My So Charmed Life

WIPs, personal stories, an occasional interview, and links to fabulous finds in the world of craft.

Tool Envy


The most indispensable thing EVER for a crafty girl with aging eyes–the Head Magnifyer. Late in the semester at school, I discovered a drawer full of these and my life was changed. Best feature is that the magnifyer flips up so you can work with your seed beads etc, and then get up and walk across the studio without killing … more

New, WIP, and BETTER Photos


So, this post will NOT feature the work I’ve been doing in metalsmithing class… this is work I’ve been doing at home DURING the period of the metalsmithing class. There is so much that I want to say about jewelry, about art, about making and selling. But I’m going to save that for another time, and just get these images … more

Heavy Metal


For my birthday this year, the BF lovingly gave me the gift of tuition for Metalsmithing for Jewelry, Course AR229 at Montgomery College, Rockville Campus. For you non-locals, this is a small community college, about which I had a very snobbish attitude… with my year at RISD, my art degree from UMD, and my decades in the practice of making. … more

A New Post About New Work


So it’s been a crazy kind of year at my fulltime graphic design gig (designfarm), which my dears is a very good thing indeed. And I say that with the utmost gratitude to the gods of fulltime work. That said, there just hasn’t been much of me left to make jewelry and So Charmed has been a somewhat neglected affair. … more

Deep Fried at The Ohio State Fair


First stop upon arrival at this year’s Ohio State Fair: the sheep barn. The babies were getting tucked in for the night in their pj’s, so they could rest up and not soil themselves before winning ribbons at tomorrow’s show. I love the wrinkles on this one. But this baby gets the blue ribbon for most fabulous shape! Don’t hate … more



Wish I could claim this idea for my own, but alas, the crux of it was someone else’s. Still, this is my take on a mini tiara, all tricked out steampunk style, to go with the Westwood Anglomania shoes I posted about yesterday. It features an actual vintage keyhole escutcheon, other hardware, and clock parts, all of which were in … more

Anglomania! and New Kicks


You guys miss my shoe postings don’t you?? Well. I ordered these divine Vivienne Westwood shoes from Zappos to go with a killer vintage 40’s dress I’m wearing to a wedding in the fall and they arrived today. They are just fab! Vegan, with a rich, weird plastic smell for you PVC freaks out there, darling heart-buckle, and a walkable … more

Jodi’s (alleged) Fountain of Youth


I posted this photo to Facebook this morning and a friend asked: Jodi, how do you stay so young [looking]? I tossed off a quick facebooky answer but have been thinking about this excellent question all morning. First of all: I’m as old as the rest of you! I have wrinkles and lines, and a chicken waddle that makes me … more

South Beach Vegetarian: Summer Lunch P1 Variety is the Spice of Life


Oddly, I seem to be on a Mediterranean kick this week, even though the theme of this post is variety… especially regarding salads. I’m the only one in our family of 3 eating this way, and I just can’t get to the grocery more than once per week. This leaves me combining some of the same things in different ways … more

South Beach Vegetarian: Summer Lunch P1 / Crunch Your Veggies


This is my second time using the South Beach Diet as a vegetarian, and I’m feeling so great about it that I thought it’d be fun to share some ideas for success. First of all, don’t let the name fool ya. I know, they all say this, but SB is less a diet and more a way to eat. I … more

Rattle & Hum


Here are two new necklaces that I will not likely ever part with but which I wanted to share anyway. Above & below: (It’s a) Material Girl! Giant early plastic baby rattle; I don’t think it’s celluloid, likely a bit later, 1950’s or thereabouts. I’m sure I had one of these. It’s filled with the most fascinating floating magenta glitter, … more

Inspiration: CDG


Oh these many years of longing for the wearable art of Rei Kawakubo, design genius behind the formidable Comme des Garcons. Alas, I shall likely never be able to afford such treasures, but can, and will take inspiration. These first images are from the discount designer website Yoox, garments currently available at astronomical sale prices. Can you see the little … more

Zum Zum UNITE!


I am not content dear readers to only be The Girl With the Most Beads… I must also be The Girl With the Most Frocks. And, to that end, I have been thrifting for 3+ decades now… constantly scoring great vintage on what can only be described as a lifelong treasure hunt. I have also experimented with designing and making … more

Au Revoir Paris and SEE YOU AGAIN SOON.


Everything must come to an end and thus concludes my Paris blog. This will serve as a simple photo essay with captions; the images I love that didn’t fit neatly into the other posts. Above, night walking in the City of Light. View from the bedroom window of the apartment on Montmorency. Soundtrack: A Flock of Pigeons. Molly was wowed … more

Pompidou Centre Inside & Out, Featuring Niki de Saint Phalle


Let’s go back to Paris shall we? I know I’d like to. Our rented apartment for the week was situated right between the fabulous Marais District and the Beaubourg District, making the Pompidou Centre one of our key landmarks from which we’d get lost anyway. As you know, I absolutely love gigantic modern art institutions, favorites being the Hirshhorn, MOMAnyc … more

The Girl with the Most Beads


I have had a growing collection of vintage mardi gras beads for many years now and recently my interest in these has peaked again. The most collectable of the old “throws” as they are called are the vintage glass strings, made in the Czech Republic and later Japan, in the 1920’s-30’s. These beads fetch a nice price on the collector’s … more

Paris: Things I Bought + Bonus! Jesse James


Were you thinking it was all about art, literature, espresso, and monuments? Nooooooooo, mes amis. There was shopping. Yes, there was. Today’s post is just the stuff I happen to be wearing here at the office… and there’s a definite color way happening. The shoes above were purchased at Gaspard Yurkievich, deeply discounted as they were (gasp) last season’s stock. … more

Quite Possibly the Most Wonderful Bookstore in the Entire World


The BF is a serious student of the early 20th century lesbian art & literary salon society of the Left Bank area of Paris and has read many books about the likes of Natalie Barney, Kiki deMontparnasse, Gertrude Stein, Djuna Barnes and founder of the best bookstore in the world, Sylvia Beach. Shakespeare & Company–the colorful history of which reads … more



One of my favorite adventures in Paris was lunch at the very famous Laduree, a bakery-turned-pastry-shop-and-tea-salon started in 1862 by Louis Ernest Laduree. Famous for their classic French macaroons (above), we delighted more in an unbelievable cup of hot cocoa (below), as well as a truly fabulous lunch with pastries and espresso for dessert. The interior of Laduree is amazing… … more



The first of several posts about my trip to Paris must be about the exhibition pictured above. Opening on May 6, at Galerie des Bibliothèques, Bibliothèque Historique de la Ville de Paris, 22 rue Mahler, 75004 Paris and running through August 1 when it will move to the Rimbaud Museum in Charleville, this event was the impetus for our travel. … more

Button Button


Who’s got the button? Well… I know, but I’m not telling. Suffice to say that over the weekend I was granted entrance to the inner sanctum of one of the most prominent and experienced importers of Czech bohemian glass buttons in the USA. Folks, I’m not a religious woman, but I thought I had died and awoken in heaven. When … more

American Pickers: The Jodi Episode


I guess I’ve been a picker all my life. It started back at RISD with my first sojourn to a Salvation Army store and I’ve been addicted to thrifting ever since. The 70’s were a real heyday for this passion, especially for vintage fashionistas. Back then an intricately beaded 1950’s cashmere sweater could be had for a quarter, a 1930’s … more

Hearts A’Plenty


It’s getting near that time of year again, where hearts are beating louder than usual, expressing their love on St. Valentine’s Day. Hearts have been an icon of choice at So Charmed since the beginning; you can find them in every collection on the site. Some hearts are a bit macabre… pictured above, Bring Me the Heart of Marie Antoinette. … more

Silly Kitties


Where’s Iggy? THERE’S IGGY!!!!! (And his brother, Angelo, in the background) Angelo often hides under blankets too, but tends to do a better job tucking in paws and tail.

Nature vs. Nurture


A constant conversation in the life of an adoptive mom, Nature vs. Nurture. While my mom is fond of calling my Korean-adoptee daughter, Molly, “Little Jodi” there are definitely ways in which her Nature shows itself to be nothing of sort. Her Nurture? Ahh, that is another matter all together! I am blogging this morning to share the evidence of … more

earrings earrings earrings + shoes


I’m just crazy for earrings these days. I love making ’em. I love wearing ’em. And I even love photographing ’em. The pair pictured above feature handblown Venetian glass hollow beads with circus stripes and glittering copper aventurine. Copper findings make these really special. Another favorite recent pair, in a very limited edition due to the availability of supplies. Cloudy … more

A Series of Short Posts on Random Topics


Podcast Heavn’: EMERGENCY PANTS, or Top 5 Reasons I Love Bridget & Shane


So with the gift of this amazing iTouch for Chanukah last year, I’ve finally come around to the world of Podcasts. Until last week, my favorite was The Moth, brilliant live storytelling that has made me both laugh and cry (mostly laugh), and is a must-listen. Recent Moth faves: Michaela Murphy on her family’s obsession with spying on the Kennedys, … more

Tutu Factory


At our house, the crafts are always flowing, and one of our favorite materials is TULLE. We just can’t get enough of the stuff… it’s so darn girly and fussy and fun. With help from some of her super creative friends, Molly has been making the most beautiful tutus! Some of them are traditional princess-style, some (above) have a more … more

Wasabi !


Not only do I sell my jewelry on Etsy these days, I’m also a rabid Etsy buyer… from independent fashion (dresses! corsetry!), to vintage collectibles, to handcrafted dolls… too much of my hard-earned pay (of which lately there is simply too little for this sort of nonsense) goes toward my obsession with other artist’s obsessions. Call me a patron ok? … more

A Good Day Starts with a Good Breakfast


And on Sundays at Chez Darwin, that means homemade crepes! But wait… How did we get to the yummy deliciousness above, a warm paper-thin pancake smothered in blueberry jam… let’s see shall we? It all started with a Fete de la Crepe in Molly’s 6th grade French class, a l’ecole. Merci beaucoup to Mme Mangiafico for teaching the students something … more

Please Won’t You…


This is the second time that cool chick Sahar Vahidi, ed-in-chief of the above-named magazine, has contacted me for jewelry to include in one of her fabulous fashion shoots. And of course, what could I say but Shut Up! Yes! Jewelry can turn itty bitty in a magazine spread so I’m including the piece pictured for you to have a … more



Some of you may already know that Courtney Love Cobain has been shopping at So Charmed lately… shopping quite a bit in fact. You’ve asked just what she’s purchased and I don’t think she’ll mind me sharing some of that with you. Pictured above is my answer to the punk princess’ obsession with Marie Antoinette, a yummy rosary style necklace … more

Mad Plaid Cuffies


You fashion grls out there know: Cuffs are the new black. Or whatever. But the truth is, this is a great, flexible format within which to create. I did some fun knitted ones awhile back and here is a new batch. These are being offered as assymetrical one-of-a-kind pairs. FUN! This pair features a lovely rhinestone button/badge and sweet creamy … more

Earrings & Furniture


I’ve gone completely earring crazy of late, creating an entire collection at the So Charmed site, cleverly titled For Your Ears Only and priced right at under $50, many under $25. Most pairs are one of a kind and ready to ship now, so if you are behind the eightball for the holidays, here’s a good option for ya. You’ll … more

Stuff I Love that Other People Made


It had to happen. My daughter Molly and her BFF Corrie are now making–AND SELLING–jewelry. And I’m here to tell you, their stuff really rocks. I’m one of their bestest customers, and I am, as you know, a highly discerning jewelry-maven. What’s lovely about their work is that they very smartly operate within their abilities… while pushing themselves a bit … more

Like Snowflakes


I don’t know just how many custom charm bracelets I’ve designed and created to date… lots though. Dozens, maybe 50, maybe more. And each time one of these delightful opportunities comes into my life, I suffer a moment of doubt at first (the typical facing-the-blank-white-page fear)… Have I found all of the possible solutions? Can this one be as perfectly … more



I’m just so obsessed with the circus lately, it’s bordering on (or has become) a weird sickness in its own right. I am old enough to have been to many many circus’s and carnivals as a young child. Suffice to say, I found almost nothing to enjoy, and everything to fear and loathe. Some say I was a “sensitive” child. … more

Does this look like fun to you?


Molly and I spent a week at our beloved Rehoboth Beach Delaware this August, basking in the sun and ocean, eating horrific but delicious junk food and chasing Amish people with our camera (another story for another time)… but the thing we did the most, or at least with the most intensity was… gambling at Funland. For this I am … more

Summer in The City


It was 100 degrees in the shade but that didn’t stop me, Molly, Corrie (Molly’s BFFL), David (the BF), and Irene (the BF’s mom) from romping around both the Lower East and West Sides of Manhattan last weekend. Molly and Corrie dressed as twins the entire weekend, making it easy to keep track of them! Like a school field trip. … more

← Older posts Newer posts →