It’s All About the Angles with Janis Kerman

Geometry finally makes sense to me when I look at Janis Kerman’s designs!  There is something so clean and neat about her work that really appeals to my sense (and maybe desire for!) order and structure.  Her asymmetrical earrings, like the ones in this picture, are some of my favorites.  I love the fact that she says “it’s the balance, not the symmetry” when it comes to design. I think of that as a corollary to “jewelry pieces should coordinate, not be matchy-matchy”.  The other thing  that Janis is a master at is taking older jewelry pieces  (a.k.a. the things that you’re not wearing and are just sitting in a drawer somewhere — but you don’t have the heart to give away) and creating something brand new from it.  This is the necklace she made for me a couple of years ago from some necklaces and earrings that I had.

Ellen Pearls BACK

One of the things that is so rewarding is to hear a customer who has a “repurposed” piece of jewelry from Janis tell us how much she loves it — both because of how it looks, as well as because it enables her to wear things that have sentimental meaning but haven’t seen the light of day in years.  This is a great time of year to go through your jewelry box (you know, it’s that spring cleaning thing!) and see if there aren’t some pieces that you’re not totally ready to part with but that you aren’t wearing.  And, as you can tell from the earrings in the picture above, it doesn’t matter if you don’t have matching stones.

If you’d like to spend some time with Janis so that she can sketch some designs for you, please give us a call so that we can schedule an appointment.  In addition to the custom design work, there will be plenty of Janis’ finished jewelry to look at that you might want to make your own too.  The trunk show and custom design event runs Thursday and Friday, May 12 and 13, from 10am – 7pm, and Saturday, May 14 from 10am-5pm.

 


From the Bench: Meet Jennifer Dawes

Well now, it’s been quite a while since we’ve posted a “From the Bench” designer profile and that’s not good!  We’re going to ramp this section of our blog a bit going forward and, to start things off, we’re focusing on Jennifer Dawes, the designer of Dawes Design jewelry.  Our friends at Indesign.Jewelry are making it easy for us to bring you some inside info about Jennifer’s approach to design, as they recently conducted this great Q&A with her.  It was SO great, that there is a follow-up interview too!

One of the things I like the most about Jennifer and her jewelry is that she has a definite point of view — a point of view on what she wants to create, how she wants to create it and how she wants to run her business.  We’ve gone from carrying more of Jennifer’s “everyday” jewelry to carrying more of her bridal rings like the ones in the picture above.  Moving forward, you’ll be seeing more of the everyday gemstone collections in the store.  In the meantime, I hope that you’ll take a look at these interviews and enjoy getting to know one of our designers a little bit better!


It’s Time — A Jamie Joseph Trunk Show!

Back by popular demand!  Yep, we had just barely begun to announce our 2016 event schedule (which, by the way, is still in the making for the 2nd half of the year) when customers began asking when we would be having a Jamie Joseph show.  It’s always a fun time as Jamie sends boxes of rings in a multitude of gorgeous colors/stones and customers try to decide between this one and that one.  This year, in addition to the gemstone rings, Jamie will be sending some of her rings from her new bridal collection which was recently profiled by Minnesota Bride magazine.  The line is beautiful, and the organic look and feel that we’ve all come to know and love about her work is present in in the bridal collection as well.  There are bound to be other goodies in the selection that makes it’s way from Jamie’s Seattle studio to the Twin Cities for the weekend of April 8-9 — it’s always a surprise to open the box and see what’s inside.  Whatever it is, it’s sure to be bold, beautiful and will definitely put a smile on the lucky lady who gets to wear it!


You’re Invited to Breakfast at Max’s for Valentine’s Day!

That well known celebration of love is upon us – you know what I’m talking about – it’s Valentine’s Day! – and you’re invited to Breakfast at Max’s on February 13. We’re calling it “baubles, bites and bubbly” because you’ll be able to enjoy delicious breakfast treats to eat and drink from our neighbors at Blackstone Bistro while you shop for all of your Valentine’s Day gifts. In addition to that, we’re having a live MyTalk 107.1 Shop Girls broadcast going on, because it just wouldn’t be the Saturday before Valentine’s Day around here if Allison and Harmony weren’t in the store talking jewelry and chocolate gift ideas.  And, while Audrey Hepburn can’t join us (and we do think that our cover girl Kate does a great job at channeling Ms. Hepburn from that certain movie about breakfast in front of a particular jewelry store…..), we certainly hope that you will — no reservations needed!  The breakfast fare will be available between 10:30 – 1:00, with the live broadcast taking place between 11-1.  As an added bonus, the first 25 people who come for breakfast will receive a heart “token” from that can be redeemed any time on February 13 at Blackstone Bistro for a cocktail of their choosing.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again.  While many dismiss VDay as being too commercial and simply made up, we choose to embrace the spirit of the “season” as we don’t believe that there is ever such a thing as too much love!


From Across “The Pond” — A Jo Hayes Ward Trunk Show!

The British are coming, the British are coming!  Ok, so not exactly.  But Jo Hayes Ward, who is from Britain, IS coming to Max’s for her very first trip to the store (and to Minneapolis)!  Jo’s work is recognized for its intricate, architectural aesthetic and is really unique and highly contemporary and – well – just very cool. When I first met Jo a couple of years ago, I know instantly that her jewelry had to be at Max’s because it was so beautiful and different from anything I had seen before.  She is part of the Rock Vault, a program run by the British Fashion Council, aimed at highlighting a select group of Britain’s most innovate jewelry designers.  I’m so excited to have her in the store because, in addition to making stunning jewelry, she is an absolute delight.

Keeping with the British theme, we’ll be enjoying a bit of the “High Tea” tradition during the trunk show, complete with chocolate sampling featuring the chocolates of British chocolatier Willie’s Cacao.  I first became aware of Willie’s chocolates a couple of years ago and, when it was finally possible to import them from the UK, I jumped at the chance.  I’m a purist when it comes to chocolate — the less that’s in it the better — and Willie’s is straight up cacao and sugar (except for the bars that have delicious pairings/inclusions like ginger and lime).  You can read more about Willie’s Cacao here — and Willie’s story  is both fascinating and educational.  Yes, there really is a Willie!

The trunk show is Friday and Saturday, February 5 and 6 and Jo and I are both hoping to see you.  Cheers!

 


All We Need is Love!!!

That calendar-marked day of love is approaching!  Now I know that some (and maybe a lot, but I hope it’s not most) of you are anti-Valentine’s Day, feeling that it’s nothing but a marketing ploy by greeting card and candy manufacturers.  Not wanting to mix holiday metaphors, I say bah-humbug to that.  While it’s true that we shouldn’t need reminders to say “I love you” to those we do in fact love, and that giving a “just because” gift once in while is genuine and truly the best, I have no problem with a forced reminder (and that is not because Max’s is a jewelry and chocolate boutique!) to take a minute to celebrate those we love.

Ok, disclaimer finished.  Because we ARE a jewelry and chocolate boutique, and because Valentine’s Day IS a day known for giving such gifts, we thought we’d put together some ideas for you to get the gift giving juices going!  So, in the spirit of the season, here is a little gift guide filled with some things that we love as gift ideas for the day of love!


Tick Tock — Max’s Semi-Annual Sale is Winding Down!

Tick, tock – no pressure here, but just a friendly reminder that our semi-annual sale is winding down. Yep, the unsold items go back in the safe at the end of the day on Saturday.  Select items are marked down between 30-80% off of the original price, so I’m thinking it may be worth a trip over to see if there’s anything with your name on it.  As a bonus, you’ll see some new things in our cases too!


Wrap up Holiday Shopping with Anne Sportun!

Wrapped up that holiday shopping yet? Well, if not, I’ve got a great idea. How about stopping by for the Anne Sportun trunk show to find the perfect gift?!?! Things just wouldn’t be the same around here if we didn’t wrap up the holiday shopping season with an Anne Sportun trunk show.  It just wouldn’t be right. A definite customer favorite, Anne looks to nature for inspiration, striving to combine the precious with the everyday.  Anne’s colleague Suzanne will be in the store Friday afternoon, December 18 through the end of the day Sunday, December 20 showcasing the complete Anne Sportun Collection, including the new Vintage Bridal line and never seen before one-of-a-kind designs fresh from their Toronto Studio.  Join us for some holiday shopping — and, yes, it is ok to give yourself a gift! — at our last designer trunk show of 2015.

 

 


Max’s Welcomes Annie Fensterstock!

You know how it is when you see a picture and JUST KNOW that you love something?  That’s how it was when my eyes first fell upon the jewelry from Annie Fensterstock.  The warmth of the gold, the the vibrancy of the colors, the sparkle of the diamonds in classic, yet very modern designs — it was definitely love at first sight.  Fast forward about a year or two when I had an opportunity to meet Annie and, for the first time, set my eyes upon her jewelry in person. Definite swoon.  Since that time, it has been an honor and a privilege to represent her work at Max’s.  Annie’s jewelry is a beautiful blend of ancient goldsmithing techniques and contemporary design and are, I believe, truly works of art.  While we’ve represented Annie for a few years, this show marks her first visit to Max’s and we’re so excited to have her in the store.The trunk show takes place on Friday, Saturday and Sunday of this week, with Annie in the store on Friday and Saturday. I hope that you’ll stop by to see this beautiful collection and meet Annie and, who knows….one of her beauties just might go home as holiday gift that will be sure to wow its recipient.


Let’s Get Personal This Weekend — With Erica Molinari!

We’re getting personal this weekend with a trunk show of Erica Molinari’s jewelry. Erica is best know for her Renaissance Charm collection consisting of hand carved charms inspired by Greek coins with a unique, updated twist. Many of these charms are double-sided with an inspirational Latin phrase and customers have so much fun roaming through her collection to find the charms that best expresses their personality. Erica will be in the store to help you choose from among many possibilities, and she is a lot of fun to be around. It’s time to get your holiday shopping game on and shopping the trunk show (Friday and Saturday, December 4 and 5) is a great way to start!

Oh — one more thing.  I’m quite sure that our chocolate selection has never been as sumptuous as it is right now. Chocolate with blueberries, chocolate with ginger and lime, chocolate with toffee and sesame seeds, “gin & tonic” chocolate – anyone out there hungry yet…..???


Carolina Bucci, Small Biz Saturday, and The Shop Girls!

There will be no turkey hangover this year at Max’s because we’re launching head first into the holiday shopping season!  The warm weather this fall has played mind games with us I think but, as the first snowflakes are starting to fall this week, there’s no doubt that the holiday season is upon us.  We’re ready for it though, as our cases are filled with beautiful artisan made jewelry from over 40 designers and our shelves are stocked with specialty chocolates from around the world. You know us — we love a good party — and we love that American Express does so much to support small businesses with their promotion of Small Business Saturday.  That said, this Saturday is not only a going to be fun, it’s going to be an overall fun (and VERY sparkly) weekend, as we’re having a trunk show featuring the work of Italian jewelry designer Carolina Bucci on Friday, November 27 thru Sunday November 29.  Carolina is best known for her woven silk thread and gold chain jewelry, and having just been sent the list of everything that she’s sending for the weekend, things are REALLY going to sparkle.  And, having the Shop Girls from MyTalk 107.1 here right after Thanksgiving for a live broadcast to help kick off the holiday shopping season is quickly becoming a tradition – Small Business Saturday wouldn’t be the same at Max’s if Allison and Harmony weren’t with us dishing about jewelry, chocolate and all things shopping. So, I hope that I’ve tempted you – beautiful jewelry, delicious chocolates, a Carolina Bucci trunk show and the ShopGirls.


Ray Griffiths, Max’s and Fashion Group International!

I love trunk shows.  We have a lot of them at Max’s and there’s a reason — actually, several reasons.  One of the best things about my job is being able to go to various jewelry shows to search for new designers and new products to bring to our customers and the Twin Cities market at large.  The other thing is the ability to get to know our designers and really establish a relationship with them that will (hopefully) last a long time.  Trunk shows are a way to let our customers have the experience of getting to know an artist whose work they admire.  It’s a lot of fun for me to watch the interaction between a customer and a designer — especially once they’ve gotten to know each other over the visits to Max’s.  Last year was the first year that designer Ray Griffiths visited Max’s and the reaction to his work as well as the feedback on getting to know Ray was phenomenal, so we’re excited to welcome him back for a weekend filled with beautiful jewelry and fun.  The trunk show is November 13 -15.

Ray has a fascinating back story.  At the ripe young age of just 15, Ray began a apprenticeship to jewelry masters and tiara makers at Dunklings Jewellers in his native Australia. When I first met Ray, I asked him about this — just how big could the demand for crowns and tiaras (and their restoration) really be?!?!  His response?  “When you live in a former British commonwealth, it’s big!  Authentic crown work is Ray’s signature and is present on all of his jewelry.  Please join us to hear more about this, as well as how Ray approaches design and the jewelry business during a free networking event presented by the Minneapolis/St. Paul chapter of Fashion Group International.  The event is on Thursday evening, November 12 between 5:30 – 7:30 in the Excelsior & Grand Community Room.  Please call us for additional information.

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