you good luck, to bring fertility and to ward off negative energies.  That would be The Huayuro seed. This beauty has either deep red and black tones or solid bright red ones. In France it’s called Panacoco and besides warding off bad JuJu, it’s deemed to bring wealth and abundance.

Bold Red Necklace made with The Huayuro seed and Bullhorn.

Bold Red Necklace made with The Huayuro seed and Bullhorn.

Or the Soapberry seed. This seed can accessorize your look and be used for cleaning products such as shampoo. I guess that’s why it’s called Soapberry! Soapberry be it…And look fabulous with a few natural accessories…a necklace here, some earrings there and maybe even a bracelet flare!

Find Soapberry Seed jewels at Sur Design Studio

Find Soapberry Seed jewels at Sur Design Studio

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Win a free chevron necklace

Talented Amira Menic from Portland Oregon has a passion for creating beautiful handformed jewelry. As a child she loved to create. Every moment she was busy making things, painting, sculpting, photography. Her world always one in a creative pursuit.

Sur Design Studio is proud to carry some of her beautiful pieces and I would like to share these with you by giving away one of her necklaces. To enter; Like the Sur Design Studio facebook page and you’ll automatically enter to win or share the contest post to enter.

Win a chevron Necklace from www.surdesignstudio.com

Win this chevron Necklace from www.surdesignstudio.

Here is a sampling of more of her alluring jewelry.

Contest ends Friday November 29th at Midnight. One lucky winner will be randomly selected on Sunday December 1st 2013.

Good luck!

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World of Green

When I think of green the first thing that comes to my mind is trees. A forest of rich, luscious, evergreen trees. The cool fresh scent of humid earth and fresh air on my cheeks.

Hoh Rain Forest, in the Olympic Peninsula in Washington State.

Hoh Rain Forest, in the Olympic Peninsula in Washington State.

However this color is versatile. It stands for growth, it signals “go” and it represents luck.

Also green in its varied shades can represent many things. For example Army green just like it’s name is usually related to military camouflage. Pea green is usually associated with sickness.

Then there are the terms involving the color green. The saying “green thumb” means that a person is good with plants and gardens.

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The “green room” refers to a room in a theater or television studio where a person can relax before their performance.

The expression “greener pastures” and “grass is greener” are used in reference to something newer or better.

How about using green in the fashion world maybe with your accessories.

Or how about green for a giving themed website, Green Giving Tree.

What does the color green bring up in your world?

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Mulled Wine

Autumn is here! With these cooler days there are many things to look forward to. I for example love the tones of plums, reds and rusty browns that surround us in nature and our wardrobes during this time of year. Another favorite of a brisk cool day is the fireplace, there is nothing better than cuddling up in front of it while unwinding from the day’s events. Lastly, I love a warm glass of Mulled Wine. It’s easy to make, you can enjoy it by yourself or impress others by making it while hosting a dinner.

Recipe;

4 cups apple cider

1 bottle of red wine (Cabernet Sauvignon works)

1/4 cup honey

2 cinnamon sticks

1 orange zest and juice

4 whole cloves

2 star anise

4 orange peels (garnish)

Combine the cider, wine, honey, cinnamon sticks, zest, juice, cloves and star anise in a large pot, bring to a boil. Then lower and simmer on low heat for 10 minutes. Pour into mugs and add orange peel as garnish and viola.

Check out the animal Brass Bottle Stoppers at Sur Design Studio.

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Big announcement!

I have a big announcement! I’ve launched a small online boutique called www.SurDesignStudio.com.

As you all know I’m a big fan of art, fashion and life’s beauty. With www.SurDesignStudio.com I bring you some of that beauty by offering you pieces carefully found such as jewelry, scarves, handbags  and other accessories as well as home decoration from local and international artists.

I am also proud to announce that these unique pieces are ethically made by these artist and artisans.

Here is a peek of what you’ll find at the studio;

Flat Cube Necklace at Sur Design Studio

Flat Cube Necklace at Sur Design Studio

Flat Cube Necklace made by El Dorado Pre-Colombian Jewels a family owned business in Bogota, Colombia. Find simple elegance with this necklace.

Sage, green & beige poncho at Sur Design Studio

Sage, green & beige poncho at Sur Design Studio

This wool poncho is hand woven and dyed. Take a walk in our Pacific Northwest with this great layer for these cooler Autumn days.

  

Khaki Clutch at Sur Design Studio

Khaki Clutch at Sur Design Studio

From Kenya a fair trade Khaki clutch. Dress up in fall hues with this clutch and go out with the girls to one of favorite spots such as Bastilles in Seattle.  

Go check out The Studio and tell me what you think. Maybe even do a little shopping while you’re at it.😉

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Delights and creations

Seagull Flight by Alex Mendez.

Seagull Flight by Alex Mendez.

The days have passed and somehow I’ve managed to keep busy with many projects at home and with a business endeavor in the works. Some of these projects involve the kitchen and delicious food concoctions, others involve sitting at a desk with canvas and paint. One project in particular is an online boutique that I am close to launching. This last project has captured most of my time and heart. It’s been something I’ve talked and dreamed about having for years and soon I’ll have the opportunity to share with you. Meanwhile here is a visual snippet of those other projects, the  sweet delights and imaginary creations that have enraptured me. Plus an outing to relish the day. This was a little escape to a dock, to enjoy the Northwest Sound.

The Vista on the Sound by Alex Mendez, Des Moines, WA.

The Vista on the Sound by Alex Mendez, Des Moines, WA.

I find Ina Garten’s recipes delicious and easy to make at home.  This Summer Fruit Crostata was fun to bake and eat. My mouth waters just thinking about it.

Summer Fruit Crostata, part one by Alex Mendez.

Summer Fruit Crostata, part one, by Alex Mendez.

Summer Fruit Crostata, Part two by Alex Mendez

Summer Fruit Crostata, Part two by Alex Mendez

You can find her recipe in this book that I own and love, Barefoot Contessa at Home: Everyday Recipes You’ll Make Over and Over Again or http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/summer-fruit-crostata-recipe/index.html.

Trees Pink Background, by Alex Mendez

Trees Pink Background, by Alex Mendez

And lastly some of my time has been invested in painting and creating. This painting has soft subtle hues of metallic pink tones in the background. Using mixed media, collage and India ink, I’ve been experimenting, enjoying the process and outcome and finding more balance to my compositions.

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The beauty of routine.

The year, for me, started with many personal ups and downs. As we are almost entering the third month of 2013, I finally feel the dust settling at my heels and find myself looking forward to routine.

The simplicity of a walk in my neighborhood.

Bright red berries contrasting against blue skies, Woodinville, Washington

Bright red berries contrasting against blue skies, Woodinville, Washington.

The joy of spending time in the kitchen pouring over new recipes and concoctions.

Baking a blueberry crumb cake.

Baking a blueberry crumb cake.

The thrill of exploring my home city and rediscovering hidden and the not so hidden corners.

Pike Place Market, the alley, gum and creativity. Seattle Washington by Alex Mendez.

Pike Place Market, the alley, gum and creativity, Seattle, Washington.

Or taking a moment for lounging by the fireplace.

Reflection of a lazy day.

Reflection of a lazy day.

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Winter memories

The cold has crept in. Yet certain everyday events  distract and keep my spirit warm. Watching the last leaves flutter off the trees mesmerize my view. Gearing up for the holiday festivities expand my imagination of shimmering celebration nights. Stopping to indulge at good eateries soothes my core. These are what the crisp cooler days of winter offer to warm my heart. What fond memories has this season brought you thus far?

Stunning bright tones of the last leaves shedding off this tree.

Stunning bright tones of the last leaves shedding off this tree.

Festive decoration and ideas for the holidays sprout out and fill the days.

Festive decoration and ideas for the holidays sprout out and fill the days.

Le Grand Bistro Americain, in Kirkland, Washington filled my belly with savory food and fuel my Soul. http://www.bistrolegrand.com/

Le Grand Bistro Americain, in Kirkland, Washington filled my belly with savory food and fueled my soul. http://www.bistrolegrand.com/

Time to paint and is always a must.

Time to paint; always a must.

These are my favorite, four little paintings to make the whole.

These are my favorite, four little paintings to make the whole.

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The Passenger

Last year around this date I found myself, along with my husband, discovering the treasures of France. We took a trip that started in the coastal city of Nice, its people welcomed us and set the pace to our fantastic journey. We then rode the train along the coast heading south, stopping in historic beauties such as Arles, Avignon  and Carcassonne.

In this post I hope to share, at least a glimpse, of this wonderful getaway.

A sunrise a la Nice by Alex Mendez

In Nice, the beaches were quiet and peaceful, and the sun was golden. The breeze felt cool and promising.

Dans la rue {on the street} by Alex Mendez. Nice, France

Many times along this trip I found cities filled with narrow streets revealing a story of the past intertwined with our present.

La fenêtre {The window} by Alex Mendez, Nice France

I became enamored with doors and windows. The contrast between stone, wood and paint, standing strong through the many years and lives that they have witnessed.

The purchase by Alex Mendez. Avignon, France

Finding a vast variety of markets, ranging from vegetables and cured meats to antiques and rolls of fabric.

De passagers {The passenger} by Alex Mendez. Avignon, France.

I enjoyed being a part of and observing how history meets the present day. It is so evident in these sites and places in France. I like knowing that we are all passengers along history’s path, making our own little mark along our way.

Work in progress by Alex Mendez

The colors in this painting {in progress} brought me back to the warm hues of that trip to France.

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Embracing Autumn

I fully enjoy this time of year, Autumn. It brings a renewed palette to our eyes as well as many other changes around us. Our daily menu becomes heartier with root vegetables, soups and other nourishing meals. We change our wardrobe to cozier more snugly attire and we find ways to celebrate and be with friends and family.

Here are some of my experiences and vistas from this fall. I’d like to also see your posts on your Autumn adventures or scenery.

The valley of Woodinville, WA framed by the cascade mountains by Alex Mendez

The view from my work-space onto the valley of Woodinville, WA framed by the Cascade mountains.

A plentiful breakfast with Banana Walnut French Toast by Alex Mendez

On cold mornings I’m inspired to make my family a plentiful breakfast. One of the local culinary destinations has a delicious French Bakery {ww.atthevineyard.com}. Here we found the perfect bread for making Banana Walnut French Toast.

Día de los Muertos by Alex Mendez

One of my closest friends had a “Día de los Muertos” celebration. We shared music, tamales and dance.

Colorful hues of leaves against a shadowy backdrop by Alex Mendez

Mostly this time of year I love the contrast from the colorful hues of leaves against the shadowy backdrop that a cooler overcast day brings.

Crow at some stage of an Autumn day by Alex Mendez

And of course the spectrum of warm tones all round us has inspired my paintings.

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