Inspiration: Mixing Fine and Fashion Jewelry

Mixing jewelry

Wearing fine jewelry and fashion jewelry at the same time can be a challenge. You want to make a statement but not be too over-the-top (no one wants to look like a fashion victim), you want each piece to stand out and above all, you want to convey your personal style. Mixing and matching fine and fashion jewelry is a fun and youthful approach to accessorizing. But how do you make sure your beautiful, subtle heirloom diamond pendant that you wear all the time is not completely overshadowed by the fabulous and dramatic necklace you’re dying to show off? Hitchcock Madrona shows you how.

Step 1: Start out with the smaller, more delicate pieces. These pieces may include the jewelry that you sleep in, shower in, and keep on for months at a time. They will act as your base layer and most fine jewelry is of this variety. We took a photo of some of our favorite Loren Stewart rings that can serve as examples.

Loren Stewart

Step 2: Incorporate something special. Adding an heirloom necklace that has been passed down for generations in your family or that amazing bracelet you got on your travels lends a special element to your look that can’t be bought.

Step 3: Add fashion pieces slowly. Pause and really think about the effect that each piece of jewelry has on your overall look. Does it enhance and show off the more delicate pieces? The goal when mixing these two jewelry genres is that they build off of each other. Typically, you want to have on more fine jewelry than fashion jewelry.

Step 4: Think in terms of odd numbers when layering. Wearing two delicate necklaces and one larger dramatic necklace is a nice option. With rings, consider wearing one larger ring (may we suggest the Hitchcock Madrona druzy ring?!) and pairing it with two that are small and skinny.

Step 5: Mix metals and materials. You want the pieces you choose to be different and distinct from one another so that they don’t blend together. Wearing and mixing different colors, stones and metals together will help you achieve this effect.

Erica

rings

We think these guidelines work well but none of the steps outlined above are hard-and-fast rules. Even though layering jewelry can be a little daunting it should always be fun first and foremost.


Hitchcock Madrona Signature: Druzy Rings

Druzy rings

The Hitchcock Madrona druzy ring captures the essence of the boutique’s aesthetic and spirit.  They are playful yet sophisticated, and whimsical yet timeless.  Here is how the design was born…

Five years ago, after spotting large druzy stones in India, the initial design was produced.  There was something about the stone that was both magical and intriguing, not to mention, the size of the stone was like no other on the market!  Clients were consistently enchanted by the colors and shimmering quality of the quartz crystals.  After quickly selling out batch after batch – the design had to be perfected!  Originally, the setting was simple and crude, so Dustin and Erica worked for over a year with a jeweler to create a clean and modern band to complement the organic bling of the druzy stone.  Each slope, ridge and angle was carefully scrutinized for maximum comfort and aesthetic appeal.  Today we view the Hitchcock Madrona druzy ring as an iconic piece; one that appeals to a wide range of women.  Do you have one?  Two?  Many?  Too many?

Druzy ring

Druzy is the term used to describe the tiny crystals that form over millions of years within the crevices of a geode.   Each Hitchcock Madrona druzy ring is unique and comes in a variety of colors, as well as two different stone sizes.  You can also choose from either a silver or gold setting.


Outfit of the Day: I’ve got Sunshine (Pants) on a Cloudy Day

outfit

I am trying to inspire the sunshine with my clothing choices. But, it is still pretty gloomy (but, yeah, no snow!) in Seattle. Maybe that is why I look like I am angry in this photo?

earrings

Faceted onyx and gold plated sterling drop earrings by Hitchcock Madrona.

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Two medallion necklaces by Shannon Koszyk (shortest and longest). Pyrite and labradorite layering necklaces by Hitchcock Madrona. Onyx and sterling silver ring by Crystal Hartman.

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Sterling silver cuff by Crystal Hartman. Gold plated sterling “oyster” ring by Eric Saeter.

XOXO

Erica


Hitchcock Madrona: Gifts Under $150

Knowing how hard it can be finding gifts that are meaningful and also budget friendly, we’ve decided to feature some of our favorite accessories and pieces of jewelry under $150.00. If you’re still doing your Christmas shopping and are looking for items that are fun but still sophisticated, definitely stop by; we have fantastic presents for all of the stylish men and women on your list this year!

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The ever popular Hitchcock Madrona bangle cuffs available in sterling silver, rose and yellow gold

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Barbour rain boots

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Simple stone drop earrings.  We have many incarnations of this design in various stones and metals.

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Winifred Grace dove necklace

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Barbour wool scarf

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Hitchcock Madrona gold disc earrings

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Pantherella cotton socks

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Hitchcock Madrona loops earrings (gold or silver) and Xenia Mara earrings (various styles available)

These are just a sampling of the many great gifts we have in stock right now! We are open everyday between now and Christmas Eve.


Outfit of the Day: Painter’s Pants and New Vests

Handmade wool and silk vests by Hitchcock Madrona.

 

Dustin and I were not looking to create a vest but we were so inspired by a men’s tuxedo waistcoat from the early 1900’s that I found at a costume shop. We deconstructed it to create the pattern for this fabulously androgynous vest. Menswear has been a consistent trend in women’s fashion for several decades (Hello, Diane Keaton in Annie Hall!). A sharply tailored menswear piece is so sexy on a woman. This vest excentuates your waist and is a great frame for jewelry.

Steel “Tic-tac-toe” ring by Surplus. Gold filled bangle cuffs by Hitchcock Madrona (never take these off!). Steel pipe ring layered with my faux diamonds by Surplus. We have received our holiday order of Hitchcock Madrona bangle cuffs. They are going to be great gifts this holiday season!

I acquired these pants in the most hilarious way – Reilly, a local artist, friend and client came into the store minding her own business when I accosted her regarding the perfect paint splatters on her pants. She told me that she had worn them out and was ready to move on to a new pair. Since I tried, and failed miserably, to create authentic painter’s pants (and I didn’t have the budget for the Double RL version) we did a trade! She got an awesome new necklace from one of her favorite artists, Surplus, and I got the pants! We still alight about it when we see each other – another woman’s trash is MY treasure!

18K gold and diamond shield necklace by Hitchcock Madrona (on oxidized sterling silver chain). I have plenty of these for holiday!

I love the small checks of the vest paired with the larger plaid of this Barbour scarf. At $65, these Barbour scarves are a great gift for everyone on your list – father, mother, husband, wife, son, daughter, dog. Anyone!

XOXO

Erica


Travel: Santa Barbara Sept. 2012

While Dustin was busy (I mean BUSY) on the physical installation of the current interiors, I went away with my family to the beaches and always perfect weather of Santa Barbara.  Ever since I had my baby two years ago, Dustin has been the anchor of the boutique’s physical transformation.  No longer are we alone painting until 4:00 am only to be back at work for the day at 10:00 am.  This is partly a function of our growth (we can hire it out now) and the fact that I’m a mom and family time is sacred.  Needless to say Dustin, Hitchcock Madrona’s co-owner and my cousin extraordinaire, was working ’round the clock for a solid week.  Dustin managed a cast of painters, carpenters, videographers (yes, we filmed it!), and electricians who worked to bring our current concept to life.  I am working on the blog post tracking Dustin’s inspirational road trip, as well as the new concept.

For now, here are some images of me off duty.  Why is this interesting blog fodder?  I thought it might be a good time to talk about the concept of “second skin jewelry”.  This is a term I came up with to describe jewelry that you can live in comfortably.  It stays on your body and becomes a part of you, like a second skin.  A classic example would be the Cartier love bracelet.  People wear those (they don’t come off easily) for years and years – remarkably, even decades.  I love that concept!

Butterfly Beach.  Men’s Gap shirt bought on sale and white shorts purchased at a consignment store.

Me and my baby!

We visited Underwood Family Farm in Somis, CA to play in the sandbox, feed some animals, and stock up on fresh food for our week.  As you can see, I relied on my vintage red polka-dot bandana for easy mornings.  Do I look authentic?  Fooled you – I’m actually a city-girl-farm-poser.  I am wearing a Target t-shirt and Double RL jeans (aka paid a lot of money for those holes!).

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You can classify a piece as “second skin” jewelry if it fits one or more of these requirements.  Can you 1) sleep with it on? 2) swiftly pass an airport metal detector? 3) shower, bathe or swim with it on? 4) wear it to the gym?  All of these requirements can be met if the piece of jewelry is stylistically small and unobtrusive.  It also needs to be made from genuine materials, such as gold, sterling silver, and precious stones.  Precious stones usually rate high on the hardness scale and are quite tough.

Above are my second skin necklaces: Gold #2 by Code Lulu Frost (you can hardly see it in this photo) and gold, diamond and sterling silver heart by Hitchcock Madrona (see detail below).

Yellow gold filled bangle cuffs by hitchcock Madrona.  Literally, I have not taken these off for months.  We are sold out of the first shipment but more are on the way!  Sterling silver, rose and yellow gold filled available.

Delicate 18K gold ring by hitchcock Madrona (middle finger).  I am also wearing my faux diamond wedding ring I like to take traveling.

A new version of my heart necklace (from first NYC post) – I added a little diamond on the top left corner (when right-side-up) to symbolize the position of your heart.

Goats in the sky!  It was amazing how the goats negotiate the 15 foot high ramps crisscrossing the farmyard.

XOXO

Erica


Officially Fall Outfit of the Day: Claire’s Return

Fall is in full swing around Hitchcock Madrona and we have all the cold weather gear you need from head to toe. Literally, we are selling hats, sweaters, coats, and socks. This season has been fun broadening our boutique’s offerings. We are so accustomed to selling jewelry that I get a big rush when we sell a pair of socks. Speaking of socks, we have some awesomely cozy and fabulous (of course) socks from Pantherella (England).  I am into the over-the-knee style and will figure out how to wear them asap. Blog post to come!

As you can see, I bribed Claire into another photo shoot. She even agreed to wear lipstick – I will turn her into a diva in no time!

Cashmere sweater by Hitchcock Madrona. Copper, brass and semi-precious stone necklaces by Xenia Mara (layered).  Hailwood coat by Barbour International.

Have I expressed my utter devotion to these short Barbour boots??!  Seriously, there is no reason why you should not own a pair.  Utilitarian Seattle chic. No brainer! I love them because they are a bit unexpected (not Hunter) and they are so light and easy to wear!  I get sore ankles when I wear the big, heavy, tall Wellies.  These are perfect to slip on and run out the door.

“Organic bling” of this druzy quartz ring by Hitchcock Madrona is perfect with the casual/outdoor style of the outfit.

We have sizes 7-9 in the short boots (all black).  They are running a bit big but I actually like that so that I can wear a wool sock comfortably.

How cool are these socks from Patherella?  Maroon, pink and cream. Perfection. I wore these with clunky platform heals and a jean skirt the other day.

Today was the first day of the season that I turned the heat on in the shop. Milestone!  Come visit and update your sock drawer!  I am sure it needs it – mine does!

XOXO

Erica


Outfit of the Day: Featuring MOSCOT Eyewear

I am interrupting my NYC blog for a quick outfit of the day post and an exciting announcement! These photos were taken a few weeks ago when the sun was still shinning in Seattle (I am NOT complaining about the weather – it has been beautiful!). I cannot stop wearing my MOSCOT frames! Hitchcock Madrona will be the exclusive seller for MOSCOT Eyewear in the Pacific Northwest. MOSCOT is a company that is over 100 years old with a rich history as a family business that has been passed down five generations. We are honored to bring this wonderful product to Seattle. MOSCOT has been on Dustin’s radar since he read about the company in GQ Magazine at the tender age of 14. That was a FEW years ago!

“Meckie” frames in black by Moscot.

Steel necklace by Surplus (bottom). Sterling silver monogram shield necklace by Hitchcock Madrona.

Gold filled bangle cuff bracelets by Hitchcock Madrona. Woven cotton and chain bracelet by Venessa Arizaga.

Sterling silver industrial bracelet by Hitchcock Madrona. Prism ring by Eric Saeter.

More photos to come of Dustin and I at MOSCOT headquarters in NYC. Email me if you would like to know when the frames are in stock. They are all ophthalmic quality – ready for your prescription. We are also getting sunglasses.

XOXO

Erica


Inspiration: Earth Tones and Mixed Metals

Before I left for vacation I persuaded Claire, barista at the Hi Spot Cafe, to get jeweled up and let me snap her photo. Her hair was down that day (it is normally piled on top of her head in a “Claire bun”) and she looked just like a model a la Ralph Lauren. She doesn’t have a stitch of make-up on – zero. She did have a glass of wine to loosen up before the photo shoot though. As you can see we had fun – I will make her my model again!

Cotton scarf by Hitchcock Madrona. Arrowhead ring by Pamela Love.

Gold thread and chain necklace by Venessa Arizaga.

Vintage chain and labradorite bracelet by Xenia Mara. Arrowhead ring by Pamela Love – also available in black. These rings are so hot!

Copper and leather cuff by Hitchcock Madrona (her right hand).

I am back from vacation and I have TONS of blogging material!

XOXO

Erica


Layering: Delicate Necklaces

The necklace layering that I do on this blog is usually worn by me in an over-the-top way. I know that piles of jewels is NOT for the everyday (unless you are me). As interesting as it is too see “editorial” looks, I think it is also nice to see more wearable options. I have picked out some of my favorite delicate necklaces in the store to create layering combinations. I think they are wearable and casual but still edgy and fashion-forward. You can also replace one of these layers with something that you already have in your jewelry wardrobe. I love mixing sentimental or antique pieces into more current combinations.

Simple, solid gold arrowhead necklace by Loren Stewart. I actually love this piece on its own. Alone, it is very delicate – just a hint or suggestion of jewelry (love that idea!). Loren Stewart is exactly the type of “fine” jewelry line that I, and our clients, love.  The designers never over design and let the materials (they often mix metals and incorporate diamonds) speak for themselves. I always describe Loren Stewart pieces as “fine jewelry with an edge”. Love everything that they do! We will be getting in a large holiday order in the next month. I can’t wait – we are expecting some really high-end items from the line for the first time. Bring it on!

I paired the Loren Stewart arrowhead necklace with a simple turquoise strand. I wanted to use another medium (gemstones) in this combo. I also LOVE gold and turquoise together. To mix it up and give the combo some toughness I layered the sterling silver Pamela Love talon necklace. In my opinion, if you want to add Pamela Love to your collection this is such a great piece to consider. It is one of her classic designs and can be worn all the time. I know it is not to everyone’s taste but it is so wonderfully macabre.

Solid gold “4” necklace by Lulu Frost. These little gold numbers are from her fine jewelry line untitled CODE.  They are all based on the shapes of the room numbers at the Plaza Hotel. I have been wearing a “2”necklace ever since my boy turned two a few weeks ago and it is perfect. Next, I wanted a round pendant to give some weight to the combo so I picked our sterling silver coin necklace. There are little diamonds embedded in each prong and the frame is custom made. The coin is authentic (consulted with a numismatist, aka coin collector) from Greece and is about two thousand years old. Love a piece with a story!

I can’t talk about layering without mentioning the bullet/crystal necklaces by Unearthen. I wear mine constantly! They are the perfect mid-length so they don’t interfere with anything else in my necklace collection. Therefore, the perfect last layer. Again, it toughens the look. When layering many delicate necklaces, is important to give it some strength.

I hope you enjoyed this post. I would love to see YOUR necklace layering. Please post photos on our Facebook page – Hitchcock Madrona!

XOXO

Erica